It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas …
London is an absolutely incredible city any time of year, but there is just something magical about the place, in the lead up to Christmas. The city is decked out in its best gear ready to celebrate the festive season and bring in the New Year.
With days getting shorter and temperatures dropping, London’s festive cheer definitely makes the winter time much more bearable and even enjoyable. And believe me I cannot believe that I can even say that! From mid-November, the city slowly starts the festive season with Christmas lights, Christmas trees, and winter popups all around the city. Whether you love the Christmas season, or just want to know what’s happening around the city in December, keep reading for festivities galore.
We may not get snow, although we did have a teaser of snow earlier this month, but that doesn’t mean we can’t do any winter activities. Get some skates on and glide around on the ice, circling around stunning Christmas trees at some of London’s most iconic locations.
My pick would have to be the Ice Rink at the Museum of Natural History. Where else can you skate next to one of London’s most beautiful buildings? Definitely perfect for a festive photo!
Nearest Tube Station: South Kensington
Other places to go ice skating in the city include Somerset House, the Tower of London and Winter Wonderland. All locations can be booked in advance online.
Instagram Worthy Christmas Displays
London truly goes all out for the festive period with not only Christmas lights brightening up our shorter days but also spectacular Christmas décor throughout the city. My top three photo locations would have to be
1. Covent Garden Market
Nearest Tube Station: Covent Garden
2. Fortnum & Mason
Nearest Tube Station: Green Park or Piccadilly Circus
3. The Ivy Chelsea Garden
Nearest Tube Station: South Kensington or Sloane Square
Must Visit Pop ups
London is a city of popups with so many coming and going throughout the year. But in the lead up to Christmas, the capital really outdoes itself.
The biggest popup, Winter Wonderland, takes up its annual residency in Hyde Park from mid-November-early January. Think mulled wine, roasted nuts, Bavarian beer, roller coasters and just about anything Christmas and you will find it here! Entrance is free but expect to queue at peak times.
Tip: Bring cash with you, most vendors accept cash only! If you forget, don’t stress, ATMs are available throughout the attraction.
Nearest Tube Stations: Hyde Park Corner, Marble Arch or Knightsbridge
The Winter Forest
One of my favourite popups this season would have to be The Winter Forest in Exchange Square. A new addition this year, The Winter Forest, provides a nice escape from the hectic city life, with a cosy tipi tent, a snow-covered Christmas tree forest and a tipi cinema. Fill you belly with Christmas treats and drinks in this festive oasis.
Nearest Tube Station: Liverpool Street
Rekorderlig Cider Lodge & South Bank Centre Wintertime Market
If you’re going to have mulled cider, why not try one of the best in the business? Rekorderlig have set themselves up a lodge on the South Bank and are serving varieties of cider, mulled and regular, amongst a delicious selection of cocktails. Wander through the Wintertime Markets to pick up some Christmas gift inspiration or tuck into some of the delicious meals that they have cooking up.
Nearest Tube Station: Waterloo Station
Igloo Dining Experience
If you’re after an unforgettable dining experience, one that none of your friends will have ever done before than have I got just the thing for you! Ever thought you could dine in an igloo along the Thames? I surely didn’t! The two biggest operators are Coppa Club near Tower Bridge and Jimmy’s Lodge on the South Bank.
Bookings are essential and minimum spends can be required, ensure to confirm this at time of booking.
The city is shining in the festive period, Christmas is seriously all around. Just remember to look where you’re walking, because these lights can cause some serious distractions! Just walking around the city you will find so many beautiful light displays but I will share with you my favourites.
These angels are quite simply stunning! Elegant, captivating and quite simply the best Christmas lights in my book
Glowing lights inspired by falling snowflakes take on one of London’s most iconic shopping streets. The switch on of these lights signals to official start of the Christmas season.
Going with a Carnival theme this year, the Soho street brings more colour and fun into the festive season.
Some other festive attractions worth mentioning include:
Christmas in Leicester Square
Trafalgar Square Christmas Tree
There’s so many things happening in the city around the festive season but I hope I’ve inspired you to explore our beautiful capital rain or shine because we’ve only got another week or so before the festive season packs up and leaves us behind for another year. Let me know if you make your way to any of these wonderfully festive places plus keep me posted if there’s anywhere I’ve missed.