Jingle Bells, Whisky Barrels and Naughty Elves: Devon's best alternative Christmas events!

Jingle Bells, Whisky Barrels and Naughty Elves: Devon's best alternative Christmas events!

By: Devon Hotels
Added: 29 November 2017

If you do one thing before Christmas, book a last minute break on Dartmoor!


With the nights drawing in, leaves crunching underfoot and crisp winter mornings, Dartmoor really does provide the perfect backdrop for your last minute festive escape.

Wild, open moorlands and deep river valleys, villages steeped in history and arguably some of the best walks in the UK, a winter break on Dartmoor is just what the doctor ordered.

We’re bringing you the insider’s guide to Dartmoor in Devon. Where to stay, shop and explore in perhaps England’s most famous countryside location in the run-up to Christmas.

Christmas Fair


On 2nd December it’s the Dartmoor National Park Christmas Fair. Head over to Princetown to meet the artisans behind the unique Dartmoor Range - you’ll find the perfect gifts for all the family! With Christmas trees and wreaths for sale, and children’s crafty activities, there’s plenty to do.

When: 2 Dec 2017, 10am - 3pm.

Where: National Park Visitor Centre Princetown

Tickets: Click here

Stay at: Two Bridges Hotel

Why:  Four Poster beds and deep spa baths. Don’t miss their quintessentially English Full Afternoon Tea beside a crackling log fire.

Dartmoor Whisky Distillery Tour



Dartmoor Whisky Distillery is the first single malt whisky distillery in the south west of England.

As well as viewing their still in operation, you’ll be able to visit the whisky heritage centre, to learn more about the craft of producing whisky, and the heritage of the beautiful Dartmoor National Park, and the qualities that the granite geology brings to Dartmoor Whisky.

It will be a little while before you can taste the finished whisky, but at the end of our tour, you will be able to taste the ‘work in progress’ by sampling the 'New Spirit' before it is barrelled.

When: Tuesday's, Wednesday's Thursday's and Saturday's, with tours every morning at 11.00am, and every afternoon at 2.00pm.

Where: Dartmoor Whisky Distillery

Tickets: Click here 

Stay at: Mill End Hotel

Why: It’s the perfect Country House hideaway. Twenty individually-styled bedrooms, comfy lounges, log fires and beautiful riverside gardens.

Tales & Trails


Join Tich Scott & Dartmoor's Daughter to discover the hidden gems of Dartmoor. You will walk ancient tracks; be regaled with stories by local people of local people and history, and be driven between destinations in a luxury or vintage Landrover.

Tich Scott is a 14th generation Dartmoor farmer who runs 'Proper Dartmoor Tours'. He is an award-winning local dialect speaker, has been on BBC Spotlight several times, and knows everyone there is to know as one of Devon’s best-loved comedians, story-tellers, and folk singers!

When: 13 January 2018, 10am - 4pm

Where: Chagford main carpark

Tickets: Click here

Stay at: Bovey Castle

Why: You’ll have worked up quite the appetite, so sit back and enjoy the gastronomic delights of Bovey Castle - they’ve just been awarded 5 AA Red Stars and 3 AA Rosettes don’t you know!

New Year's Health Walk & Wild Swim


Kick-start your new year’s healthy intentions with a beautiful walk on a route that will include a little-visited wild swimming spot. Dartmoor's Daughter creates transformational experiences to improve health, wellbeing and performance. 

When: 7 January 2018, 10am - 3.30pm

Where: Secret Location

Tickets: Click here

Stay at: Ilsington Hotel

Why: You’ll need to make the most of their soothing bubbles, hydrotherapy pool and steam rooms in their award-winning spa after that refreshing wild swim!

Bonus Event: Craft Fair


Wonderworks Contemporary Craft Fair in the beautiful Dartmoor town of Chagford gets bigger and better for Christmas 2017

Now in its 15th year, Devon's acclaimed Wonderworks Contemporary Craft Fair will be showcasing the work of 30 crafts people from the South West in the newly expanded and refurbished Jubilee Hall over the weekend of 9-10 December.

When: 9-10 December 2017, 10am - 5pm (4.30pm Sunday)

Where: Jubilee Hall, Chagford 

Tickets: Click here

Stay at: Moorland Garden Hotel  

Why: Quiet fireside area for relaxing and reading. Comfy sofas welcome walkers, dog owners, locals and residents to enjoy real ales and gastro-pub fare.