Experience a festive Christmas as a member

What does Christmas mean to you? Is it hanging up decorations, hearing festive music or smelling chestnuts roasting on an open fire? If you're keen to make Christmas even more magical this year, here's how National Trust membership could bring you a truly festive Christmas experience.

Experience historic traditions

Discover a historic Christmas when you explore the places we care for during the festive season. At Standen House in West Sussex, you can see the house decorated beautifully for the season, and at Hanbury Hall in Worcestershire you can experience a retro Christmas with music and decorations inspired by the '70s and '80s. Alive with the sights, sounds and smells of a historic Christmas, it's an unforgettable experience. As a member, you'll have access to over 500 places and can use your handbook for visit inspiration. 

See the twinkling lights and decorations at Ormesby Hall, North Yorkshire
Admiring the decorated Christmas tree
See the twinkling lights and decorations at Ormesby Hall, North Yorkshire

Enjoy some tasty treats

Discover the true taste of the festive season with our mouth-watering recipes. You can serve up lots of delicious winter treats, including moreish Christmas cake, sweet yule logs and fresh-from-the-oven warm mince pies.

As a member you’ll be able to try out new recipes from your members’ magazine and online members' area year-round, which should mean no fighting over the last-remaining Christmas dessert in the chilled aisle this year. It also means that you'll be ready with inspiration for vegan and vegetarian alternatives to traditional recipes, such as a vegan Christmas pudding. Plus, you can also indulge in a little Christmas treat or two at many of our cafés while visiting the places in our care this winter. 

This year tuck into this tasty vegan Christmas pudding
Vegan Christmas pudding on a plate with brandy sauce being poured over the top
This year tuck into this tasty vegan Christmas pudding

Embark on a winter adventure

Create memories to last a lifetime when you go on a winter wander with your family this Christmas. At many National Trust places this winter, you'll be able to step into the wellies of beloved children's book character, Percy the Park Keeper, on winter trails created with mini explorers in mind. Help Percy and his friends complete some gardening tasks through different activities and connect with nature along the way.

As a member, you'll enjoy free admission to explore the property and by taking part in the winter trail, you'll also be helping to care for these historic, beautiful and natural places. It's just £2 per child to take part in the trail and as well as keeping the kids inspired and entertained, you'll get a special note from Percy, a hat to wear as you complete the trail and a postcard of a never-before published illustration of Percy and a Percy bookmark at the end.

Enjoy a family adventure this winter
Family exploring Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal, North Yorkshire
Enjoy a family adventure this winter

Seek out the perfect gift

You can find lots of locally handmade gifts at the Christmas markets and fairs that happen at some National Trust places each year. At places such as the Riding School at Calke Abbey in Derbyshire, you can find handmade crafts, local foods and festive drinks. At Trelissick in Cornwall, you can even find gifts made by National Trust staff and volunteers. Seek out ornaments, crafts, jewellery and much more for that special someone.

Plus, our online shop is bursting with festive cheer, and every purchase supports the work we do to care for hundreds of places. Our member e-newsletter often highlights online offers, so you'll be one step ahead when it comes to Christmas shopping. If you're looking for a gift for adventure-seekers, National Trust gift membership could be perfect for them. As well as caring for nature and history, gift membership gives free access to hundreds of places.

Visitors in the Market at Gibside, Tyne & Wear
Visitors in the Market at Gibside, Tyne & Wear
Visitors in the Market at Gibside, Tyne & Wear

Get Christmas-ready with the members' area

Be the first to try new winter recipes, discover seasonal gardening tips and prepare for the ultimate Christmas with our online members' area. As a member you'll be invited behind the scenes at many National Trust places in captivating videos and podcasts, as well as being the first to find out about the new events and experiences that we're planning.

Video

Historical festivities at Standen House


Take a trip through time in this behind-the-scenes video of Standen House, West Sussex, which first appeared on our online members' area. Staff and curators were influenced by the arts and crafts movement in the decorations they used for Christmas in 2020, and Christmas trees were placed throughout the house to tell the story of the Beale family, who once lived here.

Create handmade decorations

We don't hold back when it comes to festive decorations at the places we care for, and if you fancy making your own decorations this year we've got plenty of Christmas craft events to choose form. Join in with family crafts at places such as Longshaw, Burbage and the Eastern Moors in Derbyshire or Florence Court in County Fermanagh to deck out your home with some jolly decorations.

If you can't get out and about this Christmas, you can follow one of our online how to guides instead. Create a festive natural wreath, make some pine cone decorations with your younger family members or even reuse pieces of scrap paper when you craft a colourful paper chain.

Making orange pomander decorations
Visitors making orange pomander decorations at a Christmas event at Attingham Park, Shropshire
Making orange pomander decorations

Be amazed by colourful winter illuminations

Add some sparkle to your winter festivities when you visit a Christmas light show near you. At Kingston Lacy in Dorset, you can experience sparkling tunnels of light, giant baubles and trees drenched in colours. You might even spot Father Christmas along the way.

At Belton House in Lincolnshire, you can visit the sculptural fire garden for a mesmerising evening out. As well as strolling through the illuminated trail, you can warm up beside the flickering flames for a festive time with loved ones. As a member, you'll get free parking at most of the places in our care, which means you can carry on the Christmas celebrations as long as you want.

Enjoying the illuminations at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden, North Yorkshire
Enjoying the illuminations at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden, North Yorkshire
Enjoying the illuminations at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden, North Yorkshire

Relish the Boxing Day walk

When you become a member, winter walks are made even better because you know you’re helping us to care for these beautiful places. The trees are speckled with winter berries, and frost gives the grass, shrubs and foliage a slight twinkle in the morning sunrise. The stillness of winter can bring peace and quiet to a woodland walk and a breath of fresh air to your favourite place.

With hundreds of places to enjoy and free car parking for members at most places, why not try a different Boxing Day stroll this year? Head to Hinton Ampner in Hampshire for peaceful woodland walks, or the coast at Blakeney Nature Reserve, Norfolk, to enjoy the sea air.

Visitors exploring the shore of Lake Windermere, Cumbria
Visitors exploring the shore of Lake Windermere
Visitors exploring the shore of Lake Windermere, Cumbria

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, food lover or crafting expert, if you’re seeking a unique Christmas experience then joining the National Trust is a great place to start. Not only will you get to enjoy historical Christmas celebrations and more at many National Trust places, you’ll also be helping us to continue our vital conservation work for many more festive seasons to come.