Festive displays and activities make Windsor Castle an ideal place to visit this Christmas. The Castle will be getting into the spirit of the season from 3 December.
Just for the Christmas period, the table in Windsor’s State Dining Room will be set for a festive Victorian dessert course and dressed with dazzling silver-gilt from the Grand Service. The magnificent candelabra, tureens and dessert stands were commissioned in the early 19th century by George IV, when Prince Regent, and are today used by Her Majesty The Queen at State Banquets. The Christmas dining display can be seen from 3 December 2009 to 6 January 2010.
Queen Victoria’s winter sleigh will be on show in St George’s Hall with the traditional Christmas tree from Windsor Great Park from 3 December to 6 January. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert spent many Christmases at the Castle, and the Queen often enjoyed sleigh rides around Windsor during the winter months. The royal sleigh, built by the carriage-makers Hooper & Co., is painted red and gold, and lined with red velvet.
Families visiting the Castle on 19 and 20 December can follow a special Christmas activity trail through the State Apartments and discover what it was like to plan and host a Christmas ball. In the Moat Education Room, children can have a go at designing their own amazing costume or making a Christmas tree decoration to take home.
In the Royal Collection shops you will find a host of original and unique gift ideas for everyone on your Christmas list, as well as tree decorations and a range of luxury seasonal foods.
For those looking for a very special experience or early Christmas gift, an Exclusive Evening Tour offers the chance to go ‘behind the ropes’ once the Castle has closed its doors to the public. The tour takes visitors through the sumptuous State Apartments in the company of an expert guide and ends with a glass of champagne. It is available on 16, 17, 18 and 19 December, price £50.00. For further information or to make a booking, please telephone +44 (0)20 7766 7322 or visit www.royalcollection.org.uk.
Windsor Castle is open daily, except 25 and 26 December. Visitor information is available from www.royalcollection.org.uk. Buy your tickets at the Castle, from www.royalcollection.org.uk or +44 (0)20 7766 7304 and enjoy free re-admission for a year.
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Admission to Windsor Castle is managed by the Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity in England and Wales (1016972) and in Scotland (SCO39772).