Have a fun-filled Christmas and make sure you don’t miss a thing with our ultimate guide to the best of what’s on this festive season.
SANTA’S TOY MINE
Welsh Mining Experience at the
Rhondda Heritage Park
23 Nov til 24 Dec
The unique and magical journey begins underground as you make your way through Santa’s Toy Mine, past the sweet mine, into the ice cave and surface right at Santa’s front door. But is he home?
You will be part of a group of festive fun seekers who will travel into the beautifully-decorated mine and meet Father Christmas. While the Santa encounter is in a group each child will have a turn to speak with Father Christmas and share their festive wishes and receive a special gift
You can also make-your-own teddy bear, have photos with Santa and enjoy the Christmas Craft Market. There’s also a fun and interactive Chocolate Making Workshop that you can sign up for.
Box office: 01443 682036
Rhondda Cynon Taff Theatres
Be whisked away on a magical journey of stars, glitter, music and laughter with the most magical family pantomime of them all – Cinderella.
Buttons will take you through the enchanting story of Cinderella, meeting the Ugly Sisters, the Fairy Godmother and a whole host of colourful characters along the way. Gorgeous costumes, dazzling scenery and a fantastic cast are the magical ingredients in this lavish and vibrant traditional family panto.
03000 040 444
THREE MAGICAL BALLETS
St David’s Hall, Cardiff
Pirouette into the festive season with a classic ballet performed by the world famous Russian State Ballet of Siberia. St David’s Hall is hosting three very special ballets all sprinkled with magical special effects. Coppélia is a charming comedy with lively choreography and colourful costumes. You’ll travel to a fairytale world in The Nutcracker, where toy dolls come to life at the stroke of midnight every Christmas Eve. Last but definitely not least is Swan Lake, probably the greatest romantic ballet of all time.
029 2087 8444
Wales Millennium Centre
26 Nov til 4 Jan
After nearly a decade since the last sell-out UK tour, Cameron Mackintosh’s acclaimed Broadway production of Boublil and Schönberg’s musical Les Misérables is about to return to Cardiff. This brilliant new staging has taken the world by storm and has been hailed “Les Mis for the 21st Century”. With scenery inspired by the paintings of Victor Hugo, the magnificent score of Les Misérables includes the songs, I Dreamed A Dream, On My Own, Bring Him Home, One Day More, Master Of The House, and many more. Les Misérables is undisputedly one of the world’s most popular musicals. Storm the barricades for a ticket.
Box office: 02920 636 464
SANTA’S WINTERY WONDERLAND
Go along and meet Santa and his busy elves in his wintery wonderland as he gets ready for the big day! Take a stroll through his snow covered garden and watch the cheeky elves create magic in the workshop, who knows, if you have been a good boy or girl Santa may have a present for you!!
St Fagans National Museum of History
There’s a festive pick and mix at St Fagans every weekend in December. You can shop for unique gifts at the makers markets and the kids will have lots of fun on the fairground. You can also meet Father Christmas for a fireside chat or you can make some sweet treats with Mother Christmas. Make sure you book tickets ahead because Santa is going to be very busy.
Box office: 0300 111 2 333
Grand Pavilion Porthcawl
13 Dec til 5 Jan
Once again The Grand Pavilion will have all the ingredients for a perfect family panto, with a dastardly villain, a hapless comic and a hilarious panto dame, as well as spectacular sets and costumes, fabulous songs and dances and bags of slapstick fun!
Book your tickets now because Snow White is a pantomime not to be missed!
VISIT SANTA BY STEAM TRAIN
Brecon Mountain Railway
23 Nov-22 Dec
What better way to kick off your Christmas celebrations than a magical steam train journey to see Santa, it’s guaranteed to get you into the yuletide spirit. The Brecon Mountain Railway is more popular than ever and their Santa specials are always a sell-out so make sure you book ahead.
It’s the perfect festive experience for families, take an exciting steam train journey from Pant Station to visit Santa’s Grotto in Pontsticill. This is truly a magical way to celebrate the season and kids love it. Adults will enjoy mulled wine and mince pies along the way and the kids will get a present when they reach their very special destination.
01685 722 988
A MINT CHRISTMAS
The Royal Mint Experience, Llantrisant
23 Nov til 23 Dec
Forget turkey and tinsel, the highlight of Christmas for the little ones is a visit to see the man himself and this year Father Christmas will be at an iconic Welsh landmark. The Royal Mint in Llantrisant is hosting some very special festive weekends and Santa is the star attraction. You can have breakfast with the main man at his alpine retreat, with lots of arts, crafts and games.
You can also take part in The Great British Snowball Fight, Santa will be along to officiate the championship final, but who will win – Mistletoe United or North Pole Town? Every child will get to meet and have a photo with Santa, sit in his sleigh and take away a gift.
0333 241 2223
New Theatre, Cardiff
7 Dec til 12 Jan
You and your family shall go to the ball with yet another spectacular family panto from the New Theatre. This year Gok Wan takes centre stage as Fairy Gokmother. With all the magic ingredients for a wonderful festive production, there’ll be laugh-out-loud comedy, jaw-dropping special effects, stunning song and dance and plenty of boos and hisses as the ultimate pantomime is brought to life. Get your tickets now.
029 2087 8889
Wales Millennium Centre
Inspired by Little Red Riding Hood, Red is a hilarious tale for all the family. A group of unlikely heroes find themselves in an enchanted misadventure with Grandma Red; a raucous old lady on a spirited mission to bring back forgotten stories. Expect magic, laughter and a festive rock-out as we stray off the path in search of the wolves.
02920 636 464
NATIVITY! THE MUSICAL
Wales Millennium Centre
Every child wants to star in the Nativity and at St Bernadette’s School they’re attempting to mount a musical version! The only trouble is that teacher Mr Maddens has promised that a Hollywood producer is coming to see the show to turn it into a film. Feel-good, funny and full of joy, this cracker of a musical was adapted for the stage by Debbie Isitt, the creator of the much-loved films.
02920 636 464
Gower Fresh Christmas Trees
From 23 Nov
Visit a Winter Wonderland in Gower to discover a snowy kingdom of polar bears, talking Christmas trees and a busy elves workshop. You can even sit in Santa’s sleigh before you meet the man himself and his favourite reindeers, if you’ve been good you might even get an early Christmas present to take home. While you visit this popular Swansea attraction you can pick up your Christmas tree from Gower Fresh Trees who have an amazing choice of fresh trees, you can even pick your own and have it cut in front of you.
Gwyn Hall, Neath
3 till 12 Jan
Climb on board the Flying Carpet and join Aladdin, Princess Jasmine and Widow Twankey in this year’s festive extravaganza. A family fun packed experience with a mix of traditional and modern tunes with plenty of audience participation where you can boo the evil Abanazar.
0300 365 6677
ROYAL WELSH WINTER FAIR
It won’t be long until the showground in Llanelwedd is full of visitors, exhibitors and prize-winning livestock for the annual Royal Welsh Winter Fair. One of the finest prime stock shows in Europe, there’s two-days packed full of competitions, festivities and Christmas shopping.
This is the perfect place to pick up some special and very unique Christmas gifts.
Swansea Grand Theatre
13 Dec Til 12 Jan
Take a fairy tale flight to Neverland this Christmas for the swashbuckling pirate adventure, Peter Pan. The Jolly Roger will be navigating the perilous high seas to throw anchor in Swansea Bay for another unmissable festive season starring Corrie’s Tristan Gemmill as Captain Hook and Kevin Johns as Mrs Smee.