Christmas is fast approaching and you may already be thinking about when your little one can meet Santa ahead of the big day.

This year a number of places across Essex are also offering youngsters and their parents a chance to dine with Father Christmas too.

Here we have rounded up some of the places where the experience is being offered.

Fenwick, Colchester

The store will be hosting Santa’s Breakfast Club on two dates.

Youngsters will be able to meet Santa on Saturday November 27 and Friday December 17.

You can fill up on all your Christmas favourites at Carluccio’s while little ones enjoy a spot of colouring, with reindeer antlers and crayons handed out to especially good girls and boys.

Not only will you meet the man himself inside our magical grotto, but you can also help his elves to make Pom Poms.

It costs £23.50 per person. Vegetarian and vegan options are available.

Stay and Play, Basildon

The venue is hosting its breakfast with Santa events once again. 

There is availability on December 11 and 12, December 18 and 19 and December 23 and 24.

Costs start at £20 per child and £12.50 per adult.

Food options include a full English, veggie breakfast and scrambled eggs and salmon for adults and smaller portions for little ones including pancakes.

Poplar Nurseries, Marks Tey

The garden centre is expected to host its popular breakfast with Santa event again this year.

Dates and times are still to be confirmed.

For more details visit

Toby Carvery – Basildon, Colchester, Chelmsford, Clacton, Southend

Santa will be visiting for breakfast at Toby Carverys across the country on a number of dates in December.

He will be at the restaurants on December 11, 12, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23 and 24.

Pre-booking is essential and people are advised to check times and dates with their local branch.

Harvester – Colchester, Chelmsford, Rayleigh, Basildon, Benfleet, Southend

You can treat your little ones to breakfast with Santa at Harvesters across Essex.

He will be making visits on December 4, 5, 11, 12, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23 and 24.

Pre booking is required and costs start at £6.99 per child.

And if breakfast doesn't appeal to you.... 

Stoke by Nayland Resort

The hotel will be putting on a three course meal for little ones and their families.

It will take place on December 19 from 12.30pm to 3.30pm.

Santa will also be giving out gifts.

Costs start from £12 for two to six year olds and £17 for seven to 12 years old. Adults are £29.