While we all love a trip to a Christmas show or a panto or a visit to Santa, for some it can be overwhelming. We have rounded up a list of some sensory Christmas shows, Santas and pantos for this holiday season that the whole family can enjoy together.
Sensory Christmas Santa Experiences
You can check our round up of 50 fantastic places to see Santa around Ireland here!
Sensory Santa at Elf Town, Galway
Dates: From November 25th 2022 with a Sensory Santa Experience on December 2nd at 11am and December 3rd at 8.30am.
Elf Town is fully accessible and offers a sensory friendly experience for those who may find a regular visit overwhelming. The experience is modified to allow for more movement and will be less bright and loud.
The sensory experience takes place on Friday, December 2nd at 11am and on Saturday, December 3rd at 8.30am and should be booked in advance.
Visit The Santa Express at Wicklow Christmas Market
Dates: November 19th to December 18th 2022 Please email for details of the Sensory Santa Experience.
A day at the Wicklow Christmas Market would not be complete without a visit to see the big man himself, Santa Claus! Get ready for a fun ride on the brand new Santa Express with Santa’s favourite mischievous (but fun!) elf, Oribel, as your train conductor.
After your train ride you’ll be met by a team of elves, led by the notoriously naughty Elf and Safety, who will be eagerly awaiting your arrival. Then visit Mrs. Claus for a favourite Christmas tale. Then of course, it’s time for a visit with Santa! He will be there to meet all of the girls and boys who will get to personally tell him what’s on their Christmas list. Families will visit Santa as a group, and each child will receive a special Christmas gift from Santa Claus himself.
For more information and to book the sensory Santa experience, email [email protected]
Sensory Santa at Westport House, County Mayo
Dates: The Winter Wonderland Experience runs on dates from November 19th to December 23rd 2022. The Sensory Santa Experience takes place on December 2nd 2022.
Westport House will host an annual Sensory Santa session at Winter Wonderland for children with autism and sensory disorders, allowing families to enjoy a magical Christmas experience.
The lights will be turned up and the Christmas tunes will be toned down. Santa will meet with families individually and numbers will be reduced to make for a more peaceful experience.
Aside from meeting the big man, there’s lots to do! Say hello to Mrs Claus, visit Tinsel Town where you will see the elves village, real snow, live crib and more.
Visit Santa at Winterval Festival, Waterford
Dates: Winterval takes place on dates from November 18th to December 23rd 2022. Sensory Santa Visit dates TBA.
Winterval Festival Waterford will be an amazing Christmas experience with markets, workshops, amusements, lights and entertainment for all. Santa will be in his Medieval Chambers beneath City Hall, The Mall on dates from Saturday November 18th to Monday December 23rd.
For details of sensory santa visits, email [email protected]
Sensory Santa Workshop, Clare
Dates: 2022 info TBC
Santa will be in his workshop at Aillwee Cave in the Burren, Co Clare again this Christmas. His elves will guide you through the cave singing Christmas Carols and each child will have a personalised visit with Santa and meet Mrs Claus too. You will also get to meet Snowy the Owl in the birds of prey centre and Santa’s train will be hard at work all day giving rides to everyone.
Sensory Ice Skating Wexford
Dates: 2022 dates TBA
Wexford on Ice will be on the Quays in Wexford with family tickets available. For those who aren’t feeling confident, there are stability aids to help you glide across the ice.
Sensory and wheelchair friendly skate sessions take place with music & lighting turned down and wheelchair users able to take their wheels directly onto the ice.
Get wrapped up in the magic of Christmas with these fantastic family events and activities around Ireland – seasonal fun guaranteed!
Sensory Christmas Pantos and Shows
You can check our full round up of the best pantos around Ireland here!
Helix Christmas Panto – Hansel & Gretel
Dates: November 25th 2022 to January 15th 2023; sensory night on December 20th @ 6pm
Join Hansel and Gretel on their journey of intrigue and adventure.
With panto favourites Buddy (Colin Hughes), Laurel (Aidan Mannion),the wickedly wonderful (Paul Byrom), and the outrageous Dame Lola (Chris Corroon).
There will be a special performance with some adjustments for the sensory-friendly show, including:
- House lights are left on
- Sound levels compressed
- Performers will be aware to contain any shouts or sudden movements
- Any strobe lights removed
Sleeping Beauty at Draiocht, Blanchardstown
Dates: January 5th to 22nd 2023; sensory show date TBA
Panto is Back! Oh yes it is!
Once again Coolmine Panto Group will be back in Draíocht in January 2023 with Sleeping Beauty, written by Karl Harper.
Renmore Pantomime, Galway
Dates: December 29th 2022 to January 15th 2023; sensory-friendly show Jan 9th at 12pm
With the enchantment of the Fairy Godmother and the mischief of the Ugly Sisters, Renmore Pantomime Society will ‘Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo’ their way through the Town Hall Theatre to follow Cinderella and her friends on this wonderful adventure.
Throughout this charming journey, be inspired by her continued endeavour to have courage, be kind and always believe in a little magic.
For more information and booking details, click here.