Last weekend we visited the Christmas Market at Lee Valley White Water Centre. It’s not somewhere I’ve visited before, being a little too far out of the way but I know they have lots of events going on there all year round so was intrigued to see what it was all about. I would be really keen to go back and maybe try out some of the activities there on a normal day as the white water areas looked brilliant. The day we went was rather too chilly but there were still plenty of people at it!
The Christmas Market entailed an ice rink, Santa’s Grotto, Funfair and German market. It was set slightly away from the main centre and seemed to have lots going on! We went ice skating first – this starts at £5 per person for a 45 minute session which seems to be good value. The rink is a decent size and there are people around to help you up if you fall down! When we went there was a reasonable number of people so those of us who basically crept around the edge were able to do so without holding anyone up or having to go round other people! My daughter really took to this and was off like a rocket, I have no idea where she gets it from!
Next we went to see Santa. I did feel that this has the potential to be a bit of a disappointment as it was quite overpriced for the experience at £7.50 per person. The grotto was small but nice enough, though Santa had clearly been on the bratwurst and the room was a little smelly! However, Santa was lots of fun and made the kids laugh, plus they were particularly taken with his ‘pointy fingers’ approach to having a photo taken!The big kids got colouring books, which were good quality but not the most exciting of gifts, and my youngest got a Christmas story book which he absolutely loved. I guess it is very hard to have a present that suits all ages though! The Santa was nice enough but I did feel it could have been better.
The German Market and Funfair had a lot to see but again was quite overpriced. We got some bratwurst, which was very tasty (though a little confusing because the kids’ one seemed to be £3.00 cheaper but the same size as the adults’!), went on a couple of rides and had some hot chocolates. There were lots of nice stalls, and I was tempted by the cheese stall though this had closed for lunch when I was looking round.
All in all it was a nice day out, well laid out with lots to do, but just too expensive. For a family of four to visit the ice rink, Santa, go on one ride each and eat a hot dog you would be looking at over £80 which is quite a lot of money, especially this time of year. Still, we had a great time and it was certainly fun to go somewhere different!