This is a firm favourite of ours every Christmas! At only £3 Dobbie’s Christmas Walk Around great cheap festive activity and your little ones will love it! There are a few changes this year, but nothing major and in my opinion it’s still just as good as last year. It’s well worth a visit!
What to expect at Dobbie’s Christmas Walk Around
If you’ve never been before then Dobbie’s Christmas Walk Around is a series of big Christmas displays all linked together for you to walk around. Think penguins, polar bears, reindeers, Christmas trees and lights everywhere. So if you’re taking really little ones I’m sure they’ll still love the lights, even if they’ve got no clue what’s going on!
I’d say we spent around 20-30 minutes walking around it today, but your time in there will of course vary depending on your little one. It’s completely buggy/wheelchair friendly and also perfect for little legs running around.
Do you have to book?
No, you can’t pre-book the walk around. You just turn up and pay on the day. If you are planning to visit Santa’s Grotto as well then it’s advised that you pre-book this to guarantee a space. We managed to book the Grotto whilst we were there despite it showing as sold out online.
Tickets are sold on a first come first serve basis. I had visions of there being huge queues and it selling out for the whole day early on! This wasn’t the case at all, we walked straight in and there was no queue. Obviously this is likely to change on weekends and closer to Christmas.
Was it busy?
As I said we didn’t have to queue at all today. In fact when we did the walk around we didn’t see a single other person in there! It was only it’s second day of opening when we visited (4th December) and we were there for around 10.20am (it opened at 10am).
The queue to visit Santa Grotto’s grew fairly quickly behind us as they were having a few technical issues. We only had 2 families ahead of us, but there were probably 8 families waiting by the time we went in.
I thought the Grotto was fairly well done, all things considered. It obviously has to be different this year, with no sitting on Santa’s knee and social distancing, etc. All children are given a magic bean to take in which is magicked into a mini Christmas tree to plant. After a chat with Santa (non existent in our case as Ashley was absolutely balling her eyes out at him!) the children are invited to pick a present out of Santa’s sack.
I think it’s good value at £12 per child given that you get the walk around included, a one on one chat with Santa, the mini Christmas tree and a good quality present. I’ve done a quick google of the gifts in the present and they’re actually worth £12 on their own. Obviously your money is better spent if your child doesn’t cry the whole way through it like mine!
How is it different to last year?
I thought it was fairly similar. The walk around is a bit smaller and there are a few bits that they’ve cut out, but it’s still great.
You still get to have your photo taken with Santa (at an extra charge) but you stand/crouch next to him at the fireplace rather than sitting next to him. The photo’s still look good.
There was supposed to be an extra activity after the Grotto this year called the Magic Christmas Tree experience. I’ve no idea what happened to this as it’s wasn’t there, but if I find out I’ll update this.
Food and Drink
There’s a restaurant in the garden centre, just next to the Christmas walk around and Grotto.
Best bits: The walk around is so festive and magical, we absolutely love it and for £3 you can’t go wrong!
Worst bits: There were a few problems today which I’d put down to teething problems as they’d only just opened. They accidently send a load of people round the wrong way when it opened. So when we first got sent the ‘right way’ we were walking against the crowds. We then got sent the same way as they’d been and had the place to ourselves!
They are supposed to close every day for an hour at 1pm for lunch. However today they started lunch at 11.45am so there were a load of people who then had to wait around for it the re-start.
The camera in the Grotto was being temperamental and they had to fix it whilst we were in there.
Cost: The walk around is £3 per person (babies free) and Santa’s Grotto is £12 per child and £3 per adult and this includes the walk around.
Tickets: No tickets required for the walk-around, just pay on the day. You can pre-book the Grotto by clicking here.
Pram friendly: Yes
Bike & scooter friendly: No
Covid measures: Masks need to be warn by anyone over the age of 11 that can, they’ve widened the walkways and I’d guess they are limiting the number of people in the walk around (but we were the only ones in it when I visited).
Location & parking: Aylesbury Rd, Weston Turville. There is free parking onsite.
Sat nav:HP22 6BD
Baby in Bucks Top Tip
Go visit, you’ll love it! We didn’t have any problems with it being busy but I’d imagine if you can go on a weekday like us, you’ll find it a lot quieter.