Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Grumpy Parents' Guide to Cheap Short Breaks for Kids at Christmas

The best Christmas breaks for kids are those that include kid’s activities, leaving the grumpy parent to chill out. After the brain-withering activity of frantic present-buying, the last thing a grumpy parent needs is to get creative on arrival to think of what to do. This means a visit to Santa’s grotto, a sweet making or tasting session and perhaps a trip on a Christmassy vehicle, which might be a steam train or steam boat. And yes, a nice cream tea. Throw that in please! But where can such ideal Christmas breaks for families be found?

Short Christmas Breaks for Families with Fun Activities

A good itinerary is vital for a good Christmas trip. Yes, there are lots of ‘Christmas trips’ out there, such as a trip to a market town to do some shopping or to an historic location to do some sightseeing. But kids being kids, need constant distraction, which does not allow a minute to check out the map on arrival or asking a kind bypasser to recommend the nearest pampering spa, ahem, I mean venue for kids’ entertainment. Planning ahead is vital, but who wants to do that, if an all-in Christmas trip can be found?

Where can I Take the Kids for Fun Christmas Trips?

I checked out the sites, and found BuyaGift and Experience Days came up with some good ideas, but careful reading of what the itinerary was vital, or the day could end up with large gaps with nothing to do or worse, disappointment. I also found a few local theme parks had put together a Christmas package for kids, such as Santa’s Sleepover at Alton Towers and Santa Safari at the Safari Park. Check out your local theme park and see if they do a similar thing. I found the itinerary included a visit to see Santa (of course) plus pressie gift, a Christmas show and hot mince pies with mulled wine.

Xmas Day Trips for Kids

Some venues will deck up for Christmas activities such as Snow Dome’s Santa Winter Wonderland, which will wear kids out with their snow trail and Santa’s panto. See real reindeers within the animal village too. I found Cadbury World created interest as this included a tour of the place, a chocolate-making session and a chocolate tasting session. Good for all year round too.

Interesting Christmas Trips for Kids

I found local venues would put together a cosy Christmas experience for kids with a nice steam train trip in various locations such as the Cotswolds or the Severn Valley. The trip ended at a nice-looking grotto, a festive brass band and plenty of festive little shops to sample gingerbread men, mince pies or Christmas crafts. I found a local canal junction had prepared a Christmas barge, for kids to enjoy a cruise on the canal towards Santa’s Village, where Santa would board to applause. Kids would then visit Santa in his grotto, get a pressie and a photo. The trip would end at a nice teashop for a comfort break.

Santa Claus’ Trips for Kids

Of course, if your purse will permit such trips, you can take the kids to Lapland to experience a true winter wonderland. These trips include flight to Lapland, visit of Santa’s grotto in Santa’s Village, food, sleigh ride with real reindeers and you never know you could even get lucky and see the Northern Lights! Visit Lapland’s capital, Rovaniemi, a lively city packed with fun activities and an underground grotto made of ice. See an ice hotel, ice bar and ice sculptures! Trips range from one day to several.

Ideas for Xmas Trips to Take Children

There are lots of Christmas trips that would appear ideal for kids until the itinerary (if there is one) is checked out. A visit to a market town or sightseeing tourist attraction might not always suit hyperactive kids vying for Christmas activities, making grumpy parents grumpier. This is why I would always make sure that there is at least a visit to see Santa. Look for a Christmas panto, Christmas craft making, a comfort break and a pleasant trip in a steam train or barge. Christmas trips with a few such diversions are sure to result in a kids’ Christmas trip to remember.

More Christmas Activity Ideas for Kids

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