When is Belfast Christmas lights switch on 2021? Will Xmas lights get turned on this year - and other events

With Christmas around the corner, we explore what festive events you can enjoy in and around Belfast City Centre.

Friday, 12th November 2021, 5:28 pm

The holiday season is almost upon us and it's once again that time of year when Christmas lights start brightening up those dark evenings.

Last year saw the Belfast Christmas lights switch on and Christmas Market cancelled due to the pandemic, but what is happening this year?

Here’s all you need to know about the Christmas lights switch on in Belfast and other festive events on offer in 2021.

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The Belfast Christmas Market is back this year and kicks off on Saturday, November 20. 2021.

When is Belfast Christmas lights switch on?

This year there will be no lights switch on event in Belfast, but the city will be getting into the festive spirit with the festive lights coming on at Saturday, November 20, 2021.

Instead of a switch on, there will two evenings of events on the Belfast Christmas Market opening weekend, from Saturday, November 20 to Sunday, November 21, 2021.

Based on the theme, ‘Once Upon a Time’, you can enjoy street performances, light projections, animations, music and dancing to get you in the holiday spirit.

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Festive Animations

Belfast will have Christmas themed window displays available throughout the city.

Look out for some festive scenes on the opening weekend of Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 November.

Some animations will stay up throughout the Christmas season, head into the city centre to try and find your favourite!

Music and dance events

There will be lots of music and dance events happening on the opening weekend, from choral classics to lively samba bands.

The city will also be hosting street theatre performances including fire juggling, LED hoop spinning, acrobatics and pop-up street shows featuring Christmas fairies, winter princesses and naughty elves.

Belfast Christmas Market

This year’s Christmas market will be bringing the holiday spirit to Belfast from Saturday, November 20, 2021.

The market offers festive favourites from over 32 nationalities, including crepes from France, Belgian waffles, Dutch pancakes, Spanish paella, tasty nougat from Italy and the German beer tent.

There will also be plenty of local food and arts and crafts, with traders joining from St George’s Market and the carousel and vintage Helter Skelter will also be returning.

Access to the Market on busy weekends will require proof of vaccination or asked to take a lateral flow test prior to entry.

Botanic Gardens Bright Lights Festival

Dissapointed there will be no switch on event? If bright lights are your thing, then get down to Botanic Gardens for their Bright Lights Festival.

This dazzling light trail features over 18,000 light bulbs, 25,000 meters of neon tubes, 10,000 meters of tree lighting, and 160 lanterns with festive designs.

There's also plenty of tasty festive treats on offer from hot chocolate to spiced winter warmers.

Bright Lights Festival kicks off from November 11 to January 9 from 5pm to 9pm daily.

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