12 magical reasons to visit Barnstaple this Christmas

Whether you’re looking for fun festive activities to do with kids or the best shops and restaurants, you’ll find something for everyone by checking out our 12 magical reasons to visit Barnstaple this Christmas.
With less than 50 days until Christmas, it’s time to start planning how you’ll be spending the run up to the most wonderful time of year.

1.    See the town sparkle as the Christmas Lights are switched on  (18th November, 6pm)
Barnstaple’s biggest party of the year: a magical, festive mix of live entertainment and music on stage before the countdown to the big switch on at 6pm.


2.    Visit the Barum Brocante – Christmas special  (3rd December, 10am - 3pm)
What treasures will you find at our very own Christmas Brocante? Full of fantastic vintage, retro, artisan and food stalls your bound to find something to go under your tree.


3.    Join Barnstaple Town Council’s annual Christmas Fayre and Carol Concert (6th December 6.30 - 8.30pm)
One of the highlights of the festive season! Visit Father Christmas in his Guildhall Grotto, have a go in a giant snow globe and sing along with the carol service at 6.45pm.


4.    Visit Barnstaple’s first ever Christmas Fayre (13th, 14th , 15th Dec, 4 - 9pm)
Set on The Square and along The Strand Barnstaple’s first ever Christmas Fayre promises to have a warm and merry atmosphere with lots of local arts & crafts, hot and cold drinks and live music on offer; it’s one not to miss!


5.    See the beautiful lights
One of the best reasons to visit Barnstaple this Christmas is to see the spectacular festive light display. What’s Christmas without some twinkly fairy lights after all!


6.    See our beautiful Christmas wreaths
Throughout December come and see our beautiful Christmas wreaths on display in the Pannier Market which have been decorated by local businesses, charities and community groups. Which one is your favourite?


7.    Unique shopping experience
Visit Barnstaple this year for the ultimate Christmas shopping experience.  Barnstaple is renowned for having some of the best independent shops that you won’t find anywhere else. You’re sure to find the perfect gift, whether you’re looking for something truly unique and boutique or this year’s must have toy.


8.    Visit  our historic Victorian Pannier Market
With additional opening times in December, you can stock up on Christmas cheer, soak up the traditional atmosphere whilst searching for that perfect Christmas gift in Barnstaple’s very special Pannier Market.


9.    Take the children to see Santa in his grotto
Make Christmas extra special with a visit to Santa and his magical grotto in Green Lanes Shopping Centre from 18th November. The centre will be bustling with festive activities and live music throughout December.


10.    The streets are alive with the sound of music and entertainment
Throughout the festive season the streets come alive with the marching bands, choirs and street entertainment to entertain you whilst you do your Christmas shopping.


11.    Eat some fantastic food
From mince pies to mulled wine and restaurants boasting the best seasonal produce, it is easy to feel as stuffed as a turkey.  And yes, it is worth it.


12.    Treat the family
Christmas isn’t Christmas without a visit to the theatre to see the Pantomime (oh no it isn’t!).   Let your dreams take flight and don’t miss this spectacular  show as the most adventurous of all family pantomimes – Peter Pan – comes to the Queens Theatre from Friday 14 Dec -  Sat 5th Jan.

You don’t have to be local to enjoy Barnstaple. The Tarka Line is Barnstaple’s rail connection with the rest of the country.  There are trains seven days a week, all year round, with an hourly service through much of the day Monday – Saturdays.  The journey time from Exeter is around 1 hr 10 mins.  The Devon & Cornwall Rail Partnership works to promote the Tarka Line and other rural railways in the two counties.  They work hard to encourage people from near and far to visit Barnstaple and North Devon by train.   The Partnership is delighted to be supporting Barnstaple Town Centre Christmas promotions in the name of the Tarka Line as we look ahead to 2019 which will be a year of great change on the line with more seats, refurbished trains and an even better timetable.

More information about the line can be found at www.greatscenicrailways.com

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