Mariah Carey has defrosted, Michael Buble is emerging out of hibernation: the Christmas season is officially upon us. 

If you're looking for things to do to entertain the family this winter, there are a huge variety of festive events taking place across Scotland.

Of course there's the Glasgow and Edinburgh Christmas markets, the lights switch-ons, and  the Castle of Light show. 

But here are a few fun and unusual Christmas experiences in Scotland you might not have thought of, from opera shows to reindeer selfies and cosy drive-in movies. 

Watch Christmas drive-in movies

The Herald: See Elf at the Christmas drive-in moviesSee Elf at the Christmas drive-in movies (Image: Itison)

Where: Loch Lomond Shores, Ben Lomond Way

When: December 15-24

Watch Christmas classics like ELF, It's a Wonderful Life, Home Alone, Arthur Christmas and How the Grinch Stole Christmas at a drive-in cinema on the shores of Loch Lomond. 

There will be 21 screenings of festive movies on the "world's biggest mobile LED screen" at the popular event, which is celebrating its 10th year. 

Limited tickets are still available, costing around £38 per car. 

How to get tickets: To purchase tickets, visit Itisoncom/drivein

Meet a reindeer at the Cairngorms

The Herald:

Where: Glenmore village, east of Aviemore

When: December 2, 3, 9, 10, 21, 22, 23, 24

The Cairngorm reindeer herd has been free-roaming the national park for more than 70 years.

At Christmas time, the paddocks are adorned with tinsel and festive decorations, children can complete a festive quiz, and Father Christmas comes to visit. 

Around four or five of the reindeer will be on display, though visitors won't be able to feed them as they are wild animals.  

Tickets are expected to sell out quickly. They cost £5 per person, with children below the age of two going free. 

How to get tickets: Visit

Sing along at The Elf Games

The Herald: The Elf Games will be festive fun for the familyThe Elf Games will be festive fun for the family (Image: Children's Classic Concerts)

Where: Edinburgh Usher Hall and Glasgow Royal Concert Hall 

When: December 3 at 3pm in Edinburgh, December 9 at 1pm and 3.30pm in Glasgow

Children's Classic Concerts has teamed up with the Royal Scottish National Opera, RSNO Youth Choruses and the Manor School of Ballet for a magical Christmas performance.

The Elf Games will see the orchestra teamed with the choir and ballet to deliver popular festive performances and singalongs for families. 

Expect traditional on-stage escapades like snow ball fights and a spirited programme which features the music of  Tchaikovsky and Rimsky-Korsakov. 

How to get tickets:  Book your tickets at

Get a selfie with Dasher and Dancer

The Herald: Santa's reindeer are paying a visit from the North PoleSanta's reindeer are paying a visit from the North Pole (Image: Nikola Johnny Mirkovic)

Where: Crieff Hydro Hotel, Perthshire

When: Throughout December 2023

Children can meet Santa's reindeer in the grounds of Crieff Hydro Hotel's 900 acre estate. 

Visitors can get up close to the animals for a supervised walk around their enclosure with reindeer experts. The experience will be complete with a selfie at the end. 

It is part of a winter wonderland at the estate which also includes a Santa's Grotto, ice skating, pantomime, and fairground rides. 

How to get tickets: Tickets are on sale from £12 at

Visit Europe's biggest indoor funfair

The Herald: Irn-Bru Carnival in GlasgowIrn-Bru Carnival in Glasgow (Image: Irn-Bru Carnival)

Where: SEC Glasgow

When: December 22 - January 14, 2023 (Closed Christmas day)

Described as the largest indoor funfair in Europe, Irn-Bru Carnival fills Glasgow's SEC each winter with thrill rides, classic stalls, and a huge inflatable play area. 

The entertainment includes arcade games, bungee trampolines, Whac-A-Minion, a climbing wall, face painting and more.

Tickets are still on sale for the popular event, at £18.50 for adults and children aged three and under going free.

How to get ticktes: To get tickets, visit