Do I need an entrance ticket to Edinburgh’s Christmas? 

Entry into the Edinburgh’s Christmas sites is free! You can pre-book a selection of rides and activities online in advance such as Ice Skating, The Big Wheel, Christmas Tree Maze and Santa’s Stories. All rides, including those bookable online, can be paid for at the point of entry to the ride or attractions. Our staff will be on hand to help. Please bear in mind that each site is cashless, so card payments only.  

Where can I buy tickets from?

We sell tickets for Edinburgh's Christmas and Hogmanay exclusively through the Edinburgh Winter Festival, Edinburgh's Hogmanay and Ticketmaster websites. On these websites, you can find a full listing of our relevant events with ticket purchasing options, and advice on purchasing in person from our box offices or in the queues for certain rides and attractions. For ticketed events, we always recommend pre-booking to avoid disappointment. 

As per our T&Cs, our tickets cannot be resold. Tickets bought through third party sites will not be valid. 

Getting There 

What time Is Edinburgh’s Christmas open? 

We have 3 sites for Edinburgh’s Christmas festivities. 

From 25th Nov – 19th Dec, Opening hours are: 

East Princes St Gardens10:00-22:0010:00-22:0010:00-22:0010:00-22:0010:00-22:0010:00-22:0010:00-22:00
Santa Land12:00-21:0012:00-21:0012:00-21:0012:00-21:0010:00-21:0010:00-21:0010:00-21:00
George Street12:00-22:0012:00-22:0012:00-22:0012:00-22:0012:00-22:0010:00-22:0010:00-22:00

Over the festive period opening times vary from the 19th Dec:  

 19th - 23rdChristmas EveChristmas DayBoxing Day27th-30thHogmany (31st)New Years Day2nd-3rd
East Princes St Gardens10:00-22:0010:00-20:00CLOSED12:00-20:0010:00-22:0010:00-19:0012:00-20:0010:00-22:00
Santa Land11:00-21:0010:00-20:00CLOSED12:00-20:0012:00-21:0010:00-18:0012:00-20:0010:00-21:00
George Street09:30-22:0009:30-20:00CLOSED11:30-20:0009:30-22:0009:30-19:0011:30-20:0009:30-22:00

3rd of January 2023 is the last day of all events.  

Peak Times 

Check out our map which has all the info you need to plan ahead and make the most of your visit. 

Peak times at East Princes Street Gardens are between 14:00 - 19:00 on weekends where an entry system will be in place to ensure everyone has a safe and enjoyable experience. This may involve some wait time before entering, so please factor this in when planning your visit.

How do we get to the Edinburgh’s Christmas sites? 

Edinburgh’s Christmas sites are all located within the city centre. Public Transport routes all move through the city centre including trains, buses and trams. Once in the city centre, all sites are within a short 5minute walk from each other.  Please see our travel advice on getting to the sites and our site map to ensure you arrive at the correct site for any prebooked attractions and make the most of your visit.

Is there Parking? 

There is no designated parking for the event. There are some parking spaces and multi-storey car parks in the city centre, these will be busy due to the time of year. There are park and ride facilities available on the outskirts of the city too.  

Can I Bring my dog? 

Yes, your dog is more than welcome on our Edinburgh’s Christmas event site but must be kept on a lead and under control at all times. Dogs are not permitted on the rides and attractions, please check in with our Front of House or Ride staff if you have any questions. 

Safety At Edinburgh’s Christmas 


We have security teams working across all Edinburgh’s Christmas event sites to monitor and assist in maintain public safety and preventing crime and disorder. If you see anything suspicious or that you find uncomfortable, please report it to our security team.  


All Edinburgh’s Christmas site are outdoors in the Scottish winter elements. Make sure to wrap up warm and cosy. Waterproofs are always advised. Please try not to bring umbrellas.  

We will be open whatever the weather unless the weather is at a windspeed that may be dangerous to the public. If this rare occasion occurs, we will notify people via our social media channels and anyone with pre-purchased tickets to events or attractions will be notified directly.   


We are operating a cashless site. All bars, food stalls, rides and attractions will have card payments available.  


How to buy ride tickets 

All rides can be paid for at point of entry. There is no box office on site, just head on up to the ride, pay and go!  

The Big Wheel is the only ride available to purchase on line. Tickets are valid for the full day from 10:00 until the last ride. Please make sure to be within the East Princes St Edinburgh’s Christmas event site before 21:30.  

What Rides are here 

East Princes St Gardens has our Forth 1 Big Wheel alongside thrill favourite Techno Power and, new for 2022, The Sizzler. We will also have a classic Helter Skelter for the kids with a winter warmer bar underneath. 

Can I pre-book tickets for any rides? 

Your pre-booked tickets for the Forth 1 Big Wheel and Christmas Tree Maze guarantee you entry to attraction on that day. You can use your ticket at any time during that day from 10:00 until the last ride. Please bear in mind the last entry to East Princes St Gardens (Forth 1 Big Wheel) site will be 21:30 and West Princes St Gardens (Christmas Tree Maze) site is 20:30 so give yourself plenty time before the last ride/entry.  

There is no fast track, each ride will have one queue and we will work to keep it moving as quickly as we can.  

Pre-booked tickets for Ice Skating and Santa’s Stories will have designated time slots, this information will be found on the ticket. Please make sure to arrive in plenty time ahead of your session.  

If I have a pre-booked ticket, do I need to print or can I show on my phone? 

We advise having your QR code tickets downloaded on to your phone. We have scanners that work with any QR code, paper or phone but for ease phone tickets are fine.  

Is there a group booking option for any of the attractions?  

For certain attractions there is a group booking discount, the Forth 1 Big Wheel has a group booking option. Please check the sessions and dates for full ticket options.  

Food and Drink 

Is there food and drink available at each Edinburgh’s Christmas site? 

Yes, we have a selection of Winter Warmer bars at each site along with a selection of food traders too. The majority of food and drink outlets are based within East Princes St Gardens Markets with a small selection at West Princes St (Santa Land) and George St Ice Rink. 

Drinking alcohol at Edinburgh’s Christmas 

All Edinburgh’s Christmas bars operate on the challenge 25 policy. Visitors cannot bring in their own alcohol and random security bag checks will be carried out at the gates. Alcoholic drinks purchased on site must not be taken outside of site and must be consumed or disposed before leaving the site.  

Off sale  

Closed sealed alcohol bought as gifts or shopping can be taken offsite if purchased from one of our stalls. Once purchased it cannot be opened and consumed within the site, security reserve the right to confiscate.  

Buggy Park  

There is no buggy park within East Princes St Gardens site, please bear this in mind when visiting and going on rides.  

Santa’s Stories and the Ice Rink will have a designated buggy park. Valuables are left at your own risk and Edinburgh’s Christmas cannot take responsibility for any lost items.  

Are there baby change facilities?  

Yes, all sites will have an accessible toilet with baby change facilities available.  

What is Santa Land and where is it? 

Santa Land is our family friendly zone, with kids rides as well as some family favourites such as the Waltzer and Dodgems! Santa Land is also the home of our Santa’s Stories along with the brand-new Christmas Tree Maze. Come on down for family fun and a wee mulled wine too for the adults! 


Feedback contact 

If you have any feedback or want to get in touch, please contact us on info@assemblyfestival.com and someone in our team will get back to you.  

Event Specific FAQs

Lidl on Ice FAQs
Christmas Tree Maze FAQs
Santa Stories FAQs