Contact Us

For reservations or enquiries telephone:

01208 895570

Email us:
Perfect Stays Ltd, 10b Palmers Way,
Trenant Ind Est, Wadebridge, Cornwall, PL27 6HB.

Send An Enquiry

From the Blog

What to do in Cornwall and Devon this Christmas

Posted by Bethany Walton on Updated on

10 recommendations for families

Whether it’s seeking out sparkling light displays, delving into spiced hot chocolates or visiting Father Christmas and his elves, discover 10 family-friendly days out in Cornwall and Devon to enjoy during this year’s festive period.

North Cornwall

Father Christmas awaits at Bedruthan 

Visit between the 1st and 22nd December, when Bedruthan is opening its doors to Father Christmas himself. Checking in for some much-needed rest and relaxation before the big day, you can find him in his magical grotto in the grounds of the hotel. Perfect for little imaginations, wander through the snow-topped trees and past his sleigh, before receiving a beautifully wrapped gift.

A Day Before Christmas also includes a two-course lunch or dinner in the Wild Café, so take a seat in their sea-view restaurant and enjoy a delicious meal as a family. What's more, Bedruthan are also holding their renowned Christmas Fair in mid-November, click to read our full guide to Cornwall’s festive markets in the run-up to the big day.

Lappa Valley at Christmas time

Ideal for families with young children, a day trip to Lappa Valley throughout December is just the ticket to get into the festive spirit. Enjoy mince pies and hot chocolates as you make your way through the park - or climb aboard the steam train and play ‘eye spy’ as the train chugs through the countryside. Meet Santa’s reindeer, write a wish list and post it in the North Pole post box, then visit the man himself in his enchanting grotto. 

On rainy days, visit Lappa Valley’s indoor soft play and stop for lunch in The Engine Shed Café - one of Cornwall’s best baby and toddler-friendly cafés.



© Bedruthan Hotel and Spa

West Cornwall

Visit the festive streets of St Ives

The ever-charming St Ives becomes even more magical in December. Lights, lanterns and glowing window displays add a touch of sparkle to the streets, transforming the vibrant town into a festive paradise. St Ives will be hosting a town treasure hunt for children throughout December, so pop into Café Art or St Ives Library for a form ahead of your adventures.

With far too many adventures to list, click here to see St Ives’ Christmas schedule. From pantomimes and food markets to Santa’s grottos and a Boxing Day swim, you’re sure to find an experience perfect for the whole family.

Watch the lights switch on in Mousehole

For the 60th year, Mousehole will breathe life into its infamous Christmas light display, where the lights will be switched on gradually from Monday 11th through to Thursday 21st December. An estimated 7,000 bulbs and 20 strings of lanterns will ensure the village is just as technicoloured and show-stopping as ever before. Be sure to arrive early on the Saturday, and tuck into fish and chips on the harbour wall as the crowds start to gather ahead of the full switch on.



South Cornwall

Meet Santa and his elves at the Eden Project

As soon as December arrives, Christmas well and truly descends on the Eden Project. Nestled amongst Cornwall’s china clay country, the Eden Project is a must-visit day trip whatever the weather. Transforming with the seasons, winter brings with it a mesmerising sensory light experience throughout the gardens and biomes. Immerse yourself amongst live music, spend an afternoon on the glittering ice rink and wander through the illuminated gardens, all before visiting Santa and his helper Elfie. 

Pre-book and head to The Eden Project with the whole family this December.

Sing along with traditional Christmas carols

Set in the historic courtyards of Bodmin Jail, join the carol singers for a Christmassy evening on the 9th December. Serving marshmallow-topped hot chocolates as well as mulled wine for the adults, warm up and enjoy singing along with the Male Solvely Choir. There’s no need to book, so wrap up in your wooly jumpers and enjoy an impromptu evening at one of Cornwall’s most notable historical landmarks.


54376 (2).jpg

© Eden Project

South Devon

All aboard the Christmas train

Running from late November and throughout December, hop on the Christmas Train of Lights from Paignton to Kingswear in South Devon. Illuminating the night sky, the vintage train is decorated in sparkling lights inside and out. Perfect for children of any age, board the train and keep an eye out for the magical displays that await along the way. What’s more, there’s a very special guest on board ready to receive children’s Christmas lists and wishes.  

Once you arrive into Kingswear, snap some photos of the light train in all its multi-coloured glory before journeying back to Paignton. Set to sell out, book your tickets in advance to secure your space.

Wander through festive Kingsbridge

For those visiting South Devon in early December, be sure to visit the beautiful Kingswear to discover its wonderful Christmas displays. With brightly lit shop windows, carol singers and food stalls aplenty, while away an afternoon getting lost in the festivities. Warm chilly hands with hot teas and sugar coated doughnuts, before going in search of Santa’s Grotto amongst the crowds.



Right: © Pennywall Farm

Discover Christmas on the farm

With welly boots and scarves at the ready, head to Pennywell Farm in Buckfastleigh for a memorable festive day out. Starting in November, the farm transforms into an enchanting winter wonderland with hundreds of decorated fir trees and twinkling lights. On arrival, children will receive their Christmas passport from Santa’s elves, before the Nativity show begins.

Little ones will love watching the story of Christmas come to life by the Pennywell animals, before meeting the stars of the show in their enclosures. Wrapped in blankets, cuddle the miniature pigs and pygmy goat kids – guaranteed to leave everyone with a smile on their face. Before heading home, use your Christmas passport to board the tractor ride through the enchanting gingerbread forest or visit Santa Claus in his grotto.

Booking quickly, secure your tickets to visit Pennywell Farm before your visit.

Tickets at the ready for The Polar Express

A truly memorable day out, The Polar Express train ride is one for the whole family. Head to Buckfastleigh train station in your pyjamas, ready for your magical journey to the North Pole. Meet the characters from the film, including the conductor and singing chefs who regale you with the tales of The Polar Express as you journey through the countryside. Tuck into warm cookies shortly before arriving at the North Pole, where Santa Claus is waiting to welcome you. Ready to read Christmas wish lists, children can hand their letters over to Santa before receiving a silver sleigh bell keepsake. 

Find out more and book your tickets for The Polar Express.

Image credits: Bedruthan Steps and the Eden Project. All other images are our own, or from Unsplash.

Last updated: 24th October 2023.


Posted by Bethany Walton

Beth can usually be found on a Cornish beach or enjoying a swim in the sea. She has great insight about where to visit across the county, plus plenty of recommendations for finding the best Cornish ice cream.

Related Posts