The Royal Mint Christmas Experience - PR Visit And Review.
The Friday feeling was well and truly with us this week when we were kindly invited to the Christmas Experience at The Royal Mint in Llantrisant, South Wales.
This popular Welsh attraction has created an incredible festive experience...
that tells the Yuletide secret that Santa Claus has been using The Royal Mint as his British base for hundreds of years, and how the tradition of hanging stockings up on Christmas Eve, ready to receive your wonderful presents on Christmas morning, was inspired by jolly old St Nicholas and a sack of gold coins.
At the museum entrance, there was a big welcome sign with a beautiful winter scene underneath which instantly made us feel Christmassy. As we walked along the snowy pathway past the displays and decorations we found a beautifully lit courtyard filled with little stalls. Vendors selling food, drinks, plants, gifts, and much more. We had no idea this was on, so it was such a lovely surprise. Even if you didn't go to the Christmas Experience, it's worth popping down just to spend a lovely evening here to do a bit of Christmas shopping and have something delicious to eat and drink. The stalls are not there all the time so worth checking with them to find out when.
Inside the museum reception was so cheery. Trees and decorations everywhere and the most magnificent reindeers pulling Santa's sleigh that the children could climb inside for a photograph.
We had the loveliest guide - shout out to Allison, who directed us through into a cosy seating area.
Here is where we began the festive tour with a run down from Allison of the fun we had ahead and an introductory video from Santa Claus.
After viewing the video wewere shown to a magical mailbox where you can post your Christmas list in, so don't forget to bring your letters to Santa with you on your tour. My son was mesmerised with this!
From here we were led down a snowy, path lined with twinkling candy canes and were taken through into Santa's mailroom, where Allison captivated the children with tales of Christmas. She then showed us the Minting Factory which was incredible. We could witness firsthand the machinery making the new coins, as well as displays of coins they make for countries around the world.
The children were kindly allowed to strike their own limited edition Harry Potter 50p coin. They got to have a go at pressing the button and watching the design get printed onto a blank coin. All given in an adorable presentation case for safekeeping. The perfect memento of our Christmas visit and one we will treasure forever.
Sat snugly beside a scene of a festive fireplace, we found the REAL Father Christmas - Honestly the best! He was nestled amongst the most adorable Christmas decorations - A giant nutcracker and candy cane, a sack filled to the brim with presents, and the most gorgeously decorated sparkling Christmas tree. He was dressed in a white fur-trimmed red jacket and trousers with a broad buckled belt, a matching hat, and black boots with rosy red cheeks and the biggest welcoming smile.
The children got to spend quite a bit of time chatting with him. He was super engaging, speaking with my little boy about the gifts he wishes to receive on Christmas day, the magic of Christmas, and was more than happy to let me take photographs of him with my son. Really precious moments, especially for my youngest who stood with his eyes wide open, hanging off his every word. So sweet!
When you've finished at the grotto with Father Christmas, you are then able to have a browse around the Royal Mint Experience Museum which is fascinating and something I've wanted to do for a long time. There is a colouring station for the children with printouts they can use which was a great distraction while I got to read the displays about the history of the Royal Mint.
There is a gift shop where you can find lots of lovely gift ideas, as well as hanging Christmas decorations for your tree. There are even calendars to count down to the big day. Bo (my son) especially liked their giant chocolate coins.
The Royal Mint café has a fantastic Christmas menu including delicious treats like mulled wine, mince pies, festive sandwiches, and lots more.
I finally enjoyed my first mulled wine of the season - cheers to that!
If you're based in South Wales then you couldn't wish for a better Christmas experience than this. Allison was the hostess with the mostest - so warm, kind, and overflowing with knowledge. You could really tell how passionate she is about her job. Every member of staff we met, from the reception staff to the cafe baristas ... everyone was so friendly and chatty, and made our visit to the Royal Mint really special - and one I'd recommend to everyone.
To book your tickets for The Royal Mint Christmas experience head on over to their website.
Tickets are selling fast so don't miss out! :)