Monday, 22 November 2021

Christmas at Dunham Massey 2021 - A Review

On Thursday evening we had the pleasure of attending the press night for the launch of Christmas at Dunham Massey 2021. My family and I have attended every year since 2017, with the exception of last year due to our local lockdown, so it is fair to say that we were all extremely excited to return to one of our favourite festive events.

Christmas at Dunham Massey is brought to you by Raymond Gubbay Ltd (Sony Music) in partnership with the National Trust and sees the stunning grounds transformed into a beautiful winter wonderland, with a magical, after-dark illuminated trail. Featuring over a million lights accompanied by seasonal sounds, it is the perfect place to make memories with loved ones or friends as you walk around the stunning grounds and take in the creative and mesmerising lights.

Prior to beginning the Christmas Trail you can spend some time in the courtyard, where there is a selection of different street food vendors, along with some vintage fairground rides that included a carousel and a helter skelter. Tokens need to be purchased for the rides at an additional charge and these are available from a kiosk located nearby, if you haven't already purchased them in advance. 


It is important to note that due to the one way system, you don't return back to the courtyard area after you have finished the trail, so if you are wanting to enjoy this area and have a bite to eat, then this needs to be done prior to entering the trail. The food and drinks available looked delicious and were reasonably priced. I also felt that there was a good variety of choices available to cater for all tastes.

Once we had finished in the Courtyard, my family and I made our way over to the giant sized reindeer located at the start of the trail where we were greeted by friendly staff who scanned our tickets. The mansion was lit up brightly and we were captivated watching the sequence of lights across the building. Our favourite part was when Mariah Carey's All I Want for Christmas began to play and my son, along with some other guests, began to dance. It felt so Christmassy and welcoming and we were excited to see the rest of the event as we began to walk down the path.


Just like previous years we were greeted with stunning displays and my son kept asking how long it must have taken people to create the fascinating arrangements. The fire garden was so relaxing and I could quite happily have stood there for a long time just watching the flames and listening to the music. We were also extremely impressed by the incredible rose garden installation which was absolutely breathtaking as the roses began to change colour. 

There were also plenty of opportunities along the trail to purchase hot drinks and snacks including hot chocolates, mulled wine and tea. The option of a children's hot chocolate was also available and my boys both said it was absolutely delicious. It cost £2.25 and they enjoyed taking sips and keeping warm as we continued our walk together.

Approximately midway through the trail, there is a place to stop and purchase marshmallows to roast on one of the fire pits. The marshmallows were available to buy for £1.50 each which I thought to be reasonable given their large size. My youngest son opted for a candy floss favoured marshmallow, but my eldest son noticed additional cabins that were selling waffles and crepes, with the giant tubs of nutella immediately catching his attention. He therefore chose to buy a nutella filled crepe instead at a cost of £4.50 which he described as the best snack he had ever tasted.


My favourite part of the evening was watching my son speak with Santa, albeit socially distanced. Whilst there are no individual meet and greets, Santa did his best to speak out to guests in the crowd and welcome everyone. It was beautiful to watch his interaction with visitors and the surrounding setting was wonderful and perfectly lit with gentle lighting against the backdrop of the night sky.

Overall we had a wonderful time and it was the perfect start to our Christmas celebrations. The way the event is designed makes it suitable for all ages and whilst it is a lovely family event, I also feel that it is ideal for couples and individuals to enjoy too. All of the staff we came across were extremely courteous and were very friendly each time my youngest son spoke to them. He had taken one of his teddies with him and insisted on showing it to every staff member, who all seemed more than happy to engage with him and have a little chat. The highlight of our evening was the interaction between Father Christmas and my son which was just a joy to watch. We would absolutely recommend Christmas at Dunham Massey to others and if you have already booked your tickets, then you're in for a treat.

For further information on Christmas at Dunham Massey, please visit their website or social media channels which can be found here:

Website - National Trust - Dunham Massey
Facebook - DunhamMasseyNT - Facebook
Twitter - @DunhamMasseyNT

Event Details

Attraction - Christmas at Dunham Massey, the magical after-dark illuminated trail.
Location - Dunham Massey, Altrincham, Cheshire, WA14 4SJ
Dates - 19th November 2021 to 2nd January 2022 (the event is not open on all dates so please check for availability).

The majority of tickets for this event are now sold out, however on checking today (20/11/21) there are currently limited tickets still available for the 1st and 2nd of January 2022. However, the creators for Christmas at Dunham Massey are also operating a new lights trail approximately 40 minutes away from Dunham Massey called Christmas at Delamere Forest. You can find out more details on this event on the blog here.



*Disclaimer - We attended the press evening of Christmas at Dunham Massey and were provided with complimentary tickets for the purpose of writing an honest review of our experience. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Details provided are believed to be correct at the time of writing but can be subject to change. I would therefore always recommend visiting the attraction's own website in order to obtain the most up to date information. 

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