By: Michelle L. (London Bureau)
December is here, and it is definitely the most wonderful time of year. For once, I get to experience the beauty of fall foliage, and its transcendence into what we hear so much about in songs, movies, and tv shows, a white Christmas, or at least London’s version of it.
This city has perfected the Christmas spirit, putting up its decorations right after Halloween. There is nothing quite like the sight of Regent Street at night twinkling brightly, the anticipation of the decadent display windows at Harrods, Selfridges, and so many others, and the pop ups all around the city dedicated just to get you excited for the holidays. This is our guide to the best things to do in London this Christmas season!
Winter Wonderland – one of our favorite attractions is exactly what it sounds like, to give you a better picture, mix Santa’s Enchanted Forest with Oktoberfest and this is what you get. Located in the middle of Hyde Park, it is central to everything and a must do. As you approach the entrance you soak in the giant ferris wheel, the rollercoasters, and largest ice skating rink in London which fills you with childlike wonder. Not to mention the holiday themed stalls built to look like log cabins complete with trinkets and ornaments for all your decoration needs. Then to fulfill your adult side, get lost in the Bavarian Garden, where you can wander through the tents listening to live music, chowing down on bratwurst, and washing it down with pints of beer!
South Bank Centre– The view of the London Eye on the Thames River is already one of our favorite wonders of the world. During this time of year, it becomes even more incredible to see as they add a charming market complete with, a Christmas tree maze, carousel, food stalls, and a bar to make your wish list come true. If this isn’t enough to get you excited, the pop-up roller skating disco should help you escape adulthood for a little bit.
Bizarre Bazaar – If you are stopping through Waterloo on the weekend, head over to The Vaults where they transform it into a holiday market. It is a great place to get unique crafts from independent, artisanal traders including jewelry and ornaments. This will make your shopping experience more exciting, plus they have music, cocktails, and comedy!
Vauxhall Après Ski Lodge – If you plan on visiting the Tate Britain or will be in the Vauxhall area, this is the perfect little spot for you! As you pass the bouncer and walk through a hall of pine trees, you first enter and see a few food stalls including sandwiches, burgers, fish and chips, and Asian food. Continue on and you will fall in love with the adorable mini nooks outfitted to look like lodges where you can cuddle with your S.O.. If you’re with a group make sure you enjoy the pool tables and pitchers of drinks.
Kew Gardens – This mile long botanical wonderland awaits you. You and your children will be in awe of the brightly colored laser beams dancing over water, Tunnel of Lights, scented Fire Garden and fairy-tale avenues of flora. Santa and his elves will be in the North Pole village, plus favorite vintage rides, Don’t leave without hot chocolate and a delicious marshmallow on a stick, handcrafted in many different flavors.
These are just a few of the incredible things going on around London for this holiday season and we do not want you to miss out. So put on your most festive gear and take the town by storm, Santa and his reindeer are waiting!