Christmas in and around East Sussex

This article was about our Christmas activities in 2017. We’ll be updating this with 2018 event information later in the year. Our places in and around East Sussex are ready to share their festive traditions with you. Tackle festive trails around our winter gardens and estates. Warm chilly hands in front of a roaring fire, or try out a new exhibition. Plus every time you visit you help us keep those Christmas lights twinkling bright for years to come.

Kipling’s stories of Sussex fairy tales brought to life this Christmas


Creatures from Rudyard Kipling’s Sussex fairy tales will cast their magic around Batemans, his family home. Look out for miniature handmade decorations and glowing doors to the homes of fairies that live among the books on the author’s very own shelves. The garden will have a trail based on Kipling’s ‘Rewards and Fairies’ tales, where little ones can spot the homes of creatures from his imagination. 2 December to 1 January (closed 24 & 25 December), 11.30am to 3.30pm.

Robins on top of letter boxes Christmas decorations

White Cliffs of Dover 

Reinvigorate the senses with panoramic winter views of the stormy Channel, then warm-up with a browse round our clifftop Christmas shop. This year, deck out your home with decadent decorations from pretty tea lights to box baubles. Or indulge in delicious festive eats like marzipan fruits and brandy butter. Open daily in December (closed 24 & 25 December), 10am to 4pm.

Putting the finishing touches to the tree

Scotney Castle 

A festive ‘woodland wonderland’ comes alive at Scotney, with natural sculptures around the garden. Make decorations to take home and visit the tree to make your wish. There's also carols and a scrumptious Christmas lunch to warm the cockles. Daily 2 December to 4 January (closed 24 & 25 December), 10am to 4pm. Normal admission applies.

Bagpuss and friends celebrate Christmas at Sissinghurst Castle Garden

Sissinghurst Castle Garden 

Escape the Christmas madness and meet Bagpuss, see the Soup Dragon and behold Noggin the Nog. Enchanting displays tell the story of these much-loved family favourites, created by Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin. Displays go behind the scenes of their character creations, including Pogles Wood and Ivor the Engine. Open 11 November to 4 February, 11am to 4pm. Ticketed entry.