My boys were really excited when we told them we were going to Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park in London last weekend. We got there for 10am when it opened and entered via the Red Gate, (the nearest tube is Marble Arch), which is perfect for families as it takes you straight to Santa Land and the Circus Megadome.
There are a variety of shows on in the Circus Megadome including a daily performance of the Mr Men and Little Miss puppet show at 11am. It was critically acclaimed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this year and we all really enjoyed seeing the characters from Happyland brought to life. My 5 year old especially loved it and is still talking about it days later!
There are also several performances of Zippo’s Christmas Circus on in the Megadome throughout the day – we went to the 1pm showing which was absolutely breathtaking! I’m still not sure who was the most impressive act, the man skipping on a unicycle, the acrobats or the incredible tightrope walkers.
Not far away from the Megadome is Santa Land which is packed full of festive stalls, rides and games for young children. My boys, (who are three and five), both really loved the rides so we spent quite a bit of time here. Close by there’s also Santa’s Grotto and a Family Chill Space which was perfect at lunchtime as it gave us a quieter space indoors with tables and benches to eat lunch away from the hustle and bustle.
My eldest son was fascinated by the Magical Ice Kingdom which this year features amazing ice sculptures created from 500 tonnes of snow and ice that tell the story of A Christmas Carol. Unsurprisingly, it was really cold in there so do make sure any little ones are wrapped up warm before going in!
I hadn’t fully appreciated just how big a Winter Wonderland is until we got there but it really is enormous! It’s full of all different kinds of stalls, games, rides, attractions and food/drink vendors so there is literally something for everyone. Also of note for kids is the Paddington on Ice show, and a new 70m high Giant Wheel that towers over the fair and gives you amazing views of London on a clear day.
Winter Wonderland is open from 10am-10pm. If you’re going with kids I would suggest you get there early as it did start to get quite busy by mid afternoon. It had great facilities for families from buggy parks to there being lots of toilets (including baby change facilities). By all of the toilets there was also a water refill station – you can take empty refillable bottles in but you can’t take water in from outside. You can pre-book tickets for all of the shows and some of the rides online.
We had a brilliant day at Winter Wonderland and I’d definitely recommend it for anyone looking for a festive family day out in London this Christmas.
Our tickets were complimentary but all views and opinions are my own.
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