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3rd November 2017

Categories: Visitor News

Christmas lights switch-on events, Santa’s Grotto, festive markets – there are so many North Devon events to look forward to this winter.

That’s not to mention the various celebrations of the area’s blossoming arts scene, including showcases of some of the best local bands and makers in Barnstaple.

Here, we’ve rounded up some of the top picks for the colder months:


There will be a day full of Christmas cheer in Bideford on the 3rd December. The event runs from midday to 7pm, with lots to see and do – including the ever-popular Santa Fun Run for the Children’s Hospice South West. The Light Switch On is at 5pm, with a Reindeer Parade shortly after.

Clovelly (main image):
The promenade starts down the cobbles at 5pm, with a local brass band leading the procession down to the harbour, accompanying Christmas carols sung by a local choir. Held in aid of the RNLI, they take place on the 3rd December.

A street food party takes place 11am-4pm on 19th November, before the lights switch on in the Square.

The lights will be switched on on 24th November, with events including a Christmas market, Santa’s grotto and a Carol service taking place over the weekend, until the 26th.

Meet The Grinch at the town’s Grinchmas switch-on event, taking place on Saturday 2nd December.


Woolly’s Wonderland at The Big Sheep:
See Santa’s magical light Show, enjoy ice skating, tobogganing and snowboard simulator, the Ewetopia indoor playground, Eweston Station train ride and the Twister ride, from 2nd-31st December

Christmas at The Milky Way Adventure Park:
On the 9th, 10th and then from the 16th to 23rd December, The Milky Way will be a Christmassy haven. As well as meeting Father Christmas, there will be the opportunity to create decorations alongside the adventure park’s usual rides and attractions.

Donkey Ride at Quince Honey Farm:
Enjoy some magical Christmas fun in the Play Hive before taking a donkey ride to visit Santa in his festive grotto, meeting his little helpers along the way – on 2nd and 3rd December.

Santa Specials at Lynton and Barnstaple Railway:
Enjoy an exciting two-mile return journey from Woody Bay Station to Killington Lane and back by steam train. Kids will experience the magic of Christmas by meeting Santa and receiving an individually named present.

Father Christmas’ Grotto at Arlington Court and the National Trust Carriage Museum:
On the 11th and then 17th-20th December, Arlington Court will be home to Father Christmas’ Grotto.


Christmas Farmers Markets at The Big Sheep:
Free range turkeys, organic meats, cheeses, cakes, fudge, chocolate, bread, fish and Christmas trees are just some of the delights which will be on offer at the South West’s biggest indoor Farmers’ Markets – every Saturday in December up to Christmas Day, 9am-1pm, free entry.

North Devon Christmas Market in Braunton:
Expect some of the area’s top makers and food producers on 2nd December, 3pm-11pm

Artisan Market in Bideford Pannier Market:
Arts, crafts and more will be available to peruse on Sunday 19th November, 10am-4pm.

These are just the tip of the Christmas market iceberg, though! FOOD AND DRINK:

Clovelly Herring Festival:
An annual Herring Festival is held to promote these tasty, nutritious ‘Silver Darlings’ and support carefully managed fishing as carried out by our local fishermen.

Clovelly Boxing Day Barbecue:
The Boxing Day Barbecue takes place every year on Clovelly Quay. With FREE entry to the village, there will be live music, mulled wine, and even a treasure hunt.

Lynton and Barnstaple Railway:
Every passenger receives a mince pie from 29th December until 1st January.


White Moose:
The White Moose Gallery in Barnstaple will have Portrait Classes and a Group Exhibition on show throughout November and December.

Broomhill Art Hotel:
There are various events over the winter months, including Rachael Roberts and The Gatsby Gang on November 17th and Amy Newton and Jenna Witts on December 12th.

Free entry to Dartington Crystal:
There’s free entry to Dartington Crystal’s Visitors Centre and Factory Experience in Torrington up until Christmas.

Alt Fest at the Golden Lion Tap:
Showcasing North Devon’s top alternative rock bands including Pretend Happy, TripToTori and more on December 9th.

Connect and Create Fest:
Back for its third year on December 3rd, Connect and Create takes place in Barnstaple Pannier Market, showcasing North Devon artists, crafters, musicians, charities and businesses.

RHS Rosemoor:
There’s a Christmas Craft and Design Fair from 24th to 26th November; the wonderful Glow Garden Illuminations from 17th November to 6th January, Thursday–Saturday, 4pm-8.30pm; and a Christmas Food Fair on 3rd December.

Beauty and the Beast takes place at the Queen’s Theatre, Barnstaple from 8th December to 31st December.

Have we wet your whistle for Christmas in North Devon? Good! 


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