We don’t know about Rudolph but this will go down in history as the biggest Christmas celebration yet in Edinburgh.

Underbelly have been running Edinburgh’s Christmas for five years now and this year 781,520 tickets were sold showing an increase of 13% on last year. With discounts for those with an EH postcode locals bought 9% more tickets than they did in 2016 with 142,333 booked in this manner.

The works created by school pupils who competed in Winter Windows were shown off to better advantage this year in Parliament Square, Kirkgate Plaza, Craigmillar Library, Drumbrae Library and at Wester Hailes Westside Plaza, allowing many more to enjoy the works.

There was a Giant Advent Calendar projected onto the facade at General Register House and The Ice Adventure was quite spectacular (if a little chilly!)

La Clique Noël provided outstanding adult entertainment at the Famous Spiegeltent on Festival Square featuring fire-breathing sword swallowing and quite literally breathtaking music and acts, this was a show not to be missed.

©Ian Georgeson

Charlie Wood and Ed Bartlam, Directors, Edinburgh’s Christmas said: “What another bumper year with record tickets sales and more locals than ever engaging in Edinburgh’s Christmas. In our fifth year of producing the event, we were delighted to introduce some great new attractions, most especially the Ice Adventure which transported visitors into an historical and mythical Scottish winter wonderland.

“We are especially proud 0f the extension of Winter Windows out of the city centre and into local communities and of the introduction of Edinburgh’s Giant Advent Calendar – both entirely free attractions that help spread Christmas joy across the city.”

Edinburgh’s Lord Provost, Frank Ross said: “Edinburgh’s Christmas was a real show-stopper, with more tickets sold than ever before, a welcome rise in the number of Edinburgh residents enjoying their local discount, and people from 47 countries flying in to experience the city’s rides, attractions and everything the city has to offer.

“In its fifth year, Edinburgh’s Christmas certainly remains one of the UK’s favourite winter destinations. Today’s figures prove the Festival continues to attract record numbers of visitors and supports footfall to the city centre – providing a welcome boost to our local economy while bringing everyone together to enjoy Edinburgh in winter. A huge well done to everyone involved.”


John Donnelly, Chief Executive, Marketing Edinburgh said: “Edinburgh’s Christmas 2017 offering exceeded expectations and has proven incredibly popular with visitors and residents alike. To have the city recognised as hosting the UK’s best Christmas Market was a huge highlight.  The expansion of the event’s footprint, stretching it from General Register House at the East End of Princes Street to Festival Square, was particularly successful in encouraging people to further explore the city centre’s shops, bars and restaurants.”


Roddy Smith, Chief Executive of Essential Edinburgh said: “We are delighted that Edinburgh’s Christmas continues to go from strength to strength, with the numbers of both visitors and locals enjoying all that the festive season in the city can offer up again this year.

“The Edinburgh’s Christmas celebration, which is supported by Essential Edinburgh, is recognised throughout the world as making Scotland’s Capital the place to be at this time of year, driving footfall, trade and opportunities for our retail and hospitality sectors in particular at this vital trading time.”