Festive Fun 2023 – Activities in Burythorpe, Malton & York

Your December 2023 Guide

A celebration of what's on in Malton and surrounding villages

Welcome to this year’s round-up of fabulously festive things to do for adults (and their dogs) in the most beautiful part of Yorkshire. 

This is the list as we stand at the end of November… bookmark this page as I’ll be updating this everytime I find something new 🙂 

🐾 Dog friendly 

🔗 Details are correct when I publish them – all listings have a link –  check times, doggy access and booking information.

Donkey Burythorpe

Hey, I'm Gemma - curious explorer of Yorkshire and host at Kingfisher & Yew

This curated list started as a guide for the lovely couples staying with us, and quickly evolved into this celebration of events happening in the beautiful countryside around here. I hope you find something you enjoy!


Whether you're treating your partner to a day out, or nurturing your inner introvert with a solo adventure, you'll be sure to find something to enjoy here.

Malton Christmas festival

@Malton Market Place

Saturday 2nd & Sunday 3rd December

The huge 2 day Malton Christmas Festival is the shopping event of the year. Expect a fabulous weekend of festive fun in and around Malton’s picturesque Market Place, with delicious food and festive gift stalls, street food, live music from local brass bands and choirs and family entertainment. Malton’s shops will be packed with Christmas gift ideas too – stay a while longer and explore the many charming streets across town on your visit. 


Stargazing in Dalby

@Dalby Forest

Several Dates - check for availability

Astro Dog offer exciting, interactive, stargazing sessions in the enchanting setting of Dalby Forest. Dalby Forest is a designated Dark Sky Discovery Site and is set within the heart of the picturesque North York Moors National Park. 


Guests can enjoy a guided tour of the night sky, learning about stars, asterisms, constellations, star-hopping and how to navigate the night sky. Use telescopes and binoculars to view the planets, the Moon and stunning deep space objects such as double stars, star clusters, galaxies and nebulae. 



North Yorkshire Open Studios - Winter Open Studios Event

@Malton (and across North Yorkshire!)

Saturday 2nd & Sunday 3rd December

Various artists across North Yorkshire including some Malton based artists too are throwing open their doors. Check the website for various artists locations.


Artists in Residence - Fiona Bowley

@Dalby Forest

Every day - available all day

The sculpture is located on the Jerry Noddle viewpoint trail.

‘My work is often informed by the beauty of stone in the ancient classical world, and my sculpture for Dalby Forest references the rock carvings of the Nabateans (4th century BCE – 1st century CE), around Petra in Jordan, and Sasanian carvings in Bishapur, Iran (260CE).

I am interested in the devices that sculptors employ to raise the status of their subjects, for example with ornamentation, posture or scale. I use these devices in my sheep sculpture; standing my Sheep on magnificent plinths and carving elaborately decorated fleeces.

My Winged Sheep for Dalby Forest stands within a small shrine (an aedicula) cut into a huge sandstone rock. A small procession of sheep, also carved directly into the rockface, bow and kneel in homage to the Winged Sheep above them.’ 


Yoga in Dalby Forest

@Dalby Forest

Every Wednesday

Step away from your normal routine and try yoga in Dalby Forest, hosted by Chantelle from The Balance Rooms.

This class is suitable for all abilities and will guide you through a series of movements to help rejuvenate, restore and refresh.


Artists in Residence - Layla Khoo

@Dalby Forest

Every day - available all day

Custodians is located from the bike trails car park near Adderstone field

“Custodians” is an evolving installation, inspired by the history that the Forestry Commission is charged with preserving, and the future they plan to protect beyond their own lifetimes. 

Life-sized porcelain rabbits are placed in an otherwise unseen man-made rabbit warren, of sufficient historical importance to be listed as a scheduled monument, and yet lost to most visitors as part of the forest floor. These other-worldly white rabbits gaze upwards at viewers, their eyes silvery and reflecting the light shining down on them, highlighting the history of this land. This art work identifies the site in the present. The future of the site will be marked with sapling yew trees planted around its perimeter, an evolving feature with its own folklore connotations of death and rebirth, which will only come into fruition years after the sculptures have gone.


Ryedale Vineyards tours - Mulled Wine in the Vineyard

@Ryedale Vineyard, Westow

Sunday 3rd, 10th & 17th December

Join us for mulled wine in the Vineyard every Sunday afternoon until 17th December, where you can enjoy a wintry wander in the vineyard as a perfect antidote to all the Christmas chaos.  The outdoor horsebox bar will be serving mulled wine, spiced cider, hot chocolate with all the trimmings and home made mince pies. 

The cellar shop is stocked full of Westow grown and made wine and cider, plus handmade beeswax candles from the vineyard hives.  The shop will also be offering free tastings and discounts on cases of wine, an ideal opportunity to buy a bottle or two to accompany your Christmas feast.  Highly recommend 🙂


Be Amazing Arts presents: A Christmas Carol

@Kemps General Store, Malton

Tuesday 5th - Sunday 24 December

An immersive theatre and dining experience in the streets and buildings of Malton.

Follow Dickens around Malton’s beautiful marketplace, as he tells the story and brings to life, before your eyes, the classic and loved characters of A Christmas Carol.

The promenade show ticket price includes a food platter from The Cooks Place Malton, as we celebrate with the ghost of Christmas Present and a warm winter drink to toast to the goodwill of Christmas. 


Gingerbread House Making Workshop

@The Patisserie, Malton

Friday 8th December

The popular gingerbread house making workshops brought to you by The Patisserie are filling up fast. Places are limited so be sure to book your tickets now. 

Join Patisserie owner, Andrew who will demonstrate how to assemble the gingerbread house in detail, with a few tricks to help them stay up! 


Festive Wreathmaking Workshop

@Sledmore House, Sledmore

Friday 8th & Saturday 9th December

Using natural Sledmere foraged materials, Jan and Clare will show you all the tips of the trade in order to creatively make and take home your very own festive Christmas wreath.

Included on the day:

– Tea or coffee and a glass of Prosecco, plus a mince pie.

– All equipment and materials.

– Entry into the Sledmere’s grounds and beautiful walled garden

– A showstopping Christmas Wreath to take away


Swinton & District Excelsior Band

@Milton Rooms, Malton

Sunday 10th December

You are invited to a Free Christmas concert from the Swinton band – featuring the main band, their Training Band and Beginners Group.

They will be holding a raffle and having a retiring collection to help towards band funds.


Take a tour of our adults-only, dog-friendly, rural retreats

Explore 300 years of history in our recently renovated farmers cottage with salt water, log burning hot tub.

Malton Saturday Market: Monthly Arts & Crafts Market

@Malton Market Place

Saturday 16th December

Find crafts from locally based artsists, ceramics to crafters and more and have a browse alongside the Malton Traditional Market.


Huge at Christmas!

@Milton Rooms, Malton

Saturday 16th December

If you’re looking for the ultimate Christmas party join HUGE, the ultimate party band.

Few bands cover the range of material they play, including Bruno Mars, Olly Murs, The Killers, The Kaiserchiefs, Take That, Justin Timberlake, Michael Buble, ABBA, Queen, Tom Jones, The Commitments, Barry White, Madness, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, James Brown, Kings of Leon and even Dolly Parton, as well as 70s disco and Motown classics.


Winter Solstice Yoga Special in Dalby

@Dalby Forest

Wednesday 20th December

Join us on the first floor of the Dalby Forest visitor centre for a winter solstice special evening, including a cacao ceremony, yoga, breathwork, and a relaxing guided meditation that will melt into a sound bath. After practice, there will be homemade muffins and herbal teas available and time to share any thoughts or feelings surrounding winter solstice.


New Year's Eve Celebrations

@Dewars Restaurant, Malton

Sunday 31st December

Bring in the New Year with a spectacular celebration at Dewars Restaurant and Rooms. Begin the evening with a welcome drink followed by a delicious three course meal, created by the expert chefs at the hotel. Then raise a toast and enjoy the vibrant ambiance as the countdown to the stroke of midnight begins with a live DJ set from DJ O’Brien Hesson.


In York

York is utterly gorgeous at this time of year. In the darkness you can roam cobbled streets, enjoying the twinkling lights and exploring the hidden historic pathways between some of the most famous streets. There is a large festive tree visible from the world famous glass fronted victorian tea room, Bettys and often musicians filling the air with music and the joyful spirit of the festive season.

 There are ample opportunities for visiting food markets too – with woods chalets complementing the charm of the city.

York Christmas Festival & Market

From 16 November to 22 December, York will be transformed into a festive haven with more than 75 alpine chalets adorning Parliament Street and St Sampson’s Square for York Christmas Market.


Yorkshire Yuletide Village

Made in Yorkshire will once again brings a unique selection of Yorkshire based designer makers to the newly restored The Guildhall, nestled behind the mansion house in St Helen’s square in the heart of York.


Yorkshires Winter Wonderland

At York Designer Outlet you’ll find Yorkshires Winter Wonderland – an outdoor skating rink and chalet serving warm festive beverages. This is out of the city centre, so parking should be easy. 


Theatre, Opera & Comedy

Other fun things to do

A day at the races | yorkracecourse.co.uk/racing-fixtures.html

Explore York’s chocolate history (they have a truffle event on right now which looks delicious!) | yorkschocolatestory.com/events/

Find viking re-enactments and outdoor drama | visityork.org/whats-on


If you’re interested in York you may also like these guides:

Gardens to visit near Malton and York

Historical Places to visit near Malton & York

Adrenaline adventures near Malton and York

Michelin Star Dining within 35 Minutes

Year round events & activities in Burythorpe

Afternoon Tea & Tennis

Afternoon Teas are available daily at Burythorpe House Hotel  12-4pm with tables available in the dining room, the garden or in front of one of the roaring log fires (yes please!)

Vegan & GF available and pre-booking required: Contact reception 01653 658200

Paying customers can also play tennis on their courts, bring your rackets.

Food & Monthly Pub Quiz

Show off your general knowledge in the lovely 17th Century former coach house. Local ales and a friendly bunch make this a lovely way to spend an evening.

Check their Facebook page for quiz dates and other events here:


Massage with Jasmine

If you’re staying with us, Jasmine can be booked (directly with her) to provide massage and other beauty services. I love this at Yew Tree with the salt-water hot tub.


Yoga with Anna

If you’re staying with us, Anna can be booked (directly with her) to help you unwind with 1:1 or 1:2 private yoga sessions.

Get yourself booked into our luxury adults-only rural retreat

Lakeside cabin in the woods Burythorpe, Malton

Kingfisher Cabin

Tuck yourself away in the woods

Stay in our hand crafted log cabin with private lakeside, outdoor bath and woodland book-nook.

Expected early summer 2023

Yew Tree Cottage

Steep yourself in history

Stay in our recently renovated 17th century country cottage with salt water, log burning hot tub.

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