School Holidays 2023 Wakefield

Places to see Santa 2023

Many places are operating pre-bookable ticketed entry only and we advise you to check before you travel. 

There are so many different places to see Santa in Wakefield and the surrounding areas in 2023. Here is a selection of venues, including grottos and breakfast with Santa!

Things to do, places to go & days out with the kids in Christmas Holidays 2023

Click here for more information

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Saturday 9th December 2023


Meet our special sweet Santa in his liquorice grotto and receive a Christmas gift!


Children of all ages and their grown-ups are invited to join us at Pontefract Museum for our very special Liquorice Santa drop-in day.


The Liquorice Santa drop-in day is a chance for friends and family to come together in the heart of Pontefract Town Centre to discover some amazing facts about Pontefract’s ‘sweet’ history and enjoy a memorable festive day – and it is all FREE!

There will be a range of festive fun crafts and activities around the Museum to bring you Christmas cheer.

No booking required, although plan ahead as it will be busy! Santa and activities will be at the Museum 10.30am – 3:30pm.


5 Salter Row, Pontefract WF8 1BA

01977 722740
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18th November – 24th December 2023


Join the elves at Santa school as they play and learn how to be a brilliant elf. Journey through the polar playgroundChristmas classroom and graduation forest before making your way to Santa’s grotto to meet Father Christmas and choose a toy from his toyshop.

Enjoy 10% off tickets to our Magical Santa’s Grotto when you book for our opening weekend Saturday 18th & Sunday 19th November!

Pre booking required!


For more information and to book your tickets click here


Tingley Garden Centre, Thorpe Lane, Tingley, South Leeds, WF3 1SL.
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November 18 – December 23

This festive season, the Thackray Museum of Medicine invites families of all ages to join Father Christmas on a magical 90-minute journey, exploring the diverse ways people celebrate Christmas around the world. This enchanting experience offers an exciting blend of activities, crafts, and heartwarming moments with Father Christmas himself.As part of this immersive adventure, visitors can embark on a captivating activity trail throughout the museum, where they’ll uncover clues and enjoy some delightful winter crafting. Don’t forget to strike a pose on our very own Thackray sleigh for memorable photographs that will capture the joy of the season. The highlight of the experience is the special audience with Father Christmas, where he will regale young and old alike with cosy festive stories. Each child will receive a thoughtfully selected gift to take home as a cherished keepsake of this unforgettable encounter.



18th November – 24th December 2023



Journey through the festive forest as the Christmas elves share how Santa’s magical robins make sure all the letters are sorted in time to make wishes come true! Then it’s on to Santa’s grotto to meet Father Christmas and choose a toy from his toyshop.

Prebooking required!


For more information and to book your tickets click here


Otley Garden Centre, Pool Road, Otley, West Yorkshire, LS21 1DY

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18th November – 24th December 2023



Journey through the polar picnic party, festive forest feast and reindeer barn dance as Santa’s elves share stories about how all the animal helpers celebrate Christmas. Then it’s on to Santa’s grotto to meet Father Christmas and choose a toy from his toyshop.

Enjoy 10% off tickets to our Magical Santa’s Grotto when you book for our opening weekend Saturday 18th & Sunday 19th November!

Prebooking required!


For more information and to book your tickets click here


Tong Garden Centre, Tong Lane, Bradford,  BD4 0RY
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Marvellous Museum Christmas Toy Box for SEND Families – 16th December 2023

** Slots to see Father Christmas are now fully booked. If any become available we will post on our social channels.

Our relaxed family festive crafts will be available 10am to 3pm, with no booking required. **


Relaxed family festive fun and a visit from Father Christmas!


This Christmas we are opening the Museum toy box with a relaxed day of free festive activities and crafts.

Explore the sights, smells and textures of Christmas. Get hands-on and play with toys from the past. Make your own toy to take away!

Crafts and activities are free and no booking required.

Father Christmas will also be visiting the Museum!

You will need to book a timed slot in advance to meet him in his cosy museum grotto.


Book your free timed slot to see Father Christmas HERE


This session is designed for SEND and neurodiverse families (but all children and young people are welcome). There will be changes to the sensory experience in the Museum for a more relaxed visit.


Wakefield One, 159 Mulberry Way, Wakefield, WF1 2UP

01924 302104
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25th November –  24th December 2023


Before Santa goes down your chimney, he’s going down the mine!

We’re excited to announce that Santa Underground is back and now available for bookings!

Travel 140m underground to visit Santa at the Coal Mining Museum in his unique and atmospheric underground grotto. Good children will receive a present and certificate while naughty ones will get coal…


Please note there is no minimum age limit for our Santa Underground Experience


Book your tickets here


Read our review from our visit to Santa at the Coal Mining Museum in December 2019 here – we loved it!!


National Coal Mining Museum, New Road, Overton, WF4 4RH

01924 848806
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18th November 2023- 8th January 2024


The Christmas Adventure at Stockeld Park is truly the home of Christmas magic.

What was once but a simple Christmas Tree shop has grown to become the most wonderful family Christmas experience. Join us for Christmas fun and visit Santa in his cosy Grotto, experience the Enchanted Forest come to life with the spectacular Winter Illuminations and enjoy our magical ice rink.

See the Enchanted Forest from a different perspective by strapping on your skis and skiing round the Nordic Ski Trail. Discover large themed outdoor playgrounds and visit the Playhive, our indoor world of adventure, it’s indoor play like never before!

Whilst you’re with us why not stop by our Christmas Tree Shop, all our trees are grown right here on the Stockeld Estate.

There is so much festive fun to be had at Stockeld Park this winter and so many long lasting memories to be made.




Suitable for toddlers

Stockeld Park, off the A661 Wetherby Road, LS22 4AN.

01937 586333
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18th November 2023- 8th January 2024


Stockeld Park’s Christmas Adventure is back this Winter, and it’s going to be bigger and better than ever before! ☃️

Experience the magic this festive season and see the park transform into a magical Christmas wonderland – the perfect day out for the whole family over the Winter months! ✨

Make magical memories with their incredible festive attractions, including:

✨ Winter Illuminations in the Enchanted Forest
🎅 Santa’s Grotto
⛸ Ice Skating Rink
🎭 Grinchilocks & the three elves show at the Stockeld Theatre
❄️ Illuminated Snowflake Maze

01937 586333
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This festive season, you can choose from THREE FESTIVE events at Whistlestop Valley:  “Tea with Santa”, “Simply Santa” or “The Santa Express.”


Tea with Santa

Get ready to experience the ultimate festive treat this Christmas, with our brand-new event TEA WITH SANTA ✨

We are excited to invite you and your little ones, to join us for a magical afternoon. Filled with delicious treats, Christmas wishes and a scrumptious afternoon tea!

It’s the perfect opportunity for your little ones to meet the main man in red and make unforgettable memories!

Your ticket includes:

-An allocated time slot for a delicious afternoon tea in the café, where Santa himself will visit each table for a good old chat and to hear your all-important Christmas wishes ✨
-Each child will receive a gold coin from Santa to spend inside his toy shop🎁
-A unallocated steam train ride to Cuckoo’s Nest throughout the day 🚂

When booking, you are booking a table for 4. We regret that we can only accept whole table bookings even if there is less than 4 of you.



Simply Santa and Santa Express

 Simply Santa and The Santa Express feature a trip aboard the heated carriages hauled by one of our steam locomotives; transporting you to the North Pole!


Whilst at the North Pole, you will have a one-on-one meeting with the big guy himself inside his cosy grotto, filled with sacks of presents for the good girls & boys. Santa’s cheeky elf will be causing Christmas chaos at the Shelley North Pole – will you spot them?!

There’ll be a complimentary edible festive treat and drink for everyone plus the opportunity to make up a bag of magical reindeer food to take home with you and write out your Christmas wish to hang on the magical Wishing Tree. You’ll also be able to have a Yuletide whizz around the duck pond on our ride-on miniature train at the front of Clayton West Station.

What’s included.

SIMPLY SANTA includes:

  • Return steam train ride to Shelley North Pole
  • Individual family meeting with Father Christmas
  • A gift for all children over 12mths (under 12mths have the option of selecting a gift or not when booking)
  • Opportunity to make up a bag of magical reindeer food to take home
  • Christmas Crafts
  • Opportunity to write your Christmas wish and hang it on the Wishing Tree
  • Edible festive treat for all guests over 12mths
  • Meet Father Christmas’ cheeky elf
  • The outdoor playgrounds, covered jumping pillow & Clayton Flyer miniature ride-on railway
  • The Firebox café and gift shop will be open
  • The Turntable ice cream parlour will be open at the North Pole


  • Everything included in Simply Santa plus:
  • 25 minute Christmas Elf Show at Clayton West (drop in, not allocated)
  • Tram platform rides at the North Pole


Visitors are welcome to arrive earlier than their train departure and stay until facilities close.




Park Mill Way, Clayton West, Huddersfield, HD8 9XJ

01484 865727
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Experience the magic of Christmas at William’s Den, every weekend from 2nd to 24th December 2023. So what’s on the Christmas List this year?


Castle Farm, Wold Hill, North Cave, HU15 2LS

01430 472230
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Christmas at Castle Howard

Tickets on sale: On sale now

Dates: 25th November – 24th December 2023

Christmas at Castle Howard with Father Christmas and Friends

Make magical memories, and meet Father Christmas, Mrs Claus and jolly WonderPhil at Castle Howard this Christmas. Watch a joyful performance bursting with jingle bells and Christmas spirit, sing Christmas songs together, and enjoy a special, individual moment with Father Christmas himself. All children take home a Christmas gift

Price: £19.00 – £32.00


Booking required.

Castle Howard, York,  YO60 7DA


Christmas at Gulliver’s Valley Theme Park

11th November – 23rd December 2023 (selected dates)

Escape to Gulliver’s Valley at Christmas time for a festive family adventure.  Look out for Elfie mischief, fairy fun and snowy surprises.

Selected festive rides and attractions for all the family, explore the magical Winter Wonderland, children choose their own gift from the Elf Workshop, explore Santa’s house and see him in his Grotto!

Price: from £22.00 (use XMASGV for 15% off on selected dates – offer ends 5th November)


Pre-booking advised

Mansfield Road, Sheffield, S26 5QW


Christmas at Sundown Adventure Land

18th November – 24th December 2023

As Christmas draws near, the park is converted into a Winter Wonderland with Christmas theming throughout and the annual opening of the wonderful ‘Night before Christmas’ ride. Climb aboard one of Santa’s sleighs and take a magical journey through the enchanted forest to arrive in style at Santa’s Magical Grotto.

You’ll be greeted by the elves and the ever friendly Mrs. Claus and when it’s your time, you’ll be invited to meet the big man himself. Where you’ll receive a lovely, individually wrapped present and the chance to share your wishes with him.

Must be pre-booked in advance online.

Treswell Rd, Rampton, Retford, DN22 0HX

City Cruises York – Santa Experience

25th November – 23rd December 2023

Your Santa experience begins as you are welcomed into our Grotto, cleverly hidden away underneath the beautiful Lendal Bridge. Upon entering, the Santa Experience Captain will check all of the children off the special list that we receive from Lapland.

You will then be warmly greeted by Santa’s good friend Mary Christmas or Ernie the Elf, who will gladly show you to your reserved seating and distribute the magic bells.

Pre-booking required.

Tel: 01904 628324

Father Christmas at Bolton Abbey Estate

Set dates from late November 2023 onwards.

Father Christmas will be tucked away in his festive village nestled near the entrance to Strid Wood. His sparkling Christmas village will come alive with crackling open fires, twinkling Christmas trees and Christmas carols softly drifting through the air.

After some Christmassy Activities, children will help the elves to wake Father Christmas and ensure he is on time for all of his deliveries. The experience will last approximately 20 minutes from beginning to end.

Booking required.

Bolton Abbey Estate

Hampson Plantworld

From November 2023

Santas’s grotto in the garden centre


Denby Dale Road, Durkar, Wakefield, WF4 3AZ. Call: 01924 298365 o

Murton Park – Yorkshire Museum of Farming – Christmas

25th November – 17th December 2023

Santa loved his staycation at Murton Park so much last year, that he’s decided to do it again and invites you to join him.

Step this way for a magical Christmas experience in Santa’s village. Meet the big man himself in his cosy winter cabin where children will receive Christmas money to spend in the Magical Toy Shop. Then take a walk through the village and be enchanted by the elves and peek inside their homes and workshops.

Booking required

Murton Ln, York YO19 5UF. Tel:  01904 489966

Nostell Christmas

Father Christmas will be returning to Nostell House this December. This is an informal and relaxed experience with no booked slots. He will be visiting the North Pole on Mondays & Tuesdays to make sure his elves are on track for Christmas!


Normal entry prices for the gardens apply, no charge for NT members.


Opening times: 11am to 4pm (last entry 3pm)


Closed Christmas Day


Doncaster Road, Nostell, near Wakefield, WF4 1QE

Owl Lane Nurseries Santa’s Grotto

Santa is coming to Ossett. Owl Lane Nurseries have built a Grotto to make Santa feel right at home.

All tickets include a gift and can be purchased the day of your visit.

Check the websites for opening dates.

Owl Lane, Ossett, WF5 9AU. Tel: 01924 276446

Piglets Adventure Farm Christmas Experience

Tickets on sale now: Limited Availability

18th November – 24th December 2023

Jump aboard the Magical Sleigh Ride to Santa’s Woodland Village for a truly unforgettable Christmas experience with NEW activities for this year!

𝐓𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐞’𝐬 𝐬𝐨 𝐦𝐮𝐜𝐡 𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐥𝐮𝐝𝐞𝐝 𝐢𝐧 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐤𝐞𝐭:
🧝 Check in at Elf Airlines
🛷 Ride on Santa’s magical Sleigh through the twinkling Woodland Village.
🎁 Receive the golden key to unlock his amazing Toy Shop.
🥧 Enjoy festive food and much more!

Price: £14.95 – £24.95, under 1’s £9.95


Towthorpe Grange, Towthorpe Moor Lane, Towthorpe, York YO32 9ST

Places to see Santa for FREE in and around Wakefield

Christmas can be expensive, so we’ve put together Places to see Santa for FREE in 2023 – click here!


Places to see Santa for FREE

Rotary Club of Ossett

December 2023




Santa at Ackworth Garden Centre

2nd – 24th December 2023 (selected days)


It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and what festive season would be complete without a visit to the Big Man himself?

You will have a private family audience with Santa Claus, where you can tell him all your Christmas wishes – and promise him that you’ve been very good this year!

You will also receive a photo memento of your visit, and, with the help of Santa’s elves, you can choose a brilliant, well-deserved gift from our range of award-winning gifts in a tin or our Jellycats!


Ackworth Garden Centre, Barnsley Road, Ackworth, WF7 7NB

A Cannon Hall Farm Christmas – The santa Apprentice

2nd- 24th December 2023 (weekends only)

Enjoy the new and enchanting Christmas experience at Cannon Hall Farm.

Cannon Hall Farm have teamed up with Talegate Theatre Productions and the Copycat Party Company to create the most magical event to share with the whole family. Join Santa on a magical adventure in our staged show (in our indoor heated event space) before adventuring on to the Toy Factory where children take their magic key to the elves…and choose their very own present!

Booking required.

Cannon Hall Farm, Cawthorne, Barnsley, S75 4AT. Tel: 01226 790427,

A Thornton Hall Christmas Adventure

Our Thornton Hall Christmas Adventure for 2023 sees the return of tradition, pure magic and mystery. Get ready to immerse yourself in the true wonders of Christmas and all the magic it brings…

Experience the BRAND NEW Thornton Hall Christmas Village and the return of our famous magical Reindeer ride.

Thornton-in-Craven, Skipton BD23 3TS. Tel:  01282 841148

Santa at Thorp Perrow Arboretum

Take a wintery walk through the Arboretum to find Santa’s cosy log cabin. Meet the donkeys, take a sneaky peek into the elves bedroom and the bustling miniature ski village. Can you spot the woodland creatures on your way? Don’t forget to take some reindeer food to sprinkle outside on Christmas Eve.

Booking link available via the Thorp Perrow Wildlife Park Facebook Page

Thorp Perrow Arboretum, Bedale, North Yorkshire, DL8 2PS. Tel: 01677 425323

Santa Sleigh Route – Wakefield District Round Table 1088

Wakefield Round Table Santa Route for December 2023 



Santa Specials on the Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway

From November 2023

The fires will be lit at Bolton Abbey station, the Refreshment Room will be bulging with mince pies and other seasonal fare, (as will the Buffet Cars) and decorations will be all around.

Santa will be on the train, giving out presents to well behaved children, festive music will be playing whilst entertainers & elves will ensure a jovial Christmas spirit throughout!

Also available evening Santa specials and festive afternoon tea

Pre-booking required. Suitable for toddlers.

Tel: 01756 710614

Santa’s Grotto at Eureka!

Christmas 2023 dates coming soon.

Santa Claus is coming to town… Visit him in his Grotto at Eureka! this Christmas.

Father Christmas is heading to Eureka! this December, with his sleigh with gifts a-plenty and he wants to meet YOU!

Discovery Rd, Halifax HX1 2NE


Santa’s Grotto at White Rose Shopping Centre

11th November – 24th December 2023

Little ones can meet Santa and receive a gift. Booking advisable but you can join the queue on the day. Check our the Super Ice Rink, open right up till 2nd January.

White Rose Shopping Centre, Dewsbury Rd, Leeds, LS11 8LU

Trinity Walk Christmas Grotto

17th November – 23rd December 2023

See Santa for FREE at Trinity Walk & free face paintings at weekends

No need to book, just turn up. The grotto will be located on the Gullwing Christmas zone near The Entertainer and escalators above Sainsbury’s on Thursdays between 4pm & 6pm and then between 11am & 3pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

Donations being gratefully accepted for Forget Me Not Hospice


Woolley Edge Christmas Tree Farm

Santa’s magical sleigh is available for photo opportunities!


Family Christmas Tree farm with real reindeer between Wakefield and Barnsley.

Take your photo in Santa’s sleigh, donation to Forget me not Hospice and meet Santa at 10am every weekend as he feeds his reindeer


Beacon Hill Farm, Wooley, WF4 2LQ. Tel: 07973 910 717