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Where Is The Most Festive Place In The UK?

26 November 2020

With the festive season fast approaching, you’ve probably started to think about how to celebrate Christmas this year. Traditionally, many people look forward to getting out at Christmas, visiting German-style markets, taking little-ones to see Santa, with some even flying to The North Pole – well, Lapland – to meet the big man himself.

Most Festive Places in the UK - Macdonald Hotels

But the full, festive experience may be closer to home than you realise. We’ve found the most Christmassy areas of Britain, looking at regions in Scotland, England and Wales where the most snow falls, and that enjoy the most picturesque festive period.

At a time where Christmas feels closer to home than ever, we take a closer look at the most Christmassy places in Britain.

Where is the most festive place in Scotland?

Aviemore is not only the most festive place in Scotland, it’s possibly the most festive place anywhere in the UK.

Nestled within the mountainous Cairngorms national park, Aviemore which sees three times the UK average snowfall[1], a festive 76.2 days[1]. So while we can’t guarantee a white Christmas, the chances are significantly higher in Aviemore than virtually anywhere else in the UK.

Christmas, of course, is about more than just snow. Little brings the magic of the festive season alive like the sight of reindeer. While other places may import their festive animals for the season, the Cairngorms are home to the UKs only free-ranging heard of reindeer[2]. Little brings festive tingles to the spine like seeing these magnificent, regal animals in their natural environment, and the region is home to over 150 of them[2].

Most Festive Places in the UK - Macdonald Hotels and Resorts

Of course, no Christmas isn’t complete without a visit from Santa himself. There lots of ways to see Father Christmas in Aviemore, to complete your festive experience. Most years, there are numerous Christmas parades[3], the Aviemore Santa Run For Disables Snowsports[4], visits by Santa and his reindeer on Christmas Eve in nearby Ballater, and a whole range of Santa Breaks at the Macdonald hotel in Aviemore.

Check local information and restrictions ahead of any activity.

Book your Aviemore Christmas break.

Where is the most festive place in England?

As we saw in Scotland, a festive flutter of snow is much more likely around higher ground, and the Pennines in the North of England gets the highest average snowfall. In particular, Copley in County Durham sees an average of 53 days of snowfall[5] annually, over double the British average of 23.7 days.

Of course, Christmas is not complete without Santa, and the areas boasts plenty of opportunities for people young and old to spend some time with the St Nick, while taking in historic and picturesque surroundings. The classically English Crook Hall and Gardens sees Santa visit every weekend in December[6].

Just a ten minute drive from Copley is Raby Castle, where Santa will be reading Christmas classics fireside. Just 15 minute drive South West, Barnard Castle promises to be a magnificent sight worth seeing, as it welcomes Santa’s enchanted wonderland grotto[7].

Of course, check local information for further information and restrictions.

Despite being one of the most popular places for tourists to visit in England, Cornwall gets the fewest average days of snowfall, meaning a white Christmas is rare.

Where is the most festive place in Wales?

Met Office maps[1] show that the North West corner of Wales, around Snowdonia is the snowiest place in Wales – the clue is in the name. As we’ve already seen, elevation above sea level is key to areas of snow throughout Britain, and Snowdonia sees an average of nine days of snowfall in winter months[8].

Traditionally, the entire town of Betws-y-Coed transforms itself into an entire winter wonderland for one weekend in December. Streets and houses twinkle with Christmas lights, and the streets come alive with festive parades and traditional carolling, transporting you back to a time that feels really magical.

But it wouldn’t be Christmas without a visit from Santa. Head East to Bodnant Gardens in Colwyn Bay where there a range of festive activities, from lantern trails to elf workshops and, of course, Santa’s Grotto and the neighbouring Garden Centre[9].

Make sure you check local information for opening times, availability, and restrictions.



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