The best things to do in London this Christmas
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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… in London!
The lights have been switched on, the ice skates and window displays are out, winter wonderland is open, and Christmas pop-ups are, well, popping up all over the capital!
Ahhh yes, the most wonderful time of the year is here once again, and we couldn’t be more excited (the carols have already begun in our office!) Why? Because this year is going to be more magical than ever!
So if you’ve made the best decision ever to spend Christmas in London this year (or are thinking about it, but just need a little more convincing), go on and have a merry little read of our guide below to the best things to do in London this Christmas.
We guarantee that Christmas in London will be a holiday so jolly that even Santa would be jealous of!
Walking in a Winter Wonderland...
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Christmas in London is now synonymous with Hyde Park Winter Wonderland.
This annual Christmas extravaganza is sure to spread joy with ice-skating, shows, rollercoaster rides, food stalls, festive bars and live music…you can also take your children to meet Santa and his magical elves!
It’s free to enter, however you do need to pay for attractions and they get booked up quickly so it’s best to book in advance. Do take cash out before you get there, as the ATMs have long queues and charge a fee.
Open from now until 1st January 2018.
Be dazzled by London's gorgeous Christmas lights...
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Add some sparkle to your day and hit up Central London’s big streets for some impressive Christmas light displays – Oxford Street, Carnaby Street, Bond Street and the cobbled alleys of Covent Garden are just a few of the streets that wrap themselves in lights for the festive season. Wander the streets, ride a bus or join a bike tour to take in the bright lights.
If gardens are more your thing, head out to the magical Kew Gardens. Stroll around in wonder, admiring the beautiful gardens, covered in over one million dazzling lights. Complete your evening with some light Christmas shopping at the charming stalls, and don’t forget to stay warm with a delicious mulled wine or hot chocolate!
Shop for gifts or souvenirs at the Christmas Markets...
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Nothing says Christmas like a winter market, and London has plenty of those!
Update your decorations, find the perfect Christmas gift and enjoy the festive treats on offer. From the bright and wonderful Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park and Winterville in Clapham Common to the more traditional markets of Leicester Square and London Bridge, you’re sure to find something to your liking. Read all about London's Christmas markets here.
Pop into one of the London's Christmas Pop Up's...
[Image Credit: Metro]
One you're finished your Christmas shopping, go get cosy in one of the many winter pop ups sprouting all over London!
Chill out in a festive igloo by the River Thames at Coppa Club, or if you fancy giving curling a go at the same time, head down to the Social Fun and Games Club at Roof East in Stratford.
Many a rooftop bars have transformed into cosy ski lodges for those missing the slopes this winter. Wrap up in blankets, grab your mulled wine and relax in the enchanting mountain lodge inspired spaces at Winterland in Fulham, the Winter Forest in Broadgate and Jimmy’s Lodge on the Southbank.
Glide down to one of London's incredible Ice Skating risks...
[Image Credit: The Standard]
Ice-skating is arguably the most picture perfect of all winter past times.
Spectacular outdoor ice rinks pop up all over London during the festive period. With historical buildings providing the most stunning backdrops - our favourites are at Somerset House, The Tower of London and the Natural History museum.
Do book your tickets in advance to avoid disappointment or having to wait around in the cold!
Eat, Drink & Be Merry...
[Image Credit: The Times]
Over the years many of our wonderful guests have enjoyed their Christmas' away from their home, but in the comfort of their London home. Our vacation rentals have kitchen's fully equipped with all you might need for preparing a delicious feast together, dining tables to sit and enjoy it, and comfortable sofas and beds to unwind and nap after overeating at Christmas lunch!
If you're worried about where to get all your grocery supplies, don't be! There plenty of food stores, markets and independent stores in London where you will find all the food, drink and goodies you could dream of for an incredible Christmas feast. Or if you'd rather a more convenient option, perhaps you'd rather do an online shop with Ocado, who will deliver everything right to the door!
If you don’t fancy stuffing the turkey this year, why not avoid all the faff (and washing up) by opting for a traditional Christmas feast at one of the many restaurants and pubs that are open on Christmas Day.
Here are a few of options for all kinds of diners:
Orange Public House, Belgravia
Feeling fancy this Christmas? Head to this luxurious gastropub where well-heeled Belgravia locals frequent. You will enjoy the elegant yet casual ambience as well as the mouth-watering Christmas menu they have to offer. A few of the stand outs include: juniper-cured beef, or seared scallops with salsify to start, followed by traditional mains such as roast turkey (with spiced clementine chutney) or beetroot gnocchi with caramelised onions, finished by Christmas pudding with custard & whiskey ice cream, or Bramley apple pie for desert. All this is would be incomplete without a glass of Billecart-Salmon, of course. Cost: £85 per head. Sounds pretty a’peel’ing to us.
Dean Street Townhouse, Soho
This popular Soho restaurant is always buzzing with diners from open to close. The gorgeous Georgian-era style rooms will be the perfect setting for enjoying their Christmas feast on offer this year. It’s a little pricier than other deals at £100 per person, but sounds well worth it! It includes a spread of traditional English dishes which have an elegant twist, like duck and smoked eel terrine, organic Norfolk Bronze turkey and wild mushroom wellington, accompanied by a glass of champagne, coffee, mince pies, and cheese, chutneys and chocolate truffles to finish. That sounds Soho good!
Wahaca, various locations
If you’re looking to get as far away from a turkey as possible this year, head to Wahaca! London’s most loved Mexican chain is rebelling against the traditional Christmas style dinner this year, with so called “Rebellion Banquets” available for under £30. Expect tacos, taquitos, tostadas, burritos, all topped off by churros. Taco ’bout delicious!
Duck & Waffle, The City
This famous restaurant is located on the 40th floor of 110 Bishopsgate, so we don’t know what will be better – the spectacular views, or the Christmas menu! On Christmas day they’ll be serving up a winter sharing menu. For £85 per head, diners can drool over spicy ox cheek doughnuts, a whole roast chicken, roasted Brussel sprouts with orange butter and shallots, and a whole lot more on the plate. You’d be Quackers to miss out on this one!
Please note: you'll most likely have to book in advance for all of these.
Christmas Afternoon Tea at the Ritz...
[Image Credit: Metro]
If you’re feeling fancy this is one not to miss.
Treat yourself to one of the most famous afternoon teas in London, with a Christmas twist… the traditional Palm Court at the Ritz will be transformed into an enchanting winter wonderland, with a superbly opulent tree and carol singing.
We can’t think of a more spectacular way to spend an afternoon.
Costs: £80/adult £50/child
Dates: Saturday 25 November to Saturday 30 December 2017 with 1.30pm, 3.30pm, 5.30pm and 7.30pm sittings.
So... have we convinced you yet?
Our friendly Enquiries team are here to help you find the perfect Christmas vacation rental for your special holiday, which you won't forget!
You can view our full portfolio of London Vacation Rentals here.
We can’t wait to hear from you, and welcome you this festive season!