Christmas in Cornwall

    It’s time to prepare for the festive season in Cornwall. When the calendar flips to November, Cornwall comes alive with the spirit of Christmas. The streets are adorned with lights, festive markets spring up, and a flurry of heartwarming events for all ages set the stage for a truly memorable Christmas. Let's take a closer look at some of the fantastic events happening in Cornwall this winter.

    Mousehole Harbour Lights | Paul Watts

    Christmas Lights & Decorations

    Cornwall's Christmas lights bring joy to our towns, villages, harbours and gardens, casting a warm and enchanting glow that unites communities in festive cheer. The annual switch-on events are eagerly anticipated by locals and visitors alike. Truro's cobbled streets will be adorned with lights from Friday 24th November, Falmouth from Thursday 30th November, Newquay from 1st December, and the iconic Mousehole lights from Monday 11th December.

    Heligan’s Night Garden is also returning for 2023. The event brings flora and fauna to life in the dark through an enchanting lantern display, which will be running from 17th November until 2nd January.

    Then, from Saturday 18th November, witness the stunning 60-foot garland made from thousands of estate-grown flowers adorning Cotehele's Great Hall. It's a tradition dating back to 1956 and a sight to behold. Or, over on the south coast, Anna Sawle will return to National Trust Trelissick to create the beautiful displays and arrangements in the house, including the dining table laid for a festive feast in the West Library. She’ll be taking inspiration from Cornish heritage as well as the traditional Cornish tartan and hunting tartan in her displays that will complement the rooms and collection while maintaining a festive Christmas atmosphere.

    BIG Christmas Market | Truro Farmers Market

    Christmas Markets

    St Mellion Estate invites you to join them for an afternoon of festive fun and Christmas gift shopping on Sunday 19th November. Spend the afternoon wandering around the fair, enjoy some festive nibbles and meet a whole bunch of lovely local suppliers offering a range of Christmas treats, gifts and decorations.

    The following week on the 22nd and 23rd November, the Eden Project will host the Cornwall Christmas Fair, raising funds for Cornwall Community Foundation.

    Then, from Wednesday 29th November until Christmas Eve, we welcome the BIG Christmas Market to Truro. The award-winning Truro Farmers Market brings a new style for 2023 with the introduction of bespoke wooden cabins to house Cornwall's top-notch artisan traders and producers, which will bring an amazing festive feel to the city centre. Lemon Quay will be alive with traders from across Cornwall, all showcasing their incredible talent and craftsmanship within the Cornish community. Each day will showcase local food, drink, art, and crafts, while street food, music, festive happenings, and family entertainment will add an immersive feel to the month-long market.

    Just a stone’s throw from the city is National Trust Trelissick, who are hosting their Christmas Craft Fair from 2nd - 5th December, featuring handmade gifts by National Trust staff and volunteers.

    Jump across to the North Coast on Sunday 3rd December for St Moritz Hotel’s enchanting Christmas Market. Discover a world of treasures at the market, featuring approximately 20 charming stalls offering a diverse range of goods. From dazzling jewellery and vibrant flowers to delightful Christmas gifts and handmade crafts, there's something for everyone on your list.

    Festive Afternoon Tea

    Festive Afternoon Tea is a delightful twist on the traditional English classic, with an array of sweet and savoury treats, each expertly crafted with a Christmas spin.

    You can enjoy this tasty experience at the Esplanade Hotel before a wintery walk on Fistral Beach.

    Or, if you need a break from Christmas shopping, head up to the Alverton Hotel in Truro to savour their festive delicacies.

    Christmas Crafting

    From Christmas cards to winter wreaths, get all your Christmas crafting wrapped up in Cornwall.

    Budock Vean’s Arts and Craft Club will be running throughout the winter, where you can make Driftwood Christmas Stars, Christmas Cards and Christmas Wreaths.

    Trebah Garden will also be hosting card and wreath making workshops, and what a perfect setting for getting crafty!

    Or, on the North Coast, head to the Esplanade Hotel for Festive Wreath Making and Christmas Calligraphy, and even shake up a storm at their Christmas Cocktail Classes.

    Padstow Christmas Festival | James Ram
    Heligan Night Garden

    Father Christmas

    It wouldn’t be Christmas without a visit from Santa! We’re very lucky that he’s cleared time in his busy schedule to spend some time with us here in Cornwall.

    During his stay, he’ll be popping into Trelissick for special storytelling sessions, and he’ll also be hiding in his grotto at the Royal Cornwall Museum waiting for you and the elves to find him!

    Whilst the reindeers rest up for Christmas Eve, you’ll find Father Christmas travelling on the Bodmin and Wenford Railway. Join him on the steam train for storytelling, High Tea, and Christmassy arts and crafts.

    Padstow Christmas Festival

    The Padstow Christmas Festival is a beloved annual event that encapsulates the very essence of Christmas in Cornwall. This festival, running from 7th - 10th December, has become a renowned celebration of food, drink, and Cornish craft, loved by locals and visitors alike. The four day event includes chef demonstrations from culinary icons like Rick Stein, Paul Ainsworth, and Nathan Outlaw all showcasing their skills in a beautiful coastal setting. With the addition of a Christmas Market, the festival showcases an exciting selection of gifts and produce.

    For even more festive fun, delve into our 'What's On' pages and uncover a treasure trove of Christmas crackers. Find out more and plan your Cornish Christmas today.

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