The nights before Christmas are precious and magical. So spend them in a magical place – deep in the New Forest.
Come early to the ancient forest and make a day of it, walking or cycling under frosty bare branches and spotting our beautiful deer, pigs and New Forest ponies, as they nibble the frozen grass and walk their ancient trails.
Then, as the shadows lengthen and the dusk falls, proceed to Beaulieu’s magnificent Palace House, to experience a stunning light installation highlighting some of the festive season’s best-loved stories and customs.
The Winter’s Tales evenings at Beaulieu take place over eight candle-lit nights in December (December 9-11, 16-18 and 21-22.)
Drive through the darkened forest to watch Palace House come alive as the light show reveals friendly mice scuttling along the kitchen plate shelf, snow falling on family portraits and a festive seascape of the popular Christmas carol I Saw Three Ships Come Sailing In at the Montagu family home.
Walk under the illuminated archway at the entrance to the Victorian garden and follow the beautifully lit pathway to where two towering flambeaux beckon you into the house itself, before experiencing the festive magic inside.
Step into the Portrait Gallery to see the Montagu family album Christmas table, where a light ‘time machine’ shows family childhoods of the past and present using toys from Beaulieu’s collection.
To complement Beaulieu’s Victorian Christmas, see the fairy tale winter scene of a life-size, snow-dusted gingerbread house in the courtyard with swirling, light-show snow flurries, falling on the scene.
Spot the shadow of a cat in the larder as it stalks the mice ‘dancing’ on the kitchen shelf.
Upstairs in the Upper Drawing Room, see the model of Buckler’s Hard-built Agamemnon, which is joined by HMS Euryalus and HMS Swiftsure from the Battle of Trafalgar, for a lyrical light show version of I Saw Three Ships Come Sailing In.
Then head outside to see one of the largest outdoor illuminated Christmas trees in the New Forest, which stands beside the National Motor Museum in the grounds of the attraction.
Remember, too that you can also combine this event with your Christmas shopping. Beaulieu’s Kitchen Shop at Palace House and the main Visitor Reception Gift Shop will be open, offering traditional country house gifts, tasty preserves, silverware, motoring memorabilia, books, children’s toys and inspirational gift ideas.
If you’re making a day of it, there are ample places nearby for a delicious lunch, including the Drift Inn close to the railway station at Beaulieu Road and if you want to stay over, try the Montagu Arms just yards from Palace House itself – with three AA Rosettes and a kitchen run by a Roux Scholar chef, you’ll find plenty of magical food to eat, too!
For more information, visit www.thenewforest.co.uk
Notes to Editors
Winter’s Tales event tickets are £10 an adult, £5 a child and £29 a family (two adults and up to three children or one adult and up to four children) if bought in advance online. Advance tickets are available until 5pm on December 7. To book or for more information see www.beaulieu.co.uk/events or call 01590 612345. On-the-door tickets are £12 an adult, £6 a child and £32 a family. Each of the evenings is open from 3.30 – 7pm. Arrive before 5pm to enjoy the rest of the Beaulieu attraction, including the National Motor Museum, World of Top Gear, On Screen Cars and the 13th century Beaulieu Abbey.
T: 01329 822866
Issued on behalf of:
The New Forest