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9 games to play at home on Christmas afternoon


On the hunt for some ideas to keep the crew entertained and busy at home on Christmas day?

Christmas Party Games | SolStock

Whether you’re hosting the type of guests who are keen to play something indoors – seated with a wine in hand – or the type who’d prefer to get more active in the garden, there are games to suit each mood, every room of the house and different property sizes.

Here’s a wrap up of the best games to play over Christmas to suit everyone and each space.

To play in the living or family room

1. Guess how many ornaments are on the tree

This game can be played wherever your Christmas tree is set up and is a great option for homes both big and small. All you need is a Christmas tree (of any size) set up with decorations (that you’ve actually counted).

Simply set up a box with paper and pens next to it and ask everyone to guess how many decorations are on the tree. Get them to write their name and answer on a piece of paper and pop it into the box.

The person who guesses closest wins. A prize perhaps?

2. Christmas carol charades

© Iuliia Gusakova | 123rf

Is there anything better than a game of charades at a family gathering? Yes, yes there is. Christmas-themed charades.

You’ll need a host to stand up and run the show and they’ll need a list of Christmas carols – as many as possible is best.

Divide your group into even teams. The aim of the game is for the teams to take turns to send a member to the host who will secretly tell them the name of a Christmas song.

The person will act the song out – without speaking – until the team can guess the name of the carol (or until a sand egg timer has ended). The team keeps going and scoring points until they don’t guess in the timeframe.

The host will keep score. You can decide to keep going until all songs are acted out or base it on the best score within an hour.

Read more: 6 Christmas decorating ideas

Play around the dining table

3. Christmas movie trivia

Trivia is definitely an old favourite at family gatherings – just be wary of the competitive types (you know who they are)!

Create your own trivia and print out the sheets for everyone, or you can find some online. Here’s a free one.

4. What’s in Santa’s hat?

There’s plenty of fun to be had with a Santa’s hat – even indoors. Picture: Getty

This is perfect to play while seated around the dining table.

Select between four and eight items and hide them in Santa hats. Pass the hats around the table and each person gets a little bit of time to feel the item (without peeking or taking it out of the hat) to take a guess at what it is.

Each player should write their guess down and whoever guesses the most items correctly, wins.

Play in the garden

5. Candy cane hunt

If you’re lucky enough to have a large yard, make it extra magical for kids with hidden candy canes. Picture:

This one is ideal if you have a big backyard (and if you don’t you can consider playing throughout the entire home).

Simply hide candy canes all around the garden and then let the kids (and kid-like adults, too) hunt them out. You may want to keep some candy canes aside for little ones who might not be as quick to find any.

6. Spoon and decoration race

A festive spin on the old egg and spoon race, this is another great game to play if you have a large enough outdoor area.

Give everyone a tablespoon and replace the usual egg with a Christmas bauble instead. Whoever makes it over the finish line first – without dropping their bauble – is the winner.

Play in the pool

7. Name that Christmas carol

Bring the festive vibe poolside. Picture:

If you want to sit in and around the pool to keep cool, this is the perfect game to bring the festive vibe poolside.

You’ll need someone to play DJ and some portable speakers or speakers that can carry the noise to your pool.

Your DJ should have a number of Christmas tracks ready to play and a score sheet to keep track.

The DJ plays the first few seconds of each song and the first person to guess and sing the full line of the song gets a point. You can either play first to guess 10 songs or best of 40 songs – it’s up to you.

Play in the kids’ playroom

8. Christmas maze

Keep kids away from screens by preparing activity sheets beforehand. Picture: Getty

If you want to keep kids away from screens – or simply want some uninterrupted adult time – set the kids up with a Christmas-themed activity maze in their playroom.

You can make your own activity sheets and print them out for everyone or choose from many of the templates available online – this is a great one here that has lots of different activities. Just grab some crayons and you’re good to go!

9. Christmas tree cup tower

This is another great one to keep the kids busy – but it’s as equally fun for adults.

Perfect for playing in a kids’ room or playroom, the game requires some Christmas stickers and between 50 and 100 plastic cups (preferably green to keep things festive), depending on the age and height of kids.

First up, give the cups and stickers to the kids to decorate. Then it’s time for the kids to start the challenge to build the highest Christmas tree tower, made from the cups, without it falling down.

It provides endless fun as the idea is that you keep building each time the tower falls down.

This article was originally published as Games to play at home on Christmas afternoon by and is written by Alexandra O’Brien.

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