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Where to see Santa in Cornwall 2020

Meet the man in red himself as he appears across Cornwall - sometimes by sleigh, but even by steam!

Santa baby… in usual years the hottest tickets in town sell out as soon as bookings open – and in our new Covid times, with additional restrictions in place, the places where you can see Santa in Cornwall are fewer and further between. So, if you haven’t already sorted out yours, what are you waiting for?

Father Christmas at Eden, The Eden Project, St Austell (4-24 Dec)

Famed for its biomes and awesome gardens, this year Father Christmas has brought his entire magic-making laboratory to take over the top floor of the Core building, where he will be using some of Eden’s amazing plants to help create new magical powers.

Expect plenty of surprises and a fun show full of warmth and cheer – along with Christmas treats for everyone to take home! If you feel like making a proper day of it, team it with some ice-skating on the extremely Christmassy ice-rink. Get your skates on, tickets always book fast.

(Remember FC is inside the grounds, so you’ll need to budget for Eden Project admission tickets too, or have an Eden Project Membership, Annual Pass or Locals’ Pass) as well as pre-booking a co-ordinating admission slot at least 30 minutes prior to your FC visit.

Father Christmas at Bedruthan, Mawgan Porth (2 – 22 Dec 2020)

No magical woodland at Bedruthan Hotel & Spa this year – because the man in red has checked into the hotel for a little relax instead. Book a one-night festive stay in a sea-view Bedruthan room (“And to all a good night!”) and you’ll get a private family meeting with Father Christmas (fifteen minute experience) as well as a special gift for each child from the man himself, plus use the spa and swimming pool.

Father Christmas at Heligan, Lost Gardens of Heligan, Near St Austell (5-24 Dec)

Once lost to the brambles of time since the outbreak of WW1, the gardens at Heligan are magical at Christmas. Cosy fires inside, twinkly lights outside – meet Father Christmas and his elves in the cosy setting of Head Gardeners Office which is nestled in the garden.

Head to the Festive Reserve Yard, where you and your family bubble will be welcomed by the naughty but nice Elf Team who will ensure you get into the Christmas spirit; with music, games, toasted marshmallows over the fire and warming festive refreshments.

(Don’t forget you need a ticket, or hold a Heligan Membership, or Locals’ Pass, and you’ll need to arrive 45 mins prior to your booked slot) 

Santa by Steam, Bodmin & Wenford Railway, Bodmin (5, 12, 19, 22, 23 and 24 Dec)

When he’s not driving the sleigh with Rudolph and the rest of the reindeer, Father Christmas travels by steam train – in fact, he takes over the guard’s carriage.

Arrive at Bodmin General Station for mince pies, seasonal drinks and carols on the platform, before climbing aboard for an hour-long return journey on a beautiful steam hauled train. During the trip each party will be taken to meet Santa, with plenty of time for a photo, with gifts for each child.

Santa at Lappa Valley, Newquay (5 – 24 Dec)

When Santa isn’t on the Bodmin railway, he’s over near Newquay where you can meet him in his grotto and take a nostalgic ride on the steam railway.

Take a nostalgic steam train ride through the wooded valley into Lappa, where you’ll find lots of festive fun. All families will be greeted at the Lappa Valley ticket office, where the elves will allocate you a time slot to visit Santa. All children will receive a specially chosen gift.

Other Cornish Santa experiences to keep an eye out for – may not be going ahead in 2020 but we’ll update with details when we have them.

Father Christmas at Lanhydrock, Bodmin

Lanhydrock (a Cornish Downton Abbey?) is usually set up as a Victorian Christmas (FC is in authentic green robes, not red) and children can meet Santa in the cosy dining room.

(Don’t forget you need to get into the house first, which means buying a ticket or National Trust membership)

No details yet for 2020, we will update here when tickets are released.

Santa Claus is coming to (Charles)town, Shipwreck Treasure Museum, Charlestown

Charlestown is an 18th Century Georgian harbour (you’ll recognise it from Poldark when Verity Poldark and Captain Andrew Blamey eloped in series 1) where in previous year’s intrepid children have travelled through the UK’s longest festive tunnel of lights beneath the museum, encountered Alabaster Snowball the elf and then discovered Santa Claus himself in his underground grotto.

No details yet for 2020, we will update here when tickets are released.

Trebah Santa Days, Trebah Garden, Mawnan Smith

Each Christmas the elves usually return to Trebah, a sub-tropical garden on the banks of the River Helford (think Daphne Du Maurier’s Frenchman’s Creek).

No details yet for 2020, we will update here when tickets are released.

And of course, he’s usually at village halls, garden centres and many more throughout December but I’ll be here til January listing all those out, so best to check Facebook to see which are going ahead this year.

Find more ideas here

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