It’s the most wonderful time of the year but finding the right Santa experience for your family can be a serious job.

So let me tell you about our family trip to LUGGWOODS and it might be just the ticket for your brood.


Have you ever seen a Santa that made you believe in the magic of Christmas all over again?


Last weekend, I took the kids to Luggwoods and wasn’t really to sure what to expect.


I’ve learnt that it’s not a visit to Santa anymore, it’s an “experience” and there’s so much hype about them but I have to say credit where it’s due, Luggwoods definitely lived up to the hype.


We, Myself, Ois, Hannah and my sister in law Lynn arrived into the car park of the Luggwoods, we had a bit of a wait to board the Santa tractor drawn carriage but there was Christmas music in the log cabin as we waited, so Ois and Hannah danced away and then a lovely Elf arrived to paint the kids faces.


Here is where I began to realise I, as a parent of a near three year old was in for really magical evening.


Ois was completely taken with everything from start to finish. While we waited for the tractor, Oisín had his face painted, he was delighted with his red sparkly nose and antlers. The excitement began to build.

The Elves arrived to welcome us and usher all the excited kids and parents to the tractor and as we made our way up the footpath to board we were guided by twinkly fairy lights.


Once we were all safely on board the Elves explained that the grinch had robbed all the presents and we had to save Christmas. The atmosphere was electric.


The train journey itself is absolutely magic, as we follow the trail to Santa’s house we found the presents, woke the fairies and made the Grinch happy and this was all before we had even met Mrs. Claus.


The Elves and Ice princess were fantastic with the kids. Then you catch the views as you travel along overlooking the city, they’re absolutely spectacular.


Oh and little tip -sit on the right side going up, you’ll have a better view of everything.


As we arrived Mrs.Claus welcomed us in with a huge basket of lollipops, after a chat with the kids the doors opened to Santa’s Workshop complete with reindeer and tractor. Luggwoods have literally ticked every box and we haven’t even seen Santa yet.


A magic bookcase leads you to yet another brilliantly decked out room where you wait your turn to see the main man.


You can get a snap in the sleigh or take a selfie with the elf on the shelfie or even sit down to write your letter to pop in Santa’s post box. It’s all catered for.

Then our turn came and we headed in to meet Santa. He greeted Ois and Hannah by name, was full of chat about Oisín’s impending 3rd Birthday. Ois was thrilled with him and I was literally about six again, He was magical.


The kids both received a toy, we didn’t feel rushed at all meeting Santa. He took his time to chat to the kids and get pictures.

When you finish your Santa visit, you enter another room. There’s more Elves on hand to entertain the kids with a disco, as well as a ball pool and toys for toddlers.


There’s food and refreshments on sale for the grown ups to catch you breath and take a moment to catch a look out of the window at the incredible view across the city.


When all our group had finished, we boarded our express and headed back down the hill.



Luggwoods is really something special, it has so many elements and just when you think you’ve seen it all, another door opens. It really is a proper Santa experience, there is SO much for the kids to enjoy. A truly magical way to start this year festivities.
Keep in mind, it’s the foothills of the mountains so it can be muddy and mucky, so think of that for all the footwear.
The kids and adults need to be wrapped up well. As it is in the mountains, you need to be prepared for the weather and your forest surroundings.

We decided not to bring Hannah’s buggy, so we had a bit of lugging in her. She is just gone one, so it was all a bit lost on her but as you can tell, Oisín who’s just turning three lapped up every moment of it.

We’ll definitely be back next year. It’s an absolute bit of Christmas magic in the foothills of the Dublin mountains.

You can find all the details here.

S xx