Here’s a roundup of our 8 favourite highlights happening this weekend (not necessarily in date order):
Image: Bure Valley Railway's Santa Specials
Image: Horse + Bamboo's production of Hansel & Gretel, which has inspired the Cathedral Quarter Sweet Trail
Inspired by Norwich Puppet Theatre’s show, Hansel & Gretel (17 - 31 December), have fun with this lovely family trail in Norwich’s historic Cathedral Quarter, hunting down giant sweets in shop windows; each has a letter on it which spells out a mystery word. Once you’ve got it, hand in your completed trail maps to either Norwich Puppet Theatre or Norwich Tourist Information Centre in The Forum and you might win some fantastic prizes! Either way, you’ll have had fun exploring the Cathedral Quarter and a nice stretch of your legs! The trail runs until 31 December, is free to take part in, and has some great prizes including show tickets, edible goodies and a year’s family membership to the Puppet Theatre – plus many more!
There’s plenty going on in our market towns this weekend. In Loddon and Chedgrave there’s a Victorian Evening with a switch-on of the Christmas lights, and lots of other Victorian-themed activities and entertainment as well as Father Christmas and other kids’ activities, Friday 2 December, 6.30 – 8.30pm.
On Saturday 3 December head over to Wymondham for ‘Wynterfest’, a day full of fun with Father Christmas, activities, a brass band, street entertainers and the switch on of their Christmas lights (2 – 6pm), or pop to Harleston for their Christmas Market and Lights switch on (10am – 8pm). There’ll be plenty of festivities including fun entertainment for all the family, Father Christmas (of course!) in his grotto and plenty of home-made gifts, wreaths and delicious food and drink for sale!
Image: Christmas with St Nicholas at the Cathedral of St John the Baptist
The Cathedral of St John the Baptist celebrates all things Christmas with their St Nicholas Fair, this Saturday 3 December (11am – 5pm). Browse and buy lovely gifts including crafts, handmade items and books, plus enjoy entertainment and tower tours AND look out for an appearance from St Nicholas himself. He’ll arrive on his horse and bring presents for the kiddies!
The Santa Specials return for another year at Bure Valley Railway from this weekend onwards. Hop on the Santa train which runs between Wroxham and Aylsham Station, where Santa himself will be waiting to meet kids with a personalised present for everyone under 12! There’ll be entertainment and refreshments for everyone to enjoy before climbing back aboard to return to Wroxham. Santa Specials will run every weekend from 3 December and every day from 17 Dec until Christmas Eve. Booking is essential, please see the website for more details.
Image: Woodforde's Norfolk Ales
Head over to Woodbastwick for Woodforde’s ever-popular annual open weekend! Featuring all things local, the brewery will be throwing open its doors and there’ll be tours, live music, food and (plenty of) drink as well as a market full of things to buy for yourself or for lovely gifts! Free entry, 3 & 4 December (9am – 5pm on the Saturday, 10am – 4pm on the Sunday).
The Museum of Norwich at the Bridewell are going a bit retro this weekend, for their ‘Celebrating Street Style’ event. They want you to share your style stories from the seventies onwards and would love to see any clothes, accessories or photos from the last 50 years or so. Saturday 3 December, 11am – 3pm (usual museum admission applies).
Well, what could be more festive than that? St Peter Mancroft, Norwich’s largest Medieval church, hosts their annual Christmas Tree Festival again from 1-5 December, and it’s free admission too!
Image: Christmas at Strangers' Hall
Strangers’ Hall is really amazing at Christmas; head over there to enjoy the festive decorations and enjoy a tour of the museum, all part of their 'Festive Fun at Strangers' Hall' event. There are various dates for this, but one is this weekend on the Sunday 4 December, so get yourselves down there; you’re bound to feel all festive afterwards! (Other dates for festive fun include 4, 7, 11, 14, 18 & 21 December - find out more here.)
The Tunnel of Light and projections onto Norwich Castle and City Hall continue, whilst there’ll be festive tastings in the Deli at Jarrolds – Norwich‘s only independent department store - every Saturday in December.
For the finer details on Christmas in Norwich visit our dedicated Christmas section on VisitNorwich.co.uk. There's info on where to stay, eat, shop and explore as well as lots of additional information - it's all here!
Greater Anglia have Advance fares from £9 one way between London Liverpool Street and Norwich. Trains run every 30 minutes. Abellio also serves Colchester, Ipswich and Diss on the Norwich line. Direct trains also run from Cambridge.
East Midlands Trains runs services from Liverpool, Manchester and Nottingham.
Flights into Norwich served from Edinburgh, Manchester, Exeter, Aberdeen, Jersey*, Guernsey* and Amsterdam.