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Winter events and things to do

Festive fun in and around Caerphilly Castle

The winter months are a great time to visit the National Museums in Wales. There are seven museums with many events throughout the winter months.

Events also take place at many of our castles and historical buildings in Wales. See the Cadw website for details.

Gladstone’s Library Hearth Festival takes place in February (as well as in November) each year. The festival provides the opportunity to improve your writing. Find out how to publish your novel, get hints and tips and find inspiration.

You'll find a variety of events at the National Botanic Garden of Wales throughout the winter months. The gardens are open every day of the year apart from Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

It is the time for a variety of Pantomimes and theatre - see the Theatre Wales website for details of venues. If you enjoy ballet head to St David's Hall and enjoy the Snow Maiden, The Nutcracker, Swan Lake or Cinderella. Alternatively see Dylan Thomas' A Child's Christmas in Wales in Newport, Bangor or Aberystwyth, a brand new ballet by award-winning Welsh Dance Company Ballet Cymru, narrated by Cerys Matthews.

Christmas events

There are many fayres and events in the lead up to Christmas. Below you will find a selection of just some of the many events. 

Enjoy the best of British farming at the Royal Welsh Winter Fair with around 1400 displays of livestock and plenty of things to buy.

The annual Caerphilly Christmas Fayre is set in and around Caerphilly Castle, with a variety of goods to buy and plenty of entertainment throughout the weekend.

Aberglasney Winter Fair has almost 100 stalls selling gifts, crafts, decorations and fine food. As twilight fall the Gardens will be specially lit. There's a variety of entertainment including traditional choirs to silver bands too.

There are events taking place in our National Parks, including the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority’s festive events, which take place on the first weekend of December. There's plenty going on in Snowdonia National Park too and events in the Brecon Beacons National Park include Christmas stargazing.

Cardiff Winter Wonderland enjoy ice skating and fairground rides plus food and drink. On New Year’s Eve, there are Calennig celebrations in Cardiff, with a funfair and free live music. 

Waterfront Wonderland - Swansea - stalls, hot food, ice skaking and a festive funfair. Both winter wonderlands are open from mid-November until the early in January each year.

Cardiff City Centre - Photo credit Visit Wales 

Festive swims and other festive fun events

In the summer a swim in the sea is pleasant, but it takes quite a brave person to take a dip in the winter! That doesn't stop many who take part in Christmas swims, with fancy dress and raising funds for charity. Annual events include the Porthcawl Christmas swim, Llandudno boxing day dip, Tenby boxing day swim, Saundersfoot New Year Swim, the Walrus Dip in Pembrey Country Park and the Barry Island New Year's Day Dip.

If running is your sport, the Nos Galan Races take place every New Year's Eve in Mountain Ash, south east Wales.