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Best West Midlands Christmas days out 2021

Christmas days out in the West Midlands sell out fast! This is a comprehensive list of places to see Santa as well as other festive events. I will be updating each location as soon as they release details. As I’m publishing this post well in advance of Christmas, I’ll put a star (*) by the attractions that are currently advertising Christmas events. You’ll be able to jump straight to them using the links in the table below. Please do let me know if I’ve missed any brilliant events off the list, I’d be happy to add them in. Advance booking is essential at all attractions unless otherwise stated. For more days out around the area at any time of year, check out my list of things to do in the West Midlands.

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Best Herefordshire Christmas days out 2021

Brockhampton Estate (National Trust) – Peter Rabbit Winter Activity Trail

Brockhampton Estate have not yet released details of their Christmas event for 2021.

Dates: Not yet released.

Website: Brockhampton National Trust

Review: Reviews of Brockhampton are available on Trip Advisor.

Brockhampton Manor House

Croft Castle (National Trust) – A Peter Rabbit Winter Activity Trail

Croft Castle have not yet released details of their Christmas event for 2021.

Dates: Not yet released.

Website: Croft Castle National Trust

Review: I can’t find a review of the Christmas event, but you can read my review of a dog friendly family day out at Croft Castle.

Croft Castle, Herefordshire in black and white

Eastnor Land Rover – Santa and Drive

Details of the 2021 Christmas event at Eastnor Land Rover have not yet been released.

Santa and drive dates: Not yet released.

Website: Eastnor Land Rover

Review: Plutonium Sox

Santa Drive Eastnor Land Rover mum and two girls toasting marshmallows
Toasting marsh mallows after the Eastnor Santa Safari in Herefordshire

Best Shropshire Christmas days out 2021

Blists Hill Victorian Town – Victorian Christmas

Details of the 2021 Christmas event at Blists Hill Victorian Town have not yet been released.

Dates: Not yet released.

Website: Ironbridge Gorge Museums.

Review: Birmingham Mail

Cart horses at Blists Hill
Sepia photo of two cart horses at Blists Hill

* Hawkstone Park Follies – Santa Safari

Visitors will arrive at Hawkstone Park Hotel to check in. Enjoy a hot drink before getting into a Land Rover to journey across the park, through a Wishing Arch then up hill to Santa’s caves. Stroll through the caves until you reach Santa’s grotto to meet him. Children will receive a gift. Tickets must be booked in advance as they do sell out quickly.

Santa Safari dates: 1st to 23rd December 2021.

Website: Hawkstone Park Follies

Review: Team Stokey

* Ray’s Farm, Bridgenorth – A traditional Christmas

It’s an old-fashioned Christmas at Ray’s Farm this year. Look into a donkey’s stable to see baby Jesus and Mary, Joseph, three kings and three wise men. Talk to Santa who is preparing toys for delivery and meet Frosty the reindeer. Follow a Christmas Trail throughout the farm, meeting farmyard animals as you go.

Dates: Not yet released.

Website: Ray’s Farm

Review: Trip Advisor

* Telford Steam Railway – The Polar Express

The Telford Steam Railway polar express is one of the most magical Christmas experiences around. Board the train in your pyjamas at Froghall Station for a magical journey to the North Pole. Sing along with favourite characters from the film as they tell the story. Enjoy a mug of hot chocolate and a cookie from a dancing chef as you make your way towards the Northern Lights. When you reach Santa’s village, he will climb aboard to give every passenger the first gift of Christmas, a silver bell from his sleigh. Back at the station, extend the fun with a snowball fight and find out if you’re on the naughty or nice list. The journey lasts around an hour and they recommend setting aside 2 hours for the full experience. Pre-booking is essential and this event always sells out early. Telford Steam Railway have recently revealed that tickets for this event will go on sale on Monday 16th August 2021 at 12.25pm.

Polar Express dates: 26th November 2021 to 23rd December 2021.

Website: Telford Steam Railway

Review: Plutonium Sox

Polar Express Telford conductor stamping ticket. This popular West Midlands Christmas event is back for 2021.
The conductor stamping a ticket on the Polar ExpressTelford

Best Staffordshire Christmas days out 2021

* Alton Towers – Santa’s sleepover

A sleepover at Alton Towers ticks every box for a magical Christmas. Stay in your choice of themed hotels and visit Santa with a gift for every child. All visitors will get entry tickets for both the water park and theme park. Explore the Twinkling Stars garden light walk. Only certain rides in the theme park are open, but this will include the CBeebies land attractions. Enjoy a festive evening meal and breakfast. Evening entertainment will include a farewell from Santa. 

Dates: 27th to 28th November 2021 and 3rd to 5th, 10th to 12th and 17th to 23rd December 2021.

Website: Alton Towers

Review: Mini Travellers

* Churnet Valley Railway – Polar Express

For the first time in 2021, Churnet Valley Railway will be hosting the Polar Express train ride. Board the train in your pyjamas at Froghall Station for a magical journey to the North Pole. Sing along with favourite characters from the film as they tell the story. Enjoy a mug of hot chocolate and a cookie from a dancing chef as you make your way towards the Northern Lights. When you reach Santa’s village, he will climb aboard to give every passenger the first gift of Christmas, a silver bell from his sleigh. Back at the station, extend the fun with a snowball fight and find out if you’re on the naughty or nice list. The journey lasts around an hour and they recommend setting aside 2 hours for the full experience. Pre-booking is essential and this is likely to sell out.

Dates: 26th to 28th November 2021, 2nd to 5th, 9th to 12th, 15th to 23rd December 2021.

Website: Churnet Valley Railway

Review: You can read a review of the previous Churnet Valley Railway event, Santa and Steam thanks to Otis and Us. You can also read my review of the Polar Express at Telford Steam Railway which is a very similar event. There is no review of the Polar Express at Churnet Valley because this is the first year it has taken place.

Drayton Manor, Tamworth

Details of the Drayton Manor Christmas event have not yet been released.

Magical Christmas dates: Not yet released.

Website: Drayton Manor

Review: Plutonium Sox

Drayton's Magical Christmas | Drayton Manor Theme Park and Zoo in Tamworth, West Midlands, UK becomes a festive Winter Wonderland at Christmas. Children can meet Santa in the Castle of dreams and families can enjoy the usual rides and attractions along with extra shows, snowstorms, ice skating and beautiful Christmas decorations. The day is rounded off with a Thomas Land parade and a fireworks display. #Christmas #WestMidlands #ThemePark #DraytonManor
Festive Thomas the Tank Engine at Drayton’s Magical Christmas

* National Forest Adventure Farm

Get ready for a North Pole Adventure at the National Forest Adventure Farm this Christmas. On arrival, every child will receive a personalised ticket from Santa. Then, collect some elf coins as you check in before setting off through a magical portal en route to the North Pole. Explore a Victorian High Street with a sweet shop, help Santa’s elves to sort out parcels in the post office and ring bells to keep them on time. Head to the Northern lights to meet a talking polar bear before fixing the toy machine to save Christmas. Silvermist the reindeer is on hand to sing some festive songs with visitors and mother Christmas will help children to decorate gingerbread. Then, it’s time to meet Father Christmas and choose a present from his gift room. The experience lasts around an hour and a half and tickets include National Forest Adventure Farm entry for the whole day. Tickets need to be booked online in advance. Tickets are not yet on sale but the website says they are coming soon. 

Dates: 27th November to 24th December 2021

Website: National Forest Adventure Farm

Review: The Ladybirds’ adventures

* Snowdome, Tamworth – Santa’s Winter Wonderland

2021 will be Santa’s 16th year at the SnowDome in Tamworth and he’s back with a brand new Winter Wonderland stage show in a larger theatre. Reception rooms have also been extended. Visitors can explore the real snow trail with slides, an enchanted forest and snow tubes for sledging down ramps. Animals are waiting to meet you beside Santa’s House in the Christmas village. This year, there’s a traditional carousel and you can post your letter to Santa in his talking post box.

Winter Wonderland dates: 13th, 14th and 19th to 30th November 2021. 1st to 24th and 26th to 31st December 2021 and 1st and 2nd January 2022.

Website: SnowDome

Review: Plutonium Sox

Child on a sledge in the snow with Christmas trees in the background.  The popular West Midlands Christmas event at The Snowdome in Tamworth is back for 2021.
Little girl on a sledge at the SnowDome festive event

Best Warwickshire Christmas days out 2021

Kenilworth Castle (English Heritage)

Details of the Kenilworth Castle Christmas event have not yet been released.

Dates: Not yet released.

Website: Kenilworth Castle

Review: I can’t find a review of this Christmas experience but you can read our review of a dog friendly family day out at Kenilworth Castle.

* Magic Alley, Stratford Upon Avon – A Candy Cane Christmas

Magic Alley will be transformed into an Ice Kingdom for Christmas 2021. Explore ten different rooms on a Christmas quest discovering magical creatures and characters on your way to meet Father Christmas. All children receive an age-appropriate gift from him before continuing on their journey which ends with a visit to a snow-covered enchanted forest. Here, everyone can play in the snow and have a snowball fight. Choose between a Christmas experience for children aged 4 and over or for children aged under 4. The older children’s trail includes basic puzzle solving and reading. Visitors will need to state their child’s age on booking so that they can receive the right gift for their age group.

Dates: 21st November 2021 to 24th December 2021.

Website: Magic Alley

Review: Birmingham Mail

* Warwick Castle, Warwickshire – Christmas at the castle

A Christmas light trail and ice rink lead the festivities outside at Warwick Castle this year. The whole castle will be lit up by thousands of lights, a 20 foot high Christmas tree is up in the Great Hall and Santa will be spreading festive cheer at story time. A winter bird of prey show takes place too, and for the first time visitors can enjoy a Christmas afternoon tea in the Conservatory Tea House. All tickets need to be booked in advance and are likely to sell out. Visitors can book either a castle visit only or add a skate session, story time with Santa or visit to the Christmas light trail. All of those options will need to be booked in advance. For the ultimate Warwick Castle Christmas experience, stay over in a wooden lodge at the Knight’s Village and wake up to the sound of sleigh bells as Santa visits with a special gift for little ones. Then you can join him and the elves for breakfast. 

Christmas at the castle dates: 27th November 2021 to 3rd January 2022.

Website: Warwick Castle

Review: Plutonium Sox

Santa standing in front of a huge fireplace with Christmas trees either side at Warwick Castle. The popular West Midlands Christmas event at Warwick Castle is back for 2021.
Santa at Warwick Castle

Best West Midlands (county) Christmas days out 2021

Birmingham city centre – Frankfurt Christmas Market

Details of the 2021 Birmingham Christmas market have not yet been released.

Frankfurt Christmas Market dates: Not yet released.

Website: German Market

Independent review: Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Christmas Market

Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery – Santa’s Grotto

Details of the 2021 event at the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery have not yet been released.

Santa’s Grotto dates: Not yet released.

Website: Birmingham Museums

Review: Mama Geek

Black Country Living Museum, Dudley – Santa Hunts

Details of the Black Country Living Museum Christmas event have not yet been released.

Dates: Not yet released.

Website: BCLM

Review: There are Trip Advisor reviews of visiting at Christmas and you can read my review of a family day out at the Black Country Living Museum.

* Cadbury World, Birmingham – Christmas Celebration Weekends

Christmas weekends have been running at Cadbury world for a long time now and seem to follow a similar format each year. Santa’s stage show is full of music and festive fun for all the family. His elves even come laden with gifts to give out to visiting children. There’s a festive menu in the Cadbury cafe, handmade festive chocolates to buy in the shop and the annual Cadbury pantomime. Expect a chocolatey twist on the traditional panto. Tickets include both pantomime and Santa’s stage show but you will need to prebook slots for each to fit around the tour.

Christmas celebration weekends dates: Weekends from 20th November to 19th December plus 20th to 23rd December 2021.

Website: Cadbury World

Review: Mama Geek

A family day out at Cadbury World Birmingham festive area in Cadavra ride
Festive area at Cadbury World

* Dudley Canal and Tunnel Trust – A Fairy Tale Christmas 2021

Little Red Riding Hood has wandered into a magical kingdom of fairy tales this Christmas at the Dudley Canal and Tunnel Trust. Unfortunately, the Big Bad Wolf is there too and he wants to keep everybody’s Christmas presents for himself. Visitors will board boats into the caverns and tunnels to follow Red Riding Hood’s adventures as she attempts to outwit the wolf and ensure Santa has plenty of gifts for the children. The first stop is a pantomime by Krazy Kris and his UV friends. Then, look for the wolf’s footprints and search for hidden presents. When you get back on dry land, it’s time to visit Santa and the elves in his Christmas workshop. There’s a gift for all children and adults can enjoy a mince pie and hot drink. Bring your camera for a selfie with the elves and Santa’s Sleigh. They also recommend wearing a Christmas jumper and you can round off your visit with a festive meal or snack at the Gongoozler restaurant. This experience always sells out so it’s worth booking early.  

Fairy Tale Christmas dates: 3rd to 5th, 10th to 12th and 17th to 23rd December 2021.  

Website: Dudley Canal and Tunnel Trust

Review: Trip Advisor

Dudley Zoo, Dudley – Santa’s Grotto

Details of the Dudley Zoo Christmas event have not yet been released.

Santa’s Grotto dates: Not yet released.

Website: Dudley Zoo

Review: Trip Advisor

National Sea Life Centre, Birmingham – Meet Santa

Details of the National Sea Life Centre Christmas event have not yet been released.

Meet Santa dates: Not yet released.

Website: National Sea Life Centre

Review: Plutonium Sox

Santa in sleigh with two little girls, Christmas trees in the background
Children with Santa at National Sea Life Centre Birmingham

Best Worcestershire Christmas days out 2021

* Severn Valley Railway – Steam in Lights

Enjoy a live show on the opposite platform when you arrive at Bridgenorth Station, before the beautifully decorated Steam in Lights train arrives. Once onboard, music and narration unfold in your private compartment. Look out for magical creatures and auroras that can be seen from the train, along with big, bright, bold displays from the windows. They advise arriving 45 minutes before departure to park and the car park is a short walk from the station. Visitors will need to bring a torch. It’s worthy of note that Father Christmas doesn’t travel on these trains. It’s unclear whether they will also be running their usual Santa Specials this year, they are not listed on the website at present. The Severn Valley Railway Christmas experiences always sell out so it is well worth booking early.

Steam In Lights dates: 19th, 20th, 26th, 27th and 30th November 2021 and 1st to 4th, 7th to 11th, 14th to 18th and 20th to 23rd December 2021  

Website: Severn Valley Railway.

Review: Trip advisor

* Three Counties Showground – Malvern Winter Glow

Last year’s Malvern Winter Glow was a lovely evening out given the Covid restrictions but this year it is set to be far bigger and better with four festive experiences all taking place at the Three Counties Showground. Visitors can skate on one of the biggest real ice rinks in the region, enjoy lunch or a snack from an indoor café, follow the new light trail around the show ground and view Malvern’s skyline from a giant observation wheel. An arctic express land train transports visitors from the main gate to a personalised visit to Santa and his elves in their cozy cabin. There are gifts for all visiting children and Mrs Claus has baked fresh cookies for everyone.   

Dates: 12th November 2021 to 9th January 2022

Website: Three Counties Showground

Review: Plutonium Sox

Two little girls in a tunnel of fairy lights
Posing in the fairy light tunnel at Malvern Winter Glow

West Midlands Safari Park – Santa Safari

Details of the West Midlands Safari Park Christmas event have not yet been released.

Dates: Not yet released.

Website: West Midlands Safari Park

Review: DIY Daddy

Witley Court – Enchanted Witley

Details of the 2021 Christmas event at Witley Court have not yet been released.

Enchanted Witley dates: Not yet released.

Website: Witley Court

Review: Plutonium Sox

Magical fairy houses at the Enchanted Witley Christmas event in Worcestershire
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