Edinburgh's Christmas 2018: shows, events, attractions and ticket prices

Edinburgh's Christmas will bring six weeks of seasonal entertainment to the heart of the city, featuring plenty of food, fun and festive celebration for all ages.

Friday, 9th November 2018, 1:26 pm
Updated Monday, 12th November 2018, 7:51 pm
Edinburgh's Christmas events kick off from Saturday 17 November and continue through to late December
Edinburgh's Christmas events kick off from Saturday 17 November and continue through to late December

Events kick off from Saturday 17 November and continue through to late December, offering a wealth of exciting festivities to enjoy in the run up to Christmas.

Which events are on at Edinburgh's Christmas?

An array of free-to-attend events will be taking place at Edinburgh's Christmas festival this year, including carol concerts and firework displays.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Edinburgh's Christmas events kick off from Saturday 17 November and continue through to late December

Christmas Market, East Princes Street

The Edinburgh Christmas Market will be held at East Princes Street Gardens from Saturday 17 November 2018, until Tuesday 1 January 2019.

Visitors can pick up some unique gifts at the wooden market stalls, or indulge in some seasonal food and drink, with the likes of hot turkey sandwiches, churros, hot chocolate and mulled wine all on the menu.

The market is free to attend.

There will be a string of rides, attractions and events at Edinburgh's Christmas, including ice skating at St Andrew Square

Light Night

Held from 3pm on Sunday 18 November on George Street, this free event will feature performances from choirs across Scotland in front of an expected 20,000 strong crowd, ready to witness the Christmas light switch on.

The event will be hosted by Forth Radio's Arlene Stuart, with a special guest appearance from The Voice contestant Saskia Eng.

A fireworks display will also form part of the event, as well as the lighting of the Christmas Tree on the Mound.

Nativity Carol Concert

The traditional annual carol singing concert will take place around the nativity scene in St Andrew Square on Sunday 2 December at 3pm, and is free to attend.

24 Doors of Advent

Peak behind the doors of a real-life advent calendar throughout December, as a host of venues around Edinburgh take part in this unique event, encouraging visitors to discover a new place each day of advent.

Some of the most unique buildings in the city will be involved from 1 to 24 December, including Lauriston Castle, Corstorphine Hill Tower and Edinburgh Printmakers.

Some venues will require booking in advance.

Winter Windows

Held from 17 November to 26 December, Winter Windows will form a magical pathway of stained-glass windows at various venues around Edinburgh, including West Parliament Square, Great Michael Rise and St Patrick Square.

Norway and Scotland: Poetry & Music - Links Through Centuries

Festival Square Spielgeltent will host an evening of poetry, storytelling and music, with guest appearances from Scottish poet Christine De Luca and Norwegian poet, translator and musician Odd Magne Goksøyr, among others.

The event will be held on Sunday 18 November at 7pm, and is free to attend.

Which shows can I see at Edinburgh's Christmas?

Alongside the free to attend events, a number of shows will also feature as part of Edinburgh's Christmas festival.

Some highlights include:

- A screening of popular festive film Love Actually on 8 December, at 6.30pm at Usher Hall,

- A production of Black Beauty at the Traverse Theatre on 29 and 30 November, at a cost of £7 per person

- A Baby Loves Disco event offering daytime dancing to parents, toddlers and youngsters, at Festival Square Spiegeltent from 9 to 23 December

- A string of themed cabaret and variety shows from touring company La Clique, at Festival Square Spiegeltent from 16 November 2018 to 5 January 2019

All information on paid-for shows at edinburghschristmas.com.

Which rides and attractions will there be at Edinburgh's Christmas?

A variety of fairground rides and attractions will feature as part of Edinburgh's Christmas festival, located at various spots around the city centre.

Youngsters will enjoy visiting Santa Land in East Princes Street Gardens, where there will be a Santa train, Christmas Tree Maze and a reindeer ride, among other attractions.

Other rides around the city centre include a helter skelter, rollercoaster, chair-o-planes and candy cane bunjees.

A Santa's Grotto will also be located on Castle Street from Saturday 17 November until Monday 24 December.

Visitors will need to book for the rides and attractions, including the Santa's Grotto, Santa Train and the Big Wheel, with prices starting at £2.

Ticket purchases and bookings can be made at edinburghschristmas.com.