/ Travel & Leisure

Are you going out and about this Christmas?

Couple walking in snowy forest

Museums and stately homes across the land are getting in the festive spirit with wintery events and special visitors. Which Christmas activities make you go ho, ho, ho?

It’s finally happened – I’m now in the mood for Christmas. I was beginning to panic, what with less than two weeks to go until the 25th, that I was going to be a bit of a ‘bah humbug’ this year.

But after singing my heart out at a carol concert at my local museum, buying a copy of the Christmas edition of TV Times, and being served cranberry sauce with my roast on Sunday, I think the festive fun can begin!

Last weekend I visited the Horniman museum in south east London. I wasn’t there to see any exhibitions, but to join in with the carol singing taking place in the gardens. I’ve been going for the past 10 years now. It’s become a tradition for my household, and every year I’m astounded that more and more people are turning up. I’ve realised that it is the event that heralds the start of Christmas for me, so it’s one not to be missed.

Have yourself a merry little weekend

We’ve just published our 10 top Christmas attractions, including some of our members’ favourite museums, and many are holding special events in the run-up to Christmas. You can meet Father Christmas, listen to a brass band, or shop for some unusual presents – whatever takes your fancy

Stirling Castle is telling the Story of Christmas. The young actors in the family can dress up as shepherds or angels for a nativity play (with real animals) in Chatsworth House’s farmyard. Even Father Christmas is taking time out of his busy schedule to visit Snowdonia’s Penrhyn Castle between now and the big day.

If the chilly weather forces you indoors, there are still lots of cosy things you really only get to enjoy around this time of year. I love listening to Phil Spector’s Christmas CD on repeat (my favourite track is Marshmallow World) and eating a tub of Twiglets in one sitting without feeling too guilty (well, maybe a little bit).

No matter what the weather brings, I’m sure I’ll be wrapping up warm to wander around a Christmas market or two. I might even treat myself to a mulled wine along the way.

Are you off on a festive adventure this weekend? Which Christmas activity is your favourite?