Did we really manage to make it to Christmas? I can’t believe we’re still not over coronavirus and still in the thick of it! Hopefully though you still manage to have some Christmas cheer, in whatever way that is. I really hope we don’t have to go back to homeschooling in the new year, it’s been nice that the children have managed to be in school for one whole term (give or take a few weeks off due to covid isolation and time off due to sickness bugs!). The end of term is finally here though and as always there are plenty of activities going on in and around Warwickshire during the school holidays. Here are some ideas of what you can do during Christmas School Holidays 2021 in Warwick, Leamington Spa, Stratford-upon-Avon, Coventry and the surrounding areas.
Museums and Libraries
- Vintage Sleigh Ride and Winter Wonderland at Coventry Transport Museum, Coventry – various dates. Wander through a magical winter wonderland of festive activities and snowy scenes before taking a ride on an enchanting vintage sleigh, pulled by two trusty reindeer. Your next stop? Lapland. Meet Santa, tell him your Christmas wishes and collect a special gift. The Vintage Sleigh Ride and Winter Wonderland includes museum admission tickets for the day of your visit.
- Leamington Spa Art Gallery and Museum, Leamington Spa – The museum is now open again – please see their website for opening times.
- Various events at Leamington Library, Leamington Spa – various dates.
- Lego Club – Saturday 11th December 2021, 2pm Lego Club (ages 4-11, book online)
- Christmas Crafts – Monday 20th December 2021, 1030-1130am (ages 4-11, book online)
- Rhyme Time – Tuesday 21st December 2021, 10.30am (ages 0-2, book online)
- Kate’s Storytree – Wednesday 22nd December, 10-11am (ages 4-11, book online) Children’s storytelling and crafts.
- Story Stomp – Thursday 23rd December, 1030am (ages 2-4, book online).
- Christmas Crafts – Thursday 23rd December, 2-3pm (ages 4-11, book online).
- Rhyme Time – Friday 24th December 1030am (ages 0-2, book online).
- Lego Club – Saturday 8th January, 2pm (ages 4-11, book online).
- Market Hall Museum – various dates. Please see website for Christmas & New Year Opening Hours). The museum is welcoming visitors once again. What have you missed most? The bees? The giant tapestry? The historic Plesiosaur skeleton? Or maybe it’s the giant bear or Oisin, their very own tweeting giant irish deer skeleton. Combine your trip with a wander around Market Place and a walk down to St Nicks Park and you can easily have a lovely day out in Warwick. If you can’t come to the events at the Market Place Museum, then you can take part in their #museumfromhome activities. See our review for some of the exciting activities that we have previously tried!
- Various events at Warwick Library, Warwick – various dates.
- Lego Club – Saturday 11th December 2021 10-1045am & 11-1145am (ages 4-11, book online).
- Lego Club – Saturday 18th December 2021 10-1045am & 11-1145am (ages 4-11, book online).
- Christmas Crafts – Mon 20th December 2021 10-1130am (ages 4-11, book online).
- Story Stomp – Wednesday 22nd December 2021 930-10am (ages 2-4, book online).
- Rhyme Time – Thursday 23rd December 930-10am & 11-1130am (ages 0-2, book online).
- Christmas Crafts – Thursday 23rd December 2-330pm (ages 4-11, book online).
- Rhyme Time – Thursday 30th December 930-10am & 11-1130am (ages 0-2 book online).
- Christmas Crafts – Thursday 30th December 2-330pm (ages 4-11, book online).
- Christmas at Tudor World, Stratford – 18th – 31st December 2021. Tudor World living history museum is situated right in the centre of the beautiful Town of Stratford upon Avon, just metres from the world famous RSC, and set within an historic 16th century grade 2* building. Using historical settings, discover the secret lives of the Tudors and what life was really like during the time of William Shakespeare; Francis Drake; Elizabeth I, Henry VIII and everyday people. At this magical time of year, discover how Christmas was celebrated in the past. Everyday there will be a seasonal trail and ‘prezzie’ for each child. Prince Christmas himself will be making an appearance for some story-telling!
- Festive Fun – British Motor Museum, – British Motor Museum, Gaydon – 17th – 23rd December 2021. Tis’ the season to be jolly at the British Motor Museum with a Selection Box of activities for all the family to enjoy from 17 to 23 December! Help Martin the Mechanic get Santa’s sleigh back on the road with our Christmas jigsaw trail, create your own car-based Christmas card to take home or have a go at colouring in using the Quiver augmented reality app or on the Christmas themed sheets provided. Don’t forget to pick up our festive take home activity to make your own ‘Princess Mary’ box. Admission charges apply, see website for details.
- Miniature railway open day at Bridge View Light Railway, Baginton – Saturday 11th December 10am-3pm. Come and join us for a ride on our scenic miniature railway. We’re pleased to say no need to pre-book for train rides, but these run weather and volunteer availability permitting.
- The Winter Festival at Compton Verney, Warwickshire – 3rd – 24th December 2021. Compton Verney itself is a wonderful place to spend time with children. There is lots to explore, woodland, the lake, playground and many a hide-and-seek opportunity. However, there are also lots of extra activities going on during the school holiday: Santa’s Magical Woodland Grotto, Reindeer Trail, Storytime with Mother Christmas, Christmas Carols and more. Pre-booking activities essential. See website for further details including charges and admission details.
- Luminate Winter Light Trail at Coombe Abbey, Coventry – Thurs 18th November – Friday 24th November 2021. A spectacular, illuminated trail, full of wonder and intrigue, to delight and enthral your senses. As darkness descends, join us on our enchanting journey, as we weave a captivating light trail through the stunning, historic grounds of Coombe Abbey Park. Immerse yourself in our mesmerising mile long trail, with stunning lighting elements and fabulous light play, all set to ambient music. A Timeless experience to be enjoyed by all, young and old alike. Tickets must be pre-booked online in advance.
- Christmas Fun in the Park at Spencer Park, Earlsdon, Coventry – Sunday 19th December 1-4pm. Join us for some Christmas fun. Wear your best festive jumper or come along in Christmas fancy dress. Visit Santa and his Elves, play Hunt the Santa, or buy that last minute Christmas present from one of the craft stalls, there’ll be lots to do at our seasonal family fun day. Hot dogs, warming soup, hot drinks and festive cakes will also be on offer from the Pavilion Café.
- A Fairy Merry Christmas at Ryton Pools Country Park, Coventry – Saturday 11th December 1030am-1230pm. Ryton Pools is a great park to visit with two playgrounds (one for younger children and one aimed at older children a short walk around the pools). Take a picnic and you can easily spend all day here. It is also a perfect spot for a bit of cycling or scooting! This is an additional activity, please see Facebook event for more details and booking link.
- Christmas Adventure Quest at Kenilworth Castle, Kenilworth – until 2nd January 2022. Explore Kenilworth Castle with our family-friendly Christmas adventure quest. Embark on a scavenger hunt to find the clues hidden around the castle, and discover fun facts and festive folklore along the way. Plus, get in the festive spirit as you enjoy the decorations dotted around the grounds. Standard admission applies.
- Enchanted Christmas Kingdom at Hatton Adventure World, Hatton – various dates. This Christmas, treat your family to a magical adventure at Hatton Adventure World and be amazed as our park is transformed into a winter wonderland. Take a walk through the enchanted forest and be entertained by a special Christmas Panto starring Father Christmas and his cheeky elves. Get creative with gingerbread decorating, reindeer food making and go for a spin on the festive funfair rides. Laugh along with Mr Holly the Christmas Elf in his Festive Friends Puppet & Yuletide Trickery shows. Each child will also be able to choose their very own special gift from Father Christmas’ toy shop to complete their magical adventure.
- Christmas at the Castle – Warwick Castle, Warwick – From 27th November, complete your Christmas wish list in one truly epic destination. Christmas at the Castle is the ultimate festive experience! Glide upon our spectacular ice rink to your favourite festival hits in the shadow of a world class back-drop and discover our dazzling light trail with dancing light projections. Inside, journey through the castle at the most magical time of the year. Discover twinkling trees, dazzling decorations and festive flourishes with the Great Hall & Staterooms and marvel at the renowned 20ft high Christmas tree. Outside, climb the towers and ramparts for impressive panoramic winter views and explore 64-acres of grounds and gardens. Overhead, you’ll find impressive birds of prey, flying gracefully as our expert Falconer leads them in an unforgettable demonstration. Plus, BRAND NEW for 2021 welcomes the unmissable Stories with Santa experience in partnership with Orchard Toys. (additional ticket required) Admission fee applies, see website for details.
- Christmas Family Workshop at Hill Close Gardens, Warwick – Thursday 16th December 330pm. A family workshop of festive crafts, a special storytime and a place to deliver your letter to Santa. Cost is £4 per child with under 2s free. No need to book, simply drop-in.
- National Trust Properties, Warwickshire – From walks through riverside parkland to stories from days gone by, there is lots to discover in Warwickshire. Look out for their special Percy the Park Keeper winter trails too! See website for details.
- Warwickshire Wildlife Trust Nature Reserves, Warwickshire – The WWT website lists many nature reserves within our local area which are great for exploring. We can definitely recommend Ufton Fields near Leamington Spa. There is a circular walk about 1.5 miles (not too far for little legs) which also encompasses a den building area. Lots of fun!
Christmas Markets & Shopping
- Leamington Bells Jingling at Royal Priors Shopping Centre, Leamington. From cheeky elves, to singing princesses, choirs and much more – this is the festive season you do not want to miss!
- Elf helpers roaming around the centre (handing out Christmas goodies) Sat & Sun 4-5th Dec, 11-12th Dec, 18th-19th Dec 11am-4pm
- Santa’s Elf Workshop – Santa has entrusted us once again to host his Leamington base, but we need all your help to get things running smoothly. Get those Santa hats on and come on by the centre to join in the festive fun!
- Late Night Thursdays – Thurs 16th & 23rd December. It’s getting close to the big day and we’re staying open later to help get things ticked off your Christmas shopping list. Why not bring the family as well and they can enjoy some fabulous dance performances and the harmonies of town favourites, the singing princesses!
- Christmas Makers Market at The Farm, Stratford – Saturday 18th December 9am-4pm The Farm Stratford Christmas Inspired Monthly Maker’s Market, Saturday 18th December from 9am until 4pm in our poly tunnel! It’s a chance to celebrate our amazing local, independent businesses, artisan makers, food creators & all round food gurus!
- Christmas Markets at Hatton Shopping Village, Hatton – Saturday 11th, Sunday 12th, Saturday 18th & Sunday 19th December 2021 10am-4pm Our final outdoor markets of the year! Browse our popular outdoor Christmas Markets bursting with a multitude of fantastic festive gifts and awash with unique presents for you to choose from. The markets on 11th & 12th December are part of a special vintage themed weekend which will showcase our Vintage Tractor, beautiful Vintage Christmas singing and delicious Christmas Vintage tea’s in Alfie’s Café. Dress up in your finest vintage style outfit and be in with a chance of winning the ‘Best Dressed’ competition & prize!
- Christmas Meet the Maker Market at Church Farm Brewery, Budbrooke, Warwick – Saturday 11th December 2021 10am-2pm. On Saturday 11th December, we at Church Farm are holding our first ever Christmas Meet the Maker! Come down to Church Farm in Budbrooke and meet our fabulous local businesses that are based on site at the farm, but also other businesses that are from the surrounding areas!
- Visit Warwick Christmas Fairs, Warwick – Sunday 12th & Sunday 19th December 10-330pm. Get into the Christmas spirit while browsing a fabulous choice of gifts, homewares, decorations, cards and crafts created by local producers in a jolly atmosphere in the heart of Warwick. In addition to the festive stalls and refreshments which will alter weekly, the Visitor Information Centre on the ground floor has a wide selection of Warwick souvenirs, local crafts and gifts for sale. Visitors can also support charity by choosing to send Christmas greetings by selecting Cards For Good Causes that supports over 200 causes throughout the UK.
- Santa Experience – Magical VR RIde at West Orchards Shopping Centre, Coventry – various dates. Our Brand New Santa experience will fill you with festive cheer!!! Santa will welcome you to his sleigh lodge on level 3 of the shopping centre. He will show you a safety video and then take you through to the Virtual Reality Sleigh Ride. After the ride, the children will chat with Santa for a few minutes and each child will receive a small chocolate gift.
- Brunch with Santa at The Queen & Castle, Kenilworth. Sun 12th December 9-1130am. Santa’s making time to visit our beautiful pub and he’s inviting you to share a very special time with him during your brunch visit!
- Meet Father Christmas at Kenilworth Fire Station, Kenilworth – Saturday 18th December 2pm-5pm. Come along and meet Santa in his Grotto at Kenilworth Fire Station. There will be games and competitions and tours of the fire engines. No booking is required just turn up between 2pm and 5pm. £4 to see Santa and each child receives a gift. Colouring Competition to win a “Firefighter experience” and lots more going on!
- Santa with Leamington Rotary Club at the Royal Priors, Leamington – various dates. Santa has unfortunately had to self-isolate for the past 2 Christmases, after all if you are several hundred years old you are extremely vulnerable. Santa and his elves will be back in the Royal Priors and delighting children by handing out toys again over the Christmas period with his usual. Ho! Ho! Ho! The dates this year will be: Sat 11th December 10am-4pm, Sun 12th December 11am-3pm, Sat 18th December 10am-4pm and Sun 19th December 11am-3pm.
- Santa & The Elves Afternoon Tea and Breakfast at Enchanted, Leamington – Sat 11th & Sun 12th December 2021. Enjoy afternoon tea or breakfast with Santa and the singing elves! Pre-booking essential.
- The Ice Kingdom at Magic Alley, Stratford-upon-Avon – various dates. Enter The Ice Kingdom and make your way through our magical 10 rooms completing the Christmas quest. On the way you will happen upon various characters and magical creatures before meeting Father Christmas. All children receive a present and then continue on their journey culminating in a visit to the snow covered Enchanted Forest where you can play in the snow and have a snowball fight! All Covid safety measures will be in place in line with the government guidance at the time of the event. Tickets can be booked in advance at the Magic Alley website and pre booking is vital. The event is currently sold out at time of writing but cancellations may be available, please check website for details.
- Meet Father Christmas at The Home Guard Club, Tiddington, Stratford-upon-Avon – Sunday 19th December 2021 4pm-6pm. Meet Father Christmas in the grotto slots between 4-6pm. Tickets are £5.50 per child contact Jackie on 07518 748647 to book you slot. The Bunker bar will be open and mulled wine and mince pies will be available to buy.
Arts and Entertainment
- A Christmas Carol at The Albany Theatre, Coventry – Saturday 4th – Sunday 26th December. The Albany Theatre brings this much loved tale vividly to life with breath-taking sets, spellbinding costumes, heaps of Christmas spirit and a sprinkle of spooky goings on. Recommended for ages 7+
- Dick Whittington at The Albany Theatre, Coventry – Thursday 30th December – Saturday 8th January 2022. All the ingredients for the perfect pantomime: laugh out loud comedy, stunning scenery, special effects, and gorgeous costumes. Not forgetting a generous helping of boos and hisses along the way!
- Beauty and The Beast at The Belgrade Theatre, Coventry – Wednesday 24th November 2021 – Saturday 8th January 2022. This beauty of a panto will feature amazing sets, crazy costumes and seasonal silliness that make a trip to the Belgrade an unmissable Christmas trip.
- Santa’s Magical Mystery Guest at The Belgrade Theatre, Coventry – Thurs 9th December – Fri 24th December 2021. An unmissable treat for all children up to the age of 6 years. Fun characters, favourite action songs, a great story and a chance to meet Santa and get a present from him.
- A Christmas Carol at The Belgrade Theatre, Coventry. David Bradley stars in Simon Callow’s acclaimed one-man adaption of the ultimate classic Christmas tale. Join Ebeneezer Scrooge, Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and a trio of ghosts for a festive story designed to rescue Christmas from all the scrooges out there! For ages 7+.
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar at Warwick Arts Centre, Coventry – Saturday 18th – Friday 24th December 2021. Dive into Eric Carle’s bright and colourful world as his beloved stories are transformed from page to stage, using a menagerie of 75 lovable puppets and charming music. For ages 1-6.
- Cinderella, Priory Theatre, Kenilworth – Weds 15th December 2021 – Sunday 2nd January 2022. Enjoy the fabulous Priory panto, with spectacular scenery and costumes, fabulous songs and dances – and bags of audience participation and slapstick fun!
- Puss in Boots, Talisman Theatre, Kenilworth – Thursday 19th December 2021 – Saturday 4th January 2022. All the fun of the traditional family pantomime – laughter and slapstick, gorgeous costumes, great songs and of course some audience participation.
- Aladdin, Royal Spa Centre, Leamington Spa – Saturday 4th December 2021 – Sunday 2nd January 2022. Containing all the ingredients for a perfect family panto. Spectacular sets and costumes, fabulous songs, dances and bags of slapstick fun!
- Christmas Events at Enchanted Tea Rooms, Leamington Spa – if your little one loves Disney characters (especially princesses), then Enchanted is THE place to be in Warwickshire. They have a number of events for all character fans this school holiday:
- Saturday 11th & Sunday 12th December: Hot Chocolate or Afternoon Tea with Santa & The Singing Elves
- Sunday 12th December: Christmas Afternoon Tea with the Princesses
- Monday 20th December: The Polar Express Pyjama Party
- Tuesday 21st December: The Polar Express Pyjama Party
- Wednesday 22nd December: The Polar Express Pyjama Party
- Thursday 23rd December: The Polar Express Pyjama Party
- Monday 29th December: Princess Rapunzel & Aurora Afternoon Tea
- Tuesday 28th December: Spoonful of Sugar Mary Poppins Afternoon Tea
- Tuesday 28th December: Greatest Show Afternoon Tea
- Wednesday 29th December: Wizards at Christmas Afternoon Tea
- Wednesday 29th December: Afternoon Tea with the Snow Sisters
Stratford upon Avon
- Jack & The Beanstalk at Stratford Playhouse, Stratford – Saturday 18th – Friday 31st December 2021. Spectacular scenery and effects, Fairies, the Dame, Principal Boy, the Principal Girl, the Baddie, lots of jokes, singing and dancing. A giant of a story!
- Beauty & The Beast by Tread the Boards at The Attic Theatre, Stratford – 17th December 2021 – 2nd January 2022.Tread the Boards Theatre Company are delighted to bring pantomime back to The Attic Theatre this Christmas. Dreaming of a happier life, the beautiful Belle leaves the quiet town of Stratfordia to go in search of adventure but finds herself transported to a cursed castle and held captive by a hideous beast who has been placed under a spell by an evil enchantress. It is down to her friends Funny French Franc, Dame Dotty alongside the arrogant and stupid Jean Claude Van Dumb to save her. Can Belle see beyond the monster and fall in love with her captor before the last petal falls from the enchanted rose? Or will the Beast’s selfishness cost him the world he once knew and the hand of the girl who has melted his heart? We have really enjoyed their previous productions of Cinderella and Wind in the Willows and we are sure Beauty and the Beast will be a hit too!
- The Magician’s Elephant at RSC, Stratford – various dates until Saturday 1st January 2022. A magician conjures an elephant from the sky, setting off a chain of events so remarkable, so impossible, that it changes life in this quiet and lonely town forever. This brand-new musical for all the family reminds us all that even the impossible can be possible when we open our eyes and hearts to those around us. See the RSC website for dates, times and booking details! For ages 6+.
- Playbox Holiday Workshops at Playbox Theatre, The Dream Factory, Warwick – Various dates. Join us at The Dream Factory for a fun-filled holiday with workshops for all ages. Booking required, please check availability as these always sell out very quickly.
Best of the Rest
- Coventry Festive fun at Coventry Skydrome, Coventry – Saturday 11th December 2021 1130am-330pm. Head to the Skydome atrium to meet Frozen’s very own Elsa and Olaf, before enjoying a festive makeover with our wonderful face painter. Once you’ve had your face painted, pose for a photo in our interactive gif-booth, before you treat yourself to a delicious hot chocolate! P.S. Don’t forget to bring your letter for Santa! We’ll also have our special post-box so you can send your wish-list first class to the North Pole. See you there!
- Wasps vs London Irish Christmas Cracker, Coventry Building Society Arena, Coventry – 26th December at 3pm. This year’s Christmas Cracker sees Wasps take on London Irish at the Coventry Building Society Arena on Boxing Day, 3:00pm kick-off. Join us on Sunday 26 December for a sleigh full of festive activities. Christmas Fan Village and funfair, reindeer and an incredible fireworks display!
- Children’s Christmas Party, Kineton Sports & Social Club, Kineton – Sunday 12th December 3-5pm. Another one for the little ones, their very own Christmas party and a chance to meet Father Christmas! 2-4pm, free to members, £2 non members. Ideal for children aged 4-11 years.
- Dinky’s Play Cafe, Leamington Spa – Please check Facebook page for opening hours. Opening hours Tues-Fri 9.30am-2pm, Sat 10am-5pm (Closed Sundays for private parties and also Mondays). Dinky’s is a delightful cafe in Leamington complete with baby area and soft play frame suitable for age 3-8 year olds, so you can enjoy a coffee whilst your little ones are entertained.
- JNB Gymnastics Academy, Pathlow, Stratford-upon- Avon – Various dates. There is so much going on at JNB gymnastics academy – the popular Mum, Dad and Me sessions for little ones, Bouncebox, dance and gymnastic classes and even discos! See their webpage for further details and to book.
- Jump In Trampoline Park, Warwick – Looking for things to do in the half term holidays? Come to Jump In Trampoline Park Warwick. Who doesn’t enjoy school holiday activities that are fun for both kids and adults? Here at Jump In Warwick, we have all kinds of fun and rainy day activities to do that don’t involve a screen!
- Young Engineers Christmas Engineering Challenge at Myton School, Warwick – Monday 20th December 2021 930-1130am. challenge at Myton School. Come and build a working conveyor belt to help the Elves with their presents and design a motorised sleigh for Santa.
- Family Nativity Service at St Nicholas Church, Warwick – Christmas Eve 4pm. All are welcome to join our informal, fun, family-friendly nativity service. Come dressed as a character from the Christmas story and join us on a journey to Bethlehem. Places are limited so we recommend booking in advance.
- Family Christmas Craft Session at The Open Door, Hampton Magna, Warwick – Saturday 11th December 2021 10am-1pm. St Michael’s Church invites you to a family Christmas craft session – drop in to The Open Door between 10am and 1pm to make a festive craft and enjoy refreshments, all free of charge. Crafts suitable for all ages. You may like to drop in whilst following the Christmas Window Trail, organised by the community centre. We will also be serving takeaway refreshments for you to enjoy whilst out and about.
- School Holiday Chocolate Workshops, The Chocolate Shed, Yew Tree Farm Craft Centre, Wootton Wawen – Various Dates. The Chocolate Shed specialises exclusively in running brilliantly fun and sticky chocolate making workshops. See website for details.
Enjoy the 2021 Christmas School Holidays in Warwickshire!
We hope we’ve provided you with lots of Christmas school holiday inspiration in this post! If you’re after some Elf on the Shelf inspiration too, don’t forget to check out our Elf on the Shelf blog post with plenty of ideas to keep you going (talking of which, it’s that time of night again isn’t it!).When you are indoors, for some quiet time or because the weather isn’t playing fair, we can recommend some great indoor activities. We hope that you manage to have lots of fun with your families. Let us know what you get up to or if there’s any more activities you can suggest in the comments box below or by joining the conversation on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Enjoy!