Father Christmas finder

Sitting on Santa's knee. ©iStock.com/morganl

Have you been a good boy? Image: ©iStock.com/morganl

Santa Claus is coming to town, but where can you see him? I’ve covered some of the most popular places – Baytree in Spalding and the Nene Valley Santa Special – but also some lesser known ones, like the new Santa Train at Ferry Meadows.

I haven’t visited Santa at all of these places – just Baytree last year (which is brilliant, and I would highly recommend) and Queensgate when Little Miss was 6 months old (she was completely uninterested in him at that age!). So my comments below are based on what any friends who’ve been say, and what I was able to find out on the web and over the phone.

Baytree Garden Centre, Spalding

The winter wonderland at Baytree is probably the most popular Christmas attraction in our area. It really is worth a visit if you have never been before. The winter wonderland features Christmas trees, singing penguins and reindeer, lots of lights and a little train ride! Just be warned, weekends can get very busy (particularly getting close to Christmas) and I have heard of friends queueing for one or two hours. Don’t forget to check out the real reindeer while you are there.

  • When: Daily until 24 December. Check Baytree Garden Centre website for times.
  • How much: To wander through the winter wonderland and visit Santa is £8.50 per child. To just see the winter wonderland is £1.50 per person (adult and children).
  • Bookings: You can’t book for the winter wonderland or Santa’s grotto. But groups can book on 01406 372828.
  • What do you get? All children visiting Santa get a present and a real Christmas tree.
  • Photo? Yes, professional photographer in Santa’s grotto. Photos available to purchase for around £3 – £4. You can take your own photos in the winter wonderland, but not in the grotto.

Springfields  Festival Garden Centre, Spalding

Santa will be setting up residence in his grotto in the garden centre at Springfields. You need to purchase a ticket at the tills in the garden centre; you can’t buy tickets at the grotto itself. Once you’ve seen Santa, take a walk around the gardens – they’ve been decorated with thousands of fairy lights.

  • When: Daily until 24 December. See Springfields website for times
  • How much: £5 per child. You need to pay with cash, not card.
  • Bookings: None available
  • What do you get? Each child gets a Thorntons chocolate gift worth £10.
  • Photos? No professional photographer, but you can take your own.

Waterside Garden Centre, Baston

Come and visit Santa in his grotto and let him have your Christmas list. After you’ve seen Santa, have a walk around the Christmas displays indoors. The Christmas trees are beautifully decorated in different colours and themes.

  • When: Daily from 21 – 24 December. 10am – 4pm. See Waterside Garden Centre website for more details.
  • Bookings: None available
  • How much? £4.99 per child
  • What do you get? Small gift and a real Christmas tree
  • Photos? No professional photographer, but you can take your own.

Crowland Garden Centre, Crowland, Peterborough

Come and enjoy breakfast with Santa and his elves in the restaurant. Everyone will have the chance to chat with Santa and receive a gift, and afterwards the kids will be able to decorate a gingerbread man. There is limited space for breakfast on Monday 23 and Tuesday 24 December.

  • When: Daily from 21 – 24 December. See Crowland Garden Centre website for times and more details.
  • Bookings: You need to book online or by phone: 01733 212900
  • How much? Adult breakfast: £7.99, child breakfast: £7.99, adult mini breakfast: £3.99.
  • Photos? No professional photographer, but you can take your own.

Queensgate Shopping Centre, Peterborough

Santa will be seeing boys and girls in his grotto in North Square (outside John Lewis on the ground floor). Unlike previous years, you can’t book a time slot, you just turn up and wait in line.

  • When: Daily until 24 December. See Queensgate website for times.
  • How much: £4.50 to visit Santa & receive a present, £4.50 to visit Santa & have a photo with him, £7.00 to visit Santa, receive a present and have a photo with him.
  • Bookings: None available
  • What do you get? Small gift.
  • Photos? Yes, professional photographer. Photo included in some options. You can’t take your own photos.

Nottcutts Garden Centre, Peterborough

Visit the winter wonderland at Nottcutts and see Santa in his grotto. Each child will receive a small gift. You can also have breakfast with Santa in the restaurant and enjoy games and a story from the man himself.

  • When: Daily from 21 – 24 December. Breakfast is available on 23 & 24 December. See Nottcutts website for times.
  • Bookings: None available for the grotto. But you need to book for breakfast by phone: 01733 234600 or in the restaurant prior to the day.
  • How much: Santa’s grotto is £6.50 per child. Breakfast is £11 per child.
  • What do you get? Small gift
  • Photos? No professional photographer, but you can take your own.

Dobbies, Hampton, Peterborough

Come and see Santa and his helpers in his grotto. Each child will have the chance to speak to Santa and receive a small present.

  • When: Daily from 14 – 24 December. See Dobbies website for times
  • How much: £6 per child
  • Bookings: Dobbies advise to book online as soon as possible, especially if you want to come closer to Christmas. You can also book by phone: 01733 898640. It may be possible to book a time slot on the day, but this will depend on availability.
  • What do you get? Small gift
  • Photos? Yes, professional photographer. Photos will be about £5 each. You can’t take your own photo.

Serpentine Green, Hampton, Peterborough

Santa and his elves will be seeing boys and girls in his grotto at Serpentine Green. All children will receive a small present.

  • When: Daily until 24 December. 10am – 4pm. See the Serpentine Green website for more details.
  • How much: £5 per child (all money raised goes to the RNIB)
  • Bookings: None available
  • What do you get? Small gift
  • Photos? No professional photographer, but you can take your own.

Nene Valley Railway, Wansford

Hop aboard the Santa Special for a train trip to Peterborough and back. Before the journey visit Santa in his log cabin where the kids can give Santa their Christmas list and will receive a small gift. There are a number of tickets options, from the classic ticket, which includes a drink and chocolates to premier first class tickets which entitles you to your own private compartment (seats 6) and a personal waiter serving platters of festive food! There are still some tickets available for departures on Monday 23 and Tuesday 24 December.

  • When:  1 – 24 December. There are several departures a day, see Nene Valley Railway website for more details on dates and times.
  • How much: Classic ticket prices range from £11 – £16.50. First class tickets range from £14.85 – £22.50. Premier first class compartment tickets (seat 6) range from £175 – £200. If you purchase a first class ticket, you can also purchase breakfast or lunch for your journey.
  • Bookings: Yes, you need to book online or phone: 01780 782833 or 01780 784444 between 9.30am and 3.30pm. If you want to travel on the same day as booking, you will need to telephone.
  • Photos? No professional photographer, but you can take your own.

Sacrewell Farm, Thornhaugh, Peterborough

Take a tractor ride across the farm to visit Santa sitting by his roaring fire in Mill House. Each child will get a chance to chat with Santa and receive a small gift. While you’re at Sacrewell Farm, make some traditional Christmas decorations in the function room. Adults will be able to ride on the tractor with their kids for free.

  • When: Daily from 14 – 24 December. See Sacrewell Farm website for times.
  • How much: £8 for a child (includes Farm entry), £5 for children that are members and under 2’s. Adults will be charged normal Farm entry.
  • Bookings: You can book by phone: 01780 782254, or just turn up on the day. If you pay on the day you may need to wait for a space on the tractor, but when I spoke to Sacrewell Farm, they said they do keep a certain number of spaces for people who pay on the day.
  • What do you get? Tractor ride and small gift.
  • Photos? Yes, professional photographer. Photos available to purchase from £8 (they come mounted in a Sacrewell Farm frame). But you can also take your own.

DISCLAIMER: To the best of my knowledge all the information presented above is accurate. I have either spoken to, or emailed all the above venues to check details. But I’m only human (and a harassed Mum!) so I apologise in advance if I’ve got anything wrong.

Advertisements

5 comments

  1. What a lovely round-up, looks like Santa will be busy 🙂

  2. Great blog! Thanks for all the information – Sacrewell is one of our favs.

    1. Thanks, it was quite fun writing and now I have to decide where to take Little Miss!

  3. Thanks for adding the link to your blog on the BritMums Travel Round-up. A nice surprise to pop over here and discover we live near each other. I live in Holbeach, the other side of Spalding.
    Great memories of trips to Baytree to see Santa with my boy. He’s 17 now so the mini Christmas trees we were given each year are now pretty big!

    1. Thanks for stopping by. Baytree is brilliant, last year Little Miss was fascinated by all the lights, but didn’t really ‘get it’. This year I think she will!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Growing Family

UK home and garden blog sharing ideas, inspiration and tips for busy family life, written by Catherine Hughes

Gammon and Chips

The adventures of two kiddiewinks, by their Aussie expat mum

Mummy Matters

Parenting and Lifestyle

The Vanilla Housewife

Funny stories from my third world kitchen

The Oliver's Madhouse

When life isn't complicated enough ..

Kids In Tow

Blogging family days out in and around the Yorkshire area

What the Redhead said

The future's bright, the future's Ginger

%d bloggers like this: