Festive Events Near and Far (or a wee bit farther)
Many people love where they live, and I'm no different. The Scottish Borders really is a hidden gem that is too often overlooked, with its rolling green landscapes, peppered with towns like Galashiels, that are rich with local history and heritage. Living here at any time of year is wonderful, but living here during the festive season is magical. Our region really comes alive during the festive season with a plethora of enchanting events that will fill your heart with joy and your soul with warmth. From the twinkling Christmas light switch-ons to the bustling Christmas markets, festive spirit is everywhere.
In this blog, I'll take you on a journey throughout the region and beyond to give you a flavour of my favourite festive events.
Galashiels Heartland Market
I have to start close to home with the Galashiels Heartland Crafters Market. This monthly event is located at the top end of Channel Street, outside the Great Tapestry of Scotland Visitor Centre, and each month brings together an eclectic mix of crafters, makers, and shakers from across the Scottish Borders. This year, the Market team has decided to extend the hours and add an additional day in December, so not only can you now shop until 4pm, but you can shop on the Sunday too and the market is on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 4th December, 10am to 4pm.
Christmas at Abbotsford
If you're looking for something with more flexibility with dates and times to accommodate your busy festive schedule, Christmas at Abbotsford runs from Saturday, 18th November, to Sunday, 24th December. On offer at Abbotsford is a range of events and activities, with Santa's Grotto, Christmas Story Telling with Mrs Claus, and Breakfast with Santa. There is also a Christmas lunch menu available in Ochiltree's Cafe.
Kelso Christmas Lights Switch-On
Christmas Lights Switch-On events are for more than just cities, with big-name celebrities, and in many of our regions' towns and villages, you will find events from the end of November into early December when communities and visitors come together to celebrate the switching on of the festive lights, it marks the unofficial start to the festive season. The event in Kelso is one of my favourites, partly because it is held in the beautiful Square, one of Scotland's only cobbled squares. This year the event will be held on Saturday 25th November from 5-7pm (lights officially switched on at 6pm).
Festive Wreath Making in Selkirk
Looking for a unique and creative Christmas activity? Join Go Wild Scotland on the 27th of November for a Wreath Making Workshop in the picturesque town of Selkirk. Surrounded by the beauty of nature, you'll have the opportunity to craft one-of-a-kind holiday decorations using materials freshly gathered from the woodlands. Remember to dress warm and be ready for the weather. Tailored for children aged five and over, this magical experience encourages them to unleash their creativity and create lasting memories.
As much as I love this place I call home, another brilliant benefit of being Borders-based is the proximity to Edinburgh, which is world famous for its festive flings. Here are a few events that are also worth considering for inclusion in your crammed festive calendar:
- Christmas at the Botanics (link)
- Castle of Light Edinburgh Castle (link)
- Edinburgh Christmas Market (link)
- Edinburgh's Hogmanay (link)
Since December is the season of gift giving and smart dressing, I thought I’d share a few of my Tartan Plus Tweed product top picks with you.
Always a favourite, how about one of the beautiful Heathergems jewellery range? One of these pieces would bring that added touch of something special to any party night outfit.
For making sure you have all the essential close to hand when you’re out and about this December, there’s the wardrobe staple the Harris Tweed bag.
Or, for the more introverted of you, how about you take the opportunity to snuggle up and stay home this winter, with these sheepskin slippers.