You'll never be short of something to do in Milton Keynes over the Christmas and New Year period. We get very festive across the city with events and activities for all the family.
Step back in time for a Victorian Christmas or maybe hang out with Robin Hood and his Merry Men plus much, much more.
Below are some of the activities happening this festive season, but we are adding details everyday so check back regularly:
Visit Santa at centre:mk - 9 Nov to 24 Dec
A visit to the Grotto until 24th December* is a must to get into the Christmas spirit with children. The interactive experience allows children to come along and join Chef Ginger-Snaps, the jibbering, jabbering Nordic Christmas Chef in centre:mk’s chaotic kitchen as the annual ‘Elf Christmas Feast’ preparations gets into full swing. Children can decorate their very own Gingerbread Christmas Tree biscuit with snowflake sugar before meeting the big man himself. The Grotto experience lasts approximately 20 minutes.
The memorable experience starts at just £8.50 per child (including a free gift and craft activities). Book in advance online at https://tickets.eskimojoevents.co.uk/centremk_2018/ or at the grotto.
CHRISTMAS MARKET AT CENTRE:MK - 16 NOV to 23 DEC - FREE ENTRY
centre:mk's Christmas Market is back in Queens Court. There will be a whole host of glorious festive food, drinks and gifts on sale from an array of international themed traders. Here’s a taster of just some of the line-up for 2018; Jerk Chicken, Brattys, German Beer, Mulled wine, Lebanese street food, hot donuts, Moroccan leather goods, cheese stand, African wooden gifts, toffee vodka, Turkish jewellery, ethical craft goods and toys, German chocolate kisses.
Meet Santa at Xscape for FREE - from 10 Nov
Xscape MK is spreading the festive cheer far and wide this year as Santa will arrive in his grotto on Saturday 10th November and you can visit him for FREE right up until Christmas Eve. The big man will be in his grotto, located in the main mall, every weekend and also on 20th, 21st and 24th December between 11am and 5pm ready to discover what children want for Christmas and to give out presents. Families can visit for FREE with online booking* which will open soon.
For more information visit xscapemiltonkeynes.co.uk
Christmas at intu Milton Keynes
This festive season, Oak Court will be filled with an indoor Alpine Village, complete with a bar & fire pit – the perfect cosy spot for you to merrily sip on warm mulled wine, spiced cider and hot chocolate! Look out for a list of activities taking place in this hot spot throughout December.
MK’s glorious carol singers, school choirs and bands will return from Friday 7 December onwards, filling shoppers with magical Christmas spirit – join in or listen as the festive music fills the malls! And they’ll be joined by the much-loved intu gift wrappers from Saturday 8, who will make the pressies under your Christmas tree look they’ve been wrapped by Santa himself.
THE CHRISTMASAURUS TO VISITS INTU MK
It’s never too early for Christmas and dinosaurs- right? On the 17th and 18th November, we’re overjoyed to announce that the North Pole’s most extraordinary resident, The Christmasaurus, is visiting intu Milton Keynes. Stop in the boulevard, between Pret a Manger and the soft play area, where there’ll be craft activities for kids big and small inspired by Tom Fletcher’s magical Christmas story ‘The Christmasaurus’, and take a family selfie (or should that be ‘Eflie’) with the larger-than-life star of the bestselling book – the Christmasaurus himself.
CHRISTMAS MOVIES AT INTU MK
Fancy catching a festive flick whilst Christmas shopping this year? Well at intu Milton Keynes, you can do just that from Saturday 17 November! This year, intu MK has pulled out all the stops for Christmas and something new and exciting for 2018, its Movie Magic films. Festive family favourites including Elf, The Polar Express and Home Alone will be screened inside a yurt in the centres ‘chalet-esque’ Alpine Village, which will be situated in Oak Court for the festive season. Shoppers of all ages are invited to sit down and watch a movie together FOR FREE and bask in the magical surroundings of the Christmas setting, which will also be serving delicious festive food and drink. Check the full schedule - CLICK HERE
But that’s not all – on Saturday 1 December, intu Milton Keynes’ Etsy Market will take place, bringing together 80 stalls of handcrafted goods – perfect for stuffing those Christmas stockings and filling the bottom of the tree with original gifts for your loved ones.
Robin Hood at MK Theatre - 8 Dec to 13 Jan
Soap star Shane Richie will be leading the cast in this year’s spectacular family pantomime Robin Hood from Saturday December 8. He’ll be starring in the title role alongside comedian Peter Piper as Friar Tuck and West End star Gina Murray as the Spirit of Sherwood as Robin Hood comes to the venue for five weeks over the Christmas period.
Audiences will join the most heroic outlaw of them all as the arrow-shooting hero Robin Hood strives to win the hand of the beautiful Maid Marion while he and his trusty band of Merry Men outwit the evil Sheriff of Nottingham in a show full of action, adventure, music, laughter and audience participation.
Book now - https://www.atgtickets.com/shows/robin-hood/milton-keynes-theatre/
Christmas at Gulliver's Land
Celebrate Christmas at Gulliver's this year with one of their fantastic festive packages. They'll transport you into a winter wonderland with a great selection of Christmas rides, shows and attractions throughout the theme park. Look out for some festive favourites returning this year, including the popular Elf School. Don't miss the chance to become an honorary elf or come and visit Mrs Christmas' Kitchen for the chance to cook up some delicious treats.
Packages start from £7.95 per person...CLICK HERE for full information and to book
Tabby McTat at The Stables - 17 to 30 December
Brand new stage adaptation from Freckle Productions. A world premiere stage adaptation of Tabby McTat, based on the book by Julia Donaldson with illustrations by Axel Scheffler, playing at The Stables, Milton Keynes from Monday 17 – Sunday 30 December as part of a UK Tour.
Tabby McTat is a busker's cat with the loudest of meows. He sings all day long with his best friend Fred, until one day they get separated. Tabby finds shelter and a new life with all the home comforts a cat could dream of, but he soon misses his old friend. Will they ever find each other? Brought to life on stage with original songs and inventive puppetry, Tabby McTat is a heart-warming story of friendship and loyalty.
Suitable for children and families of all ages. Running time: Approximately 1 hour
Tickets are now on sale from The Stables box office, tel: 01908 280800 and via The Stables website at www.stables.org
Frosts Christmas Grotto - from 18 Nov to 24 Dec
Everyone Loves Christmas at Frosts, especially our Santa’s Grotto! Well this year our fabulous Grotto returns with some exciting new changes for 2018 including individual family time with Santa, Pre-select your child’s gift, so that your visit is personalised, a brand-new activity!
On arrival children will be greeted by Santa’s Head Elf and his team who will get everyone in the festive mood with singing and dancing. Then it’s onto Mrs Christmas’ Kitchen where there will be gingerbread biscuit decorating. There will be alternative biscuits or an alternative activity available for any children who suffer with allergies There will be fun and games for all with Santa’s elves before families will each be lead through to see the big man himself! There will be individual family time with Santa and one of his elves will capture the perfect festive photo. Santa will have a gift for the whole family to enjoy as well as your child’s pre-chosen gift.
There will be a FREE to attend magical opening parade with Santa and his team of elves on Sunday 18th November at 10am. Santa will then open the doors to his Grotto for visitors from 11.30am. Tickets to the grotto are priced at £14.99 for children over 6 months old and £4.99 for adults (Babies; birth to 12 months - £6.50*) *Price does not include gingerbread decorating but does include your visit to Santa and a baby present. If you wish for your little one to partake in gingerbread decorating, please book a full price child ticket. To book and find out further details of all events, head online to www.frostsgardencentres.co.uk/events or call 0800 954 9484.
Christmas Party at Safari MK
Join the Safari MK gang on Wednesday 19th December 5.30pm to 8pm for their Christmas Party. Party Includes: Fantastic fun on their three tier play frame.
Buffet for the children, visit and present from Father Christmas plus party games and a disco. Call 01908 565 165 to book or visit www.safarimk.co.uk
Children 1-12 are £14.95 each and children under 1 are £4.50 with adults free of charge.
Christmas at The Hub
Whether you're looking for a meal out with family or a larger festive get together with work colleagues - The Hub in Central Milton Keynes has it all. With 12 different restaurants plus other lifestyle brands on offer - you'll be spoilt for choice.
For full information CLICK HERE
Father Christmas comes to Bletchley Park - various dates in Dec
Give your children a magical experience this Christmas! Step back in time at Bletchley Park and experience a 1940s style Christmas Grotto. Father Christmas will be at home in the Library in the Mansion throughout December. Every child will receive a present and enjoy festive crafts and music while you wait.
When booking you must select a ticket that states grotto entry. If you wish to purchase grotto tickets for children aged 12 – 17 and they currently hold a valid season ticket, please contact the Bookings team on 01908 272 673.
The Grotto is an additional charge to our standard annual season ticket. All annual season tickets will need be to be presented on entry to Bletchley Park.
Book online at bletchleypark.org.uk or call 01908 640404 (tickets must be booked 24 hours in advance)
Victorian Christmas at MK Museum - various dates
Start the Christmas countdown in the most festive of ways – with a trip to Milton Keynes Museum to visit the man in the red suit! The museum's seasonal spectacular will turn the clock back by a century to present A Victorian Christmas, which will be bursting with sparkle, fun and wonder. The event starts on December 1 and will run for three weekends in the lead up to the big day.
It might be cold outside, but the museum will be toasty, with a roaring fire keeping out the chills and, for the adults, a complimentary glass of mulled wine will be served upon arrival. Then, enjoy carols by gaslight in the parlour, and Christmas crafts for children in the old schoolroom. Stop off in the farmhouse kitchen and make hot buttered toast the old-fashioned way, and nibble on freshly roasted chestnuts prepared in the working blacksmith's forge.
The museum is saying there will even be occasional snowfall, no matter what the weather is doing outside plus it will also host a Christmas Market with great gifts that you won't find on the High Street. Then follow the twinkling lights through the museum grounds ready for the most magical part of all – a meeting with Santa and his elves in the grotto. Children will also get a special gift to take home from their visit. Santa has many presents to sort and reindeer to prepare for his Christmas travels, and so A Victorian Christmas will ONLY be open on the following weekends:
Fridays: 30th November, 7th & 14th December
Saturdays: 1st, 8th & 15th December
Sunday: 2nd, 9th & 16th December
Opening times: 4.30pm-7pm (Friday) and 1.30pm-6pm (Saturday/Sunday)
Santa visits cost £7 per child. Book now and avoid the queues. Call 01908 316222 (9.30am-4pm, Mon-Fri) For more information visit http://www.miltonkeynesmuseum.org.uk/a-victorian-christmas/
Red Riding Hood vs the Wolf at Stantonbury Theatre
The team behind the smash hit, Robin Hood, at Stantonbury Theatre last year invite everyone back into the woods this December for a singing, dancing, gripping, ripping new pantomime adventure for all the family from 8th to 31st December. This unique production from Stantonbury Theatre in association with Splendid Productions and Greenwhich Theatre includes students from Stantonbury International School who have the opportunity to work with professional performers. It is an affordable high quality family Christmas show, suitable for all ages, with a mix of matinee, afternoon and evening performances.
Ticket prices range from £15 - £22 for adults, from £11 - £18 for concessions and from £7.50 - £11 for children. Book on line now: http://www.stantonburytheatre.co.uk/whats-on/all-shows/red-riding-hood-versus-the-wolf/12299/
Christmas at MK Dons FC - various dates
If you want a footballing theme to your festive period - then check out what MK Dons have to offer:
MK Dons vs Colchester Utd - 22 December ko 3pm
MK Dons vs Cambridge Utd - 1 January ko 3pm
To book tickets call 0333 200 5343 or book online at www.mkdons.com. Under 12s Go Free with Young Dons annual membership £6.00
YOUNG DONS CHRISTMAS PARTY - 20 December
This annual event at Arena MK (4-7pm) sees Young Dons fans get the chance to meet first team players plus loads of other fun including; disco, party games, football-based games, dance performances, face painting and much more! Tickets just £3 for Young Dons Members, £6 for General Sale. Adults are free when accompanying a child. All under 16s must be accompanied. First 40 tickets booked also get to visit Santa. To book visit www.mkdons.com, call 0333 200 5343 or visit the box office at Stadium MK.
MK Lightning Festive Fixtures - various dates
This festive season you can get your fill of live ice hockey with three MK Lightning home matches to choose from:
MK Lightning vs Dundee Stars - Thursday 20 December at 7.30pm
MK Lightning vs Guildford Flames - Wednesday 26 December at 7.30pm
MK Lightning vs Coventry Blaze - Saturday 5 January at 7pm
You can buy tickets online via http://mk-lightning.co.uk/tickets/
Tickets just £5 for children and £18 for adults.
Winter Bytes at The National Museum of Computing 27-30 Dec
Winter bytes is here once again, and the museum has four unique activities for kids to get involved with! Ranging from music making to Minecraft challenges, we have lots to keep kids interested between Christmas and New Year.
BBC Micro:Bit – 10:30am – 12:30pm on Thursday 27th December
Lego Mindstorms – 10:30am – 12:30pm on Friday 28th December
Minecraft Challenge – 10:30am – 12:30pm on Saturday 29th December
Fortnite Gaming session – 10:30am – 12:30pm on Sunday 30th December
Normal entry prices apply - visit http://www.tnmoc.org/bytes