7 free things to do in Norfolk in the run-up to Christmas

Bespoke florist Millie Brake, left, and her mum, Gill, at the Wymondham Wynterfest with the wreaths

Wynterfest is one of the free events running in Norfolk for Christmas 2021. - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018

Christmas can be a very expensive time of year, but thankfully there are a whole host of free festive events taking place across Norfolk.

1. The Tunnel of Light, Norwich 

Where: Hay Hill, Norwich, NR2 1QX 

When: Until January 5 2022

The Tunnel of Light is bringing sparkle to the city once more this Christmas and it is located opposite The Forum. 

Created by Norwich BID and launched in 2016, this immersive festive experience features 50,000 LEDs through a 45-metre tunnel. 

The Ukulele Elves at the Wymondham Wynterfest. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

The Ukulele Elves at the Wymondham Wynterfest. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018

2. Wynterfest 

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Where: Market Cross, Market Place, Wymondham, NR18 0AX

When: December 5, 12pm-5pm

Wynterfest will take place in the town centre with a Christmas market, tasty food and drink and a Santa's Grotto. 

Wymondham Alpacas will also be there, a cookery theatre will give you some festive ideas and there will be a children's trail at the football club. 


3. Christmas Crown Trail 

Where: Various locations across Norwich city centre

When: Until January 5 2022

In 1121, 900 years ago, King Henry I chose Norwich Castle as the venue for his Christmas court. 

To celebrate, a free city-wide trail is running and more than 80 businesses have hid crowns in their windows and in-store displays - download the map on the VisitNorwich website. 

The switching on of the Swaffham Christmas lights. Picture: Ian Burt

The switching on of the Swaffham Christmas lights. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

4. Swaffham Christmas Market Weekend and Light Switch On

Where: Swaffham Market Place, Swaffham, PE37 7AB

When: December 4, 8am-10pm, December 5, 12pm-6pm 

Swaffham Town Council is running a whole host of activities across the first weekend of December to celebrate the lights switch on, which takes place at 5pm on the Sunday.

The event will include a holly fair, Christmas market and entertainment from Little Mix tribute act LMX at the Buttercross.

You need to pay for the ice rink and Santa's grotto and can book at ticketsource.co.uk/swaffham-town-council

Gorleston Christmas Lights switch on.November 2013.Picture: James Bass

Gorleston Christmas Lights switch on.November 2013.Picture: James Bass - Credit: James Bass

5. Christmas in the Parks, Gorleston 

Where: Priory Gardens, Priory Street, Gorleston, NR31 6NG

When: November 26 to 28, 10am-4pm

There will be a festive craft market, food and drink, live entertainment, children's rides and Santa's post office with elves.

The lights switch-on will take place in the High Street on November 28 at 5pm and it will be accompanied by fireworks.

Christmas in the Parks is also taking place in St George's Park in Great Yarmouth from November 26 to December 5 (except November 29 and 30). 

The panto horse race at a previous Holt Christmas lights switch on event. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The panto horse race at a previous Holt Christmas lights switch on event. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

6. Holt Lights  

Where: High Street, Holt, NR25 6BH 

When: November 19, 5pm-8.30pm

There is lots to look forward to at this year's event, with entertainment from 5pm and the Panto Horse Race down the High Street at 6.15pm. 

The Santa's parade will take place at 6.30pm, with the main switch-on and fireworks at 7pm, followed by live music from The Walks band until 8.30pm. 

Pre-bookable parking has now sold out so you may need to use public transport instead. 

The Dereham Baptist Church Wreath Festival.

The Dereham Baptist Church Wreath Festival. - Credit: Dereham Baptist Church

7. Christmas Wreath Trail and Festival 

Where: Dereham Baptist Church, High Street, Dereham, NR19 1BX and around Dereham town centre

When: Festival from December 16-18, (12-4pm on December 16 and 10am-4pm on December 17-18). The trail is from December 1.

Dereham Baptist Church is running its third wreath festival this Christmas and there will be wreaths on display from about 40 local schools and organisations from December 16-18.

There will also be a trail of nearly 50 wreaths in town centre shops and businesses from December 1.

During the festival refreshments will be available on the Friday morning and all day Saturday at the church.

A free children's activity making paper plate wreaths will also take place on Saturday. 

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