Heaton Park unveils host of Christmas activities with new Christmas markets, Santa’s grotto and festive films

There are loads of free Christmassy activities to keep the kids entertained at Heaton Park this Christmas.

Heaton Park has released a full line-up of Christmas attractions for the festive season – including a market for the first time ever. Many people will likely be flocking to Heaton Park during Christmas to visit the Lightopia light trail, which is on until 2 January 2023, but there are also plenty of free activities there to keep the family entertained over the Christmas period.

What’s on at Heaton Park

Starting on Saturday 3 December, and running every weekend until Christmas, local traders will be setting up at the park’s Stable Courtyard selling everything from upcycled bird feeders, embroidery art and Manchester-made gin. There will also be free screenings of festive movies taking place every weekend, 11am-3pm, at the Stable Courtyard under the Hayloft. The films will be played on a loop and changed intermittently, but the schedule has not been announced, so keep checking the Facebook page for more details. And remember to wrap up warm as the screenings will be outdoors.

There are several car parks at Heaton Park, but the closest one for these events is the Hall car park.

Stable Court is where you’ll find the Heaton Park Christmas markets. Photo: Google Maps

Elsewhere in the park, the Heaton Park Cafe now has a covered seating area and will be serving up lots of festive menu items.

Until 16 December there is also 30% on the Treetop Trek high ropes for anyone living in the surrounding M6, M7, M8, M9, M24, M25, M26, M27 and M45 postcodes.

Councillor Lee Ann Igbon, executive member for Vibrant Neighbourhoods said:  “Manchester is the capital of Christmas and the whole city always gets involved in the festive season. Festive cheer has taken over Heaton Park this year- with film screenings, craft sessions, festive tipples and of course, markets. It’s great that Heaton Park is embracing Christmas and is the place to be for families and the little ones.”

Where to meet Santa and how to book

Santa’s Grotto is returning to the Heaton Park Garden Centre this year. It will be open this weekend (3-4 December), next weekend (10-11 December) and every day from 17-23 December.

Bookings can be made online and cost £15. Included in the price is a gift from Santa, a Christmas tree planting experience and storytime with the man himself.

You can find the Garden Centre via the St. Margaret’s road entrance to the park.