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Children's Christmas Holiday Activities in North London - Bumper Christmas and Chanukah Listings

This half term has sped by and the Christmas holidays are fast approaching. We round up all the best things going on to entertain your little people.

 Theatre

We rounded up all of the Christmas theatre on in this post about best Christmas theatre for families in London. Some highlights are:



Gruffalo's Child which is showing at Arts Depot in North Finchley. The Gruffalo said that no Gruffalo should ever set foot in the deep dark wood... But one wild and windy night, the Gruffalo’s Child ignores her father’s warning and tiptoes out into the snow on her own. After all, the Big Bad Mouse doesn’t really exist... Does he? This is showing from 11th - 30th December and is suitable for ages 3+.


Between 21 and 23 December The Chicken Shed is showing the Christmas Tales (pictured above) - this promises to be a full-on family Talesomime (a pantomime starring all your favourite Tales characters from the Chicken shed production of Tales from the Shed). It’s gonna be high energy, hi-jinxing fun...Oh no, it’s not! Oh yes, it is!

Alexandra Palace is holding Alice in Winter Wonderland-   a Christmas panto on ice between 16 and 19 December. Crowds will enter Ally Pally’s own winter wonderland to see the Palace’s skaters take to the ice for a festive show set on its recently refurbished rink. ‘Alice in Winter Wonderland’ will be performed by Ally Pally skating club members, against the backdrop of the dramatic Victorian architecture.

Jack and The Beanstalk is showing at Watford Palace Theatre  - Fee Fi Fo Fum...Join Jack, Dame Trott and Buttercup the cow on the most giant adventure of all in this brand-new show, packed with laughter, popular tunes and a never-ending beanstalk.

Meet Santa


Check out all the opportunities to visit Santa in this post we wrote about Santa's Grottos in North London.  

Go Shopping at a Christmas Market or Chanukah or Christmas Fair


We rounded up all the best Christmas and Chanukah Markets and Fairs in North London and beyond already so check out this post and get shopping!  

Museums and Attractions

The Victoria and Albert Museum offers award winning activity back packs for children aged 5-12 to enjoy on the journey around the V&A. Children under 5 can have Animal packs with an exciting trail to find animals in the museum.  which include is holding a digital workshop for children 5 daily from 27- 31 December from 10-5pm.

RAF Museum, Hendon has a wartime Christmas Carol Concert on 17 and 18 December at 2.30 on both days. The concert will consist of classic Christmas wartime favourites that kept the home fires burning during the dark days of World War 2, as well a traditional hymns and carols for which we would ask that you raise the rafters high. Each concert will last approximately 75 minutes.

Hampton Court has Christmas Carols around the courtyards between 19 and 23 December at 6pm.

The Natural History Museum is displaying the Wildlife Photographer of the year entries, featuring more than 100 prize winning photographs- a perfect diversion for your little monkeys?! There is also an icerink if you are feeling brave!

The Science Museum is hosting the Robotville Festival  celebrating the most cutting-edge in European robot design and innovation – and exploring the cultural significance of robots. You can meet over 20 unique robots and their makers, who will be on hand to demonstrate their work and talk to visitors. The exhibition is free but timed entry applies.

The National Army Museum has a new Kids Zone for kids 0-8 years open daily from 10.10 to 5.15pm. The zone has forest and arctice themed climbing frames for kids to scale, side and run through. This new children’s play area explores aspects of army life from camping to clothing. It includes a dedicated soft-play space for babies, plus arts and crafts, dressing-up costumes, books, interactive toys and panels. The Museum canvassed and incorporated the innovative ideas and suggestions of parents, carers and our youngest users, to create an exciting space for kids aged 0-8 to learn, explore and play in a historically inspired, colourful environment.

Tower Bridge has London's biggest interactive Advent Calendar set within a Victorian themed Christmas setting. Until 24 December. Visitors have the chance to open a door a day. There is also an ice rink in the beautiful setting outside the tower.


You can now visit Reindeer Land at London Zoo! Visitors to the Zoo will be able to see London’s very own reindeer herd in their new Reindeer Lodge exhibit.There’s also a chance to catch a glimpse of reindeers, Rudolph, Dancer, Prancer and Blitzen taking a daily walk around the Zoo throughout the Christmas period. There is also a festive Christmas market.

Enjoy storytelling at Somerset House by the Tiffany Christmas Tree (outside!). Check out the website for details of which authors and stories will be featured on each day.

Jewish Museum, Camden has two Chanukah inspired craft days - making Chanukah candles and lanterns. 

Grant Museum of Zoology has Christmas Creatures - How do Arctic animals cope with the cold? Do penguins shiver and why don't the fish freeze? From mountains to icebergs, and glaciers to tundra, the Grant Museum's specimen-based hands-on activities investigate the world's snow-bound beasts. Interactive games will also look at ice-age animals and what will happen if all our ice melts. Activities running 19th-23rd. Free.

Courses and Camps

Artburst are running a session for children aged 5-9 near to London Fields, children will work to create a play based on a well-loved children’s story book. Children design and make their own props and costumes ready for a short performance at the end of the day. Workshops involve painting so children should dress ready for mess and bring a packed lunch. 10.30am - 3.30pm.  Runs Monday 19th and Tuesday 20th.

The Playing Space has a range of really great holiday courses running in Southgate, N14 for school age children. Reception to year 3 will do drama focusing on classic children's stories - Through games, songs, dances and improvisations, children explore a classic work of children’s literature. Past themes have included Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne, Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie and Fantastic Mr Fox by Roald Dahl. When booking is complete, we will choose the theme that best suits each group. Year 4 - Year 7 will focus on The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. Sounds amazing! See website for more details.

Freightliners City Farm is running craft workshops 13th-16th from £15. More details to follow soon.

Poolside Manor in Finchley has a multi activity day camp running all week. You don't need to attend all week. There is also an intensive swimming school running.

Fine Art 4 Kids has an art workshop in Crouch End running on 21st and 22nd December, 10-12.


Creative Wizz Kidz - playgroups that focus on creativity - has holiday clubs running in Golders Green and Belsize Park for ages 3-9 from 10-1pm.

Perform is running a Narnia Winter Holiday Course 19th-21st in various North London locations including Highgate, Hampstead, Primrose Hill. For 4-8s. 

One-Off Events 

Thursday 15th
Santa is coming to town to visit The Tea Rooms, N16 at 5pm. There will be carols and festive snacks. Pop in before to leave your letter to Santa as he will reply to each one.

Freightliners City Farm has carols with the animals at 4pm-5pm. More details to follow soon.

Monday 19th

Lauderdale House is hosting the Christmas Cake Show at 11.30: "Take a large handful of your favourite Christmas songs, the best festive traditions and a big dollop of family fun. Mix well, make a wish and enjoy a jam-packed hour of Christmas entertainment." Plus the chance to join in with a mini singalong. for children 3+.

For older children 10-13 there is also a creative cookery class at Lauderdale House from 2-5pm.

The Oak Studio, Hampstead,  has pottery making 10.30 to 12.15, with a further session on Thirsday 10.30 to 12.15. Use air-drying clay to make a Nativity scene or Christmas gift for a member of your family in this 3.5 hour session. The first session will be used to mould and shape your clay and the second session will be used to paint and finish it off.

The Tea Rooms, N16 has Christmas Biscuit Decorating for children 10-11, £7 each or two children for £10.

It's Chanukah at Brent Cross with the Jewish Community Centre. Children aged 3-11 will love rolling up their sleeves and getting their hands dirty making Chanukiot, cards, masks and more; all of which they will be able to take home to make Chanukah even more special.

Crafty Chefs Barnet has festive cooking fun in Palmers Green! We shall be making some edible presents such as chocolate truffles as well as other Christmassy goodies! The workshops are on Monday 19th December and Wednesday 21st December 9am-1pm. One session is £32 and if you book both it is £60. For booking details please email sabrina@craftychefs.co.uk  or call 0797 2134691. Book early to avoid disappointment!!

Tuesday 20th

If your children are 7 to 9, head to Lauderdale House where they can make their own crackers, penguin finger puppets and beautiful angel or wacky Santa paper chains. 10:30 to 12:30. Children aged 5-7 can also get crafty making Santa tree decorations, magnetic snowmen bookmarks and Rudolph sweet holders, 2.30-4.30pm.

Santa is also visiting Lauderdale House from 11.30 to 2.30 and 3.30 to 5.30pm.

It's Chanukah at Brent Cross with the Jewish Community Centre. Children aged 3-11 will love rolling up their sleeves and getting their hands dirty making Chanukiot, cards, masks and more; all of which they will be able to take home to make Chanukah even more special.
  
Wednesday 21st

The Christmas Cake Show is showing again at Lauderdale House at 11.30 (see Monday's listing).
For children aged 3- there is a drop-in session from 3.30- 4.30 for a family afternoon of lantern making followed by carol singing and Christmas songs. Bring a jam jar!

At Keat's House there's a Christmas Teddy Bear's Picnic, featuring favourite songs, poems and stories with a festive twist. Bring your teddy bear and santa hat!

Further west, the Royal Albert Hall is hosting a Christmas Carol Singalong from 2.30.

Crafty Chefs Barnet has festive cooking fun in Palmers Green! We shall be making some edible presents such as chocolate truffles as well as other Christmassy goodies! The workshops are on Monday 19th December and Wednesday 21st December 9am-1pm. One session is £32 and if you book both it is £60. For booking details please email sabrina@craftychefs.co.uk  or call 0797 2134691. Book early to avoid disappointment!!

There is a free Christmas Craft Event at Highgate Library 10.30-12pm. 

Thursday 22nd

As listed for Wednesday, the Royal Albert Hall is hosting a Christmas Carol Singalong from 2.30.

The Tea Rooms, N16 has Christmas Biscuit Decorating for children 10-11, £7 each or two children for £10.

Wednesday 28th


The Museum of Childhood is holding a performance of Pinocchio on 28 and 29 December at 11.30 and 2pm, for children aged 3+. Follow the adventures of likeable rascal Pinocchio with a puppet show adapted from the classic Italian story by Carlo Collodi. The show, performed with hand-carved puppets, captures the magic of the original story.

Thursday 29th


The Camden Arts Centre is holding an activity guide family day from 2 to 4.30pm led by artist Serena Korda. Activities will include fun, practical and interactive workshops responding to the current exhibtions, building on themes and ideas from her activity guide: Looking with Serena Korda.


Friday 30th

The Camden Arts Centre is holding an activity guide family day from 2 to 4.30pm led by artist Serena Korda. Activities will include fun, practical and interactive workshops responding to the current exhibtions, building on themes and ideas from her activity guide: Looking with Serena Korda.



If you  know of anything else going on that you think other North London parents would like to know about, do let us know and we will add it in! We will be updating this daily in the run up to the holidays so do keep us posted on any events you are hosting or attending. 

Have a really great holiday. Merry Christmas and Chanukah Sameach! 

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