Visit Winchester > Blog > 5 things to do in the Winchester district this week (6-12 Dec)

5 things to do in the Winchester district this week (6-12 Dec)


If you’re in the Winchester district from the 6-12 December then why not check out these festive treats…

1. Search for the Magic Lamps at Brooks Shopping Centre

Hidden throughout The Brooks Shopping Centre are ten magic lamps. Each lamp contains a letter that spells out one of the characters’ names in AladdinTheatre Royal Winchester’s magical Christmas pantomime this year.

Trail maps and entry forms can be collected from various points around the city including the Winchester Visitor Information Centre and Theatre Royal Winchester. Completed entry forms can then be posted in the post box in the shopping centre close to Primark or entries can be made online. Completed entries will then be entered into a prize draw to win tickets to see Aladdin at Theatre Royal Winchester on 2 January 2022 and a free Play to the Crowd goodie bag!

2. See the lights sparkle at Steam Illuminations at The Watercress Line

team Illuminations - Watercress Line - 2021 - Will Stratford

The Watercress Line heritage railway is set to sparkle and shine with the return of the spectacular Steam Illuminations for the festive season – and this year it will be even brighter.

The unique Christmas light show will feature thrilling rides on a digital LED passenger steam train, illuminated inside and out with thousands of fully controllable colour mixing lights creating flashing patterns.

Time your visit to the Watercress Line in Alresford to coincide with the arrival of Father Christmas on Wednesday 8 December! Enjoy music from a brass band plus carol singing whilst searching for those ideal gifts from local independents businesses as they stay open for late night shopping until 8.30pm.

Entertainment will start from 6.15 and we hear from the Elves that Father Christmas will arrive at 7pm, waiting to greet children in his grotto from 7.15 – 8pm.

3. Enjoy a Christmas Cocktail at Bombay Sapphire Distillery

Bombay Sapphire Distillery by night

Begin your experience with a hot cocktail, then you’ll be hosted by one of their Gin Experts in a fun and lively cocktail mixology session to make 3 cocktails using different expressions of our gin as well as tasting a selection. The distillery will serve light bites for you to enjoy before you take your final cocktail to the Mill Bar to savour with a mince pie. The Mill Bar will then be open for you to purchase drinks after your mixology session.


4. Wrap up warm and relish in some Festive Fun at Marwell

Wrap up warm and get closer to the wonders of the natural world with a magical visit to Marwell Zoo this winter. Meet hundreds of exotic and endangered animals from Amur tigers and snow leopards to meerkats and penguins, run wild in the five adventure playgrounds and join the team as they spread some festive cheer!

Marwell is delighted to announce Father Christmas will be making some special appearances at the zoo on weekends and select dates in December (Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th, Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th, Saturday 18th until Thursday 23rd December).

5. Can you spot all the Gingerbread Characters in the FREE Christmas trail?Photo of gingerbread character

Find the 10 gingerbread characters in different locations across the city centre and discover 10 letters and numbers. Once you have written them all down, unscramble them all to make a Christmas phrase and enter the free hamper prize draw. Simply return your completed trail sheet into one of Santa’s post boxes located at the Winchester Visitor Information CentreWinchester Discovery Centre or Winchester City Museum.