Christmas at Cowdray is an illuminated, after-dark, festive light trail designed to create ever-lasting memories for all the family! 

Christmas at Cowdray is a walking trail where you will see a series of festive illuminations accompanied by a soundtrack.  This year we have a brand-new, magical, woodland walk, look out for Santa and his reindeer, a winter wonderland and a new laser garden. Our theme this year is inspired by peace and tranquility and the beautiful natural surroundings.  

As you wander under the starry winter skies and step back into the 16th century, you will find on offer, scrumptious, tasty, treats to enjoy along the way including spicey winter warmers, delicious crepes, and hot chocolate mountains!  A select band of international artists, designers and technicians will transform the landscape, illuminating the night sky with millions of sparkling lights, interactive installations, and festive sounds.

How long is Christmas at Cowdray?

The light trail is approximately 1 mile long and you should expect your entire journey to take 60 minutes to fully appreciate it. The walk from Cowdray Farm Shop car park to the light trail entrance is 0.35 miles long and the walk from the end of the light trail back to Cowdray car park is 0.4 miles and the round trip is 1.5 miles. Our food and drink Village has a selection of delicious festive treats on sale which may extend your stay with us.

What are your opening and closing times?

Access to the light trail is by pre-booked time slots, with the final access 15 minutes after the time slot booked. The trail will close 90 minutes after the final trail start time.

Where does Christmas at Cowdray start?

The light trail begins in the middle of Cowdray woods by the black lake. There will be rides and festive refreshments before the entrance and these are charged in addition to the light trail. You can enjoy the rides and refreshments without purchasing a ticket for the light trail. You will wander through the woods and come out by the Walled Garden, and finish by Cowdray Ruins.

Where is Santa’s Grotto?

Santa’s Grotto is located next to the Cowdray Ruins and the entrance is located at the end of the Walled Garden. If you are visiting the light trail, we recommend that you see Santa at the end of your trail. The reindeer will be in the Cowdray Castle grounds. If you have booked Santa’s Grotto and not the light trail, you must use the walled garden entrance by Cowdray Ruins and we recommend you use the public North car park.

What should I wear?

As it’s winter and through the woods, we advise warm and waterproof clothing and suitable footwear for winter weather.

Can I bring my dog?

Well-behaved dogs with responsible owners are welcome. Dogs must be always on a lead and be comfortable with large crowds, loud noises, and fire. Bins are provided for pooh bags.

Is Christmas at Cowdray dark or covered?

Lighting will be low level in many areas so you can enjoy the light art experience. You are welcome to bring along a torch in case of an emergency. The trail is NOT covered and the weather maybe inclement.

Can I take photographs and videos?

Yes, you are welcome to photograph Christmas at Cowdray and share on social media. Please use #ChristmasatCowdray #lightuptrails and all professional photography requires prior permissions.


Accessible toilets are located on the Light Up Trail. They are clearly marked, and our stewards can direct you. First Aid is on site but please ensure you bring all medication and a trained carer to administer it.

More independent street traders to be announced soon!

Limited spaces available

Limited capacity applies so plan now to secure your special Christmas trip!

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