A family lifestyle, arts and culture blog.

10/30/2017

Halloween Nights at Saint Fagans!




Last night we were invited to review Halloween Nights at the beautifully historical St Fagans in Cardiff. We often frequent St Fagans with George and Molly (and once we even took Ziggy!) and we all love it, mostly because it's a very beautiful and interesting place. There's so much to see and do there, from historical buildings to old fashioned shops, there's just so much to explore.

Halloween Nights at St Fagans

We arrived at the car park at around 5.45pm and already there was a huge queue forming all the way from the entrance to the bus stop at the front of the car park. The kiddies haven't been too well the past few days so we decided to stay in the van until close to 6pm when the doors would open so that the children wouldn't get too cold. When we joined the queue it began moving and we were all really excited to enter the new entrance; we haven't been since it's been refurbished but it looks amazing and it's very spacious indeed.


Getting into the venue was really easy and the queue went down fast. The biggest highlight of the night was waiting for us in the main foyer, Wonderbrass an outstanding brass band welcomed us with upbeat tunes and George and Molly got to have a little dance before we began exploring the grounds.




On entry you're given a map for the night but I would highly advise you to get to grips with the online version ahead of the event. This will stand you in good stead so you don't miss anything. We didn't do this so our night ended up a bit haphazard, we ended up going back on ourselves for certain activities.

The events and activities included in the ticket price include:
  • Halloween Artefacts
  • Creepy Crafts
  • Wand Making
  • Pumpkin Carving Demonstrations
  • Ghost Stories (English & Welsh)
  • Bilingual Puppet Show
  • Ghost Stories
  • Burning The Wicker Man
  • Lantern Parade 
 We totally missed the crafts in the main building at first, so I'd definitely suggest going there first with your children to make lanterns and spooky spells. There was a lot of space in this area for the amount of children attending, and George and Molly loved the added touch of free sweets!






The activities are spread out around the grounds, so having an idea of what you plan to do ahead of setting off is a good idea! I'd suggest taking a torch to help light the way and map read. One of the first places we visited was the Makers' Market, with lots on offer to buy, perfect for Christmas gifts. We were particularly taken by the spinning top seller, who was making them (in a flash) before our eyes. Children aged 7-8 years + can have a go at making their own for only £5 or you can pick one up for £3. They're so adorable and as usual, handmade just means so much more. 

After this we headed over to the Cockpit for stories but it was already full, so we had to give it a miss. We weren't the only people to be turned away, and later the same happened at the Puppet Show and I began to wonder if there were too many people attending, or that the buildings chosen for the activities weren't big enough to accommodate the numbers. We were really disappointed to miss these activities; they sounded so lovely. 

George and Molly begged us to go to the fairground so we headed in and decided to give them a few pounds each to spend. There was a lot to do, from hook-a-duck to rides as well as yummy food on offer...


We managed to make it to the Kennixton Barn where there was an abundance of pumpkins, pumpkin carving demonstrations and wand making. It was a very small area for the amount of people and we ended up in a very tight queue waiting for a bit before George and Molly could make their wands. Then it was a bit of a squeeze to decorate them with ribbon and beads, so we did what we could and made a dash for the exit. It was such a shame it involved a lot of waiting, rushing and feeling a bit squished because it's an absolutely lovely activity. 



As we wandered around we saw several spooky characters, from school children to a ghostly woman, they were creepy but Warren wanted more of a scare! I was happy with the level of spookiness to be honest. 

 

At about 8.25pm we headed to the Wicker Man and listened to the history behind it before the lighting, it was pretty powerful listening to everyone scream and shout, 'Burn!'. After this we followed Wonderbrass to the main building with our lanterns to finish the night off.


We had a really lovely time at Halloween Nights, but we were disappointed because we missed out on some fab activities (included in the price of the ticket) due to the sheer volume of people. I definitely think the children get more for the price of the tickets than the adults do, but I also understand that the cost includes the awesome Wonderbrass, spooky actors and all the activities. I think it would be nice for the adult ticket to include something crafty (we weren't offered the chance to make a wand) as well as maybe a refreshment and snack too. 

Overall we enjoyed ourselves immensely and the whole vibe of St Fagans at Halloween is outstanding. I particularly loved the spooky vibe thanks to clever lighting, smoke machines and sound effects. Check out this short video I made whilst we wandered around last night...




Halloween Nights are running at St Fagans from 29th-31st November from 6-9pm, tickets cost £8 per child (3-15 years), £15 per adult and under 2's are free. 


Disclosure: We received free entry in exchange for review. All opinions are 100% honest and my own.
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