Everyone knows Christmas is a time for indulgence, and that’s exactly what you’ll get with a trip to Dorset in December. Whether you plan on kicking back in Georgian splendour at Summer Lodge Hotel, or would rather experience an intimate village setting at the Acorn Inn, we have you covered. Make the most of the seasonal festivities and let loose at these Christmas events in Dorset during your stay.
For the bold
If you’re looking for an alternative to ambling through Christmas markets during your festive break, catch the annual Lyme Regis’ charity Pudding Race at the Marine Parade. Cheer on local teams, who will be working their way through the obstacle course carrying a Christmas pud, in a bid to be crowned winners and raise thousands of pounds for charity. If you’re game for a laugh, take part in the ‘Chase The Pudding Race’ before the main event for the chance to be champion and walk away with the £25 cash prize.
Take a Christmas morning dip in Weymouth harbour and burn off all those calorific Christmas treats. The annual charity event welcomes seriously plucky souls to brave the freezing waters and cross the harbour to raise money for charity. And don’t worry if you forgo the challenge in favour of a lie in, there’s always the Boxing Day charity beach swim at West Bay in Bridport, where swimmers are expected to don their best fancy dress and dive in.
For the kids
Kids will love the Teddy Bear Museum’s festive makeover, where they can join Edward the life-size bear and his friends for some Christmas shenanigans. Decked out in classic décor, children can enjoy exploring the collection, from the earliest teddies to contemporary TV favourites.
Young adventurers are in for a day of rough and tumble at Farmer Palmers in Poole. Not only is it filled with plenty of wildlife and lots of outdoor activities, but over the Christmas period Santa and his little elves will also be dropping by the Animal Barn (by tractor, of course) to spread goodwill at the winter grotto. Round off your day of fun on the farm with an extraordinary interactive Deer Safari tour.
The local zoo may not be the first place that springs to mind for Christmas holiday adventures, but Marwell Zoo’s enchanting evening with Father Christmas will soon change your mind. Although a little further afield, visiting Santa and his little helpers at the Grade I listed Marwell Hall (and a variety of exotic and endangered species across the 140-acre grounds), will add a unique twist on festive fun for the little ones.
For the whole family
Dorchester’s official start to the festive season kicks off with its big Christmas Cracker. Pick up some last minute gifts at the popular Christmas Market or try the delicious homemade mince pies and mulled wine while waiting for the flick of the switch as the Christmas lights are turned on.
Celebrate Christmas Medieval style at the Dorchester Arts Centre. Learn about ancient Yuletide traditions with some carol singing, theatrical performances (including Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales), and lots of musical numbers played on authentic medieval instruments like the cittern and the bagpipes.
With so many great events in Dorset to keep you entertained over the Christmas period, it looks like you’re going to be busy…
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