The best of Scotland's Christmas celebrations for enjoying food and drink

From the return of traditional Christmas markets to breakfast with Santa Claus, here is a sample of some of the upcoming celebrations taking place in Scotland this season.

Exclusively Highlands’ Christmas Fair has returned to Eden Court in Inverness, after two years’ absence, with more than 60 exhibitors. Inside the venue is an ideal place for Christmas shopping, however, a range of delicious street food awaits outside.

Those wishing to take home some tasty treats can choose from a range of cheeses, seafood, bags of coffee, pies, preserves and venison, as well as some quirky alcoholic sauces by Slainte Sauces.

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The event runs today and tomorrow, from 10am to 5pm, and entrance is free.

The inaugural Enchanted Festival is set to enhance Balgone Estate’s yuletide offering
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Next Friday marks the return of Dundee WinterFest in the city’s Slessor Gardens following a successful debut last year.

Bavarian-style huts lined the illuminated full-scale ice rink and served up candyfloss, sweets, gingerbread, churros and hot Belgian waffles.

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The free-to-enter 2022 event will feature more than 20 stalls offering food and crafts, the return of the big wheel and vintage funfair. More than 200,000 visitors are expected to attend Dundee WinterFest, which will run until New Year’s Day.

In Fife, afternoon tea lovers can enjoy a plentiful selection of sweet and savoury delicacies next to a log fire at Falkland Estate.

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Five festively decorated horse stalls can seat up to six people and provide the perfect setting for enjoying tasty treats together.

Hot drinks are part of the package, priced at £90 per person, but guests are welcome to bring a bottle at no extra charge.

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The event runs next Saturday, 2pm to 4pm, and can be booked online at falklandestate.co.uk

And, in the Capital, Scotland’s biggest Christmas market, situated in East Princes Street Gardens, will also make a comeback next Friday.

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More than 70 traditional chalets will showcase some of Scotland’s finest producers and those from across the UK and Europe.

Visitors can tuck into various sweet treats including freshly-made mini pancakes, crepes and doughnuts, or take home bespoke gastronomic gifts.

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Whatever the weather, warm dishes – including mac ‘n’ cheese, hot dogs and ramen – will provide comfort and cosiness. The market will open daily between 10am and 10pm until Sunday, 3 January.

Just over half-an-hour away, at South Queensferry, the two-day Hopetoun House Christmas Shopping Fair will be held from next Saturday.

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More than 60 vendors will proffer a range of artisan gifts, including All That’s Delicious’ handmade tablet, BeeHype Honey, and Ogilvy Spirits.

An afternoon tea in the Stables Kitchen, priced at £28 per person, boasts a mouthwatering menu featuring spiced Viennese whirls with bramble jam, vanilla buttercream and pistachio as well as turkey, cranberry and chestnut stuffing sausage rolls with crispy sage leaf.

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The event runs between 10am to 4.30pm and details on how to book can be found at hopetoun.co.uk

In East Lothian, Balgone Estate will be transformed into a winter wonderland from Friday, 2 December, for the first Enchanted Festival, a new venture from the team behind Foodies Festival.

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The family-friendly event will include a light trial around the lake, Santa’s Grotto fairground rides and animals. Street food vendors will serve some of the best locally-produced burgers, pizza, burritos and festive mulled wine, hot toddies and Baileys hot chocolate.

Children can try their hand at biscuit making, while their parents can be freed to take on the challenge of cocktail masterclasses.

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Enchanted Festival will run over the first three weekends of December, from 10am to 8pm, with tickets priced at £10 for adults and £5 for children.

Those with wee ones should also look south to Abbotsford House, near Melrose, in the Scottish Borders. The home of Sir Walter Scott is hosting a breakfast with Santa Claus on Saturday, 10 and Sunday, 11 December and the following weekend.

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The adult’s menu includes a fry-up, with vegetarian options available, while children can enjoy sausage, beans and toast.

There will be a range of fun-filled activities and children can meet the Big Man himself, while being placed on the nice list. More information can be found online at www.scottsabbotsford.com

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Glasgow’s Scottish Events Campus will host The Big Feed Christmas Family Festival over the weekend of 10 and 11 December.

Some of the city’s most popular street food vendors will provide all manner of tasty temptation, including slow-cooked meats, halloumi fries, messy burgers, and inventive seasonal vegetarian dishes.

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Also on hand will be face painters, balloon twisters, carol singers and a well-stocked bar.

Buy tickets for the event online at www.big-feed.com