Christmas in Colchester 2018

Looking for things to do at Christmas?

This year, embrace the festive season with a visit to Colchester where you will find something on offer for all the family. Whether you are interested in traditional seasonal events, need to find activities to keep the kids entertained in the holidays, or simply want to enjoy shopping for presents, Colchester has something for everyone.

Many of the town's unique attractions and venues will be doing something extra-special to celebrate, creating some truly not-to-be-missed events that will make this Christmas in Colchester one to remember.

Santa in Colchester

Featured Christmas Events

Jack And The Beanstalk

JACK AND THE BEANSTALK

Sat 24 Nov 2018 - Sun 20 Jan 2019

The Mercury panto is back, and this year it’s bigger and better than ever.

Colchester Christmas Lights

Christmas Light Switch-On

Sun 25 Nov 2018

Christmas Light switch-on in Colchester

Lion Walk Christmas Lights

Lion Walk Christmas Light Switch-On

Wed 28 Nov 2018

Lion Walk Shopping Centre switch on their Christmas Lights

The Minories Christmas Fair

The Minories Christmas Market

Sat 1 Dec 2018

Christmas Fair at the Minories Gallery

Made in Colchester

Made in Colchester

Sat 1 Dec 2018

Christmas Fair held by local makers at Colchester Arts Centre

Thomas

Festive Day Out With Thomas

Sun 9 Dec 2018

Fun for all the family.

Victorian Christmas

Victorian Colchester at Christmas Themed walk

Sun 9 Dec 2018

During the festive season that they loved so much, join your costumed guide to discover the Colchester that the Victorians knew. Meet at the War Memorial

Colchester Castle at Christmas

FREE Christmas Open Evening

Wed 12 Dec 2018

Free Open Evening at Colchester Castle

Crouch Street

Crouch Street Christmas Grotto

Sat 15 Dec 2018

Santa visits the St Helena Hospice store on Crouch Street

Thomas

Festive Day Out With Thomas

Sat 15 - Sun 16 Dec 2018

Fun for all the family.

The Magic of Christmas

Magic of Christmas

Sat 15 - Mon 24 Dec 2018

Festive fun at Colchester Zoo

Peanuts

A Charlie Brown Christmas: Music of Vince Guaraldi

Sun 16 Dec 2018

Nostalgic Christmas Jazz at Colchester Arts Centre

John Cooper Clarke

Christmas Poetry Bash w/ John Cooper Clarke + more

Sat 22 Dec 2018

The annual festive bout of local poetry heroes at Colchester Arts Centre

Thomas

Festive Day Out With Thomas

Sat 22 - Sun 23 Dec 2018

Fun for all the family.

THEATRE OF WIDDERSHINS: SNOW WHITE, ROSE RED, BEAR

Snow White, Rose Red, Brown Bear

Sun 23 - Mon 31 Dec 2018

After the huge success of Rapunzel, Theatre of Widdershins is back with a brilliant fairy tale adventure for kids aged 4 to 104

Festive Things To Do in Colchester

Many of Colchester's top attractions are doing something extra-special for Christmas. Enjoy Colchester Zoo by Starlight, visit the Castle for free, or experience a Festive Day Out with Thomas at the East Anglian Railway Museum.

Whether you live in Colchester or are just visiting there are some cracking events taking place throughout the festive season. From traditional panto courtesy of the Mercury Theatre, to carol concerts, and Christmas Markets. Colchester is bound to have something to keep you entertained.

If you're more Bah Humbug than Ho, Ho, Ho don't despair, escape into a tinsel free zone with alternative comedy at Colchester Arts Centre, some contemporary art at Firstsite, or catch a live band at one of our pubs and clubs.

Browse through our "What's On" guide to find up-to-date information on festive events happening in Colchester.

Festive Events

Starlight Nights

Christmas Starlight Nights

Colchester

Sat 24 Nov 2018

Festive fun at Colchester Zoo

Jack And The Beanstalk

JACK AND THE BEANSTALK

Colchester

Sat 24 Nov 2018 - Sun 20 Jan 2019

The Mercury panto is back, and this year it’s bigger and better than ever.

Children's Christmas crafts

Beth Chatto Christmas Fayre

Colchester

Sat 24 - Sun 25 Nov 2018

Traditional Christmas Fayre in the grounds of the world renowned Beth Chatto Gardens just outside Colchester.

Coggeshall Christmas

Coggeshall Christmas

Colchester

Sat 24 - Sun 25 Nov 2018

A traditional tudor Christmas at Paycocke's House

Fenwick

Fenwick’s Festive Showcase

Colchester

Sun 25 Nov 2018

See performances from The Nutcracker, Megan McKenna, stilt-walkers, a live snow globe and a festive projection on to the store.

Colchester Christmas Lights

Christmas Light Switch-On

Colchester

Sun 25 Nov 2018

Christmas Light switch-on in Colchester

Lion Walk Christmas Lights

Lion Walk Christmas Light Switch-On

Colchester

Wed 28 Nov 2018

Lion Walk Shopping Centre switch on their Christmas Lights

Starlight Nights

Christmas Starlight Nights

Colchester

Sat 1 Dec 2018

Festive fun at Colchester Zoo

The Minories Christmas Fair

The Minories Christmas Market

Colchester

Sat 1 Dec 2018

Christmas Fair at the Minories Gallery

Trinity Street Christmas MArket

Trinity St Christmas Market

Colchester

Sat 1 - Sun 2 Dec 2018

Christmas Market on Colchester's Trinity Street

Santa Grotto

Santa is coming to Fenwick

Colchester

Sat 1 - Mon 24 Dec 2018

Santa is taking time out of his busy schedule to bring his festive grotto to Fenwick Colchester this December.

Made in Colchester

Made in Colchester

Colchester

Sat 1 Dec 2018

Christmas Fair held by local makers at Colchester Arts Centre

Christmas Fair

Christmas Fair

Colchester

Sat 1 Dec 2018

CoCoCare's Christmas fair suitable for all ages and abilities. There will be a range of Christmas stalls to purchase some gifts, themed activities and games, story telling and dance workshops, Santa's grotto and more.

Christmas Carols

Christmas Carols

Colchester

Sat 1 Dec 2018

Get ready for the excitement of Christmas with a choir of former members of the famous chapel choirs of Cambridge University!

A nice stall

HRCC Christmas Fair 2018 - Colchester

Colchester

Sun 2 Dec 2018

Our Christmas Fair is coming to Colchester for the first time! Expect a festive fun day out for the whole family!

Brightlingsea Christmas Tree Festival

Brightlingsea Christmas Tree Festival

Brightlingsea

Fri 7 - Sun 9 Dec 2018

Christmas trees, gifts, concerts and more...

Christmas Crib Festival

Christmas Crib Festival

Colchester

Fri 7 - Sun 9 Dec 2018

Christmas Cribs from all over the world on display. Crafts and light refreshments

Starlight Nights

Christmas Starlight Nights

Colchester

Sat 8 Dec 2018

Festive fun at Colchester Zoo

Santa's Grotto

Santa’s Castle Grotto

Colchester

Sat 8 Dec 2018 - Mon 9 Dec 2019

Father Christmas visits Colchester Castle

Christmas Wreath Making

Christmas Wreath Making Workshop

Colchester

Sat 8 Dec 2018

A creative and inspiring Christmas wreath making workshop. Suitable for all ages and abilities.

Shopping and more!

Shopping

We've got great places to shop and get all those important presents; from big name stores to local independent traders. Enjoy shopping on the High Street, and the town's flagship department store Fenwicks, then head to the Lion Walk and Culver Square shopping centres to find those must have brands. Don't forget to explore the narrow lanes and streets at the heart of Colchester to see what our independent boutiques and stores have to offer.
Fenwick at Christmas

Parking

Remember Colchester Borough Council has special Christmas parking deals: FREE parking after 3pm on Wednesdays from 5th December at all its town centre car parks and money-saving offers available at other times too, including parking on Sundays for £1 all day at selected sites.
Red Lion Yard
High Street Lights

Late Night Shopping

Late night shopping will run every Wednesday from 28th November to 19th December, with free parking in council-run car parks after 3pm on 5th, 12th & 19th December. So why not hit the shops and grab a bite to eat after work – the town centre has eateries to suit all tastes and pockets. Better still come and make a night of it; find the perfect place to stay now!
Tiptree Christmas Selection