Christmas 2019: 30+ places to see Father Christmas in and around Cardiff

Cardiff Christmas

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Santa Claus is coming to town… and he’s everywhere in South Wales this year! Don’t ask how he can be in so many places at once; that’s part of the Christmas magic. Whether you’re looking for a full-on Christmas experience, a breakfast or afternoon tea event, a simple meet and greet, or something a little more traditional, it’s all here.

Yes, some of the more popular experiences are sold out, but there are still plenty of options to meet the man in red. I’ve included the sold out options in case you want to book mark them for next year.

I’ve rounded up everything I can find but let me know anything I’ve missed, either in the comments below, on the Cardiff Mummy Says Facebook page or you can tweet me on @cardiffmummy

Please note, all events are subject to change or cancellation so please do check ahead to avoid disappointment. Many of these events need to be booked in advance. 

My full Christmas events listings will be published soon. Subscribe to Cardiff Mummy Says, or follow my social media channels to be the first to see them.

Main photo taken at Principality Stadium last year. 

Santa’s Grotto

Queen Street Cardiff (opposite Queens Arcade)

Until Tuesday 24 December; open daily from 10.30am

£6.50 per child including gift; no need to book

Housed in a traditional wooden chalet, dressed perfectly for the festive season, children can meet Santa and his elves. (Pictured above.)


FREE Your Santa in Cardiff Centre

Your Santa will be donating his time for free and meeting and greeting families at no cost. Weather permitting, please check Facebook for confirmation.

Saturday 23 November, 10am-1pm
Queen St, The Hayes, St Mary St, Open Market…(maybe St Davids Shopping Centre if permission is granted)

Saturday 30 November, 10am-12pm
Toy Appeal launch in St Davids Shopping Centre

Saturday 14 December, 6.30pm-8pm
Winter Wonderland near Ice Rink, Shows etc

Sunday 15 December, 10am-1pm
Queen St, The Hayes, St Mary St, Open Market…(maybe St Davids Shopping Centre if permission is granted)

Father Christmas and Friends

St Fagans National Museum of History, Cardiff

Saturdays and Sundays 30 November-Sunday 22 December

£5-£7 per child, per activity

General entry to St Fagans is free (just pay for parking) and then pre-book each individual activity, Meet Father Christmas (£7 per child) where he’ll tell you some stories in front of the fire in Cilewent Farmhouse, meet each child individually and give them a gift; Cooking With Mother Christmas (£6 per child) and help her make some sweet treats to take home; Write your Christmas letter in the Victorian Schoolhouse with the help of the elves and post it in ST Fagans’ tiny post office (£5 per child); Christmas Craft with the Elves (£5 per child) where children can make some decorations to take home and hang on the tree. All sessions are available in Welsh and English.


Santa’s Grotto

Caerphilly Garden Centre

Monday 11 November-Tuesday 24 December, see website for opening hours

£7 per child; photos from £3.25 each

Visit Santa in his Grotto at Caerphilly Garden Centre.

No need to book although the centre recommends arriving early as peak days will be busy and the queue will close when full.


Santa’s Grotto

Woodland Walk Garden Centre Pontypridd

Saturdays 9.30am-4.30pm and Sundays 10.30am-4pm

£7.50 per child; £3.50 per photo

Santa will once again be visiting Woodland Walk this year and he’s bringing his real reindeer with him. No need to book; just turn up. Queue will close at 12pm and will reopen depending on how busy it is. .


Christmas Around The World

Pugh’s Garden Village, Radyr

Until Monday 24 December

Adults £5; children £17 including gift; must be pre-booked

It’s the award-winning Christmas experience that sells out in record time so availability is very limited – although there are still a few daytime weekday slots left for those of you whose children aren’t in school. The experience includes a 30 minute journey through Christmas Around the World, visiting different rooms along the way towards and including meeting Santa. A photo opportunity with Santa is available and the photo can then be purchased in a folder from the Toy Shop along with other photo merchandise, starting from £6). This year Pugh’s are raising money to support Cancer Research Wales.


Santa’s Ice Adventure

Pugh’s Garden Village, Wenvoe

Until 23 December

Adults £3; children £12.50 including gift; must be pre-booked

While Pugh’s Radyr focuses on the half hour experience, the Wenvoe centre offers more of a traditional visit. The focus is on visiting Santa as the main experience, without the prior room-by-room journey of Radyr and is perfect for families who want a shorter one-on-one family visit with Santa, especially younger children. The elves in the North Pole need your help! They can’t find their way back to Santa. Embark on an enchanting walk-through Santa’s Ice Adventure to solve all the clues to find Santa in his Cosy Cabin with some help from the elves and their animal friends. The experience lasts 6-10 minutes. A photo opportunity with Santa is available and the photo can then be purchased in a folder from the Toy Shop along with other photo merchandise, starting from £6.


Santa’s Victorian Christmas

Cardiff Castle

Selected dates until 23 December

Children £12.95 including a gift

Adults £6.95

A new experience for 2019, enjoy a candlelit evening of festive family fun, in the beautiful setting of the castle’s traditionally decorated Victorian apartments. Be greeted by costumed characters, eager to share the Yuletide traditions of yesteryear, and have your photo taken by the tree in the Entrance Hall. Follow the Candy Cane Trail through the Castle to the Drawing Room, where a wonderful visit with Santa Claus awaits. Gifts will be given and warming winter treats served in the Library before you head for home.



Santa’s Toy Mine

Rhondda Heritage Park

Saturday 23 November-Tuesday 24 December

£10 per person

Santa is once again setting up his Toy Mine at the former colliery. Children will be guided on a magical journey with surprises around each corner. They will meet the great man himself and receive a special gift to take home.

Accompanying adults will get a hot drink and a mince pie upon arrival.

Other activities include a Chocolate making workshop, £7.50 per person, and a craft workshop, £5 per person.



Father Christmas and his elves

Cefn Mably Farm Park

Weekends from Saturday 29 November-Sunday 22 December, plys Wednedays and Fridays from 2.30pm, last booking 4.30pm

£8 per child plus usual entrance fee

Book in advance to see the man in red and his elves plus enjoy the rest of the farm’s attractions including farm yard animals, a petting corner, plus indoor and outdoor play areas.



SOLD OUT Meet Father Christmas

Tredegar House, Newport

Saturdays and Sundays 30 November-22 December; timed slots 10.30am-4pm

£4 per child in addition to usual entry prices.

Adults £11.20; children £5.60; family £28 or free to National Trust members

Father Christmas will be stopping over in the stables at Tredegar House this year as he makes preparations for his busiest night of the year. Tickets will only need to be purchased per child and families may bring as many additional members as they wish. You can book in advance or turn up on the day subject to availability.

See Christmas Events section below for details of Christmas Traditions and Christmas market at Tredegar House.


Santa’s Grotto

Pyle Garden Centre, Bridgend

Selected dates between Saturday 23 November and Monday 23 December

£8.50 per child

Book early to visit the famous Steel Works Santa in his grotto, as last year’s event sold out. Children will meet with Santa and get to choose a gift from a varied selection. Proceeds will go to Alzheimer’s Cymru and Surf School Porthcawl; Disabled Equipment Fund.



Tea with Santa

Pyle Garden Centre, Bridgend

Selected dates between Monday 3 and Thursday 20 December; 5pm-7pm

Adults £10.99; children £15.99

Children will join with Santa and Elsie the Elf for a unique dining experience, with arts and crafts, a singalong story and some quality time with Father Christmas. Children’s tickets include a toy of their choice worth £8.99 and a choice of hot meal and a cold drink. Adult ticket includes a hot drink and a choice of sandwich from the menu.



Santa Claus Tours

Principality Stadium, Cardiff

Wednesday 4-Tuesday 24 December

Children £12, adults £8, family (2+2) £36

Follow in the footsteps of Wales’ rugby heroes as you explore the halls in search for Santa Claus and the magical Christmas grotto. Feel the buzz of the Ray Gravell press room and stand in the footsteps of international players in the team changing room entering Santa’s Grotto.


Santa’s Grotto

Ikea Cardiff

Saturday 30 November-Monday 23 December, 11am-5pm

£10 visit and gift; £12 visit, gift and photo

Meet Santa at his magical grotto at IKEA Cardiff, as well as helping to raise much needed funds for Noah’s Ark’s Jungle Ward appeal, which cares for more children with complex medical conditions and young people in mental health crisis. Plus every visitor will automatically be entered in to a prize draw to win £300 in IKEA vouchers!


Afternoon tea with Santa

Coldra Court Hotel at The Celtic Manor Newport

Saturday 7, Saturday 14 and Friday 20 December,

Adults £28, children 2-12, £14

Saturday 21 and Monday December

Adults £30, children 2-12, £15
Tuesday 24 December

Adults £32, children 2-12 £16


Santa and Mrs Claus have set-up their Christmas Grotto at the Coldra Court Hotel and have kindly invited everyone down to visit over a delicious themed afternoon tea at The Rib Smokehouse & Grill. As well as their own special afternoon tea, children will also enjoy a very special visit to Santa’s Grotto to see Santa and will receive a small gift to celebrate the festive season.



Green Santa

Bryngarw Country Park, Bridgend

Saturday 30 November and Sunday 1 December

£15 per child, adults free

Visit the only Green Santa in South Wales, wearing his traditional green robes in an enchanting and natural outdoor setting for a magical Christmas experience. The journey starts at the Visitor Centre, before guests are taken up to the Grotto in the wood for craft making. Then each child receives at least three minutes with Santa, complete with a gift. Must be advanced booked. Selling fast!


Meet Father Christmas

Dyffryn Gardens, Vale of Glamorgan

Friday 6, Saturday 7, Sunday 8, Friday 13, Saturday 14, Sunday 16 December

£8 per child, plus normal admission prices.

Father Christmas will be meeting children and giving out gifts in the beautifully decorated house.

Some dates sold out; limited availability.



Father Christmas Grotto

Blaenavon Ironworks

English sessions on Sunday 8, Saturday 14, Sunday 15, Saturday 21, Sunday 22 December; Welsh sessions on Sundays 1 and 7 December; 11am-4pm

£5 per child including a gift; plus usual Ironworks entry prices adults £5.80, children £3.50, family (2+3) £16.80. Entry is free for members but grotto charges still apply.

See Father Christmas in the grotto at the Ironworks. English and Welsh sessions available. Pre-booking essential. Free Christmas trail also available on site. Last entry 3.30pm.



Santa Specials

Pontypool and Blaenavon Railway

Saturday 30 November, Sunday 1, Saturday 7, Sunday 8, Saturday 14, Sunday 15, Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 December

£15 per person

Enjoy a train ride to Blaenavon High Level, where, next to a roaring fire, you will meet the big man himself in the station grotto. The train will return to Furnace Sidings following a non-stop run (through Furnace Sidings) to Whistle Inn (please check opening times of the Whistle Inn Pub if you are planning to visit, as this is not part of the Pontypool and Blaenavon Railway). As well as the opportunity to meet with Santa, each child will receive an age appropriate gift. For the adults there will be sherry and a mince pie. The buffet carriage will be transformed into a festive waiting room along the platform, so you can stay warm while waiting for the steam train to return.


Breakfast with Santa

Bedwellty House and Park, Tredegar

Saturday 1, Sunday 2, Saturday 8, Sunday 9, Saturday 15, Sunday 16, Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 December 10am-12pm

Adults £6.50; children £12.50; must be pre-booked

Enjoy a scrumptious family breakfast with Santa every Saturday and Sunday in December.

As well as meeting Santa in his Ice House Grotto, there will be festive crafts and soft play
Suitable for children aged 3-12 years.


Father Christmas and Medieval Christmas

Caerphilly Castle

Saturday 7 December, 10.30am-4pm, bilingual sessions

Sunday 8 December, 11am-4pm, English only sessions

£5 per child (plus standard admission); must be pre-booked.

See Father Christmas in this splendid medieval castle, and join in with some festive arts and crafts too.



SOLD OUT Father Christmas and Victorian Christmas

Castell Coch

Saturday 7 December, 10.30am-4pm, English only sessions

Sunday 8 December, 11am-4pm, bilingual sessions

See Father Christmas in the splendid Victorian castle, plus festive arts and crafts, and games too.


Father Christmas

Chepstow Castle

Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 December, 11am-3.30pm

£5 per child plus usual admission

Visit Father Christmas at the castle with Welsh and English sessions available. Book in advance.


Breakfast with Santa

Bedwellty House and Park, Tredegar

Saturday 7, Sunday 8, Saturday 14, Sunday 15, Saturday 21, Sunday 22 December, 10am-12pm

Adults £6.50, children £12.50; ages 3-12

A hot breakfast prepared by Mrs Claus, served with tea, coffee and juice; followed by time to visit Santa in his Ice House grotto and to enjoy crafts and soft play.


Family Festive Afternoon Tea

Bedwellty House and Park, Tredegar

Saturday 14, Sunday 15, Saturday 21, Sunday 22 December, 2pm-4pm

Adults £20.00, children £16.50; ages 3-12; advance book

A traditional afternoon with a festive twist. Served with unlimited freshly brewed tea or coffee – or add a glass of mulled wine or prosecco. Dine in a Christmas themed dining area, where children and families can enjoy crafts and activities, as well as a visit from the Bedwellty Elf to ensure they have a visit to see Santa in his Ice House Grotto.


Santa Story Trail

Bedwellty House and Park, Tredegar

Saturday 14, Sunday 15, Saturday 21, Monday 23 December, 11am-12.30pm

£12.50 per child; advance book

Go in search of Santa in this fun and festive story trail with Louby Lou. After the story trail, enjoy a snack and a visit to see Santa to receive a gift.


Christmas at the Farm

Greenmeadow Community Farm, Cwmbran

Saturday 7, Sunday 8, Saturday 14, Sunday 15, Friday 20, Saturday 21, Sunday 22 and Monday 23 December; 10am-4pm

Cost per child TBC in addition to usual entry of adults £6.50; children £5.40; under 2s free; family (2+3) £23.50

Father Christmas will be taking residence in his cosy farm grotto and meeting children. There will be other festive activities including an animal nativity daily at 11.30am.

Father Christmas will also be present at the Twinkley Twilight Christmas Celebration evening on Tuesday 10 December between 4pm and 8pm, which includes Twilight Animal Nativity, Starlit Tractor Rides among other activities.


Santa’s Winter Wonderland

Cwmcarn Forest Visitor Centre, Crosskeys

Saturday 7, Sunday 8, Saturday 14, Sunday 15, Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 December

£6 per child

Meet Santa and his busy elves in his wintery wonderland, Stroll through the snow-covered garden and watch the cheeky elves create magic in the workshop. Book in advance.


Storytime with Father Christmas

Big Pit National Coal Museum, Blaenavon

Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 December, 10am-4pm

£7 per child, one free adult per child, £5 for additional adulys

Be amazed as Father Christmas arrives at Pit Top at 10.15am, travelling 300ft UP from underground on his way to Lapland. Once he’s arrived there will be an opportunity to visit him in his cottage. Also taking place is a Christmas market, selling crafts and gifts, make your own Christmas crafts (additional charge), plus singing from local choirs. Must be pre-booked.


Santa’s Grotto

Tee-Rex Adventure Golf Cardiff, Cardiff

Weekends in December, 11am-5pm

£6 per child plus usual entry costs

Walk through the elves forest cabin, decorate biscuits, get your glitter tattoo, writ your letter and then meet the big man himself. Book in advance.


Breakfast With Santa

Coffi Co, Mermaid Quay

Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 December, 9am-11am

£15 per child

Children will receive pancakes with Nutella plus a fruit juice or fruit shoot drink, with Santa in store. Each child will receive a gift from Santa. Tickets can be purchased in store.


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