12 Best Days Out for Christmas on the Isle of Wight

Do you want to celebrate Christmas on the Isle of Wight? Here are some of the best days out on the Isle of Wight for Christmas, so you can plan your perfect trip.

day out isle of wight

There are so many great places to spend Christmas on the Isle of Wight that it’s hard to decide which one to recommend! Here are some of our favourites from cinemas and gardens to illuminations and Santa experiences.

If you’re planning on Christmas on the Isle of Wight, then you’ve got a lot of fun festive activities to choose from. Number 11 is the most important – but read the rest first!

1. Wildheart Animal Sanctuary at Christmas

This zoo on the Isle of Wight has animals from all over the world for you to visit. Kinda funny to imagine them going over on the ferry. They must’ve at one point!

There are plenty of fun activities for kids year round, but at Christmas the Wildheart Animal Sanctuary has Christmas Markets, carol sessions and you can even see Santa too. For more details on this Isle of Wight attraction at Christmas check out the Wildheart Animal Sanctuary website.

2. Have a festive day out at the beach

Why not head to one of the many stunning beaches on the Isle of Wight for some fun in the (maybe) winter sun? There are loads of great beaches on the Isle of Wight but we’d recommend donning your Santa hat and hitting Ventnor Beach or Ryde Beach.

day out isle of wight

The beaches here make for one of the best days out on the Isle of Wight year round, but at Christmas they’re pretty much deserted, and just that little bit more special.

3. Catch a festive show

Head to one of the theatres on the Isle of Wight in December and watch a show.

Celebrate your Christmas with QUIVERS, the Isle of Wight’s own cross-dressing drag clown who needs practically no encouragement. This handsome woman is here to make you laugh and bring you some joy at the Newport Quay Arts Centre on December 31st.

The Shanklin Theatre is putting on Cinderella for this season’s Christmas show, or you could go to Jack and the Beanstalk at the Medina Theatre.

4. Enjoy some illuminations

Check out POLAR at Robin Hill (more on that below) and the Christmas celebrations at Tapnell Farm too.

READ MORE: Check out our Isle of Wight Quiz!

5. Jump on a steam train ride

The Isle of Wight Railway runs annual Santa’s Special trains where you can meet Santa, and enjoy a voyage into the countryside.

Grandpa day out

Board one of their historic steam trains at Havenstreet Station for an atmospheric ride through wintery woodland inside the heated and beautifully restored carriages. Feel like you’re travelling in style as you and your family will have your own compartment for your exclusive use, meaning pre-booking is absolutely essential for this Christmas activity on the Isle of Wight.

6. Catch a performance in one of the island’s churches

Catch a performance by local choir or orchestra for Christmas on the Isle of Wight.

7. Visit Santa on the Isle of Wight

No matter what your age, a visit to see Santa is always magical and on the Isle of Wight at Christmas, there are plenty of ways to make this festive tradition even more special. Here are our top picks for Santa experiences on the island.

  • Tapnell Farm 
  • Havenstreet Steam Railway
  • Wildheart Animal Sanctuary
  • The Folly Inn
  • Yarmouth Town Hall

8. Visit a Christmas market

There are a few Christmas markets open around the island. Some have traditional Christmas gifts, while others focus on seasonal foods. Browse local arts and crafts while sipping on mulled wine and munching on roasted chestnuts and shop for unique gifts while taking in the stunning views of the Solent.

  • I Love Wight Christmas Market at the Garlic Farm
  • Isle of Wight Donkey Sanctuary Christmas Market
  • Ventnor Winter Gardens Christmas Market
  • Mountbatten Gift Fair  
  • Northwood House Christmas Fair
  • Briddlesford Lodge Farm Christmas Market

9. Go for a coastal walk

If you’re spending Christmas in the Isle of Wight, how about taking a winter walk along one of the island’s many scenic walking routes?

Take in the beautiful views and visit one of the island’s great pubs at the end of it.

10. Visit Osborne House

osborne house

Visit Osborne House, former home of Queen Victoria, and see it decorated for Christmas. They often have special Isle of Wight Christmas events, although nothing has been confirmed for this year so far.

11. You have to go to the Christmas Imaginarium

The Christmas Imaginarium is an absolute must for a day out at Christmas on the Isle of Wight. It’s a two storey shop that’s busy year round, but at Christmas the queues out of the shop wind round the streets, and for good reason. This is a heaven for Christmas lovers on the Isle of Wight – it’s the number one place to be.

Christmas on the Isle of Wight

The shop in Ryde was set up by author and illustrator, Russell Ince, after the success of his book ‘Santa Claus: The Book of Secrets’. He is everything Christmas and you need to visit his store to pick up a souvenir Christmas decoration, buy the book, or just share your love of Christmas on the Isle of Wight.

12. Visit POLAR at Robin Hill

Embark on a magical journey as Pippa the polar bear returns to Robin Hill for the next chapter in this heartwarming tale at Robin Hill on select dates. Step into an enchanted world, featuring the beautifully illuminated ancient woodland, Walk of Wonder and spectacular illuminations

Warm up beside the cozy fires found in the Ponds and indulge in delicious selection of festive food and drinks before hopping on-board the Big Red Express for a twinkling tractor journey through the trees in search of Father Christmas’s loose reindeer!

Christmas on the Isle of Wight

Any more fun activities for Christmas on the Isle of Wight you think we’ve missed? Let us know in the comments below!

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