06 Dec Christmas in Madrid for all the Family
Will you be spending the run up to Christmas in Madrid this year? Are you wondering if there are any traditional British festivities on offer? Are you hoping to join in with some traditional Spanish activities? Are you looking for an unusual/traditional/jokey Christmas present? If you answered yes to any of the above then read on for our top picks of family activities in the hectic run up to Christmas.
Plaza Mayor Christmas Market
Iconic Plaza Mayor is home to the capital’s longest running traditional Christmas market. From elaborate Christmas ornaments to delicious artisan food, and quirky handmade gifts, there are a tremendous variety of products on offer, in a classically festive setting.
Until 31 December
Mercado de Diseño
Exclusive products ranging from cosmetics, perfumery and illustration, to ceramics, furniture, florists and gourmet food will be available for purchase in this designer market. Look out for brands including Paul Erroz, Maria Torné, Mark Gamon, Ana Prada, and Bela Lali as well as Octagon Design, Bluebeard, Lord Wilmore and Tiny Heaven for one of a kind Christmas presents that your loved ones will never have seen before! Alongside the market is a cultural program with various workshops, exhibitions and live music as well as a dedicated family space, food trucks and gastronomic treats.
Xmas Vibes Edition
7-8 December: Galería de Cristal (Palacio de Cibeles), C/ de Montalbán, 1, 28014
22-22 December: Matadero Madrid, Plaza de Legazpi, 8
“Many expats who never went to a pantomime until they moved to Madrid will shuffle agendas and postpone trips in order to see the annual Madrid Players panto. Jammed full of jibes towards our adopted homeland, jokes about our lives as expat parents, and slapstick humour that needs no translation, this show is the epitome of integration into Spanish lifestyle via parenthood. English speakers of all nationalities unite to lay on a performance which fills the theatre with laughter from audiences of all ages. How lucky we are to have such a dedicated amateur theatre group in our midst to herald in the Christmas season!” (Dominique White)
Plaza Perseo 9
El rock suena en familia – Family Theatre
An interactive musical show in which parents and children can enjoy a journey through the history of modern music. Happening have created a tour of Rock music from its origins to the present day with characters such as Elvis Presley and Paul McCartney appearing to sing and tell their contributions to music and culture in the first person. This is a 90 minute performance suitable for 3 years and over.
Every Sunday in December at 12.30h
Teatro Fígaro, C/ Doctor Cortezo, 5
Saint George’s Anglican Church
Saturday 14 December @ 11:00 – 20:00 Christmas Fair
A very English bazaar with raffle, tombola, gift stalls, mulled wine and plenty of goodwill.
Sunday 15 December @ 18:30 Christmas Carol Service
Tuesday 24 December @ 16:30 Christmas Eve Family Service and Christingle
“As expats most of us will have acted in the school Nativity Play as a child. Where else in Madrid can our bi-cultural children live this magical moment than at St George’s Anglican Church on Christmas Eve? The brave volunteer adults at this special service steer our kids through an impromptu Nativity Play peopled with the children who turn up that afternoon in costume for the service. It sounds crazy but this really works! All the kids have a whale of a time and it doesn’t make a spot of difference if there are three Marys and twelve Angel Gabriels. A lovely hour-long quasi-nostalgic Christmas experience for you all just prior to going to the in-laws for traditional Nochebuena celebrations!” (Dominique White)
Calle Núñez de Balboa, 43
Naviluz Christmas Bus Tour
Madrid’s Christmas lights have been designed by a series of celebrated Spanish artists and designers, who have festooned the city with everything from chandelier-inspired light sculptures to minimalist conical Christmas trees. Wander the streets at your leisure, or, to get to grips with the sheer volume of sparkling lights, hop on the Naviluz open top bus. A relatively recent addition to Madrid’s festive circuit is the rather novel dedicated Christmas Bus, offering a high-spirited tour of the spectacular Christmas lights until 6th January. The 45-minute ride starts and finishes at Plaza de Colón, and takes you on a tour of Madrid’s main streets and most magical light displays.
29 November – 6 January
We Love Animals – The Christmas Edition
Madrid’s only pop-up dedicated entirely to animal lovers and spoiling one’s four-legged friends will be popping up in Espacio Mood from the 20th to the 22nd December for its annual Christmas edition. Selling animal-related clothing and accessories as well as cosmetics strictly not tested on animals, and natural, eco friendly homeware. Specialising in gifts and treats for pets to suit any budget, they even sell beer for dogs!
C/ General Oraá, 23
Ice Circus 2
Created, produced and directed by Productores de Sonrisas, Circo de Hielo 2 is a spectacular show for the whole family. On a frozen planet with glaciers and igloos and views of the northern lights, the Eskimo people, the Inuits, are surprised by the arrival of a magical being.
Until 12 January (children over the age of 2 need a paid ticket)
IFEMA – Feria de Madrid, Av. del Partenón, 5
Belén Viviente – Scenes from the Nativity with English narration
More than 300 volunteers from the village of El Molar re-enact biblical scenes from the time of Jesus’ birth in a stunning historical building which provides a perfect setting. Tour guides take groups of visitors from scenario to scenario filling in the story and sharing anecdotes. There are English and French speaking guides for both days.
14 and 15 December
Bodegas del Charcón, C/ Albariño s/n, El Molar, Madrid 28710 (buses from Plaza Castilla)