Don’t miss: Christmas events
Ice-Rink and Christmas Market at Hestercombe Gardens – from mid-November.
The popular tourist attraction near Taunton in Somerset always puts on special events in the run-up to Christmas.
The fun begins over the weekend of November 16/17 with a fabulous Christmas market offering more than 60 undercover stalls with a variety of hand-crafted, interesting and inspiring gifts.
From November 30 all the way until the New Year, Hestercombe becomes a real winter wonderland with its popular all-weather undercover artificial ice-rink.
The rink is environmentally friendly and housed inside a marquee to keep the elements at bay.
There will be festive refreshments available for skaters and spectators, wintery Christmas scenes to get you in the festive spirit and plenty of seating too.
For advance tickets visit www.hestercombe.com or call 01823-413923.
Taunton Christmas Lights Switch-On – November 17
Christmas shopping season is upon us and in Somerset’s county town of Taunton there will be a grand switch-on to mark the occasion.
Swing band Jan’s Band – who won the Great Taunton Busk Off earlier this year – will be among the acts entertaining the crowds on the main stage.
The fun gets under way at 12noon in the Castle Green area of the town before the big switch-on when darkness descends in the early evening.
Activities for the event on Sunday, November 17, have been organised by the Make Taunton Sparkle group which was set up by local councillor Kelly Durdan last year.
Santa Trains on the West Somerset Railway – from November 30
The much-loved West Somerset Railway is once again bringing its popular Santa Specials to the region’s Christmas build-up for 2013.
Departing from Bishops Lydeard and Minehead, the fun begins on the weekend of November 30/December 1 with a Sherry and Mince Pie Special.
Santa trains will then run on weekends throughout December in the build-up to Christmas. For details visit www.westsomersetrailway.vticket.co.uk or call 01643-704996.
Don't miss: Art
West Country to World’s End Art Exhibition, Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter – from October 26
Celebrating the spirit of adventure and enterprise of South-West people, this landmark exhibition explores the West Country in the age of the Tudors.
Comprising loans from the Bodleian Library, British Library, British Museum, National Portrait Gallery, National Trust, Royal Collection, Royal Museums Greenwich, Victoria & Albert Museum and private lenders, it presents a compelling account of the remarkable contributions of individuals from the South West from 1540 to 1620.
For more information and opening times, call 01392-265858 or visit www.rammuseum.org.uk.
Don’t miss: event
Sale weekend at Kilver Court Designer Village in Shepton Mallet.
Kilver Court Designer Village is hosting a big sale weekend on Saturday, November 16 and Sunday, November 17.
Designer brands including Jack Wills, Toast, LK Bennett and Orla Kiely will be offering amazing discounts on top of the original outlet prices.
Guest designer brands will also be popping in so make sure you don’t miss the opportunity to start your Christmas shopping or update your winter wardrobe.
For more information, opening times and directions, visit www.kilvercourt.com.