Review of Yuletide Light Trail at Tatton Park
Yuletide a new light trail at Tatton Park is now open for Christmas, discover everything you need to know and what we thought in our review.
The new family Christmas event Yuletide arrived at Tatton Park. Described as a Christmas family festival we were invited along to check it for the purposes of an honest review.
By Rachel Sneddon – On The Go Reviewer
Created by Wild Rumpus, the creators of the magical Just So Festival as well as the Lanterns at Chester Zoo we had high hopes and weren’t disappointed.
Read on to find out everything you need to know, our top tips and what we thought.
Parking for Yuletide at Tatton Park?
There is plenty of parking available at Tatton Park. Parking is free for anyone visiting Yuletide.
However, you are only able to arrive for up to an hour before your timed slot.
Can You Buy Tickets On The Day For Yuletide?
To ensure you get your preferred timeslot, it is recommended to book your tickets online in advance for Yuletide.
However, you can purchase your tickets on the day at the entrance to the event if you don’t like to plan too far ahead. However popular dates may sell out.
What to Expect at Yuletide in Tatton Park
On entering, we were given a map and a programme of performances which would take place on rotation throughout the evening.
No matter your time slot, you will have a chance to see everything. However it is worth deciding what to do first; enjoy the entertainment, or walk the magical Glittering Trail.
We opted for the Glittering Trail first, although we did have a little dance to some of the live music on the way!
The Glittering Trail
Despite my 10-year-old’s cries for hot chocolate, we stuck to our plan to walk the trail first.
I’ve been to Tatton Park with the family many times, but never at night. There was definitely something exciting and mysterious about wandering the grounds in darkness.
The path was well-lit and we could see where we were going. Plus although we had worn walking boots, the path was well maintained, so I think we would have been fine in trainers.
The beginning of the trail is easily recognisable, with a stunning rainbow pathway. I was probably more excited about it than the kids. It was truly magical, and a great opportunity for a family selfie….if you can get the kids to stay still.
The 1km trail takes you through Tatton Gardens mystical atmosphere is created using a combination of lighting, music, puppetry and the characters from around the world that you meet along the way.
Those who have visited Just So Festival will recognise the same magic being replicated here. We spotted one or two familiar props along the way which the kids loved.
One of the highlights for the kids was meeting with Mari-Lwyd who was based on a Walsh tradition. She promised to send them luck if they could tell her a joke or share a song (and they obviously obliged).
Younger children seemed entranced by the puppetry of Ursa Major and Ursa Minor, a large bear and a baby bear. My husband and I enjoyed seeing the Kallikantzaroi; robots which appeared to have been upcycled from various pots and pans.
Wild Rumpus hasn’t just focused on the performances. They have ensured that the trail is stunning too, with eye-catching light effects; a highlight being the Japanese gardens, beautifully reflected in the lake.
After finishing the trail, we ended up back at the beginning, cold and ready for a hot chocolate.
As we headed back towards the hub of the Yuletide Gathering. Here we came across some Fire Jugglers who were showing off their skills to the crowd.
We watched open-mouthed, before heading over to pick up a much-needed hot chocolate and some sweet treats and to settle down for a story (or two).
The storytelling was by Just So favourite Ian Doulas who had brought along his Magic Lantern Caravan.
He shared lovely traditional tales that delighted both children and grown-ups, and it was a wonderful way to share a winter’s evening. Especially as there was a cosy seating area creating an intimate gathering.
Behind the storytelling, there were fire pits where you could enjoy toasting marshmallows, adding to the festive atmosphere.
Afterwards, we headed back to the nearby tent, where there was live music, and enough space that families could gather and listen, or have a dance if they wanted to.
When is Yuletide at Tatton Park on Until?
Yuletide is on at Tatton Park from 24th November until 23rd December.
It runs on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings from 3.00 pm with the last timeslot being 7.30 pm. There is also a special event running on the winter solstice (22nd December) where there will be additional programming such as processions.
How Long Will I Spend at Yuletide?
The organisers expect families to spend around 90 minutes at the Yuletide to enjoy everything, although you can stay as long as you want.
We were there slightly longer than that.
Is there food and drink at Yuletide?
There are several stalls selling plenty of treats to keep you warm on your visit to this winter family event.
If you are looking forward to something savoury, you will find stalls in the courtyard of Tatton Park. These are located near the carousel before you enter the ticketed area.
Here you will find goodies such as pizza, hot dogs and loaded chips, ranging from around £4.00 to £12.00.
The rest of the stalls within the Yuletide Gathering sell sweet treats. Delights included hot chocolate, with every flavour imaginable, mini pancakes and waffles ranging from £5 to £7. For those fancying a tipple and mulled wine and alcoholic cocktails were available too.
You can also purchase giant marshmallows at the hot chocolate stand if you fancy toasting some in front of the open fires. Although we bought ours whilst there it looked like you could take your own.
What We Thought of Yuletide at Tatton Park
We were there with older children (aged 14 and 10), and we all really enjoyed the atmosphere that has been created.
The Glittering Trail was beautiful to walk around and the costumes and puppetry were stunning. Younger children seemed entranced by the performances and would love the event too.
The entertainment, with fabulous storytelling and music, at the Yultide Gathering didn’t disappoint either. The fire jugglers were a particular which we all enjoyed and had the kids mesmerised.
I do have to admit I was hoping for a proper campfire – this could just be because I’m a regular around the campfire at Just So Festival and one of our favourite parts. However, the gathering still had a lovely festive feel to it.
Overall, I felt that Wild Rumpus has built on the popular light trail and created something which is a little different and more special. A festive event where families can enjoy spending time together with stories, music and laughter.
Discover more and how to book >>> Yuletide Christmas Light Trail at Tatton Park