Christmas is one of the greatest times of the year, especially if you have a house full of excitable kids running around. As joyful as this must be, it’s not an easy task keeping children entertained- especially when they’ve eaten their body weight in Christmas chocolate and are bouncing off the ceilings.
With this in mind, you’re going to have to find a way to keep them busy- and fast! Here is a list of the best things to do in and around Manchester during the Christmas holidays. You’re welcome!
The Rink at Cathedral Gardens
If you haven’t been already, the temporary ice rink in Manchester city centre is a cheap, yet fun day out for both you and the kids. Situated at Cathedral Gardens and right by the booming Christmas markets, you’ll never struggle to find things to do or places to eat at after you’re finished skating. The rink is open from 11 am until 20:45 every single day and is £8-£10 per ticket. Alternatively, save yourself some money by booking a family ticket for only £30! Can’t argue with that.
Santa’s Grotto- Arndale Centre
Visit Santa early this year by nipping into his snow-covered cabin in the Manchester Arndale. Your kids will be greeted by friendly elves who will lead them to the main man to hear all of their Christmas wishes this year. And if it wasn’t good enough already, tickets are only £5.50 which includes an exclusive festive Teddy Bear. It’s the perfect place for a shopping break and a coffee whilst your kids are kept well entertained. But you better be quick- Santa will be leaving on the 24th December to start delivering all of the presents!
Robots- Museum of Science and Industry
School may be coming to an end for the time being, but that doesn’t mean your kids have to stop learning stop. Pop by the Museum of Science and Industry this winter and see the evolution of robots right before your very eyes. Tickets are only £8 for adults and £5 for children, but your children under the age of six are allowed in for free. This is a unique experience for both you and your children, so don’t let the opportunity pass you by!
Bring your kids’ favourite characters to life in the musical adaptation of Julia Donalson and Axel Scheffler’s classic children’s book. The show, which is running until the 7th January, is being hosted in the Lowry Theatre in Salford and is open to anyone above the age of the 3; tickets costing around £20 each.
Oxygen Freejumping Manchester
If you’re a parent, you’ll know how difficult it is to keep your children entertained. The Oxygen Freejumping centre on Trafford Way, however, is the perfect place to take your children to a fun and active day. Made up of trampolines, obstacle courses and dodgeball/volleyball courts, this is a fun centre for both children and adults enjoy, and it won’t break the bank! Although tickets are only £4 for toddlers and £8 for adults, Oxygen Freejumping are also offering 20% off entry during winter when the code, DOWTK20 is quoted. Now that’s what I call cheap and cheerful!
Winter Wonderland Indoor Theme Park
EventCity is known for hosting some pretty spectacular events, but this is definitely up there with their most inventive ideas yet. Until the 1st of January, EventCity is hosting an indoor theme park with ride and attractions for children under the age of 12. As well as rides, children will be able to meet Santa at his grotto and even spend some time with special guest, Basil Brush. Tickets are around £20 each, but that includes complete access to all rides and available activities. This is sure to make Christmas extra special for your kids.
Bolton’s Winter Festival
I mean, who on earth wouldn’t love to slide down a giant ice slide and then skate around on a massive ice rink? Kids of adults- that sounds awesome! Luckily for us, Bolton’s council have brought back their amazing winter festival this year for people of all ages to enjoy. Open until the 7th of January, you’ll have plenty of time to take the kids for a family-fun day that won’t eat into your bank account. Tickets for the slide cost only £3 a go or £5 for two. Can’t argue with that really, can you?
Christmas through the ages events with National Trust
Step back into the past this year and show your kids how Christmas has been celebrated throughout the ages. The National Trust are hosting these events are four properties until the 7th January, where families are encouraged to come and explore the traditions that influenced Christmas, today.
Monolo’s Restaurant and PlayHouse
Monolo’s on Cheetham Hill Road is an excellent place to take the kids during the Christmas holiday because it can be fun for you all! The playhouse caters to children of all ages, and is divided into sections for toddlers, older children and even adults! But if rolling around in a ball pool isn’t your thing, why not enjoy some delicious and seriously cheap food at the PlayHouse’s restaurant? And maybe a glass of wine too…
If there is a prime time to give snow sports a go, it’s the winter. Unfortunately, here in Manchester, we don’t get much snow, so sledging, skiing or snowboarding outdoors isn’t going to happen. But that’s while Chill Factore at the Trafford Centre was opened! For a super fun, active day out for all of the family to get involved, head to Chill Factore these holidays for some snowy fun. And don’t worry if you’re a bit of a Bridget Jones on the slopes- book in for some lessons with one of Chill Factore’s expert instructors and learn how to surf that snow like the experts!