As we all know, Christmas is such an expensive time for families and when you add in the little days out and experiences, the tally gets even bigger.
So today we are sharing some of the best free Christmas experiences around Ireland that will give you all the feels.
The Moving Crib, Parnell Square in Dublin
The moving crib on Parnell Square is a historical multi-generational event that never fails to entertain. The event opens daily from November 28th between 11 am-6 pm right through to the New Year with exception of Christmas Day, St Stephen’s Day and New Year’s Day.
The moving crib is a fascinating journey complete with a montage of many historical and fun stories, including Noah’s Ark and The Wise Men. Highlights for many include an illusion wall that is not to be missed. The Bray Gospel Choir will be performing on Sunday 15th December from midday to 4 pm.
Christmas Lights Shows, Nationwide
Over the coming weeks, cities and towns across Ireland will be switching on the Christmas lights, Santa will be arriving and in some cases, there will be parades. Light displays such as Winterval Illuminates and Glow in Cork's big switch-on are fabulous free events that are guaranteed to put smiles on the kids' faces.
Visit a free Santa, Nationwide
A visit to Santa this Christmas doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg, in fact, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to free Santa visits. Arnotts in Dublin, Lough Key Forest Park in Roscommon, Manor West Retail Park in Kerry, Ikea in Dublin, Perks Entertainment Centre in Cork, Kildare Farm Foods and Whitewater Shopping Centre in Kildare will be hosting free Santa visits and interactions over the month of December.
Christmas Events at Farmleigh, Dublin
Farmleigh House & Estate in Castleknock has a host of free events every weekend in the month of December in the lead up to Christmas. Enjoy Christmas puppet shows, a live crib, storytelling with Aideen McBride and carol singing with The Riverside Singers and of course, you can have a little wander around the Christmas markets by the farmyard afterwards and pick up a festive treat or two. Events are free but will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
Visit Residential Houses with Festive Christmas Lights, Nationwide
Each year, new houses with pop-ups all over the country are lit up to the nines with festive decorations and twinkling lights. From Josie's Christmas Lights in Crumlin to the Whelan household in Bannow Road, Cabra there are so many houses and places to discover and explore in your area. As soon as night falls, jump into the car with a little treat and have a drive around your area and see what you can find.
Meet the Reindeer at Phoenix Park, Dublin
This is a tradition for many on the lead up to Christmas, including my own family. The Phoenix Park rangers will be out in force and there will be a surprise visit from Santa too. The Rangers will meet at Papal Cross on Sunday 1st, 8th and 15th of December at both 11 am and 2 pm. Appropriate footwear is advised, no booking is required and park rangers are advising people not to feed the deer.
Visit the Coca Cola Truck, Nationwide
Coca Cola recently announced the seven locations that the famous red truck will be stopping off at this year. Upon arrival, everyone will receive a small can of coke and times include 2 pm - 8 pm at each destination.
- Saturday, November 30th - Galway Retail Park
- Sunday, December 1st - Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin
- Wednesday, December 4th - Military Barracks, Ballina, Mayo
- Saturday, December 7th & 8th - Belfast Custom House
- Friday, December 13th - Mahon Point, Cork
- Saturday, December 14th - Waterford Winterval
- Sunday, December 15th - Swords Pavilions, Dublin