Countdown to Christmas in Gibraltar

Lights, carols, plum pudding and the best of British traditions

Check out our December-to-January festive guide

Gibraltar lights up for Christmas on Black Friday IMAGE HM Government of Gibraltar

Gibraltar lights up for Christmas on Black Friday IMAGE HM Government of Gibraltar

On November 23 the Rock lights up with thousands of twinkling bulbs, announcing the arrival of the festive season early in true British style!

In 2018 the BIG Christmas Switch On coincides with Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year. Get your presents wrapped up early and stay for the party – Santa Claus is coming to town!

From then until Spanish Christmas Day on January 6, it’s jingle bells all the way in the British territory.

The Christmas Lights Festival is a magical family show

The Christmas Lights Festival is a magical family show

Main Street shop windows get tinselled up like a scene from A Christmas Carol - and some of Gibraltar’s emporiums have been trading since Charles Dickens’ time!


In this Oxford Street-sur-Med, you’ll find all the top British stores, plus ye olde English pubs serving three-course Christmas lunches. With carol singers in the streets and stores playing all your favourite Britpop hits from Christmases past, summoning up the festive spirit is a cinch, even if the sun’s shining.

That’s the best thing about Christmas shopping in Gibraltar – the un-British weather! If you’re dreaming of a white Christmas, bad luck …it only comes in a spray can here! 


Highlights from this year’s festive calendar

November 23: Gibraltar Festival of Lights


John Mackintosh Square, from 6pm

The big Christmas lights switch-on with carols and a visit from Father Christmas and his elves. The lights stay lit until January 6.

November 23-December 22: Christmas Market


The Boulevard, Line Wall Road

An artisan market selling home-made gifts and sweet treats. Open every Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 12pm-8pm and Saturdays from 10am-8pm.

November 26-December 2: Magic Festival


John Mackintosh Hall, matinees and evenings

Fun for all the family as Europe’s top magicians, illusionists and circus acts astound you with their superhuman skills. Prices, times and tickets from

November 29: The Convent Christmas Fair


Governor’s Residence, 12.00-19.00

Stacks of stalls selling festive goodies. Tickets, £2. Information from The Convent reception.

December 1-January 14: Christmas Fun Fair


John Mackintosh Square, 12.00-19.00

Rides and slides for little ones.

December 26: Polar Bear Swim


Catalan Bay

Traditional Boxing Day charity swim followed by hot toddies. Take the plunge in a good cause! Starts around midday.

December 31: New Year’s Eve Party


Casemates Square, 22.30-03.00

Live bands, DJs, midnight countdown and fireworks to see you merrily into 2019

January 4: Three Kings Cavalcade


Main Street, from19.30

Gibraltar celebrates Spanish Three Kings Night a day early with a fancy dress procession and a carnival party. You can catch the festivities over the border next day!

EVERYONE dresses up for Three Kings Night

EVERYONE dresses up for Three Kings Night

Christmas shopping in Gibraltar?

Check out our Ultimate Main Street Shopping Guide for tips and tricks.

Rock the shops in 5 Easy Steps!

Rock the shops in 5 Easy Steps!

Belinda BeckettComment