Inside: Review of Willows Farm Santa Spectacular 2017
Of all the Christmas festivities we have ever done as a family, I have to say our day at Willows Farm this Christmas has to be right up there as one of the very best.
We used to live right around the corner from Willows when Gracie was a baby but we moved before we could take her along to meet Santa. I had heard so many great things so always wanted to go, but with two babies coming along we just didn’t ever seem to get around to it.
Well, we finally went along the other day and it was incredible.
We arrived and were given all of the things we would need for our visit. The girls wanted to go see the animals first of all and we were just in time for a meet and greet with the guinea pigs.
Wills was completely besotted with them and kept shrieking when he managed to stroke one. I can see we may well be getting him a guinea pig in years to come!
Of course the main reason we were there was to meet the big man himself. You aren’t allowed to take photos inside the grotto itself but I did manage to snap this one before we went inside.
The detail and effort put into making it all so very magical is very impressive indeed. Santa’s grotto was absolutely stunning and the girls’ eyes almost popped open when they walked through the door and saw him.
After a chat with the 3 of them, Santa handed them a magic key which allowed them access to his toy shop. Their faces, honestly it was pure gold.
We walked into the toy shop and they were allowed to choose anything they wanted. There was so much to choose from that I actually had to double check that we really could choose anything – we could!
Once they had chosen their gifts from the toy shop, we went to Create-A-Cuddle with our tokens.
It works in the same way as other stuff-your-own toys but these are reindeer, of course!
They were so chuffed with their creations and have been sleeping with them every night since.
My favourite part of the day was a trip to see the Nativity story. We sat down on the hay bales ready to listen but were then asked if the girls would like to join in.
Gracie didn’t want to and I didn’t think Lils would either, but then she surprised us all by jumping up and running over to get a costume.
Lils was mute until her second birthday, so to see her dressed up and standing at the front with everyone watching made my eyes fill with tears. To say I was proud would be a total understatement.
After the Nativity performance of the year, we grabbed seats in the 3D cinema show. A short festive movie had the girls giddy with excitement in their 3D specs!
After seeing her sister in the Nativity, Gracie found her confidence again and joined in with the Elf Academy activity. The elves are fantastic and wander around the farm chatting to children and making everyone feel Christmassy.
Wills loved seeing his sister and kept pointing and squealing when he spotted her each time.
Another Christmas must-do is to write letters to Santa. Now of course they had already told him what they wanted in his Grotto but just to be sure, he told them to write a letter so the elves would know too.
Each letter posted will get a free reply delivered to the child’s home – I can’t wait to see their faces when they arrive!
The letter-writing room also has lots of crafts to keep them occupied. With this time of year being so cold, everything was very well thought out so that there was plenty to do indoors to keep you busy throughout the day.
There were only a couple of outdoor activities, one being a meet and greet with Mischka. Isn’t she beautiful? There were also meet and greets with Peter Rabbit but the queue was too long for us in the cold so we just waved from the side.
The girls had so much fun on the ice rink! I didn’t actually know that there would be one so it came as a happy surprise. They have only been once before but on real ice so it was freezing. Thankfully this was dry-ice so nice and warm for little ones – also not so slippery!
Gracie thought she was a pro, bless her.
The final activity of the day was a quick ride around the festive wood on Tristan the Tractor.
Before a quick stop off to say goodbye to the animals.
There was one extra job given to us at the very start of the day – to complete elf passports. Each and every event needed a stamp putting in the passport, with the final task being to take a photo with a friendly elf.
The whole event was brilliantly run, completely magical and everyone had the best time. If you are in or around Hertfordshire and looking for a festive day out then you really need to go along to Willows Farm – their Santa Spectacular is outstanding.
We were invited along to the Santa Spectacular but all words and thoughts are my own.