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Edinburgh sparkles in winter

Places to be this Christmas & New Years

Edinburgh really does light up in winter - sparkling with festive spirit, dazzling lights and something for everyone to take part in. Already known for big festivals and a youthful vibe in the summer, Edinburgh doesn’t let up at all in the winter.

To pull you out of the winter doldrums, the streets are lit with spectacular Christmas lights, the Edinburgh Wheel gets dusted off, the Traditional German Christmas Market and Scottish Street Market open for business, gluhwein flows and fireworks light up the sky. The festivities kick off in November and run until Christmas in a great programme of events and activities. If that’s not enough, the fun continues with the programming for Edinburgh’s Hogmanay festivities.

In the lead up to Christmas, you can expect the opening of Winter Wonderland (one of Britain’s largest outdoor ice rinks with nearby food stalls), carolling, and plenty of activities at the Princes Street Gardens with the Edinburgh Wheel and Christmas Carousel. Over two dozen venues will stage Christmas shows and pantomimes and nine exhibitions will feature as the highlights of the cultural calendar.

To see the largest gathering of Santas you’ll ever find, then make sure you’re in town on Sunday 10th December. Edinburgh is competing for an entry in the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest gathering of Santas at the Great Scottish Santa Run. This will be to raise funds for When You Wish Upon a Star, a charity for children with terminal illnesses

Not enough for Christmas? Then stay in town for Hogmanay celebrations during the New Year. Recognised the world over as the true home of Hogmanay, Edinburgh brings in the New Year in style. The city comes alive with processions, street theatre, live pop and classical concerts, indoor and outdoor ceilidhs - all combined with the warmest welcome you will find anywhere in the world.

And of course, it finishes with a bang on New Years Eve, with parties all over town, from the Royal Bank Street Party on Prince Street to Concert in the Gardens for some great live music. And this is just some of what’s on offer! Check out the websites for a full programme listing.

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