Longleat’s hugely successful Festival of Light will be brightening up even the darkest of wintry days when it makes a welcome return from November 5th (Daily from December 1st).

Nutcracker Guards outside Longleat House as part of their Festival of Light 2017 event

The Wiltshire estate was the first place in the UK to hold such an event back in 2014 and remains the biggest; with thousands of giant Chinese lanterns transforming the estate into a winter wonderland.

Drawing inspiration from tales new and old, this year’s festival will see visitors transported into a world of fantasy – a mythical land where mermaids swim in the lake, princesses live in castles, firebirds fly and dragons roar.

Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf at Longleat’s Festival of Light 2017

Wander through magical settings depicting famous scenes from Snow White, Rapunzel, Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretel, The Snow Queen and Beauty and the Beast.

At 25.5 metres Rapunzel’s tower will be the largest lantern ever constructed for the Festival of Light and a total of 30,000 metres of silk have been used to create the displays – enough to wrap around Longleat House 124 times.

Other displays will feature a giant 30 metre long floating galleon on the lake, fire dragons, the Ugly Duckling and the Little Mermaid.

All the lanterns have been created by a team of highly-skilled artists from Zigong in China’s Sichuan province, which has been staging lantern festivals for more than 2,000 years.

The Seven Dwarfs at Longleat’s Festival of Light 2017

The giant enchanted animated musical Christmas Tree will be returning with its tale of festive joy and the Santa Trains will be transporting visitors to Father Christmas’ wintry woodland home; where elves will welcome you into his grotto.

Visitors can also experience a winter safari and the illuminated hedge maze.

Longleat House will be decorated for an authentic, grandiose Edwardian Christmas complete with live characters dotted throughout to make you really feel like you have travelled back through time.

The Festival of Light at Longleat opens Fridays to Sundays from November 5th to 26th. Daily from December 1st to January 3rd (excluding Christmas Day).

For more information on the Festival of Light go to www.longleat.co.uk/whats-on/seasonal-events. Advance booking is essential.