Today we were excited to go on our first festive outing of the season!
Wyevale Garden Centre in Marple were kind enough to offer our children tickets to their Santa’s grotto. The tickets are usually £6 per child, including a gift from Santa.
The grotto is situated inside the garden centre itself and as you’d expect the centre was decked out in Christmas decorations and merchandise. The perfect way to get you in the festive spirit!
There was a huge Christmas tree with reindeer at the store’s entrance. There were also moving polar bears on our walk towards the grotto which were lovely and very life-like.
You can’t miss the grotto itself, with “snow” and lights decorating the exterior. The kids loved that there were more animals here too – penguins and a gorgeous moving donkey.
We were met at the grotto’s entrance by Santa’s elf helpers. They were friendly and engaged with the children while they waited their turn. They also encouraged the children to have their photo taken with the donkey while we waited.
The grotto itself was small, but well decorated to create a cosy, welcoming atmosphere. The boys (7, and 9 years old) ran straight up to talk to Santa whereas our three year old was a little more cautious.
We were particularly impressed with Santa. He realised our daughter was a bit apprehensive and rather than trying to persuade her to come over, he talked to the boys and let her venture over in her own time. As the tickets were pre-booked, he knew the children’s names without having to ask them which was a nice touch. The names on the certificates they were given were also pre-written which convinced the kids that he really does know everything!
Some Santa visits can feel a bit rushed but he took plenty time to talk to the children and ask questions. He even handled our 7 year old’s tricky questions like a pro (“how can you see that we’re being good all the time, when there’s so many children to watch?”)
The children were invited to choose their own presents, which again I thought was a nice touch. Rather than a cheap selection box as I was expecting, all the presents looked to be good quality. Mine chose a soft wolf, rabbit and battery powered car.
The grottos are open up until Christmas Eve and you can prebook online. Wyevale are also offering breakfast or tea with Santa, from now up until Christmas Eve. It’s one of our Christmas traditions to have breakfast with Santa so we’ll definitely be considering booking here. There are various locations throughout the UK, and full details are available on their website.
Disclaimer – I was offered complimentary tickets for the purposes of this review. As always opinions are my own.