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Enjoy an escape from the high street this Christmas and buy a real tree from England’s only true mountain forest at the Forestry Commission’s Whinlatter Forest in the Lake District.
There’ll be mountains of UK grown real Christmas trees, as well as a range of festive activities for all the family. The Forestry Commission only sell trees that are grown in the UK and in a well-managed way, with more trees planted every year than are harvested.
A special self-led children’s trail will take kids on an adventure in amongst the trees and tracks in a search for Santa’s reindeer.
There will be Christmas crafts in the visitor centre on December 3 and 4, and also on the 4th there will be a tree planting session to mark National Tree Week. There will be a felt workshop on the 10th December to make your own felt Christmas decorations.
On December 11, to mark International Mountain Day, there will be a day of celebrations, including lantern making, family craft activities and guided wildlife walks, before the day culminates in an atmospheric lantern story walk at dusk.
Sally Burchall from the Forestry Commission said: “Not only is Whinlatter the perfect place to source your Christmas tree this year – where better than this mountain forest with its Alpine setting – it’s also a great place for visitors of all ages to get crafty and provides a greener shopping environment than the high street.”
The tree sales centre is open daily until December 19 (or until stocks last), from 10am – 4pm weekdays and 10am – 5pm at weekends.
Siskin’s Café in the forest will be serving a delicious selection of hot and cold food and drink including seasonal favourites.
The Forestry Commission is also running a competition to celebrate real Christmas trees and asking people to post their Christmas tree photos to the Forestry Commission's Flickr site - www.flickr.com/groups/gbforestrycommission. The best dressed tree will win two tickets to a forest concert of the winner's choice.
Rising to 790 metres above sea level Whinlatter Forest offers spectacular views of the Lake District and into Scotland. Visitors can explore miles of walking trails and mountain bike routes through the stunning mountain forest as well as the new Whinlatter WildPlay trail for children.
For more information about Christmas events, tree sales and activities at Whinlatter Forest this season call the Whinlatter Forest Visitor Centre on 017687 78469 and select the shop option, or visit www.visitlakelandforests.co.uk
Whinlatter Visitor Centre and Forest is situated to the west of Bassenthwaite, between Keswick and Cockermouth. Follow the B5292 Whinlatter Pass Road.