This event is fully booked

*Please note, this event is fully booked. To be added to a cancellation list, please email events@hestercombe.com*

When you arrive, you’ll be greeted by one of our friendly Hestercombe elves, who’ll hand you a special activity pack full of festive fun.

When Father Christmas is ready, you’ll wander through the winter gardens to the man himself. In his sweet little garden folly, the log fire will be roaring, lights will be twinkling on the Christmas tree and sacks of presents will be waiting…

A visit is extra magical in the evenings, as you can wander along the illuminated pathway to his garden hideout and enjoy our special Christmas illuminations around Rook Wood and the Victorian Shrubbery.

After seeing Father Christmas, children can enjoy taking part in our Christmas gardens trails, followed by a visit to the Stables Restaurant or Caffé + Gelato for festive hot chocolate and other winter treats.

Father Christmas's Grotto at Hestercombe Gardens

Dates and Times

  • Saturday 4th December, 10am – 7pm
  • Sunday 5th December, 10am – 7pm
  • Saturday 11th December, 10am – 7pm
  • Sunday 12th December, 10am – 7pm
  • Saturday 18th December, 10am – 7pm
  • Sunday 19th December, 10am – 7pm
  • Monday 20th December, 10am – 7pm
  • Tuesday 21st December, 10am – 7pm
  • Wednesday 22nd December, 10am – 7pm
  • Thursday 23rd December, 10am – 7pm
  • Friday 24th December, 10am – 7pm

Get discounts on events at Hestercombe

Join as a Hestercombe member from as little as £3.46 per month to enjoy member-only prices on events and unlimited free garden admission.


Please read the following carefully before booking your tickets:

  • You must check in at our Visitor Reception 20 minutes before your slot. If you arrive early, please head down to Caffe + Gelato to enjoy some refreshments while you wait; please don't be late, as you may miss your slot.
  • To ensure the experience is Covid-safe, a maximum of five visitors will be allowed into Santa’s Grotto during each visit including children. We kindly ask that you limit the size of your party as much as possible. Any additional family members will be asked to wait outside under shelter during the visit.
  • If you book an evening slot after 4pm, you will be given a return gardens admission voucher to be used at a future date of your choosing.
  • When you book online, you will receive a confirmation email. When you check in, you must be ready with your reference number and a print out, or screenshot of your confirmation email to show at the Ticket Office. If you don’t receive one you must email info@hestercombe.com or call us on 01823 413923 to ensure that your booking is confirmed.
  • Therefore you should ensure that you wear appropriate clothing and footwear, as there may be some slippery surfaces on your route, especially when wet.
  • Masks must be worn in both Santa’s Workshop and Grotto by adults (except those who are less able to wear face coverings) and children over 11 years old.
  • Don't forget, if you are also planning to come to see ILLUMINATE,(our Christmas illuminations), that Father Christmas evening slots (taking place after 4pm) incur a small evening premium, and automatically include admission to ILLUMINATE, so there is no need to purchase a separate ticket for the lights! Tickets to see Father Christmas before 4pm do not include ILLUMINATE admission, this must be purchased separately.

View our event cancellation and refund policy

If you experience any difficulty with booking, or have any questions, please email Visitor Reception in the first instance at info@hestercombe.com, or call 01823 413923.

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Hestercombe Gardens
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