Fed up of fighting your way through town to get your Xmas shopping finished? Why not pop along to one of these Christmas events – guaranteed to make Welsh foodies smile.
1) Caerphilly Medieval Market, December 11, 9am-5pm and December 12, 10am-4pm
With something for the whole family, this market definitely gets my vote. The festivities include seasonal music, a ‘Castle Jester’, and medieval acts and entertainment. Food is the main attraction, and shoppers can browse a continental market, a food and craft fayre and a farmer’s market. Cookery demonstrations will also be provided, and Santa will be in his grotto handing out presents to the little ones.
Caerphilly town centre, Caerphilly Castle, Twyn Community Centre, Twyn Carpark, Caerphilly TIC. Free entry except for castle admission charges.
2) The Greens’ Christmas Market, December 11, 11am-4.30pm
Organised by the Wales Green Party, this indoor market features over 15 “Welsh, green and ethical” stalls offering chocolate, mince pies, mulled wine, fairtrade clothes, ceramics and wood crafts, wooden toys, board games and jewellery. Finish it all off with a tasty vegetarian Christmas dinner.
Canton Uniting Church Hall, Cardiff (next to the Co-operative supermarket). Free entry.
3) Cardiff Christmas Market, November 10-December 23
Cardiff’s annual Christmas market returns, this year with the backing of the council. For the first time ever, the market will be held in Castle Quarter, which has recently benefited from pedestrianisation. 40 traditional wooden chalets will be offering seasonal food such as home-made chutneys and jams, whisky, wines, fruit and cream liqeurs, freshly made pancakes and honey roasted nuts as well as a wide range of arts and crafts gifts.
High Street, St. John’s Street and Working Street, Cardiff Castle Quarter (in front of the castle). Free entry.
4) Cookery masterclass: Maria’s Christmas Canapes, December 12, 11am-2.30pm
Last year, Maria showed foodies how to knock up delicious festive food with little stress. This year she returns to lead another cookery class, which will be followed up by lunch in the Castle Restaurant with a glass of wine.
Picton Castle, Pembrokeshire. £25 per person, advance booking only. Phone 01437 751369 for further information).
5) Newport Christmas Fair, December 10-12, 10am-10pm
Three days of Christmas craft stalls, Father Christmas, bands, choirs, children’s games, food, a bar, Saturday night fireworks and a “Bucking Reindeer”.
Newport, Pembrokeshire, School playing field. Free entry. Phone 01239 820912 for further information.
6) Christmas Market at Erddig (National Trust), December 11, 12, 18 & 19
A traditional festive market including picturesque wooden chalets and over 30 craft stalls. Santa Claus will be in the Winter Wonderland and plenty of food and drink will be on offer, alongside live music.
Erddig, National Trust, Wrexham, Clwyd, LL13 0YT. Free entry, £4 per child to visit Santa. Phone 01978 355 314 for further information.
7) Cambrian Christmas Market, December 9-11m 10am-4pm.
Launched for the first time this year, the Cambrian Christmas Market aims to bring the festive spirit to the people of Colwyn Bay. Featuring arts, crafts, mulled wine and a brass band, the event promises lots of unique, hand-maded gifts for your nearest and dearest.
Seaview Road, Colwyn Bay (opposite Bayview shopping centre). Free entry.
8) Christmas Show at Rhondda Heritage Park, Rhondda Cynon Taf, December 20-24
A gathering of different craft stalls offering ceramics, glass, jewellery, hand-turned wood original artwork, textiles, glass and more.
Rhondda Heritage Park, Lewis Merthyr Colliery, Coed Cae Road, Trehafod, Rhondda Cynon Taf, CF37 2NP. Free entry, Phone 01443 682 036 for further information.
9) Gower Heritage Centre Christmas Market, December 11-12, 10am-9.30pm
Local craftspeople showcase their arts, crafts, and produce and Father Christmas opens his grotto to the youngsters. If you haven’t got round to putting a tree up yet, you’ll be able to get one here.
Gower Heritage Centre, Parkmill, Gower, Swansea. SA3 2EH. Tel: 01792 371 206.
10) Aberystwyth Christmas Food and Craft Fair, December 18
Your last chance to choose from over sixty Christmas food and craft producers.
Baker Street, Aberystwyth. SY23 2AG. Phone 01970 633066 for further information.