Ever since I was a child, Christmas has been the most magical time of the year.
And if its magical that you want, Kielder Winter Wonderland is the destination you need.
For us the adventure began last Friday when Father Christmas and Mrs Christmas arrived at Kielder Waterside on their sleigh, pulled by reindeer of course, to mark the start of the festive season.
After a deep sleep in one of the premier lodges at Kielder Waterside, we embarked on our fun-filled family winter wonderland spectacular.
A truly amazing experience awaited myself and Mr M, and more so our two little ones, aged five and two-and-a-half.
Tickets for Kielder Winter Wonderland are not just for a visit to see Father Christmas, they include an entire festive day out.
After picking up the children’s lanyards from reception (and vouchers for grown-ups present, an added bonus) our first stop of the day was to see Mrs Christmas.
Nestled in the forest, children and their families are taken on an enchanted walk to see her kitchen and learn about other countries’ Christmas traditions.
After a sing-song and some fun and laughter, Mrs Christmas had to get on with her festive baking.
Our next stop was the Elves’ Workshop and a visit to see Father Christmas himself.
But as we had time we decided to see what else was on offer.
Included in your ticket is three goes on the snow tube and ice skating.
My daughter was desperate to fly down the snow tube, thankfully daddy was up for it as well!
And we had just enough time to see Snowy Owl and her friends at the Kielder Birds of Prey, again it’s included in the ticket price. My youngest was delighted to get the chance to stroke a beautiful little owl and see all the birds inside. We’ve vowed to go back in summer to see them flying.
The Elves’ Workshop and Santa visit are truly brilliant.
First up, we had to help Adelfi, the singing elf, to make some extra toys for Christmas, and we were even allowed to take them home.
Then we were taken on a walk through the enchanted forest, where Daffodil was waiting to help us make a Christmas wish for someone else, before the big man himself welcomed us into his grotto. I’ll leave what happens inside, so as not to spoil it for others, but it was very special and something my children won’t forget.
Youngsters are also given a present to take way with them.
Next was a visit to The Beavers. But we needed to refuel – thankfully there is a catering marquee on hand throughout the Winter Wonderland showcase, as well as The Hide Cafe and The Boat Inn restaurant (read my Boat Inn review).
After a quick bite it was on to some singing and dancing with The Beavers before our last stop of the day at the Christmas Theatre – both of which were funny and engaging.
For a truly magical Christmas treat and memories you won’t forget Kielder Winter Wonderland is top of the list.
Children are treated as VIPS, the elves and Christmas staff are brilliant and they spread the message of Christmas to think of others as well as yourself. Wrap up warm as it is mostly outdoors, but you won’t be disappointed.
Go online and see www.kielderwinterwonderland.com for last available dates.