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Wednesday, 26 November 2014

LIFESTYLE // SEASONAL ADVENTURES TO TAKE IN THE SOUTH EAST THIS WINTER

Around about this time last year, I talked about the London Dungeons at Christmas and touched upon some other seasonal things to do in London. Really though, the list is endless and I have no doubt I'll be dedicating another blog post to all the fun Christmas themed things you can do in the city this winter.

However, this blog post is about seasonal things you can do a little more further afield, if you're from the South East/outskirts of London like me. I suppose it's fitting that I'm posting this a little early as a few of these things might require a day booked off work!

I'm quite lucky in that I come from a close knit family and when I was younger we'd always go on random adventures to cool places nearby and a few a little further out. I'll always be ever so grateful to my parents for that and so it means I've visited some really awesome places or attractions over the years! Here are a few that I think are definitely well worth a visit this winter...

Inspire Magazine Online - UK Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle blog | Lifestyle // Seasonal Adventures to take in the South East this winter; Inspire Magazine; Inspire Magazine Online; Warwick Castle
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WARWICK CASTLE
Though it's a little further afield, Christmas at Warwick Castle is always a fun affair, especially because there's so much on all year round as it is! Warwick Castle offers typically everything a castle should - beautiful grounds, a rich history and daily shows and talks. It's also home to some attractions such as The Castle Dungeon & The Princess Tower - making it ideal for all the family. However, Christmas is when the castle really outdoes itself. The whole castle gets decked out in Christmas deco and offers a 25ft Christmas tree in the Great Hall. There are plenty of events on over the winter period such as A Very Victorian Christmas Party and the opportunity for kids to meet Santa. Most years they have an ice skating rink in the grounds or an ice skating trail too and let's not forget about how stunning the grounds will look covered in a blanket of pure white snow. You'll have to dress up warm but attractions aside, even just visiting this attraction on a winter day will be visually pleasing and you'll no doubt enjoy exploring the grounds.
Strictly speaking, Warwick castle more so in the Midlands as opposed to the South East but I couldn't miss it out!
Warwick Castle is just under two hours outside of London.

WOBURN SAFARI PARK
A safari park doesn't sound like it'll be much fun during winter - but it is, trust me. For starters, a lot of the safari is explored via car around a specific trail so grab a thermal mug full of tea, put some Christmas music on low and admire the animals in their natural habitat without having to ever step out into the cold. The safari park sets up a very special winter wonderland each year and additionally, usually hosts various different craft or Christmas fairs which is perfect for last minute Christmas gifts. You'd be surprised at how festive a safari can get when Christmas rolls around!
Woburn Safari Park is an hour and fifteen minutes outside of London.

Inspire Magazine Online - UK Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle blog | Lifestyle // Seasonal Adventures to take in the South East this winter; Inspire Magazine; Inspire Magazine Online; Waddesdon Manor
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WADDESDON MANOR
I visited Waddesdon Manor a couple of years ago and to this day still smile at the memory. The manor is home to some stunning grounds that can take almost all day to walk around and you can explore these grounds over winter. The grounds also play host to a lot of Christmas and craft fairs in the colder months and you'll find captivating light trails throughout the gardens and woodland area. There's even a winter trail where you can spot reindeer and stables where you'll find seasonal activities for children such as lantern making or photos with real husky dogs! Finally, the actual manor itself is decorated each Christmas with stunning Christmas trees and twinkling fairy lights. This years theme is is Lights and Legends!
Waddesdon Manor is about an hour and a half outside of London.

HARRY POTTER STUDIO TOUR
You don't have to be a fan of Harry Potter - even if you're not you'll find the whole tour extremely pretty at Christmas. All year round you can explore the set and submerge yourself in the wonderful world of Hogwarts but visit at Christmas and you'll get so much more. The whole place is decorated for Christmas with parts of the tour covered in snow. If you ever remember how the great hall looked
at Christmas in the films, then you'll know this isn't a tour to be missed this winter.
Harry Potter Studio Tour is an hour outside of London.

If none of these take your fancy, how about just jumping in the car and driving to a random town for a fun adventure? More often than not, different places have their own seasonal events from Christmas lights being switched on to carolling and different fairs. And if not, most cities are worth a visit simply just to travel through and gawk at with Christmas lights and decorations. Cambridge, Southend on Sea and even Canterbury have always been known to be festive at winter - perfect to get you into the Christmas spirit.

Is there anywhere you always make sure to go with your family at Christmas? Where else would you recommend in the South East that just HAS to be visited this winter? Let me know!

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