Ten great reasons why you shouldn’t miss Portsmouth Historic Dockyard’s Victorian Christmas Festival

Have you booked your tickets yet?
Have you booked your tickets yet?
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Promoted by National Museum of the Royal Navy

Travel back in time to a bygone era, where classic characters welcome you to a world of festive cheer, as you enjoy one of the south’s finest Christmas festivals - the Victorian Christmas Festival at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard from November 29-December 1,10am-6pm.

Celebrate the festival's 20th anniversary as you treat yourself to some well-earned retail therapy in the Christmas markets, meet Victorian street performers, a traditional green Father Christmas and so much more! Plus your ticket includes free entry to all National Museum of the Royal Navy ships and museums.

1. Roll up, roll up and encounter ringmaster Augustus Larkin Harrington III’s Victorian circus! Take in the sensational acts from acrobats, sideshows and even a fire breather! Hold on to your hats and get ready to learn some skills yourself to wow the family on Christmas D ay.

2. Are you a Christmas crooner? Escape the cold in the festive bar near the famous HMS Victory and enjoy live music – shanty bands, soulful singers and festive favourites are all here to keep you jolly as you grab a well-earned beverage. Don’t forget to check out the carollers and see if you still know all the lyrics to ‘Silent Night’ and ‘Little Donkey’.

3. Marvel at Europe’s madcap jester Peterkin, who will start Friday’s proceedings with hilarity galore. Bringing party tricks and games to the main stage, see how this legendary character brings traditional comedy that royalty adored to brighten up your day.

4.  Indulge in Pudding Lane for festive foods aplenty. No Christmas festival would be complete without a mulled tipple and tasty treats from a whole range of cuisines. Savour your seasonal warmer and tackle the chill the best way we know how – with food.

5. Man your Action Stations! Take a break from the cold and let the little ones run off some steam inside Action Stations. Take on the ninja force course and test your agility, scale the climbing wall and see if you have what it takes to graduate as a Royal Marine Commando. A host of active indoor fun inside for all ages.

6. Meet Madam Luella’s Dancing Girls onboard HMS Warrior – the south’s very own Neptune Girls will be joining us on this Victorian marvel to entertain the crowds in the most magnificent of settings. Join in the spirit with this carefree cabaret as the dancers kick off the Christmas fun.

7. Enjoy a wintery ride on a harbour tour and see Portsmouth like never before. Which of Her Majesty’s ships will be in over the weekend and can you name them? Whether it’s Type 45 destroyers, Type 23 frigates or perhaps even an aircraft carrier might make an appearance – you’ll be wowed by the Royal Navy’s fleet.

8. One ship, two ships, three ships! Take in our incredible historic fleet and experience the Victorian HMS Warrior, First World War HMS M.33 and of course the Royal Navy’s flagship, Vice-Admiral Lord Nelson’s famous HMS Victory. Compare the range of ships and the stories they tell - all included in the Victorian Christmas Festival ticket.

9. Have you finished your Christmas shopping? Well have no fear – Portsmouth Historic Dockyard’s Victorian Christmas Festival has over 100 stalls to cater for the whole family. Buy traditional Christmas decorations, one-of-a-kind trinkets and even pick up a special tipple or tasty treat for that special someone.

10. No Christmas festival would be complete without a special visitor. He wears green robes, he has an impressive beard, and he’s known for his catchphrase ‘Ho Ho Ho’.  Meet a traditional Father Christmas inside his grotto and bring the little ones to wonder at his magical presence. Every child will receive a standard gift, and for a small fee you can receive a little something extra to take home.

A band entertaining crowds by HMS Victory at a previous Christmas Festival in the Historic Dockyard

A band entertaining crowds by HMS Victory at a previous Christmas Festival in the Historic Dockyard

ADVANCE TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE TO BUY ONLINE NOW. Click  here

Go on board HMS Warrior

Go on board HMS Warrior

Enjoy a harbour tour

Enjoy a harbour tour

Enjoy traditional fairground attractions

Enjoy traditional fairground attractions