Christmas is a fascinating holiday that we tend to celebrate indoors for some reason. This tradition dates back to the times when winters were cold and the outside world far from friendly.
But today, in our brave new world of engaging, entertaining opportunities, why should anyone miss the chance to explore?
Fun, games, a tight community, and the spirit of the holidays so thick in the air you can cut it with a knife – all these things and more are what a Christmas market in London embodies. And here are the three best ones for you to casually stroll through while adoring the all-surrounding cheers of joy.
- The Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park. This adorable annual event attracts more than 3 million people each year for a reason: you are allowed to let your inner child lose among these marvelous, pastel-colored, toy-styled shops that sell trinkets and mulled wine. The roller-coaster rides, open-air shows and the mouthwatering smell of street food only add to the holiday vibe of the wonderland. The prices here may bite a bit but I would still recommend giving the festival a visit on Christmas, even if only to soak in the spirit of Christmas.
- Southbank Centre Winter Market. While not as pompous as the Winter Wonderland, this market adds an interesting flair by combining the British traditions with the legends of the East. You can grab a bite of anything and everything from French and Italian to Chinese and Korean here. Add a superb shopping experience and an actual time-traveling circus into the mix and you’ll get one hell of a Christmas spot to check out.
- Leicester Square Christmas Market. This market that takes place in blockbuster film premises combines the best from two worlds: fresh, snowy outdoor fun and the coziness of an indoor event. The traditional part market is filled with stalls selling all sorts of hand-crafted trinkets, sweets and all sorts of Christmas goodies while the Belgian Spiegel tent is home to a wide array of superb shows from cabaret to comedy specials.
The people of London were always fond of skating. That’s why we have outdoor ice rinks in literally every corner of the Capital. Some of the rinks that have popped up in the most iconic locations have become an ultimate Christmas attraction.
- Hampton Court Palace ice rink. This is probably one of the largest rinks in London and yet it is never empty. Why? Because when else will you get a chance to explore a royal palace – the home of King Henry VIII – while on skates?
- Natural History Museum ice rink. This rink is one of the top places to visit during Christmas in London. Period. The lights, the atmosphere, the pompous power of the very architecture that surrounds you and, of course, the gorgeous Christmas tree make a visit here worth your while.
- Skylight London. You’d think that a former warehouse wouldn’t work as a skating rink and you’d be right. But the rooftop of said warehouse that boasts a gorgeous view of London’s skyline is definitely a top spot to glide on ice with the wind blowing into your face. Add cozy igloos, delicious street food, and warming cocktails into the mix and you’ll get one of the best rinks in all of London.
Now that we are done with our shopping and active leisure, the time has come for the main course. What else can you do on Christmas in London?
- Add magic to your night during the Hogwarts in the Snow show. Warner Bros. invites everyone to celebrate the holiday season with some of the most enchanting characters ever shown on the blue screen. The Christmas lineup includes a tour and a festive dinner in the great hall that includes a flaming pudding.
- What can be more magical than the wizarding world of Harry Potter? The Syon Park after dusk. The colorful light projections create an unforgettable visual of an enchanted forest. The park is a perfect location for a romantic date. Wink-wink;)
- Disney on Ice. Need I say more? Enjoy a show that will teach both kids and adults to Dream Big while featuring our all-time favorite characters.
- Warm yourself after a long day out by a fireplace in some of the coziest pubs in London, like the Holy Bush, the Anglesea Arms, or William IV.
Do you have any other ideas about having a jolly good time on Christmas? Share them on our facebook page with the hashtag #averyLondonChristmas!