Best Christmas Events East of England 2021 – Meet Santa | East Anglia

Hurry, Hurry! Some places have already released their tickets and they are selling out fast for their Christmas events. There are quite a few magical events happening this Christmas 2021 in the East of England. I’ve put them into one big post so here you will find the best Christmas events in the East of England including East Anglia – Bedfordshire – Cambridgeshire – Essex – Hertfordshire – Norfolk – Suffolk where you can meet Santa and more – Not all events include Santa. Don’t forget to book in advance where possible.

Things to do Christmas 2021 Bedfordshire – Cambridgeshire – Essex – Hertfordshire – Norfolk – Suffolk

Please keep up-to-date with government guidance before booking or visiting. I am unsure of the following attractions policies on cancellations of events, please consider this before booking and check with them in advance. It may also be an idea to check with the attraction that everything is as advertised the day before you visit.

Please also double-check the event descriptions on the attraction’s website as the below information could change. It is essential that you read their own information carefully.

30 + Best Christmas Events East Midlands 2019 – Meet Santa and More

Anglesey Abbey – Christmas Lights – Cambridgeshire – Tickets on sale

Our longstanding partner, Pearce Sound & Lighting, has brought on board Eddie Barcan, from Splendid Events, as Creative Producer. This broader partnership will bring fresh creativity and ideas, combining iconic favourites such as the Silver Birch Grove and Riverside Path, with new sensory experiences, making sure the ‘Nature by Night, Nature by Light’ theme is a magical experience for everybody involved.

National Trust

Address: Quy Rd, Lode, Cambridge CB25 9EJ

When? Selected dates in December

How much? Adult £17.50. Child 5-17 £14, under 5s are free and do not require a ticket

Audley End – Enchanted Audley – Essex – Tickets on sale

Gather your friends and family to banish the dark winter nights and experience the past in a spectacular new light this December. Explore our grounds and gardens to discover a magical world of illumination, sound and colour, from giant lilies in the river to a fairy garden, and from a tunnel of light to awe-inspiring projections on the house itself.

English Heritage

Address: Audley End Rd, Audley End, Saffron Walden CB11 4JF

When? Selected dates in November and December

How much? Adult peak £16, off-peak £14. Child peak £11.50, off-peak £9.50. Family tickets are available.

Audley End Miniature Railway – Christmas Special – Essex – Tickets on sale

Info from a previous event – Our Christmas Special is the most magical, family, Christmas experience. The time you book for is your train ride where your enchanted experience will begin, please be sure to arrive 30 minutes before your slot so you have plenty of time to prepare. Once you’ve checked in you will board upon the Santa Express where our driver will navigate you through the Estate Woodland. You will arrive at Father Christmas’s Winter Wonderland where you and your family will meet Father Christmas himself, along with his very helpful Elves, receive a special gift and also watch a Christmas dance!

Audley end miniature railway

Address: Audley End Rd, Audley End, Saffron Walden CB11 4JB

When? 20th November to 24th December

How much? Adults and children £18-25 each. Other pricing options are available.

Best Christmas Events East of England 2020 – Meet Santa Essex

Barleylands – Father Christmas Experience – Essex – Tickets on sale

You will start your journey at our Snow Globe photo opportunity. Jump inside and our helpful elves will take a fantastic photo of your family or friends in a wintery scene with your phone or camera. Then you will meet Mother Christmas, who has a fun, festive craft for all to enjoy. Next, you can stroll through our Winter Walkway, which makes for some more great photo opportunities. Waiting for you will be Father Christmas himself, in his cosy grotto, ready to find out if you have been naughty or nice this year. His helpful elves can then take your photo with your own phone or camera….and more.

Barleylands Farm Park

Address: Barleylands Farm Office, Barleylands Rd, Billericay CM11 2UD

When? Selected dates November and December

How much? Adult non-member £14.50, child £24.50. Other pricing options are available.

Bressingham Steam & Gardens – Christmas visits at Bressingham – Norfolk – Tickets on sale

For 2021, there will be no live entertainment in the Village Hall, Santa will be in his grotto where you will be able to see and speak with him and receive a present – however, you will not be able to enter the grotto and sit with him. (We are currently planning to operate as we did for 2020, depending on restrictions in place at the time, we may relax some rules). The 2021 times slots are for visiting the grotto, this must be done on arrival this year – then at your leisure look round the decorated spaces, take a train ride and ride on the Gallopers. Please arrive in time to park, get your tickets and make the 5 minute trip from the entrance to the Grotto

Address: Low Rd, Diss IP22 2AA

When? Selected dates in December

How much? Adult (advance) tickets are £12.50#. Children (advance) 3-12 £15.50#. under 3’s (advance) requiring a present are £8.00#. #this price includes a donation.

Bure Valley Railway – Festive Express – Norfolk – Tickets on sale

Hop on board one of our Festive Express steam trains this December. Enjoy a 1 hour experience from our Aylsham Station including festive treats, a 30 minute steam train ride and a visit to see Santa in his grotto.

Each child will receive a personalised present from Santa himself.

Address: Aylsham Station, Norwich Rd, Aylsham, Norwich NR11 6BW

When? December 4th,5th,11th,12th,18th,19th,20th,21st,22nd,23rd,24th

How much? £15 per person

Best Christmas Events East of England 2020 – Meet Santa Norfolk

Church Farm Stow Bardolph – Father Christmas – Norfolk – Tickets on sale

All Father Christmas tickets include entrance to the Farm as well as visiting Father Christmas, so you can stay all day and enjoy everything Church Farm has to offer including the indoor and outdoor play areas, animal encounters, undercover petting pens, Christmas shopping and market and lots lots more. 

Tickets on sale on the 1st September 2021

Church Farm

Address: Lynn Rd, Norfolk PE34 3HT

When? Selected dates from the 2nd to 23rd December

How much? Adults £8.10, children from £10.50.

Colchester Zoo – Magic of Christmas – Essex – Dates announced

Join us at Colchester Zoo this Christmas and immerse yourself in the wonderful Christmas atmosphere! See Santa’s beautiful reindeer in their stables, get crafty at the Elves’ Workshop, hear our Christmas tale and enjoy some festive treats. PLUS all children who purchase a ticket to take part in this year’s Santa Experience will also get to take home another fantastic Christmas character soft toy. More information on this year’s festive friend coming soon.

Colchester Zoo

Address: Maldon Rd, Heckfordbridge, Colchester CO3 0SL

When? Selected dates in December

How much? See website

Colne Valley Railway – Santa Specials – Essex – Tickets on sale

We are pleased to say that Santa is visiting us again this year. We have worked hard with Santa and the Elf and Safety team to ensure that your visit to him will be as enjoyable and safe as we can make it.  You will meet Santa in his grotto before travelling on our diesel train to collect your present from Santa’s Toy Shop. Babies need to be inclulded in your party size. Please note you will be booking an arrival time slot, please arrive during this time slot.

Colne Valley Railway

Address: Castle Hedingham, Halstead CO9 3DZ

When? Selected dates in December

How much? Tickets from £40 for 2 people up to £90 for 6 people.

Easton Farm Park – Christmas Experience – Suffolk – Tickets on sale

We’ve got a wonderful winter array of magical activities for you to get involved in:

Wishing tree craft
Meet the Christmas Animals
Gingerbread Decorating
Elf Workshop Present Picking
Reindeer Food Making
Meet Father Christmas

Easton Farm Park

Address: Easton Farm Park, Easton, Woodbridge IP13 0EQ

When? Selected dates in December

How much? £17.50 per child, £9.95 for under 1s, and £10.95 per adult

Epping Ongar Railway – Santa Specials – Essex – Tickets on sale

The experience starts at North Weald Station where you will get the chance to get in the spirit with something from one of our festive food or sweet stalls whilst you listen to our live brass band! As you wait for the train perhaps you will meet our characters who will be walking around the crowds looking for the nice children to make sure that Santa will find them later. Naughty children will not be allowed to board the train!

Not long after arriving you will be invited to move over our footbridge; and then take your allocated seats on the train. Whilst the nice children wait for Santa to find them on the train and give them a present, our entertainers will be around to keep you busy. The children will find time to write a letter for Santa or enter our drawing competition. When you return to North Weald there should be time to get a quick picture of the train with the big man himself. However time is limited and this is not guaranteed.

Epping Ongar Railway

Address: Station Approach, Chipping Ongar, Ongar CM5 9BN

When? 4, 5, 11, 12, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 December

How much? £160-175 for up to 6 people.

Framlingham Castle – Christmas Adventure Quest – Suffolk – Tickets on sale

Explore Framlingham Castle with our festive family-friendly adventure quest. Follow the trail, find the clues and discover the castle’s amazing stories and secrets.

English Heritage

Address: Church St, Framlingham, Woodbridge IP13 9BP

When? 26th December – 2nd January

How much? Free for members of English Heritage. Adult ticket £12.50, child age 5-17 £7.50. Other pricing options are available.

Hylands Estate – Enlightened – Essex – Tickets on sale

Enlightened returns to Hylands Estate with a new longer route and more magical lighting installations for 2021. The grounds will be transformed into a illuminated light trail for visitors to enjoy with all the family. Book now to see mesmerising and enchanting moments along a specially crafted route.

Hylands Estate

Address: London Rd, Writtle, Chelmsford CM2 8WQ

When? 26th November to 2nd January

How much? Adults £16, child £12, family ticket £55.

Jimmys Farm – Magical Christmas – Suffolk – Tickets on sale

Step foot into our magical Christmas grotto! Meet Father Christmas and our elves and receive a lovely gift. The tickets are per child. Adults are FREE when attending with a child and adults do not need to book. Please book your half an hour slot, and you can arrive anytime within that slot.

Plus Breakfast with Santa – Join us for a bustling festive morning in The Barn Restaurant & Coffee House. Santa’s helpers will be on hand to serve you a delicious breakfast as you eagerly await the Big Man himself!

Jimmys Farm

Address: Pannington Hall Ln, Wherstead, Ipswich IP9 2AP

When? Selected dates in December

How much? Santa’s Grotto £10 per child. Please see their website for prices for Breakfast with Santa.

Kentwell Hall – Victorian Christmas – Essex – Tickets on sale

Step back in time to meet a range of Victorian characters, celebrating a traditional Christmas, with a family visit to Father Christmas for families with children under 11 years of age.

Kentwell Hall

Address: High Street, Long Melford, Sudbury CO10 9BA

When? 4th to 12th December

How much? Tickets are cheaper online – adults from £32.50, children 4-11 £20, other pricing options are available.

Kersey Mill – Santa’s Workshop – Suffolk – Event confirmed

Santa’s Workshop is a unique experience primarily for children aged 3 up to 9 years, younger children may also enjoy the experience as well as the adults too!  Helping the elves in Santa’s Workshop will be a memorable Christmas occasion for all.

Kersey Mill

Address: Kersey, Ipswich IP7 6DP

When? Open every weekend in December until Christmas Eve. Booking essential.

How much? Price per child includes one adult £25.00.  Additional adults £12

Leighton Buzzard Railway – Santa Steam Specials – Bedfordshire – Tickets on sale

Take a 25-minute steam-train ride over a historic narrow-gauge railway that’s more than 100 years old, and run by enthusiastic volunteers. Meet Santa at Page’s Park grotto, where children up to 12 will receive an early present. And to help you with your present-hunting, our shop at Page’s Park station has the best selection of Thomas products, and much more besides.

Leighton Buzzard Railway

Address: Pages Park Station, Billington Rd, Leighton Buzzard LU7 4TG

When? Various dates in December

How much? Adult £10, child 2-12 £11 including present, children under 2 £6 including present

Marsh Farm – The Father Christmas Experience – Essex – Tickets on sale

As the children enter Father Christmas’ Grotto they’ll have to be checked on the Naughty or Nice list before meeting the real Father Christmas all the way from the North Pole. But the excitement doesn’t end there! The children then enter the teddy bear market to make a special furry friend to take home before more surprises in the Toy Shop in our own Elf-ville….and more

Address: Marsh Farm, Marsh Farm Rd, South Woodham Ferrers CM3 5WP

When? 13th November to 24th December

How much? Tickets are approx. £37 per person.

Mead Open Farm – Magic of Christmas – Bedfordshire – Tickets on sale

Our jolly elves have been working hard to make your experience as festive as possible. On arrival please collect your magical passport with a list of all your activities for the day. All undercover and heated, adventure through the Magical Christmas Walkthrough where you can join our cheeky Elves to discover an enchanted world. Get ready to take part in festive challenges! Will you make it through the Naughty and Nice detector? There’s lots to do.

Mead Open Farm

Address: Stanbridge Rd, Leighton Buzzard LU7 9JH

When? Selected dates in December

How much? Child tickets from £25, adults from £18.

Best Christmas Events East of England 2020 – Meet Santa | East Anglia +

Nene Valley Railway – Santa Steam – Cambridgeshire – Tickets available

Your Santa Steam experience starts with a welcome from our station staff and badge team, entertainment is provided. This is followed by seeing Santa in our heated Christmas marquee where each child will receive a special present from our elves collection point. Following a short wait it is time to join the steam hauled, decorated train for a fun-filled ride to Peterborough and return. Please arrive 45 minutes before your departure time to allow for parking, booking in and passing through the Christmas marquee to see Santa and board the train. Please ensure at all times you follow our one way system and social distancing rules. Please note due to reduced capacity this year we will be unable to transfer any late-comers to a later train.

Neve Valley

Address: Nene Valley Railway Ltd, Wansford Station, Stibbington, Cambridgeshire, PE8 6LR

When? Selected dates from 27th Nov to 24th Dec 2021

How much? Prices start from £15 to £25 per person. Prebooking is essential.

Best Christmas Events East of England 2020 – Meet Santa | East Anglia +

North Norfolk Railway – Santa Specials – Norfolk – Tickets on sale

Join us for a magical seasonal trip. Step onto the platform at Sheringham Station and see the steam gently rising around the carriages as Santa’s Special Train waits for you to board. Grab a hot soup, drink or delicious homemade refreshments from The Old Luggage Office buffet and climb aboard the train of historic carriages ready for a journey to meet Father Christmas himself.

North Norfolk Railway

Address: Sheringham Station, North Norfolk Railway PLC, Station Approach, Sheringham NR26 8RA

When? Selected dates in November and December

How much? £22-26 per person over the age of 1.

They are also hosting a Norfolk lights Express.

Best Christmas Events East of England 2020 – Meet Santa Norfolk

Paradise Wildlife Park – Christmas at Paradise – Hertfordshire – Tickets on sale

Santa will be arriving at Paradise in a beautiful grotto based at our Safari Stage where your little ones can join him safely for a fabulous photo opportunity. Moreover, this is a completely free of charge event so make sure to get a space in the queue early to not miss out, as we cannot guarantee everyone will be able meet Santa on the day of your visit.

Santa has also brought the winter wonderland with him! There will be a glorious festive fairy light tunnel to walk through and enjoy with your loved ones. Make sure to take some amazing photos and tag us on social media so we can join in on the fun too. The festivities do not stop here, however. We shall be decking out the park with a beautiful array of Christmas decorations, complete with our 20ft Christmas tree!

Santa’s Grotto is a first come, first serve queuing system. We cannot guarantee everyone will be able to meet Santa on the day of your visit.

Paradise Wildlife Park

Address: White Stubbs Ln, Broxbourne EN10 7QA

When? Every weekend from 27th November, & every day from 18th December to 24th December

How much? Adult £22, child £20, other pricing options are available.

Roarr! Dinosaur – Dippy’s Christmas Celebrations – Norfolk – Tickets on sale

Your adventure will begin with our elves giving the children a magical passport before meeting
Mother Christmas and receiving a delicious gingerbread. You will journey through the festive wintery route with elves throughout the experience, where the children will also receive a candy cane before meeting the most important man of all – Father Christmas. Included in the Jingle all the Day experience is a digital photograph with Father Christmas and hot chocolate for all members of the family. Father Christmas will then give each child a golden ticket to exchange for a gift of their choice from his toy shop.

Roarr! Dinosaur

Address: Lenwade, Norwich NR9 5JE

When? 26th November to 23rd December

How much? Daytime child £15, 1 free adult per child. Nighttime child £17.50, 1 free adult per child. These prices will increase from the 1st of December

Sandringham Estate – Luminate Light Trail – Norfolk – Tickets on sale

We are delighted to welcome Luminate Sandringham back for a second year of spectacular Winter Light in an illuminated trail through the Royal Park. Immerse yourself in a mesmerising mile-long trail, with stunning lighting elements and fabulous light play, all set to ambient music.


Address: Sandringham PE35 6EN

When? 12th November to 19th December.

How much? Prices from £16.50 per adult, £11.50 per child (3-15).

Best Christmas Events East of England 2020 – Meet Santa Norfolk

Shuttleworth – Shuttleworth in Lights – Bedfordshire – Tickets on sale

Share an after-dark adventure with your friends and family at Shuttleworth in Lights – A Festive Special. This year with our illuminated trail will take on a festive twist! With a bevvy of wonderful Christmas and festive elements to find along your walk as you discover an enchanting world of light and colour. Start the adventure at the World Famous Shuttleworth Collection Hangars from here enter the Swiss Garden, head into the Paddock 4 for a special display, re-join the route at the Shrubbery walk, pop past the Summer House, then stroll down the wonderful Lakeside Parkland and back into the Swiss Garden, finishing with a visit to the Gift Shop and Runway Café. The 1.2-mile trail should take about 1 – 2 hours depending on your speed


Address: Old Warden Aerodrome, Hill Ln, Biggleswade SG18 9DX

When? Selected dates in December.

How much? Adult £15, child £5.

Stockwood Discovery Centre – Stockwood Illuminated – Bedfordshire – Tickets on sale

This December we invite you on a journey of light and sound in our historic gardens at Stockwood Discovery Centre. Throughout the seasonal period you can explore Stockwood in a new light.  Weave your way on a self-guided trail through the illuminated pathways, set against the backdrop of the lush greenery. We have a new story for you to explore and hope to see visitors old and new.

Stockwood Discovery

Address: Stockwood Park Golf Club, London Rd, Luton LU1 4LX

When? 3rd to 23rd December.

How much? Prices from £4-6

Thursford – Santa’s Magical Journey – Norfolk – Tickets on sale

Remember the excitement of your first visit to see Father Christmas? Give your children, grandchildren or your class a day they’ll never forget! Come and visit Father Christmas in the magical setting of Thursford. It will be a treat to cherish for everyone who wants to experience this magical fantasy journey.

Your journey takes you from penguins and polar bears to giant sized teddy bears ready to load Santa’s sleigh and then past the busy elves hard at work in the toy factory with the wonderful wrapping machine.


Christmas Spectacular 2021 is also available at this venue.

Address: Thursford, Fakenham NR21 0AS

When? Selected dates in December and January

How much? Prices vary depending on date and event

Warner Bros Studio Tour – Hogwarts in the snow – Hertfordshire – Tickets on sale

Lined with Christmas trees, the Great Hall will see a festive makeover with the long tables laden with a mouth-watering Christmas feast. A blanket of filmmaking snow will cover the majestic Hogwarts castle model and shop fronts of Diagon Alley as part of the wintery transformation.

Warner Bros

Address: Studio Tour Dr, Leavesden, Watford WD25 7LR

When? 13th November to 16th January 2021

How much? An adult ticket is £47 and £38 for a child age 5-15. Under 5s are free, other pricing options are available.

Best Christmas Events East of England 2020 – Meet Santa Hertfordshire

Whipsnade Zoo – Christmas at Whipsnade – Bedfordshire – Confirmed

This November and December, children are invited to meet Father Christmas along with some of the best company the animal kingdom has to offer. On weekends and throughout the week leading up to Christmas, experience festive magic with Meet Santa at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo! Say hello to our cheeky elves before meeting the man himself! Every child who meets Santa will receive an early Christmas gift.

Whipsnade Zoo

Address: Whipsnade, Dunstable LU6 2LF

When? 20th November to 24th December

How much? TBC

Willows Activity Farm – Santa Spectacular – Hertfordshire – Tickets on sale

Take a trip through our magical winter wonderland where you’ll find Santa in his amazing Grotto. Santa will give children a key to his Toy Shop where they can choose any gift from the hundreds stacked from floor to ceiling

Visit our Create-a-Cuddle Workshop where children can choose from a range of soft toys to make, name and take home along with a certificate. Get crafty and decorate tasty gingerbread. Write a letter to Santa (don’t forget to add your address so he can reply!).  Pop on 3D glasses to watch our short festive 3D film.  Sit back and enjoy our brand new Polar Bear show with a very special guest and so much more

Willows activity farm

Address: Coursers Rd, St Albans AL4 0PF

When? Selected dates in November and December

How much? Prices vary please see their website for up-to-date information

Best Christmas Events East of England 2020 – Meet Santa Hertfordshire

Wimpole Estate – Christmas at Wimpole – Cambridgeshire – Tickets on sale

Look forward to some together time and make everlasting memories, as you discover sparkling tunnels of light, dancing reflections and trees drenched in jewel-like colour. For a moment of reflection pause at mesmerising flickering flames in the fire garden, gaze up at larger-than-life illuminations and don’t forget to glimpse Father Christmas along the way.

National Trust

Address: Wimpole Estate, Arrington, Royston SG8 0BW

When? Selected dates from 26th November to 2nd January

How much? Adult non-member ticket with parking for one car £26, additional adults £18, children 3-16 £14, under 3s are free. Other pricing options are available.

Wrest Park – Christmas Adventure Quest – Bedfordshire – Tickets on sale

Explore Wrest Park with our festive family-friendly adventure quest. Follow the trail, find the clues and discover the gardens amazing stories and secrets.

English Heritage

Address: Silsoe, Bedfordshire MK45 4HR

When? 26th December to 2nd January

How much? Free for members of English Heritage. Adult ticket £13.90, child 5-17 £8.40, other pricing options are available

Wroxham Barns – The Christmas Experience – Norfolk – Tickets on sale

We’re delighted to announce that Norfolk’s favourite Santa has agreed, once again, to take time out of his busy schedule at the North Pole, to come to Junior Farm & Fun Park at Wroxham Barns, with his Elves for his hugely popular ‘Christmas Experience’ and this year there’s even more fun to be had! There’s ALL-NEW and improved Live Animal Nativity, new Elf College, new Mrs Claus Kitchen, our Toy Shop and Snow Storm Barn PLUS the option to add a Teddy Bear workshop session too!

Wroxham Barns

Address: Tunstead Rd, Hoveton, Norwich NR12 8QU

When? 4th, 5th, 11th, 12th, 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st, 22nd, 23rd and 24th December

How much? Prices are from £17.95 per child (aged 2 and above), £11.50 for Under 2’s. Adults from £14.50.