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What To Do In The Lake District This Christmas

1 December 2017

Christmas Lakes

Christmas is a wonderful time of year in the UK, full of festive cheer and crisp wintry air. It’s a season to spend time with family and indulge in some real holiday fun.

And, what better place to do this than in the Lake District? Over the winter period, the towns and villages come alive with Christmas events, from foodie festivals to classic films and more.

Here, we’ve found a roundup of some of the best Christmas activities happening this year in the Lake District, providing fun for all the family.


Christmas markets

The Lake District is home to lots of Christmas markets this year. They provide the perfect opportunity to browse some artisan wares and sample some local specialties.

You can find a list of some of the markets happening in the area here, but the Hawkshead Christmas Fair and Winter Beer Festival (2nd – 3rd December), the Carlisle Winter Wonderland (16th – 21st December), and the Taste Cumbria Cockermouth Christmas Market (9th – 10th December) are some stand-out options.


Watch a show

What would Christmas be without a classic festive show? There are plenty of options to choose from throughout the Lake District. So you’re bound to find something to enjoy, whatever you fancy.

Theatre by the Lake, located on the shores of Derwentwater, is showing a stunning rendition of The Secret Garden from the Friday 24th November to Saturday 13th January.

Alternatively, Theatre Voices Ambleside are performing a family-orientated Christmas show called The Christmas Gift at the Old Laundry Theatre from Tuesday 19th December to Thursday 21st December.

And, for a classic panto, head to Burneside for The Beauty and the Beast in January.


Take a trip on the Ravenglass and Eskdale railway

The Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway, locally known as ‘La’al Ratty’, is one of the oldest and longest narrow gauge railways in England and has seven miles of stunning scenery to the foot of England’s highest mountains.

This year, they are holding the popular Mince Pie trains and Santa Express throughout December.


Winter walks

A trip to the Lake District wouldn’t be complete without a spot of hill-walking, as the area is renowned for its fantastic trails.

Whilst you definitely need to take a bit more care during winter, there’s no reason you can’t enjoy this great local pastime this Christmas.

The National Trust have created a great list of winter walks here so be sure to check those out.


Explore Muncaster Castle

Muncaster Castle is a great option this Christmas, with the estate holding lots of different festive events throughout December.

You can choose from Christmas Owls by Moonlight, Christmas Tea in the Castle, and a Festive on the Wild Side, or just opt for a walk around the stunning gardens itself.


Sing carols

Carolling is a classic festive activity and you have plenty of options to do this throughout the area.

Many local villages and churches will be holding their own events, so be sure to ask a local tourist information office to find out more.

However, some great options include the Ambleside Choral Christmas Concert and the Cartmel Choral Society Christmas Concert (both 9th December). As well as the Flookburgh Band Christmas Carol Concert (16th December).

For more events, check out this page.


Wreath making at Allan Bank

This National Trust property is holding a wonderfully festive season this year and sees the return of many popular events.

You can get crafty by making your own festive wreath on 9th December. Or make your own Christmas card in the Art Room throughout December. Alternatively, you can while away an afternoon listening to Live Christmas Classics. Or return on the 16th December for carols around the tree.


Have a tea party with Father Christmas

From December 16th to December 20th, your little ones can enjoy a special Christmas Tea Party with Father Christmas.

With a showing of The Tailor of Gloucester, a delicious lunch, presents, and a chance to meet Father Christmas, this is a perfect activity for families.

Plus, your ticket also includes entrance into the award-winning World of Beatrix Potter.


Treat your tastebuds

The Lake District is renowned for its culinary specialties, including Grasmere Gingerbread, Cumberland Sausage, and Herdwick lamb.

And, with so many restaurants and pubs in the area, there’s plenty of options for you to sink your teeth into.

Check out this post by The Guardian for a list of the top 10 pubs and inns.


Visit Rheged

Rheged is a great day out for the family and has a whole host of festive events this Christmas.

With film showings, ‘Write to Santa’, a chance to meet Father Christmas, a showing of the beautiful Christmas ballet, The Nutcracker, band concerts, and more, there’s plenty on offer at this attraction throughout December.


So, if you’re thinking of heading to the Lake District this Christmas, check out our page for more information about our Lake District holiday parks.