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17 fantastic Christmas events happening in Kent

PUBLISHED: 14:54 17 November 2017 | UPDATED: 14:54 17 November 2017

Christmas events in Kent 2017 (photo: evgenyayamanenko, Thinkstock)

Christmas events in Kent 2017 (photo: evgenyayamanenko, Thinkstock)


Wondering what to do in Kent over Christmas? We have selected 17 of the best seasonal events from around the county

Christmas Gift Fayre at Hempstead Valley, Gillingham (20th November to 3rd December)

The malls will be filled with interesting and quirky stalls, selling a wide variety of traditional and unique gifts. Tickets: £5 (per child), 01634 387076


Christmas at Hever, Hever Castle, Edenbridge (25th November to 24th December)

You’ve sung them in church, at school, or with friends and family, but do you know the stories behind some of the best-known Christmas carols? Find out at Hever. Walk through the castle, which is adorned with beautiful decorations and discover the ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ trail. Tickets: contact venue, 01732 865224


Christmas Grotto, Hempstead Valley, Gillingham (18th November to 24th December)

Father Christmas’ traditional grotto features many enchanting characters, including penguins, and is open daily. Tickets: £5 (per child), 01634 387076


Santa’s Grotto, Bluewater, Greenhithe (until 24th December)

Make Christmas extra special by visiting Santa in Bluewater’s Grotto. Treat your littl’uns to a wonderful and magical experience, plus, they’ll also be given a fantastic present. Tickets: From £10.00 (per child), 01322 475475


Christmas Concert, St Mary’s Church, Chiddingstone (2nd December)

Enjoy a programme of glorious music for Advent and Christmas sung by the Quorum Chamber Choir, and conducted by Adrian Goss. Programme includes motets by Duruflė and Stanford, and a selection of Christmas delights. Tickets: £10, 01892 535416


Father Christmas in TW, Calverley Park, Tunbridge Wells (2nd to 24th December)

Father Christmas and his friendly elves will be welcoming families who are visiting the picturesque Calverley Grounds Ice Rink throughout the festive season. Pre-booking is essential. Tickets: £14.50 (per child); £2 (accompanying adults)


Christmas Magic, Groombridge Place, Tunbridge Wells (2nd, 3rd, 9th, 10th, 16th, 17th, 23th and 24th December)

Visitors can enjoy plenty of festive entertainment, including joining the elves in their workshop, going on a treasure hunt and running through falling snow. There will also be Gingerbread decorating and a chance to make some Christmas crafts. Families can pre-book to see Father Christmas in his grotto (extra charge applies). Tickets: £12.95 to £44.95; £11.95 (per child, visiting Father Christmas), 01892 861444


Meet Santa, Kent Life Heritage Park, Maidstone (2nd, 3rd, 9th, 10th, 16th, 17th, 21th, 22nd, 23rd and 24th December)

Santa will meet youngsters and present gifts to them in his special grotto, helped by his team of elves. In addition, Mrs Claus will be spreading Christmas cheer by inviting children to decorate their very own gingerbread Christmas trees. Tickets: £6.95 to £33.95, 01622 763936


Santa Specials, Kent & East Sussex Railway, Tenterden (2nd, 3rd, 9th, 10th, 16th, 17th, 22nd, 23rd and 24th December)

Take a magical steam train journey to meet Santa this Christmas on the railway’s popular Santa Specials. At Tenterden Station the Victorian carousel provides unlimited free rides for the young and young-at-heart alike. There will also be a miniature Christmas model village to stroll round at Tenterden Station. Tickets: £18 to £160, 01580 765155


Santa Specials on the Spa Valley Railway, Eridge (2nd, 3rd, 10th, 17th, 22nd, 23rd, 24th December)

Journeys start from Eridge station where visitors will be met with festive music and the smell of hot chestnuts and a roaring coal fire in the festively decorated waiting room. Arrive a little earlier for children to have their cheeks painted with either a Christmas tree or snowman before boarding the train. Tickets: £3.50 to £22, 01892 537715


The Traditions of Christmas, Leeds Castle, Maidstone (2nd December to 1st January 2018)

The magnificent rooms at Leeds Castle will be festooned with decorations and pine trees styled around Christmas traditions, past and present. Elsewhere in the Castle you can write your own personal Christmas tradition and hang it on our tree in the Seminar Room for everyone to read. Tickets: £16.90 to £24.90, 01622 765400


Tinsel & Teatime, Millbrook Garden Centre, Gravesend, Crowborough and Staplehurst (5th to 9th and 12th to 16th December)

Santa’s Elves host this special event in the run up to Christmas. Join in the fun and laughter with lots of festive games, craft activities, plus a buffet Christmas tea. Tickets: £5.95, 01892 663 822 (Crowborough); 01474 331 135 (Gravesend); 01622 832 299 (Staplehurst)


Christmas Spectacular, EMF Theatre, Tonbridge School, Tonbridge (7th and 8th December)

An informal programme of seasonal music and other festive favourites. Tickets £5, 01732 304241


Christmas Fayre, Heart of Kent Hospice, Preston Hall, Aylesford (9th December)

Christmas fun for all the family including Santa’s grotto, children’s activities, gifts, toys, festive decorations, specialist food and drink. Proceeds go to the Heart of Kent Hospice. Tickets: £2 (adults), 01622 790195


Meet Santa’s reindeers, Millbrook Garden Centre, Gravesend, Crowborough and Staplehurst (9th to 24th December)

Santa’s reindeers will be on hand until Christmas Eve lunchtime, when they will they set off back to the North Pole in time to help Father Christmas with his round-the-world journey. You can meet and take photos with Santa’s reindeer at all three centres. Tickets: Free, 01892 663 822 (Crowborough); 01474 331 135 (Gravesend); 01622 832 299 (Staplehurst)


The Nativity, Kent Life Heritage Park, Maidstone (10th December)

Visitors will be taken on a magical journey through Kent Life Heritage Park’s beautiful grounds, while being told the story of baby Jesus’ in a living nativity. Traditional carols will be sung during the performance. Tickets: £6.95 (children); £7.95 (adults); £21.95 (family), 01622 763936


Santa in Love, The Marlowe Studio, Canterbury (19th December)

An interactive family show about Santa and what he loves best. Tickets: £10.25, 01227 787787


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