If you’re in Northampton no doubt you’ve heard of the Lap of Lights at the Silverstone circuit. It’s a pretty cool way to get your Santa grotto fix from afar. My 4 year old is unsure of Santa and always has been, so the set up at the Silverstone lights is perfect for her. It’s also probably the most covid safe option in my opinion.
Ad – I visited in 2021 via free/gifted press tickets with no obligation to review. My review shares my personal experience, including the good and bad.
Silverstone Lap of Lights 2021
So, what’s it all about? Well, I guess you could split the Lap of Lights into three experiences; the Lap of Lights itself, the Lap of Lights Silverstone Lodge, and the activity zone, including pit lane ice skating (possibly my favourite part!).
Lap of Lights
Technically the star of the show, a visit to Silverstone at Christmas gets you a drive round the famous Silverstone circuit in your very own car. Sure, not at the same speed as the race cars, but the slower pace allows you to see the cool light installations dotted along the track.
This year it’s supposed to replicate Santa’s trip around the world, so you’ll find installations synonymous with different continents. If I’m honest, I wasn’t blown away with the installations. In my opinion, they look better from afar. However, my two absolutely loved them and I guess that’s the main thing.
At each section the kids can look out for a cut out Santa. This was great for my 4 year old as by the time we reached the end, where there’s a real Santa waving goodbye, she was warmed up and comfortable. At the end Santa and his elves wave, so slow down, roll down the windows and let the kids shout to him. My two loved it and my 6 year old had a sheepish smile for a good few minutes after the elf blew him a kiss!
Lap of Lights Silverstone Lodge
The Lodge is an apres-ski style lodge, complete with mouth-watering Christmas cocktails, music and hot food. It has a great vibe to really get you in the spirit. My two loved the music, bopping around. However, I would definitely prefer to hang out in this lodge sans kids and with a designated driver – it’s just too much fun!
Expect to pay a fortune – around a tenner a cocktail. And have your game plan ready if the kids spot the souvenir corner.
Tip: Head to the back of the lodge. The bar area is usually quieter and there’s a kid section where they can write and post a letter to Santa or chill out on the beanbags with a Christmas movie on the big screen, while you sip your token drink!
At the back of the lodge you’ll find a bean bag area, with Christmas movies (Elf was showing when I went, so not necessarily for young ones). There are also a few little Ikea tables with paper and crayons for the kids to write to Santa. And post it in the red post box, of course.
Oh and don’t miss the little staged photo areas, with ski lodge props.
Then upstairs you’ll find axe throwing and curling. Obviously. My two liked watching people do these, but thankfully, were then happy to run back downstairs.
Tip: There’s also a small bar up here that is often quieter than the main downstairs one.
Back downstairs and outside, you’ll find my favourite activity at the Lap of Lights – the pit lane ice skating! I love ice skating so am well-versed with the typical rink, but this one feels different because it’s in the pit lane. There’s a typical rink shape, but that leads to a narrow lane that then scoops back on itself to rejoin the main rink.
My two took it in turns to be whizzed round by me while they stood on the classic penguin skate aids. It’s great fun!
The ice skates are pretty decent quality and there wasn’t much of a queue to get them or return. There’s a small refreshment stand around the rink, as well as a car and other Silverstone bits for super fans.
Lap of Lights Silverstone YouTube
You can watch the Lap of Lights Silverstone 2021 video here:
How Much Does Lap of Lights Cost?
Tickets for the Lap of Lights start at £30 per car, but expect to pay around £60 for peak days like Christmas Eve. This ticket includes access to the Lodge, but excludes food (c. £10-15 for a dish), drink (c. £10 for a cocktail) and extra activities.
Prices for ice skating start from £8 per adult and £6 per child.
You can find out more here.
When is the Silverstone Christmas Event?
Lap of Lights usually starts mid November through to end December.
Is Silverstone Lap of Lights worth it?
So I think this comes down to a few things. If you want a reasonably covid safe Santa outting, this is the one. If you do just the Lap of Lights you’re in your car in your own little bubble for the duration, so it feels safe.
Similarly, if your child is afraid of Santa, this is a good option to see the main man with a bit of distance.
If you don’t want to spend a fortune, this isn’t the one. In my opinion, there are much better family-friendly Christmas experiences for a lot less.
Overall, my two loved it. As we drove out they were bombarding me with thank yous and telling me how amazing it was. My mum and I, however, were left feeling a little flat. The lights look better from afar – up close it feels like there should be more.
The start of the Lap of Lights experience was also a bit frustrating. We sat in a queue for 25-minutes, waiting to edge closer to the start. Sure, there’s a Santa radio to tune into, where they play shout outs, but at best it’s a glorified traffic jam.
Tip: Bring plenty of snacks or car activities to keep their mood light while you wait.
My mum and I loved the ski lodge, but that’s not the most family-friendly if you want to maximise on the delicious cocktails.
I’d definitely say the pit stop ice skating is well-worth it, but I appreciate that’s an extra cost.
Where is it?
Silverstone Circuit, Towcester, NN12 8TN
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