Santa's Grottos in London
Everybody has fond childhood memories of visiting Santa's grotto for the very first time.This Christmas you can treat your kids to the same, as Santa takes time out from his busy schedule to make several important grotto appearances throughout London.
WWT London Wetland Centre, Queen Elizabeth Walk, Barnes, London, SW13 9WT | Tube: Ravenscourt Park Station
6th - 7th December 2014
Meet Father Christmas and his huskies at the London Wetland Centre's magical grotto.
Experience the magic of a festive visit to Father Christmas and His Huskies at WWT London Wetland Centre this December where his family of reindeer, including a six month old baby, are ready to welcome you to the grotto. Take a sleigh ride with the huskies, get a family photo taken with one of the dogs, and hear tales of icy adventure at the Polar Explorer with Anthony Arctic, and discover the connection between Scott of the Antarctic and the London Wetland Centre. On Sunday only there are Fullers Shire Horse dray rides from 12noon to 3pm when you can see these magnificent animals in action and hop aboard for a ride. A visit to Santa's Grotto means you'll also get to enjoy a wintery stroll around the scenic walkways set amongst the lakes, meadows and ponds of this 105-acre wildlife oasis in Barnes.
Duke of York Square, Duke of York Square, Knightsbridge, London, SW3 4LY | Tube: Sloane Square Station
8th November - 23rd December 2014
Hear stories from Santa in his cosy grotto at the Duke of York Square.
The pedestrianised Duke of York Square, just off the fashionable King's Road, presents its very own plush Santa's Grotto at Christmas. On a day out with the family, take a break from all of the Christmas shopping at nearby boutiques Joseph, Myla and Kate Kuba and head down to the square where the kids can enjoy a meet and greet with Father Christmas. Once inside his whimsical workshop, little ones can enjoy some magical stories from Santa himself as he gives out some scrummy festive treats. Be sure to pop down to the arts and crafts marquee where you will find some family-friendly activities everyone can get involved in, which brings the perfect end to the perfect day. The Christmas grotto is open Friday to Sunday from 8th November and every day from 2nd December until 23rd December and places are limited so must be booked two days in advance. Online booking can be done via the Duke of York website.
Harrods, 87-135 Brompton Road, Knightsbridge, London, SW3 1RT | Tube: Knightsbridge Station
1st November - 24th December 2014
Meet Father Christmas in the magical setting of Harrods.
A long-standing tradition at the luxury Knightsbridge store, the Santa's Grotto at Harrods gives young children a magical experience. Little ones can meet Father Christmas at his grotto and share their wish lists with him. All children, regardless of good behaviour, will be rewarded with a special memento from Santa and parents will have the chance to buy a photograph of their kids enjoying themselves in the grotto. A new aspect introduced last year was the pre-school experience, especially suited to children under the age of four where they meet Father Christmas in the magical setting of the library and get Harrods book, badge and Christmas chocolate to take home (available Monday to Friday, 10am to 11.30am, throughout November only). Be aware that you must be a Harrods Rewards cardholder in order to book tickets, which can be done on the Harrods website.
College Approach, London, SE10 9HZ | Tube: New Cross Station (East London line closed. Bus service operates)
Treat the children to a day they won't forget as they meet Santa and elf.
Father Christmas and his Grotto come to Greenwich's glorious traditional riverside market this Christmas. Children get a unique chance to see Santa is person and collect their free goodie bag filled with lots of seasonal treats. Also on hand to keep the kids entertained is Santa's funny little helper, elf, who will dazzle the crowds with his magic tricks and balloon fun. Father Christmas arrives at his grotto to 8 Turnpin Lane on Wednesday 26th November 2014 from 3pm until 7pm, just in time for Lantern Parade and switching on the lights at Greenwich Market. We advise that you plan your visit in advance as the Grotto is open at set times - on weekends and then every day in the week leading up to Christmas.
Events at Greenwich Market
The Greenwich Vintage Market Moonlight Market
Vintage shopping experience, with a pop-up bar, vintage tea hut and live music.
Hyde Park, Rangers Lodge, Hyde Park, London, W2 2UH | Tube: Knightsbridge Station
20th November 2015 to 3rd January 2016
Take some time out from all of the whacky and wonderful rides to visit Santa.
Throughout late November and December a section of Hyde Park near Hyde Park Corner is transformed into a Winter Wonderland, complete with fairground rides, giant wheel, circus, Christmas market, food and drink stalls, an ice rink and, of course, Santa's grotto. Start your day of fun and games by heading into Santa Land to greet Father Christmas in his beautiful retreat for free. There to tell the kids all about Lapland and his little helpers, Santa will be on site every day from 10am to 6pm until 4th January 2015. And if the Grotto isn't what all of your kids want to see, there's the Magical Ice Kingdom, a walk-through world of ice and snow with woodland creatures and a unicorn-pulled carriage. It's the seventh consecutive year that the Winter Wonderland has come to Hyde Park making it a firm favourite in many Londoners' calendars. Back bigger and better than ever - you wouldn't want to miss out on all of fun.
Jubilee Place Mall, Bank Street, Tower Hamlets, London, E14 5NY | Tube: Canary Wharf Station
29th November - 24th December 2014
Santa is in residence at Canary Wharf's Jubilee Place daily from 14th December until Christmas Eve.
Visit the Canary Wharf Christmas Grotto in Jubilee Place Mall where Santa is in residence every weekend from Saturday 29th November 2014 all week from Saturday 20th December leading up to and including Christmas Eve. All children are welcome to join in the free festive activities taking place throughout Canary Wharf's shopping malls. These include Santa's Silver Reindeer, a Christmas tale performed with classic festive songs in Canary Wharf's East Wintergarden on Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th December 2014. As well as face painting, craft workshops, cookie or cupcake decorating as well as the enchanted Mirror Installation. Pre-booking to see Santa is not required but you are advised to arrive early to avoid disappointment. A £2 donation (which goes to charity) is required.
Westfield London - Stratford, , London, E15 1AZ | Tube: Stratford Station
20th November - 4th January 2015
Westfield Stratford City offers an immersive experience inspired by Grimms' Fairy Tales.
Instead of the traditional Santa's Grotto Westfield Stratford City offers an immersive experience inspired by Grimms' Fairy Tales this Christmas. Enter The Hidden House and you'll find yourself in the depths of the dark forest. Based on the tale of Little Red Riding Hood, the aim of the experience is to investigate and uncover the truth behind the disappearance of the girl without being captured by the Big Bad Wolf. Set in a free-flow maze, The Hidden House uses special effects, including air rustling in the trees, trees cracking and howling wind and animals and altering scents, to create a truly sensory experience. There are two ways to experience The Hidden House: as an immersive family experience, for school groups and children's parties; or as 'The Hidden House: Darkest Secrets', an evening experience for families with older teenage children and for groups of adults.
Westfield London - Shepherd's Bush, Ariel Way, Shepherd's Bush, London, W12 7DS | Tube: Wood Lane Station, Shepherd's Bush Station (Central), Shepherd's Bush Market Station (Hammersmith and City Line)
20th November - 24th December 2014
Kids help Elf save Christmas and all of Santa's presents at Westfield's 5D grotto experience.
Take the kids to see Santa's Grotto when you go to Westfield in west London to do your Christmas shopping and they'll be in for a treat. Just for the festive season, the mall sets up a special Grotto complete with sparkling giant candy canes and a magical roof top village. Once inside, children are given the chance to feature in an animated story about Elbow the Elf and his journey to save Christmas from a good-turned-evil Elf. The personalised mini movie includes each child's name, picture and super special effects such as wind, lights and elf dust. With over 20,000 guests expected to visit Santa at Westfield, make sure you book your Santa's Grotto tickets well ahead of the time you want to visit.
ZSL London Zoo, Regent's Park Outer Circle, Primrose Hill, London, NW1 4RY | Tube: Chalk Farm Station
22nd November - 24th December 2014
Santa and his faithful reindeer chums can be found at London Zoo this Christmas.
Visit ZSL London Zoo this Christmas and you can learn about the zoo's reindeers, enjoy Christmas craft activities, make a wish at the wishing tree and meet Santa himself. Treat youngsters to a Meet Santa ticket and they can check out Santa's herd of antlered helpers and find out lots of fun facts about the animals who pull his sleigh. Ideal for children aged 10 and under, there's story time with Mother Christmas - timed sessions are run throughout the day on a first come basis - and young ones also get the chance to help prepare treats and presents for the zoo's animals at the daily Keeper's Little Helpers sessions.
31st July 2015
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