Things to do in Suffolk this Christmas

By Steph


23rd November 2023

With the festive period fast approaching, there are lots of things you can do if you are staying at Retreat East or are visiting Suffolk this Christmas. Whether you are looking for a romantic activity with your partner or family friendly fun, you’ll find something for everyone to enjoy in Suffolk this Christmas!

Spa Days and Spa Breaks at Retreat East

Explore our spa packages for the perfect Christmas gift that lets the recipient enjoy peace and tranquility. In addition to our Festive Spa Package, offered throughout November and December, we provide various options such as the Top to Toe retreat and Mini Retreat. Discover these packages now and secure the ultimate relaxing Christmas gift today.

Festive dining 

Indulge in a festive dining experience with family, plan a Christmassy date night, or gather with friends at The Great Barn. Our festive feasting menu, available from November 27th through December, is the ideal choice for all your holiday celebrations. To book your table, visit our festive feasting page.

Festive strolls

There are lots of great places to take a Christmas stroll this Christmas. Whether you opt to wander around our grounds, take a walk through the countryside or head to the Illuminated Garden Trail at Helmingham Hall Gardens open from 18th November to 18th December, please note the trail is not open on Mondays or Tuesdays. You can book tickets for the trail here. 


There are lots of pantomimes to see in the surrounding areas during the festive season. Whether you love Peter Pan, Jack and the Beanstalk or want to boo the step-sisters there is a show for everyone to enjoy this Christmas, with the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds and Ipswich Regent Theatre just up the road. With evening and matinee performances to see, whatever age you are you’ll be laughing this season!

Explore farm shops and markets

With so much fantastic produce in and around Suffolk we have a lot of great farm shops around including our very own onsite farm shop. Head to the Suffolk Food Hall with a great range of gifts, decorations, calendars and Christmas speciality foods or visit one of the many farmers markets that take place in the surrounding areas throughout the week. 

Yule at Sutton Hoo

Step into the world of Anglo-Saxon living history with Thegns of Mercia, a re-enactment group. Witness the transformation of the High Hall exhibition building into an authentic Anglo-Saxon feasting hall. Explore the significance of this season for the Anglo-Saxons who lived 1500 years ago through the artifacts they left behind. Uncover the origins of many of our traditions in this unique weekend of immersive living history. Find out more here.

What’s on in Suffolk this Christmas?

Here are a few other things that are going on in Suffolk this Christmas to keep you entertained:

  • Christmas Wreath Making at Retreat East - Sat 2nd Dec | Thurs 7th Dec | 10th Dec 10.30am start
  • Illuminated Garden Trail at Helmingham Hall Gardens, Helmingham - 18th Nov to 18th December 2023
  • Alder Carr Farm Christmas Fayre 2023 at Alder Carr Farm, Creeting St Mary - 25th November 2023
  • Christmas Market at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds - 23rd to 25th November 2023
  • Jimmy’s Farm Christmas Fayre - 2nd to 3rd December 2023
  • A Dickensian Christmas at Kentwell Hall, Long Melford - 9th to 17th December 2023
  • Festive Family Trail at Ickworth Estate, Ickworth - 3rd December 2023 to 2nd January 2024
  • Christmas at Blackthorpe Barn, Rougham - 18th October to 22nd December 2023

There is so much to do and see in Suffolk. It makes a great place to spend the festive season, find out more about our Christmas packages today.