The temperatures might be dropping, but there’s no better time than a cold, wintry day for a leisurely stroll along the beautiful Cornish coast or mulled wine and mince pies at Pendennis Castle.
Known as Nadelik in Cornwall, Christmas is said to have been celebrated in the county when it was unfashionable to do so across the rest of Britain and many distinctive festive customs, such as Cornish church towers being illuminated on Christmas Eve, twelfth cake, guise dancing and candle dancing (dancing around a basket full of sand with brightly coloured candles in it), come from this region. Celebrate Christmas the Cornish way at Pendennis Castle on 5–6 December with fireside tales, music, dancing and Lighting and Chalking the Block, which marks the end of the old year and beginning of the new one. There will be mulled wine and mince pies, a range of craft and gift stalls – and you can even meet Father Christmas in the castle keep.
At Padstow Christmas Festival, which takes place in Padstow Harbour from 3 to 6 December, 40 chefs, and 45,000 visitors will celebrate food, drink and Christmas. One of the festive highlights is Sharp’s secret bar, which promises “a unique beer tasting experience like no other”.
Another Cornish winter highlight is Rogue Theatre’s Winter Wood extravaganza, an immersive theatrical experience that takes place in Tehidy Woods from December 11 to 30. Old Man Winter will weave a tale and reveal the path to wintry marvels, including a show with live music, festive stories, free hot chocolate, a warm place to relax, sparkly face painting and the chance to make your own traditional winter decoration to take home. Those with little elves should also look out for Frozen Ice Parties at Carnmarth Hotel on November 29 and throughout December.