Christmas is here! So it’s time to slip into your reindeer onesie, pour yourself a large glass of Eggnog, enjoy a warm mince pie and discover the secrets of a North Wales Christmas …
A is for… Advent Calendar
Why should the kids have all the advent fun? Follow @NorthWalesMag on social media for local gift ideas, Christmas giveaways, events, family days out, festive recipes and more
B is for… Brie
The Grate Cheese Deli in Colwyn Bay has a delicious selection of Welsh, French and English bries. Bake it, wrap it in pastry or serve cold with an assortment of chutneys, meats and fruit for a delightful Christmas nibble
C is for… Christmas Cards
Nikki at the Crafty Kitten in Llanrwst makes gorgeous bespoke hand-made cards for every occasion in English or Welsh. All cards are blank inside to allow you to make your own personalised greeting. Short on time? No need to worry, Nikki has ready-made cards in her shop too!
D is for… Dysgu sut I siarad Cymraeg
Give the gift of learning something new this Christmas with a Learn Welsh course. Courses for beginners are starting across the region in January. Go to learnwelsh.cymru for more information. Pob lwc gyda’r dysgu! (Good luck with the learning!)
E is for… EggNog
Treat your guests to a little taste of Christmas with this creamy eggnog recipe. George Washington, the first American president, even made his own eggnog, and let it age for a few days to let the flavour mellow. To serve 12 people, simply separate six medium fresh free-range eggs from J.A Kynaston in Llangollen into a mixing bowl. Add 500ml Welsh whole milk, 400ml Welsh double cream, 150g caster sugar, 350ml rum or bourbon and freshly grated nutmeg
F is for… Festive fun
Adventure Parc Snowdonia offers an exhilarating range of activities to choose from. Surf, climb, zip and slide and make sure to check their events calendar for festive markets, grotto and drive in Christmas movies
G is for… Grotto
Nestled beneath the treetops at the foothills of Snowdonia National Park, hides a magical Christmas adventure to remember at Greenwood. Imagine a two-hour Twilight adventure full of elves, crafts and magical surroundings bringing Christmas to life for every child. Enter Santa’s grotto for an ‘Elfie’ photograph with the man himself and receive a golden ticket for Santa’s Toy Factory!
H is for… Hot chocolate
Achieve the ultimate satisfaction in a mug with a handcrafted hot chocolate from HAUS Coffee in Colwyn Bay. Using 100% natural and gluten free chocolate provided by Harry’s Hot Chocolate; all drinking chocolate is served with an option of cream and marshmallows. Customise your hot chocolate by choosing a 70% dark, mint, orange or original flavour; or step it up with a cheeky shot of Baileys
I is for… Ice skating
Enjoy skating fun with friends, family and colleagues on the first pop-up ice rink on Y Maes in Caernarfon. With the iconic castle as a backdrop, the rink is open now through the 5th of January (closed on Christmas day)
J is for… Jingle bells
Let Cor Meibion Colwyn bring music to your ears this holiday season at one of their many scheduled shows. The group is proud of their long history recognising that there has been a choir in its home village of Colwyn since the 1890’s. To find a list of performances in a town near you, visit @ Cor-Meibion-Colwyn on Facebook
K is for… Kids
Let’s face it, it’s what Christmas is all about! Take the kids ice skating, experience the Christmas magic of a play or pantomime, go see a light show, take part in a craft session or visit Santa’s Grotto this year! For up-to-date events for the family, check our events tab on Facebook @northwalesmag
L is for… Lights
The Winter Light Show in Llandudno is a free, captivating event for the whole family. On 14th December, witness a magical, technicolour tale about the millennia-long chase for the elusive Conwy mermaid. An evening of spectacular story telling where buildings will be transformed into windows on time through light projection which starts at 5pm
M is for… Mince Pies
There’s a reason that there’s a queue at Scilicorns Bakery in Llanrwst during lunch hours. The bakery produces fresh breads, pastries and, of course, Christmas Mince Pies. Swing by their friendly bakery at 42 Denbigh Street
N is for… Nativity
If you have young children, or indeed grandchildren, then the school nativity play is often the highlight of the seasonal calendar! Who can resist those mumbled lines from the slightly bigger kids while the little ones frantically wave to their parents during Away in a Manger?
O is for… Ornaments
Create your perfect Christmas with a handpicked selection of ornaments to adorn your tree and home this year from Snowdonia Nurseries in Glan Conwy. At this time of year, the centre is transformed into a magical stage for all things festive, so it’s always worth a visit in order to get you into the festive mood!
P is for… Panto
It’s an exciting year for pantomimes in North Wales! TV personalities like Nigel Ellacott and Andrew Agnew are taking part in the festive fun this year. Make sure to catch the very talented Sherrie Hewson (Benidorm) in Sleeping Beauty at Venue Cymru as well as Only Fool’s and Horses own Sue Holderness play the Wicked Queen in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the Rhyl Pavilion
Q is for… Queen’s speech
Did you know that the first royal broadcast was at Christmas in 1932, and was made by George V? He broadcast from Sandringham, speaking words written for him by Rudyard Kipling. The royal speech became an annual event – the first televised one by Queen Victoria was in 1957. Tune into either BBC One, ITV, Sky One or Sky News this year for Her Majesty’s annual speech
R is for… Reindeer
Visit reindeer at the North Hills Farm in Mold this year. Originating in Scandinavia, each reindeer has its own unique personality and is cared for around the clock. North Hills Farm will also bring the reindeer to you and offers Christmas packages which include an illuminated mobile enclosure and two reindeer accompanied by fully-trained handlers
S is for… Santa train
Enjoy festive frolics and family fun during a trip on the Ffestiniog & Welsh Highland Railways from Caernarfon or Porthmadog. These trains are fun for adults and children alike. Santa and his elves pass through the train giving out presents to the children along the way – with plenty of laughter and jokes as well
T is for… Turkey
Make sure you’re prepared this year with an award-winning organic turkey or goose from Rhug Estate Organic Farm in Corwen and get all the trimmings plus extra delights from their farm shop on site
U is for… Under the Tree
Let’s face it, the presents are the main event! But, if you want to give the gift of North Wales, then Welsh Slate makes for a great gift this Christmas. Giftwarewales.co.uk uses only the finest slate from Welsh mines dating back over 500 million years, and all of their slate items can be personally engraved
V is for… Visitors
If you run into a tourist this holiday season looking for directions and/or recommendations, make sure you give them a warm Welsh ‘Croeso’. We are after all, a very friendly bunch!
W is for… Wreath
Adorn your door and let the neighbourhood know that you’re ready for Christmas with a gorgeous wreath. And, if you fancy going the extra mile, then you could also attend a wreath-making class at Luna Florist in Rhos-on-Sea. Contact Andrea on social media to find out more @Lunaflowerflorist
X is for… Xmas jumper
Everyone is in luck this Friday 13th December as its Christmas Jumper Day! What better way to do your bit for Save the Children than wearing your favourite seasonal sweater? Sign up your work, school or friends and get a free fundraising pack. Then donate £2 (or £1 if you’re at school) and BOOM – that money will help children all around the world.
Y is for… Yule log
OK, the Yule log might be originally a Nordic tradition, but Christmas just wouldn’t be Christmas without this chocolatey treat – especially for those people who actually aren’t too keen on raisins, as it makes the perfect alternative to either Christmas cake or even Christmas pudding…
Z is for… Zip into the New Year
Why not welcome in the New Year at a speed of 117 miles per hour? Home to 13 different adventures to choose from – one of them being the fastest zip line in the world – Zip World offers fun for all ages and it’s offering w whopping 50% off all adventures on New Year’s Day, so you can ensure a thrilling start to 2020!