Thursday, November 28

The Gardens Of Light | Bournemouth Bloggers Christmas

On Saturday 23rd November, I was kindly invited down to experience everything Bournemouth has to offer at Christmas. The Gardens of Light is designed to bring light and colour to the darkest months of the year, and to celebrate all that’s great about Christmas. Despite living in the area my whole life, I've never spent a full day exploring the German Market or Gardens, but I'm so glad I finally did! We started the day at Flirt Cafe in the Triangle at the top of town. It was packed with people, quirky decor and a menu full of variety. I went for a jacket potato and smoothie before heading down for ice skating!


Outdoor Ice Rink
Back for it's second year, the ice rink is situated in the Lower Gardens and here to stay until Saturday 6th January 2014. I hadn't ice skated in years, but I'm an avid snow skiier so managed to pick it up in no time! The rink isn't very big, but it felt lovely to be skating outside in the fresh air. They even had penguin skating aids for little ones, a real family friendly activity and only £8.50 for an hour. I'm desperate to go at night now, it's beautifully lit with fairy lights and lanterns!

Santa's Grotto
Although I did not participate in meeting Santa, I wanted to mention the beautiful Grotto as I had a sneaky peak inside and chatted with the team of busy elves! Now open until Christmas Eve and only £4.50 to enter, this is a wonderful opportunity to bring the little ones and receive a gift from the man himself. I have countless memories of meeting Santa as a child, it's a family tradition and one that Bournemouth have made even more unique. You can book a time slot here.

Christmas Market
From chestnuts roasting on an open fire, to an authentic German charcoal BBQ and the famous Moose Bar, the market is the heart of Bournemouth at Christmas. I've always loved the little unique pods that sell an array of authentic seasonal gifts and the smell of doughnuts as you walk through the square, mmmm! We visited the Alpine Moose Bar & beer garden serving German lager and mulled wines (not sure how I feel about the taste!) which were served in little boot style mugs! We were then treated to a German Hot Dog which was absolutely delicious, I felt really festive.

The Light Pods
We completed the day with a guided tour of the ten unique, interactive light installations featured in the Gardens. Completely free, each Light Pod is a unique world of light and colour. Designed by Michael Grubb, a local Bournemouth lighting designer whose previous work included the lighting for the London 2012 Olympic Park (wowee!), he has created a wonderful, playful and fun selection of pods which appeals to young and old. I highly recommend visiting at night, it was absolutely beautiful.

So there we have it! A complete summary of what Bournemouth has to offer, I'm sure you'll agree that there's something for absolutely everyone. Massive thank you to Cheryl & Make It Bournemouth for letting us experience the food, festivity and fun, I had a fab day! 

Bloggers featured (from left to right below): Laura, Rhiannon, Katy, Scarlett, Hannah, Georgie, Becca (and of course camera woman Cheryl & Becky). ps. Thanks for some of the photos Cheryl!

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