Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in London around Christmas

In Collaboration Post, Destinations by gypsycouple0 Comments

London is one of the most beautiful cities in the world especially during the end of the year. Christmas in London is an especially beautiful affair with the city all lit up and with the snow and mulled wine making it even dreamier. We’ve heard a lot of stories about it, we’ve read a lot of stories with Christmas in London described and even read stories with the protagonist reading/hearing about stories of a Christmas in London.  It’s safe to say we are pretty much hooked on to it. We’ve been trying to plan a trip to this wonderful city during this special time for years without any success especially since British Airways flies from 5 cities in India to London averaging only around 10 hours. This Christmas, we changed our plans and decided instead to ask our favourite travel blogging friends about the top 10 things to in London on Christmas. We will keep our favourite among them a secret and see if you can figure out which ones we would enjoy.

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

1. Christmas Lights by Kathryn from Travel with Kat

“London has a real buzz about it at Christmas and even though the streets are packed with shoppers, I love the atmosphere and the twinkling Christmas lights. The two most famous displays are on Oxford Street and Regent Street.  The latter’s annual light show dates back to 1954. Last year’s giant spirits were a particularly impressive sight hovering above the crowds and traffic. Each had a wingspan of 17 metres and a 15-metre train flowing out behind them. Piccadilly Circus, Carnaby Street, Jermyn Street and Saint Christopher Place are all worth checking out too, as are the historic Burlington and Piccadilly Arcades.”

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

2. Hogwarts in The Snow: Harry Potter Studio Tour by Michael from Bemused Backpacker

“The Harry Potter Studio Tour is already one of the single biggest and best tourist attractions in the UK, but at Christmas fans can get an even bigger treat as Hogwarts gets a festive makeover. This year the Great Hall is being decorated exactly as it was for the Yule Ball, the decorations are coming out in the Gryffindor Common Room and Hogwarts itself will be covered in a thick blanket of snow to bring out the Christmas cheer. There is nowhere better to grab a drink of Butterbeer and regress back to your childhood for Christmas!”

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

3. Harrods Christmas Window Display by Brittany from The Sweet Wanderlust

“There’s something magical about Christmastime in London. Walking down the streets of Knightsbridge becomes a festive occasion rather than an ordinary task as you pass Harrods. Even the most Scrooge-like is filled with a sense of wonder as the magic of Christmas takes shape through the store’s windows. Inspired by Sicilian puppet theatre, the world of Dolce & Gabbana comes to life as puppets Domenico and Stefano demonstrate Italian style through dance, food, fragrance and fashion. 

Venture inside Harrods to stock up on gifts and decorations at Christmas World on the second floor, make an appointment with Father Christmas at the Christmas Grotto, or mail a letter to Santa at the Toy Kingdom. Visiting Harrods at Christmas has been a London staple for over 60 years… will you make it part of your tradition this year?”

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

4. Hyde Park Winter Wonderland by James from Worldwide Shopping Guide

“Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is truly one of London’s best Christmas events. Featuring more than one hundred different rides and attractions, a circus, ice show, several Christmas markets, and plenty of bars and restaurants, it’s the perfect place to get into the Christmas spirit in London. 

For first time visitors, there are a couple of attractions that aren’t to be missed. There’s the Bavarian Village, which offers a chance to eat sausages, drink mulled wine, and enjoy a German-themed Christmas. Then there’s the Giant Wheel; a 60 metre tall Ferris Wheel. Finally, there’s the Ice Rink which is not only the largest temporary ice rink in London, but in the whole of the UK. 

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland typically opens in Mid November and is open every day until the beginning of January, excluding Christmas Day.” 

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

5. Walk along the Embankment by Stefan from The Nomadic Boys

“Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is truly one of London’s best Christmas events. Featuring more than one hundred different rides and attractions, a circus, ice show, several Christmas markets, and plenty of bars and restaurants, it’s the perfect place to get into the Christmas spirit in London. 

For first time visitors, there are a couple of attractions that aren’t to be missed. There’s the Bavarian Village, which offers a chance to eat sausages, drink mulled wine, and enjoy a German-themed Christmas. Then there’s the Giant Wheel; a 60 metre tall Ferris Wheel. Finally, there’s the Ice Rink which is not only the largest temporary ice rink in London, but in the whole of the UK. 

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland typically opens in Mid November and is open every day until the beginning of January, excluding Christmas Day.” 

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

6. Ice Skating at Natural History Museum by Lawrence from Finding the Universe

“One of my favourite things to do in London around Christmas is to go ice skating at the Natural History Museum in Kensington. Found in the beautiful setting of London’s spectacular Natural History Museum, and surrounded by trees coated in fairy lights – not to mention a huge decorated Christmas tree to skate around – this is definitely a must-do London Christmas experience.

Even for those who don’t skate, there’s plenty to do, including drinking a luxury hot chocolate or mulled wine, or even dining at the on-site cafe. You can also watch the skating action from the overlook balcony, which is free. The skating rink is also accessibility friendly, with dedicated wheelchair skating sessions available. There’s a lot to do in surrounding Kensington, and a visit to the Natural History Museum itself is also recommended of course! We’d advise booking your tickets in advance for the skating – whilst you can buy them when you arrive, you might have to wait a while at busy times.”

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

7. Christmas lunch at a Pub by LC Hunter from Birdgehls

“You can’t really visit London without spending at least a little bit of time in an English pub (well, I suppose you can, but where would the fun be in that?). The pubs are an excellent place to head to if you’re travelling through London in the holiday season and need a little bit of extra cheer. Not only do many of them sell mugs of very festive mulled wine, but most provide a special Christmas lunch, for those wanting to celebrate the silly season but aren’t inclined (or simply aren’t in a position) to cook. It’s best to book a little bit in advance, rather than just rock up on the day, in order to avoid a disappointment that would be felt tenfold on Christmas Day of all days!”

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

 8. Mulled Wine at Christmas Markets by Liza from Tripsget

“London during the Christmas time is absolutely gorgeous. Since the city is huge, there are quite a few Christmas Markets around the city. While Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park is undoubtedly the most famous and the biggest, the Christmas Market at the Leicester Square is one of the best-located and best-decorated markets in London. This year it was launched in collaboration with Hilton and you can see how classy and beautiful the market is. There are various attractions e.g. Santa Claus Grotto or a small theatre, but there are also plenty of stalls where you can buy Christmas souvenirs or have a bite of something tasty. One of the best things to try at the Leicester Square Christmas Market is mulled cider – a traditional English drink, which will make you warm even on the coldest day!”

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

9. Borough Food Market by Soumya from Travel Books Food

“As London’s favorite and oldest food market, Borough market needs no introduction. But come Christmas, there is a  special charm to the place. Pick up your glass of mulled wine and go stall hopping for some delicious Christmas treats. And there are lots of options for us vegetarians too. Also, if you are in the area, don’t forget to be there for the annual turning on the Christmas lights during the first week of December.”

Christmas in London | Top 10 things to do in london on christmas

10. Gordon’s Wine Bar by Alice from Tea Cake Travels

“Wedged secretly between the hustle and bustle of Charing Cross train station and Embankment Tube station, lies Gordon’s. Holed up underground, beneath the cobblestone path connecting the two transport hubs, this intimate wine bar is a true delight.

Perfect for a Christmas tipple, this bar is reportedly the oldest wine bar in London! Established in 1890, its charm has not lost a drop of its magic and is particularly infamous for being Winston Churchill’s hangout.

As the trains rumble above, you’ll find yourself sitting below, in one of the many candlelit corners of this cosy haven. The place is undeniably friendly and familiar, even if you’ve never stepped foot in the place before. The earthy wooden tables and chairs’ layout, is perfectly, thoughtfully placed. Couples, solo travellers and large groups of friends have no choice but to sit together as they sip on the various concoctions of wine and offerings of delicious cheese, nuts and dried fruits. It’s a true gem in a busy, business world.

Step back in time, take an hour out of the chaos and enjoy this true slice of authentic pub culture in the Big Smoke at Christmas.”

If you’ve been to London during this time of the year, do share your favourites in the comments or let us know if you have any recommendations or tips for us.

If you liked reading this you might also like to read about the fabulous Polish Christmas traditions.

Photo Credits:        Gordon’s Wine Bar       Ice Skating at Natural History Museum          Borough Food Market

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