It’s Christmas season in Glasgow and, as always, there are a lot of festive events running throughout the city. Here are the top five unmissable ones:

1. George Square Christmas Market

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A staple of many Christmases in Glasgow, the market has not been without its critics in recent years - with the axing of the ice rink last year a major talking point for residents and tourists alike. However, even without the so-called “romantic” rink, it’s still worth wrapping up warm and heading down.

Lasting until December 29, the market offers various festive and seasonal gifts, food and a bar where you can buy a pint of mulled wine to fight off the cold winds.

With the carousel and iconic big wheel making a return, the George Square Christmas Market is a must-visit, especially if this is your first time in Glasgow over the festive season.

Head to glasgowloveschristmas.com for more information.

2. Santa Dash

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Nothing screams Christmas more than a visit from over 5,000 Santa Clauses jogging through the city centre. That’s exactly what the annual Santa Dash is all about.

Starting at George Square on Sunday, December 10, the event sees runners of all ages don the Father Christmas outfit to run a festive 5K through Glasgow, all for charity.

Now in its 12th year, 2016 saw around 7,500 people take part and more than £200,000 has been raised for charities since the first incarnation.

Definitely one of the more unique goings-on in Glasgow during the festive period, it all kicks off at 10am sharp. There is also still time to register and take part, with a registration fee of £15 going towards the suit for the Dash.

Head to glasgowloveschristmas.com for more information.

3. Glasgow Vegan Christmas Festival

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Christmas has never really been a very vegan-friendly time of the year, thanks to all the talk of turkeys, chickens and pigs in blankets. However, this December, a vegan Christmas market is coming to the Merchant City to offer solace for vegans and vegetarians of the region.

Hosted at the Briggait on Saturday, December 9, the market will offer festive food and snacks to revellers, along with handmade gifts, mulled wine and carolling.

At just £2 for a pre-booked ticket and £3 on the door, it’s a worthwhile visit for any food connoisseurs who want to try some alternative Christmas food.

Head to vegan-connections.com to learn more.

4. Pantos

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Pantomime season has arrived, and there are numerous to enjoy throughout the city. Sleeping Beauty, at the Kings Theatre from December 2 to January 7, stars panto veterans Elaine C. Smith as The Fairy and Johnny Mac as hapless sidekick Muddles.

If you don’t fancy that one or you’re just a huge panto fan, Jack and the Beanstalk will also be performed at the SEC Armadillo from December 16 to January 7. It stars Gary, Tank Commander playing himself and includes appearances from comedy sensations the Dolls.

Panto season is always a fun time in Glasgow, and that continues to be true this year.

Head to whatsonglasgow.co.uk for more information.

5. A Christmas Cracker

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It’s not Christmas without some old-fashioned carolling and live music.

The City of Glasgow Chorus and Orchestra is hosting its annual festive extravaganza at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on December 17. Performing a series of carols, both old favourites and newer, more topical ones, the orchestra is hoping to attract a younger crowd than usual by offering half price tickets for the under 16s. Adults will cost from £20 to £26, with the event starting at 3pm.

Carols are not the only attraction here, as the audience will be included in the show, as 1,600 crackers will be pulled and an all-inclusive version of 12 Days of Christmas will be tackled. An entertaining day out for all the family.

Visit glasgowconcerthalls.com to know more