There really is nothing like experiencing Christmas in London. Almost anywhere you go, you will see pretty lights, garland, and Christmas trees. People will be in their holiday clothes and ugly Christmas jumpers are everywhere. If you’re not living in the UK, I would highly suggest you come to London during Christmas time at some point in your life. There’s just something so magical about the city this time of year.
Although, I wouldn’t feel good about myself if I didn’t warn you of the fact that there are more people you ever thought imaginable in the city at all times during the holiday season. And they’re all slow walkers.
But if you’re out for a stroll, or just out to look at all the pretty decorations and Christmas trees, you’re in for treat. Pretty much anywhere you walk, you’ll see some beautiful lights, ice rinks, and Christmas themed greenery.
Keep reading to see some of the best places to go in London to get in the Christmas spirit. You can start at Somerset House and walk to the rest within 10 minutes between each.
If you’re interested in some of the best places to go to see London’s Christmas lights, click here.
The entrance to Somerset House is incredibly grand. As you walk in between these arches, you see the enormous Christmas tree decorated with Fortnum & Mason’s baubles, or as we Americans call it, “ornaments.”
It really is a spectacular tree. I’d have to say it’s my second favourite one in London. A lot of families come here because the main reason to go to Somerset House is for the ice rink.
It’s actually not as big in person as I thought it was but everyone seemed to be having a lot of fun. It’s a cute little area to grab a coffee or a hot chocolate and hang out with the kids.
Now Covent Garden has the best Christmas tree in London, in my opinion. It’s massive and sits in this cute wooden bucket with a big red bow. At night, it looks like there’s a light bulb covering every little inch of the tree.
A friend of mine and I actually went to the Covent Garden Christmas lighting this year so we got to see them turn on all the lights in this beautiful area of London.
A few streets over, they’ve put up this light tunnel as well. It’s really tricky to get a photo without other people in the tunnel with you, but it was worth the wait. I think it looks really cool.
Honestly, Covent Garden is one of the best places to go in London. There’s shopping, really good food and pubs, and they always have the absolute best decor around, and Christmas in Covent Garden is no joke. You can’t be disappointed going here at Christmas time.
Leicester Square Market
So Leicester Square is more of a touristy area. It’s quite expensive and it’s similar to Times Square in New York. That’s where all the premieres are held so it makes sense. However, they do a Christmas market and have a grotto where you can meet Santa.
It’s in a picturesque area of London, so even if you’re just walking through, it’s very cute. If you have kids, it’s a great place to take them so they can see Santa (for a hefty £10 per kid) and get their photo taken.
I read the other day that Burlington Arcade was built so that all the posh people in London would have a nice place to shop away from all the peasants. And honestly, that really made me chuckle.
It’s decked out in Christmas decor and, as tradition, has the most expensive and high class shops. Window shopping is about as much as I can do down here, but it’s a nice place to take some pretty photos.
And as soon as we walked out of the Arcade, I saw the most pretty looking Tiffany’s I’ve ever seen. I’m not joking when I say every inch of London is decorated for Christmas.
Now my absolute favourite part of Christmas in London is Winter Wonderland, which is why I saved it for last. When I came to visit D two years ago before I moved here, he took me to Winter Wonderland and it was amazing. If you want to read about my first time there, click here.
It’s basically a massive Christmas festival in the middle of Hyde Park. There’s a ton of little stalls to drink mulled wine, cider, beer, hot chocolate and lots of different foods like German bratwurst, fries, pizza, even taco bowls and giant pretzels. There’s a Christmas market and places to see shows.
There’s tons of rides and games you can play. There’s live music. There is literally everything. We went on one ride then got some drinks and food. Just as soon as we were about to get one more drink, it starting throwing it down. We took cover and listened to some live music for a little bit. We had one more token each so we ended up going on another ride in the rain and ended up soaking wet.
Winter Wonderland is the best time, even in the rain. It’s free entry, but you do have to pay quite a bit for food, drinks, or rides. It’s well worth it though. You cannot come to London at Christmas time and not go to Winter Wonderland. You just cannot.
We were able to do all of these things in one day and we started at 12pm so it’s really easy to see a big part of the city’s Christmas decor in only one day. And of course, spending most of the time at Winter Wonderland.
Let me know if you get to see any of these places in London during Christmas, and feel free to tag me in your photos. Before you go, tell me where your favorite public Christmas tree is located??