CHRISTMAS is just around the corner with December fast-approaching and so with it comes a whole host of festive markets, fayres and events in the run-up to the festive period.

Across Dorset there is plenty going on between now and December 26 with a festive theme, so if you’re stuck for a Christmas event to attend the Echo has got you covered with a list of just some of the activities taking place this year.


Christmas Cracker, Dorchester

Dorset Echo:

Dorchester’s Christmas Cracker is back for 2021 complete with a brand new format as for the first time in 25 years the attraction switches to an all day event. Cracker Day will take place on Sunday, December 14, between 11am and 4pm. Stalls will line High West Street in town with craft fairs taking place at Shire Hall and the Corn Exchange.


Christmas Tree Wonderland, Bournemouth

Dorset Echo:

Perhaps the biggest festive attraction in Dorset, the Christmas Tree Wonderland in Bournemouth returns this year complete with the 60ft walk-through tree once again. It is one of 100 illuminations in the town. Once again the ice rink will be the Lower Gardens alongside the Alpine market and Bar in the Square open daily between 10am till late.


Elf world record attempt, Weymouth

As part of the Christmas lights switch on event a world record for elves gathering in the same place will take place in Weymouth on November 27. The event in the town centre will host a variety of workshops and activities from 10am until the lights go on at 4pm. It is hoped 2,000 elves will gather in the town in a bid to beat the current record.


Step into Sherbourne

More than 50 stalls will be set up in the Digby Hall in Sherborne on November 27. Santa will also be paying a visit throughout the event which takes place between 10 and 4pm. On offer will also be a seasonal cafe serving light bites and hot drinks.


A Dorset Christmas at the Tank Museum

On November 27 and 28 Father Christmas visits the Tank Museum, near Bovington, as part of a festive day of events. Throughout the day a variety of performances will take place including from live bands. While there will be no grotto, Santa will be walking through and on-hand for a question and answers session. The event, which starts at 9am, will also host a market over both days and will run until 3:45pm. Tickets start from £17 for adults and £9.75 for children.


Symondsbury Estate Christmas Market, Bridport

In west Dorset a charity Christmas market will take place on December 4 and 5 with proceeds going to the Family Counselling Trust and Weldmar Hospicecare Dorset. Admission is free but car parking will cost £3. A variety of local businesses will be selling handcrafted food, drink and gifts. Alongside independent shops selling luxury giftware, festive decorations and homeware.


Marvellous Market, Poole

A Christmas edition of Poole’s Marvellous Market will take place in Falkland Square on December 4 between 10am and 5pm. A host of stalls will feature in addition to music from the Bournemouth Brass Band and The Mellor Sisters Christmas Show. Visitors will also find a shop window trail for children complete with free eco art and crafts stalls.


Swanage Christmas Market

Also taking place on the first weekend of December, on Saturday 4, is the Swanage Christmas Market. Between 10am and 5pm in Station Road a wide variety of stalls and traders will be selling their festive items at the traditional Christmas market.


Poundbury Christmas Market

One of the many festive markets taking place is at Poundbury, near Dorchester. Located in the Buttermarket, like many events on this list, is taking place on December 4. The market returns for 2021 with a large selection of local independent traders from across the county selling their festive related goods.


Christmas Fayre, Portland

Dorset Echo: Chiswell Christmas Fayre. Picture: Sam McKeown

Chiswell Walled Garden is hosting its very own Christmas fayre on Portland later this month. On November 27 between 10am and 4pm arts and craft stalls will line the community garden alongside local artists showcasing their work. People can try their hands at guessing the weight of a cake as well as taking part in a raffle for a hamper. The garden’s community group will also be serving up some festive treats.


What Christmas events will you be attending this year? Let us know in the comments below.