Family events you need to book now for Christmas 2021

Nobody wants to hear the ‘C’ word when it’s only in September, but then nobody wants to miss out on the best events either.

And when it comes to Christmas, tickets sell out fast, which is why you might want to get cracking with your plans for this festive season.

With most big events cancelled last year, many people will be wanting to make the most of it. We’ve been taking a look at some of the events that sell-out quick to give you a better chance of getting the best tickets.

Christmas at Dunham Massey

One of the most popular festive events for families is Christmas at Dunham Massey, a spectacular magical lights trail.

Returning for a fifth year, the winter trail has quickly established itself as a family tradition.

The huge reindeer at Christmas at Dunham Massey
(Image: Manchester Evening News)

If you’ve been before, you’ll recognise some of the favourites, including the larger-than-life glittering deer and the towering walk-through Tunnel of Light twinkling with thousands of pea-lights.

There are dancing waterside reflections, trees drenched in jewel-like colour and much more, including the chance to glimpse Father Christmas along the way.

The event is running from November 19 to January 2 and tickets, costing £21 for adults and £13.50 for children (under threes free) can be booked online.

Dunham Massey, Altrincham, Cheshire, WA14 4SJ

Scroll through the gallery below to see more pictures from previous Christmas at Dunham Massey events

Santa Specials, East Lancashire Railway

Another sought-after festive event is the Santa train at East Lancashire Railway and tickets are already on sale.

The magical Santa Specials give families the chance to enjoy a steam train journey through Lancashire’s very own winter wonderland.

The seasonal event attracts more than 40,000 people each year and features decorated stations, brass bands, carol singers, costumed characters and magicians.

Little ones get to meet Father Christmas as he gives a present to each child and a glass of Sherry and mince pie to the adults.

The event is running on the last weekend in November, the first two weekends in December and then daily from December 18 to 24.

Tickets, priced from £20, can be booked online.

East Lancashire Railway, Bury Bolton Street Station, Bolton Street, Bury, Lancashire, BL9 0EY

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Cockfields Christmas Experience

An ‘authentic Christmas experience’ is promised once again at Cockfields Farm this year.

The whole farm will be transformed into ‘a magical winter wonderland’ for what promises to be ‘a Christmas experience you will never forget’.

The place will be transformed into the ‘North Pole’ with little ones given the chance to nosey through the Elf Village, snuggle animals in Santa’s cuddle corner and enjoy a private family visit to meet the big man himself.

They can check themselves on the Goodometer where Bubbles the Elf will see if they’ve been naughty or nice, make some reindeer dust, build their own teddy bear and watch a production of The Reindeer Flying School show.

The event is running from November 27 and tickets, £20 for adults and £40 for children, can be booked online.

(Image: Manchester Evening News)

Cockfields Farm, Lees Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 8AR

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The Lanterns at Chester Zoo

Animals of a different kind come out to play at Chester Zoo at Christmas time – glowing ones.

The Lanterns is a festive family event featuring animal-inspired illuminations, magical lanterns, twinkly costumed characters and Father Christmas himself.

The event promises to ‘transform the zoo into a spectacular wonderland, full of sparkle, illumination and a sprinkling of snow’ and tickets are already on sale for this year.

Chester Zoo’s Lanterns event
(Image: Chester Zoo)

Families arriving at the winter spectacular are welcomed by nine specially created ‘worlds’, from Night Sky Adventure to Tropical Dreams.

The event is running on selected dates from November 12 to December 23.

Tickets, costing from £11 for children and £13 for adults, can be booked online.

Chester Zoo, Upton-by-Chester, Chester, CH2 1EU

(Image: Manchester Evening News)

Scroll through the gallery below to see more images from The Lanterns event

Glow at RHS Garden Bridgewater

A twinkling lights trail will illuminate RHS Garden Bridgewater this Christmas.

The Glow trail promises to transform all five gardens at the site, in Worsley, Salford, with ‘spectacular illuminations’ lighting up the night.

Visitors will be able to see a selection of the garden’s best-loved locations, including the Weston Walled Garden, Chinese Streamside Garden and Ellesmere Lake, as they’ve never seen before, and be ‘wowed by the sight of sparkling trees, shrubs and water features basking in the glow’.

The event will run on selected dates from November 17 to December 30.

To book tickets, costing £11 for adults (£5.50 members) and £5.50 for children (£2.75 members), visit the website here.

RHS Garden Bridgewater, Occupation Road, Worsley, M28 2LJ

(Image: Guy Harrop)

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