Christmas Like A King

Round & About


This Christmas, families visiting the Official Residences of His Majesty The King in London, Windsor and Edinburgh can learn how the Tudors and the Victorians celebrated Christmas and enjoy festive carols beneath magnificent Christmas trees.

The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace

This Christmas, children can enjoy a special storytelling performance bringing to life the tales and traditions of the festive season at the Tudor Court, while exploring the exhibition of Holbein’s works at The Queen’s Gallery. Two performers dressed as Tudor Londoners will give young visitors a glimpse into Tudor life as they prepare for the festive season. Children can find out what gifts were given and what food and drink was consumed at the Tudor Court, discovering how many Tudor Christmas celebrations form part of today’s traditional activities. 

On selected dates, families can also join a Christmas activity day where they can make twinkling, miniature portrait decorations, inspired by the jewel-like miniatures in the exhibition; perfect as a gift or to hang on a Christmas tree.

A Tudor Christmas Storytelling experience takes place on a drop-in basis and lasts approximately 40 minutes.

(Saturday, 16 December, at 11:20, 12:20, 13:30, and 14:30). The Merry Miniatures: A Christmas activity day runs on a drop-in basis (Sunday, 17 December and Monday,18 December, 11:00 – 15:00).

Windsor Castle

Throughout the Christmas holidays, families can participate in craft activities and workshops exploring how the Victorians celebrated Christmas as well as enjoying the beautifully decorated Castle. This year’s displays include a magnificent 25-foot-high tree in St George’s Hall with sparkling Garter Star decorations.

Families can drop by the Castle’s Pug Yard Learning Centre where they can hear all about a Victorian Christmas and even make a special memento to take home, such as a tree decoration, a wreath or an angel, just as Victorian children may have made. They can also devise their own Christmas menu for Queen Victoria and her family to enjoy on Christmas Day or even dress up as an elegant Victorian stepping out on Christmas morning.

As they tour the Castle, children can take a Christmas family trail and then families can treat themselves to a festive menu at the Undercroft Café.

Throughout December, local school and community choirs will be performing a variety of festive songs and music under the impressive Christmas tree in St George’s Hall.

Activities run daily on a drop-in basis, excluding Tuesdays and Wednesdays

(Saturday, 16 December – Monday, 1 January, 10:00–15:00). The timings of choir performances vary from day to day.

Palace of Holyroodhouse

On a special Christmas activity day, families visiting The King’s official residence in Scotland can join special crafts activities and enjoy local choirs performing festive songs. Children can explore the Palace of Holyroodhouse and view the Christmas displays including a magnificently decorated Christmas tree in the wood-panelled Throne Room and a grand Christmas table display in the Royal Dining Room. 

Taking inspiration from the decorations around the Palace and its beautiful 17th-century plaster ceilings, children can make their own clay decoration for their tree at home in the Palace’s Family Room. Many of the Christmas traditions that we know now were popularised by the Victorians and families can learn more as they try their hand at making a Victorian invention, the Christmas cracker.

By the light of the glittering Nordmann Fir Christmas tree, visitors can see the Great Gallery come to life as they enjoy festive performances by the Edinburgh University Renaissance Singers and the Colonies Choir.

Saturday, 16 December, 10:00–15:00. Choir performances at 11:00 and 14:00.