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VMH’s Guide to Christmas in Edinburgh & the Lothians

VMH - Guide to christmas in Edinburgh and the Lothians

It’s the most wonderful time of the year and what better way to celebrate the season with family & friends than by checking out what’s on in Edinburgh & the Lothians this Christmas.

From shopping at the Christmas market, taking a magical train ride to visit Santa, to ice skating at the zoo, there’s something for everyone!  Read on for VMH’s Guide to Christmas in Edinburgh & the Lothians.

Edinburgh’s Christmas

Located in the City Centre, Edinburgh’s Christmas is the ultimate destination for family fun in the capital this winter.  Pick up last minute Christmas gifts at the traditional market, enjoy delicious food and drink, take in the sights of this beautiful city from the Forth 1 big wheel or have fun on the funfair rides.

The Polar Express

Based on the 2004 motion picture THE POLAR EXPRESS is an exciting immersive theatrical experience for all ages.  As you leave the platform the story comes to life with beloved characters from the film.  Enjoy a hot chocolate and cookie whilst listening out for the jingle of sleigh bells. With a special appearance from Santa Claus himself, this really is a festive experience like no other!

Jump aboard at Waverley Station from 30th November to 22nd December 2023.


Edinburgh Zoo’s Winter Village

New to the Zoo for 2023 is the Winter Village. With a great lineup of events from wreath making to ice skating at Rockhopper Rink, breakfast with The Clauses to shopping at the Christmas Market, there’s lots to keep your little elves entertained.

Open throughout the day during zoo opening hours and on selective evenings from Friday 1st December to Sunday 7th January.


Christmas at the Botanics

Back again for 2023 is the ever popular Christmas Lights Trail at the Royal Botanic Gardens.  Stroll through the gardens taking in the spectacular light show, grab a seasonal snack and a festive spiced winter warmer.

Running selected evenings between 16th November and 30th December.


The Conifox Christmas Experience

The perfect way to spend special time with your family this Christmas is a trip the Conifox Christmas Experience.  With activities including a visit with Santa, Storytime with Mrs Claus, Reindeer Flying School and Toy Workshop you’ll be sure to make memories that will last a lifetime.

This magical experience is a sell out every year so be sure to book early.  Running on selected dates from 1st to 24th December.


Beecraigs Festive Forest

Setin the beautiful Beecraigs Country Park, near Linlithgow, the Festive Forest is a magical festive family experience.  Enjoy the illuminated woodland trail, a silent disco and live music, traditional fun fair rides and festive street food and drinks.  And of course no Christmas experience would be complete without a visit to Santa’s Grotto.

The experience starts on Friday 1st December until Saturday 23rd December with tickets on sale now!


Christmas Panto

No Christmas is complete without a trip to the Panto. There’s too many to list so here’s a few of our picks:

The Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan at the Festival Theatre from 25th November to 31st December

Cinderella at the Church Hill Theatre from 15th – 23rd December

Sleeping Beauty at the Howden Park Centre, Livingston from 1st-28th December

Silly Science Panto at the Scottish Seabird Centre, North Berwick from 28th – 30th December