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Hot chocolate, glow worms and fairies: readers’ best winter light displays | Christmas

Ticket availability at a number of the places is now restricted, however all have been nonetheless taking bookings for numerous time slots at time of publication

Successful tip: Dazzling glow worms, Wakehurst, West Sussex

Glow Wild at Wakehurst Place (administered by Kew Gardens) at all times places on an progressive, thought-provoking show throughout its lovely grounds. Its gardens boast the UK’s tallest dwelling Christmas tree – a 33-metre large redwood with 1,800 lights. A few of this 12 months’s highlights embrace the walled backyard illuminated by dazzling glow worms and an animated projection on to pure screens among the many timber on “the journey of seeds”. They provide early, quiet classes for these with autism and different disabilities. There’s a bookable shuttle bus from Haywards Heath tation.
£16/£10, chosen evenings till 2 January, kew.org
L Isles

Antrim Fortress Gardens, with bouncy elves

Enchanted Winter Garden Antrim Castle Gardens
{Photograph}: Kelvin Boyes/Press Eye

The Enchanted Winter Backyard within the grounds of Antrim Fortress is certainly value visiting. The Barbican Gate, Motte, Italian Tower and different options are stunningly reworked with twinkling lights. And who may resist exploring Wonderland Wooden with such engaging options as Sugar Drop Cease and Lollipop Lane? Thrillseekers giant and small are catered for with a Large Wheel and different fairground rides (tokens could be purchased prematurely). Guests may additionally meet Fizz the Fairy, Bouncy Elves and different magical characters, due to actors wandering the grounds.
Adults £6, youngsters £4, till 21 December, enchantedwintergarden.com
Kevin McKenna

Reflections and scorching chocolate, Edinburgh

Christmas at the Botanics
{Photograph}: Phil Wilkinson

The magical lights of Edinburgh’s botanical gardens at night time exude pleasure for the festivities to return. Strolling by means of tunnels of heat yellow lights, whereas sipping on a Baileys scorching chocolate, is an actual deal with. Reflections from floating water lights throw light into darkish areas, and tree outlines and buildings are illuminated with shifting theatrical photos. Immerse your self in all the parts and see the botanical gardens in a completely totally different light that’s merely unforgettable.
£20/£14, till 2 January, rbge.org.uk
Emma Smith

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Guardian Journey readers’ ideas

Each week we ask our readers for suggestions from their travels. A number of ideas might be featured on-line and might seem in print. To enter the newest competitors go to the readers’ ideas homepage

Thanks to your suggestions.

Fishing harbours, Cornwall

Mousehole Christmas Lights
{Photograph}: Andrew Ray/Alamy

Cornwall has a historical past and custom of lighting up its fishing harbours by means of the festive interval. Our household enjoys an outing to Mousehole on the south-west coast of Cornwall, the place the lights rigorously displayed across the harbour are an annual spotlight. It’s value parking on the prime of city and wandering by means of the village – bag of chips in hand – recognizing lights displaying ships and even a sea monster swimming within the harbour. The annual switch-on occasion is normally effectively attended and can get actually busy however it’s actually is likely one of the best examples of festive lights in Cornwall.
mouseholelights.org.uk
Layla Astley

Needs and wellies, Margam Park – close to Port Talbot

Luminate at Margam Park Christmas lights
Luminate at Margam Park Christmas lights {Photograph}: MegHodsonPhotography

This enchanting light path winds by means of Margam Park gardens and previous gothic Margam Fortress taking 60-90 minutes. The children’ favourites included glimpsing tiny fairies in lanterns, toasting marshmallows, tying needs to the Make a Want Tree and the interactive installations. The adults have been notably impressed with the light present enjoying throughout the fortress facade, the smoke results and the atmospheric music. So as to add to the magic, we even witnessed a sylvan marriage proposal! Weellies advisable.
£15/£11, till 2 January, luminate.live
Fiona C

Winter backyard, Wollaton – close to Nottingham

Christmas at Wollaton 2021 (2)
{Photograph}: Tracey Whitefoot

With its winter backyard, light tunnels, illuminated deer park and rainbow walkway, Wollaton creates a ravishing Christmas light occasion. There are additionally lights overlaying the corridor and light trails by means of the woodland areas; the entire thing is wonderful. As you’d count on there are additionally meals and drink stalls.
£19.80/£14.30, till 9 January, christmasatwollaton.org
Rachel

Otherworldly York

Lately York’s Christmas lights have expanded to incorporate the historic gates to the walled metropolis: they’re draped in curtains of light, giving them an otherworldly high quality along with their putting medieval look. You possibly can stroll between every of the 4 gates and see the Minster and different illuminated websites as you stroll.
visityork.org
Edward Joyner

West London home windows

For the second 12 months the residents of Olde Hanwell in Ealing might be working collectively to create an enormous dwelling Introduction calendar. Final 12 months greater than 200 properties took turns to light up a window show each night time from 1 December till 24 December, and this 12 months appears to be like to be simply as large, if not greater. There’s a lot to see and a lot creativity on show, from lovely winter scenes, exploding Christmas crackers, the Grinch and a really tall Christmassy giraffe! There’s one thing new to see each night time and it’s free to go to and stroll spherical as typically as you want. It has a beautiful festive, neighborhood ambiance.
Twitter @w7adventwindows, eventbrite.co.uk
Anna Elliott

Stockeld Park: wonderment close to Wetherby

Stockeld Park
{Photograph}: Richard Walker/ImageNorth

Completely magical from the second you arrive. I’ve by no means skilled such a beautiful show of lights, magic, thriller and a lot interplay available at every component. At night time the entire park comes alive to lights, creating some breathtaking sights and wonderment not simply on the kids’s faces however the adults simply as a lot. It’s a fascinating woodland Christmas stroll. What extra may you need with your loved ones? There’s additionally ice skating, a forest maze and Nordic snowboarding to be loved right here. Stockeld is between Wetherby and Harrogate.
From £14.50, till 4 January, stockeldpark.co.uk
Nicola Baker

Taking pictures stars, Lake District

Derwent Water Aurora Star Trails
{Photograph}: John Finney Pictures/Getty Photos

I do know it doesn’t actually matter however the best light present I skilled was at 4am within the morning driving as much as Scotland. On the M6, close to the Lake District, I noticed at the least 11 taking pictures stars and some faint aurora borealis – it was wonderful. The sky was was so darkish you can see each star completely. It was a beautiful sight.
Wendy Wooden-Fletcher

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