If you’re staying with us this festive season, you’ll find it’s easy to get into the spirit of things. With wreath-making workshops, Christmas carols, live theatre and St Ives’ famous New Year’s Eve celebrations, there’s a lot to look forward to.

Here, we share some of our top things to do in St Ives this season.

Get creative

Christmas is a time to be creative, and there’s nothing nicer than a handmade wreath for your home. On 2nd, 3rd, 9th and 10th December, Una Kitchen will be holding wreath-making workshops, with lunch beforehand and an invigorating swim afterwards. To book your place, call 01736 257000.

Go shopping

St Ives’ cobbled streets are lined by shops large and small, making it the ideal place to tick off some Christmas shopping. For art lovers, you’ll find a wealth of galleries selling artworks, prints and crafts. Or visit our local booksellers, sweet shops, jewellery makers and boutiques to bag some unusual gifts.

See the lights

The town’s Christmas lights are officially switched on by Father Christmas (arriving by lifeboat, no less) at 6.30pm on Wednesday 7th December. On 10th December, from 5.30pm, an atmospheric lantern parade will tour the streets, beginning at Royal Square.

Catch a show

St Ives is home to the award-winning Kidz R Us theatre company, which encourages young people in the performing arts. This year, the company is staging Elf The Musical JR, with live performances running at 2pm and 6.30pm from 20-23 and 27-30 December. And, with the St Ives Guildhall hosting Christmas shows including A Christmas Carol and Sleeping Beauty, you needn’t travel far for a festive evening out.

Listen to some carols

Join us here at Una for some good old-fashioned carols and help raise money for charity. On Tuesday 20th December, we’ll be hosting an evening of Christmas cheer with the St Ives Community Choir. Tickets include an arrival drink and delicious food, with all proceeds going to the RNLI.

Take the plunge

If you’re feeling brave, shake off the excesses of Christmas with a bracing Boxing Day swim. Every year, swimmers hit the waves at midday on Porthminster Beach (wetsuits are allowed, but many go without) for a fun, feel-good splash about in the water. Donations of £1 are given to a deserving local charity.

Celebrate the New Year

The town is probably best known for its large-scale New Year’s Eve celebrations. Most people choose to wear fancy dress, with local pubs throwing open their doors and welcoming in partygoers with food, drink and music. At midnight, crowds gather down at the harbour to watch fireworks burst over the water – a truly impressive start to the coming year.

Venture out

If you’re travelling around by bus, car or train, you’ll find there’s plenty going on nearby, too. The iconic Mousehole Harbour Lights will be on from Monday 12th December (a staggered switch-on, with all displays lit from 17th), and Penzance’s Montol Festival, celebrating the winter solstice, takes place on 21st December.

Spend the festive season in St Ives

Stay at Una St Ives this Christmas or New Year and take advantage of one of our seasonal packages. Experience Cornwall at its wintery best: quiet beaches, community events and a refreshing sense of calm. To find out more, take a look at our festive offers.