Top 10 places to spend Christmas in the UK

It’s the most wonderful time of the year; but just where are the best places to spend Christmas in the UK?

Whether you want to stay local, fancy a trip just down the road or are ready for an adventure across the country, there are plenty of locations up and down the UK which come alive at Christmas.

So, without further ado, here are our top ten offerings of where to spend Christmas in the UK:


Where better to start than Bath, where the festive market has become one of the best places to visit during Christmas? But that’s not the half of what occurs in the beautiful city, famed for its striking 18th-century architecture, iconic sights and natural hot springs. There’s also an ice rink and glow-in-the-dark mini golf until January 2nd, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs pantomime at the Theatre Royal, and plenty of other festive fun to keep everyone amused.

Search Bath accommodation here.


One of the best places to see Christmas lights in the UK, the Cornish village of Mousehole comes alive with kaleidoscopic light midway through December. The switch-on event is quite the occasion too, with an open-air Carolaire service leading revellers in a sing-song before the lights – a beautiful display of sea serpents, boats and whales – illuminate the harbour. The switch-on this year takes place on December 16th at 7pm, with the lights then on every night from 5pm-11pm until January 6th.

Search Mousehole accommodation here.


Fun fairs, ice rinks and an Alpine Village all await you at Winter Wonderland, Cardiff’s premier Christmas event which runs from the middle of November until the start of January. It’s also the perfect city to get all your shopping done, with the city centre’s Christmas market, department stores and high street chains selling everything you’ll need. If that wasn’t enough, Cardiff Castle also runs a beautiful fireside Santa’s Grotto, while the theatres are always chock-a-block with wonderful feelgood shows.

Search Cardiff accommodation here.

The Highlands

If it’s a white Christmas you crave, one of the best places to go for Christmas would be the Scottish Highlands, where you may well find yourself enjoying enchanting snowfall. The northern reaches also offer a fantastic chance to spot Aurora Borealis – or the Northern Lights, as they are commonly known. What better than spending Christmastime in a cosy cottage, with snow trickling outside the window and the Northern Lights illuminating the sky?

Search Scottish Highlands accommodation here.


Staying in Scotland, where Auld Reekie is alive with Christmas celebrations from the tail end of November, throughout December and into January. Every year there is fun for family and friends in the form of fairground rides, with various Christmas Markets also providing a chance to get your shopping done. The theatres are also full of pantomimes and shows celebrating the joyous time, while other festivities including a Christmas Tree Maze, Ice Skating and Santa’s Grotto ensure the fun continues all the way up to Hogmanay on New Year’s Eve.

Search Edinburgh accommodation here.


There aren’t many more picturesque places to spend Christmas than the beautiful walled, medieval city where an annual Christmas Festival is held. The towering Christmas tree in St Helen's Square is a great place to start before plotting your way over towards St Sampson’s Square and Parliament Street where the magnificent market stalls of the St Nicholas Fair await you. There’s also a Winter Wonderland, home to the north of England’s largest outdoor ice rink, funfair rides and Santa in his log cabin.

Search Yorkshire accommodation here.


Credit: RNLI

The gorgeous cliffside village in North Devon is stunning all-year-round – but it’s Christmas when a medley of events truly showcases its unique spirit and location. The cobbled streets provide a multi-coloured path, with Christmas lights – put up in aid of the local RNLI – illuminating your walk down the hill to the harbour. There’s also an annual Boxing Day barbecue, with live music, mulled wine and a treasure hunt, while the fancy dress New Year’s Eve celebrations are also worth a visit.

Search North Devon accommodation here.


The Kent town has strong connections with Charles Dickens, so, with A Christmas Carol being one of the most popular Christmas stories ever, it’s only fitting there’s a huge celebration dedicated to the author. The Dickensian Christmas Festival is held in December, and turns the clock back 200 years to showcase a whole host of Victorian delights. The Rochester Castle Christmas Market is also worth a visit, and attendees can enjoy mulled wine and roasted chestnuts as they browse the various stalls for gift ideas.

Search Kent accommodation here.


Worcester Cathedral is beautiful 365 days a year, but during December and January it’s home to a glorious Christmas Tree Festival, showcasing more than 80 Christmas trees uniquely decorated by different companies and organisations. It’s organised by the Daisychain Benevolent Fund Trust, with proceeds this year going towards the charity’s nominated causes; Teenage Cancer Trust, local children’s hospital wards and Worcester Cathedral. The city also holds a wonderful Victorian Fayre at the start of December, various concerts, theatre shows, and art displays.

Search Worcester accommodation here.


Yes, there is an attraction named Lapland UK, and it can be found in Ascot, Berkshire. It’s a four-hour immersive experience of the Father Christmas story, recreating the North Pole for a month-long celebration of children’s beliefs. In the attraction, kids can help elves in the Toy Factory, decorate gingerbread houses with Mother Christmas, meet Father Christmas and his reindeer, go ice skating and much, much more. It takes place from mid-November up to and including Christmas Eve.

Search Berkshire accommodation here.

Feeling Christmassy? Check out more of our blogs dedicated to the most wonderful time of the year - including a stress-free Christmas Dinner timeline, top Christmas markets and more.

Posted by Simon Lockyer on 11th December 2017