Lightopia returns to bring Christmas magic to Manchester

Lightopia opened to the public last week for its fourth year dazzling Manchester's visitors

Presenting a Christmas Fantasy at Heaton Park, Lightopia brings an illuminated trail that features magical and multi-sensory interactive lights, lanterns, and installations, illustrating a story of an imaginative and fantasy festive world.

This year’s festival is partnered with the Lord Mayor’s charity, We Love MCR, to raise money to support young people to fulfil their potential.

Visitors can expect to experience ‘never before seen’ immersive audiovisual displays which include the glorious main event – the Pheonix – which pushes the boundaries of music and art through a spell-binding five minute display.

Reflecting on another successful launch, Ian Xiang, Creative Director of Lightopia, said, “We are very pleased to see people back at Lightopia to share in the magic of Christmas. This year’s festival is brand new to Manchester and we even think our best yet.

“We have illuminations and rides to spark joy in all ages; from the littlest ones to adults, everyone is welcome here at Lightopia. We hope to see you soon!”

The trail celebrates new beginnings and the circle of life, very fitting as the season changes and new year draws closer.

But for those particularly seeking a festive experience like no other in the city, the new ‘Christmas Story by Lightopia’ illuminations are sure to get the whole family in the Christmas spirit.

Starting at ‘Guardian Gate’, from the very first step, visitors are transported into a winter wonderland, with vibrant light installations from animals and nature, to the stunning lakeside water show projections.

At this year’s festival is the exciting return of the popular heated canopy dining in the courtyard outside The Stables Café, featuring twinkling decorations and festive tunes to bring the Christmas cheer. Serving a range of seasonal dishes including pulled pork hog roast, vintage airstream serving Holland’s popular vegan scotch egg, and stone-baked pizzas, as well as festive tipples to warm you inside, Lightopians can indulge in locally produced hot food and drink curated by a team of chefs to complete their experience.

This cosy bookable dining experience is available to add on at the checkout with any ticket purchases.

There are also ride vouchers available to purchase in advance, for extra family fun at the fairground!

Recognising and reacting to unprecedented times faced by all, this year introduced new accessible pricing options available on selected weekdays throughout November and December, including the launch date, to help with rising living costs.

Advance tickets are priced at £17.50 for adults off-peak and £22.50 at peak times or days, from £11.00 for children off-peak and £14.50 peak, and £49.00 for families of two adults and two children off-peak and £69.00 peak.

Children under three can go free at all times.

Essential carers of disabled visitors can attend for free, the disabled visitor pays the normal admission fee.

If you’d like to buy tickets please click here.




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Manchester is a successful city, but there are many people that suffer. The I Love MCR Foundation helps raise vital funds to help improve the lives and prospects of people across Greater Manchester – and we can’t do it without your help. So please donate what you can because investing in your local community to help it thrive can be a massively rewarding experience. There’s a unique sense of satisfaction in knowing that you are making a real difference in the lives of others, especially those close to home.


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