What's On | Christmas In Leicester
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What’s On

Christmas in Leicester promises to be full of magical moments – packed with festive activities and an exciting Festive Adventure trail to follow, celebrating the best the city has to offer!

From ice skating on a real ice rink, meeting Santa in his snow-covered grotto, taking a ride on the Wheel of Light, to exploring the festive light trail at Enlightened Leicester at Abbey Park or enjoying the ‘Emergence’ immersive audio visual experience at the Circle on New Walk.

Download the trail map


There is plenty to entertain the whole family throughout the festive season from enjoying traditional pantomimes and world-class shows to watching blockbuster films at the cinema. And if that’s not enough there are also exhibitions, craft fairs, carol services, fantastic competitions and much more!

What's On

Young child using a skate aid on the real ice rink at Jubilee Square in Leicester On the trail
Thursday 7th December 2023-Sunday 7th January 2024 Jubilee Square

Jubilee Square Real Ice Rink

Get your skates on for a Christmas on real ice

Jubilee Square’s real ice rink is back this year! With its covered roof, skaters can show off their best moves, come rain or shine.

With the extension of super off-peak pricing this year there will be even more opportunities to skate for just £5 at specific times. Why not book on to make your Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s day extra special as the rink will be open for these days too!

For all the details and to book your tickets visit Jubilee Square Ice Rink Site

Tickets can also be purchased in person at the Visit Leicester Information Centre located at the KRIII Visitor Centre, 4A St. Martins, Leicester, LE1 5DB. Opening times apply.

Skate hire and a 45-minute session on the ice will cost £5 at super off-peak times. Off-Peak tickets are available for £11.50 adults and £10.50 for children/concessions. Standard tickets will cost £13.50 for adults and £12 for children/concessions.

With so much to get you in the Christmas Spirit, wrap up warm and celebrate in the City.

Visit Jubilee Square Real Ice Rink Site
A crowd of people watching the Wheel of light at Jubilee Square in Leicester On the trail
Friday 17th November 2023-Sunday 7th January 2023 Jubilee Square

Christmas Wheel of Light

Benefit from a bird’s eye view of Leicester’s Christmas lights from the 110-ft Ferris wheel.

Tickets can be purchased from the ticket booth on site. A ride is approximately 8 to 10 minutes.  There are 24 covered gondolas, each seating 6 people. Wheelchair access is available to one of the gondolas – assistance will be provided for anyone using this gondola.


Standard £7
Small child (under 1.4m) £5
Family (2 adults + 2 Children or 1 adult + 3 children) £20


Monday-Friday: 12pm – 9pm
Saturday: 12pm – 10pm
Sunday: 12pm – 10pm

Santa and his elf in the grotto On the trail
Saturday 2nd – Saturday 23rd December Town Hall Square

Santa in the Square


Santa is coming back to stay in Town Hall Square this Christmas!  Magical memories are waiting to be made as children of all ages can visit Santa and his elf in the Christmas grotto. This is a truly memorable experience, and all the children will receive a free gift. Add a visit to Santa to your Christmas list!

Saturday 2nd December – Saturday 23rd December 2023

Mon-Fri 12noon-2pm & 3pm-6pm

Sat 11am-2pm & 3pm-6pm

Sun 11am-1pm & 2pm-4pm

*the queue to the grotto can close up to 1 hour ahead of scheduled times so come early to avoid disappointment

Click Here for FAQ’s for Santa in the Square

A Traditional Nativity Scene at Town Hall Square in Leicester On the trail
Wednesday 22nd November - Saturday 23rd December Town Hall Square

Traditional Nativity Scene


Enjoy the tradition of Christmas at the delightful Nativity scene in Town Hall Square. In the stable you fill find Mary and Joseph and baby Jesus in a manger, who are joined by all the traditional characters. The scene is brought to life with lights and music and a recording of local school children telling the nativity story.


Enlightened Leicester poster On the trail
Thursday 16th November-Sunday 24th December Abbey Park

Enlightened Leicester at Christmas

Brand new for 2023 Abbey Park will become an enchanting outdoor light trail as its transformed into an illuminated world. With bright installations and interactive elements, Enlightened Leicester will be a magical experience for the whole family.

Abbey Park Leicester

5pm to 8.30pm daily

Visit Enlightened Leicester at Christmas Site
Bright Christmas lights with lady and girl looking at them
Wednesday 22nd November - Saturday 6th December 2023 Highcross Shopping Centre, Upper Mail near John Lewis

Bright Christmas at Highcross


Discover Bright Christmas, a unique and immersive light experience, enclosed by mirrors that reflect a myriad of 6,000 LED Christmas coloured lights set to festive sounds.

Its free to enter and no booking required. Spend as long as you like looking at all the sparkling festive lights and listening to music.

Enter the Bright Christmas competition for the chance to win a fabulous prize.

A perfect selfie opportunity and space for children to experience fabulous Christmas lights!

Opening Times

22 November from 12pm

Monday – Friday 12pm – 8pm

Saturday 11am – 7pm

Sunday 11am – 5pm

Visit Bright Christmas at Highcross Site
Emergence light installation On the trail
Wednesday 13th–Saturday 23rd December The Circle (bottom of New Walk)

BID Light installation – Emergence


Open from 12pm and lights up from 4pm – 10pm

Welcome to Emergence: An immersive audio-visual experience presented by BID Leicester and created by This is Loop.

Emergence comes alive as darkness falls. From 4.00pm, come to see the artwork illuminated and animated at full tilt. The artwork will be open during daylight from midday so you can appreciate its architecture and the multifaceted reflection of yourself and the city.

There are three entrances, all entrances are all wheelchair accessible.

Emergence includes a hearing loop to ensure the soundtrack is accessible to all.

Black and white christmas tree in a film
1-24 December Phoenix

Christmas Cinema at Phoenix

From Classic Christmas films to family favourites and a special ‘donation’ screening of It’s a Wonderful Life, Phoenix is full of festive film fabulousness this December. Plus Festive Workshops and special ‘Stage on Film’ productions of A Christmas Carol and The Nutcracker. Check it all out on their website

Visit Christmas Cinema at Phoenix Site
A ride at the Billy Bates Fun Fair for Christmas in Leicester On the trail
Saturday 11th November 2023-Sunday 7th January 2024 Humberstone Gate

Billy Bates Fun Fair

Experience all the fun of the fair in the heart of the city this Christmas!  Bright lights and thrilling rides all add to the festive fun.

Shop at the LCB with ceramic mugs
27 November - 15 December LCB Depot

Shop @LCB Depot


For December 2023, in partnership with Vehicle Arts The LCB Depot is turning their gallery space into a Shop with work from artists and designers and makers available to purchase and (for the most part) take home straight away!

There are also loads of great opportunities elsewhere in the cultural quarter to buy unique local made artwork (find out more below) plus you can make your cards and gifts at their creative family day, and connect with other creatives at Creative Coffee…

Events (*elsewhere)

Fri Nov 24th, 5-10pm Shop Launch featuring Winter Market

* Sat Nov 25th & 26th, 11-5pm. Makers Yard Xmas Shopping Weekend.

* Sat 2nd & 3rd 10am-4pm Print Bazaar at Leicester Print Workshop.

Sun 3rd, 1-5pm Midlands Makers Winter Market.

Wed 6th 10-12pm, Creative Coffee Networking.

Sat 9th, 12-4pm Making Christmas family day.

Visit Shop @LCB Depot Site