Christmas in London can seem all too overwhelming, with events and celebrations happening in just about every corner of the city. With Christmas markets, ice-skating and theatre productions lined up for your season’s entertainment, it’s hard knowing where to start! Don’t stress – we’re here to help. Here are our tips on how best to celebrate Christmas in London.
Get your skates on
Somerset House. Open all day and into the night, playing all genres of music and offering a selection of Fortnum & Mason goodies – this is not one to miss. For something more traditional, the Hampton Court Palace ice rink sits just beneath the palace, so you can admire the spectacular views while you skate. Or, you can choose to slice the ice at one of the city’s most iconic landmarks – the Tower of London’s moat, which comes with an all-ice pop-up bar featuring ice glasses and fancy ice sculptures.
Soak up the festive atmosphere
Revel in the holiday atmosphere at one of London’s many Christmas fairs and markets. Perfect for the whole family, Winter Wonderland has an array of entertainment on offer, from ice-skating and a magical ice kingdom to a giant wheel and, of course, a Christmas market. Visit the over 200 charming stalls with arts and crafts, jewellery, decorations, food and drink.
For the countdown to Christmas, go for a sing-a-long at any of London’s Christmas carol events. For a world-famous experience, head to the Trafalgar Square carols and help raise funds for charities and voluntary groups. Or for a traditionally British experience, join the Christmas Carol Service at St Paul’s Cathedral, which also includes celebrity readings and a midnight or Christmas Day Eucharist.
Explore a Christmas market
Celebrate the season by visiting one of London’s many Christmas markets. They started as a German tradition, but the city has made them its own. See the Southbank Centre transform into a Nordic wonderland, or wander along the river for a traditional riverside market experience at London Bridge. If you’ve been looking forward to the season’s festive grub, the BBC Good Food Fayre is returning this Christmas to Hampton Court Palace. Showcasing tasty treats from the likes of Churros Garcia and Woodhouse Farm Hog Roast, as well as live cookery demonstrations and entrance into the historic palace – there’s more than enough to keep you entertained.
Absorb some culture
Head to the Southbank Centre for the Million Dollar Quartet, an unforgettable musical experience inspired by some of rock ‘n’ roll’s kings. Plunge into the magical world of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker at the Royal Opera House. With magnificent set designs and brilliant stage effects, this show will be nothing short of spectacular. Get down to Leicester Square to see cabaret like you’ve never seen it before – the theatrical phenomenon La Soiree put on a risky yet radiant performance.
Have a Christmas gathering
If the idea of braving the cold and embracing the crowds doesn’t sound fun, a themed Christmas gathering might be more your cup of tea. Throwing your own bash means that you can tailor your evening the way you like – keep it simple or go all out. Here are some other ideas to put on an amazing evening:
- Give your bash a comic touch with a festive theme – Rudolph’s reindeer, your favourite holiday movie etc.
- Dress up your living room or dining area to replicate a ski lodge or Santa’s grotto.
- Ask your guests to roll up donning their worst Christmas jumper.
- To make your party an evening that won’t soon be forgotten, get some customised silicone wristbands. You can choose your favourite colours, write a personal quirky message for your guests, and create a memento they can wear home.
- Keep the décor simple with fairy lights and mistletoe, or go all out and coat the walls and ceilings with tinsel and baubles galore.
- Make fun, festive cocktails and invite your guests to join in on the creating.
So, now you know how to spend December it’s time to get wrapped up and go!