8 Quirky Ideas to Experience at Christmas in London

8 Quirky Ideas at Christmas in London to Experience

Follow latest UK Government regulations and guidelines on Covid-19 while exploring London. Remember always to stay safe and act responsibly.



Read related articles on Christmas/Holidays season:

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Granary Square, Christmas 2020 | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

8 Quirky Ideas at Christmas in London

With so many quirky and fun activities to do in London, the 6 listed here are by no means an exhaustive list but it is worth exploring.

1 | Backyard Cinema

Watch a movie in a cinema like never before. Journey through a magical world of enchanted forest in a Winter Night Garden or find the secret entrance, explore the enchanted Snow Kingdom and go in search of the hidden cinema to watch your favourite movie. Select from a wide range of holiday favourites such as Home Alone, Love Actually, The Holiday, Trading Places, Pretty Woman and so many more.

Website: https://www.backyardcinema.co.uk/


2 | The Great Christmas Feast

Be transported to Victorian London through a secret door in a secret location for an immersive experience of Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol. The story unfolds all around as you Indulge in a mouthwatering yuletide gastronomy of Victorian street food and feast.

Extended to January 10, 2021

Website: https://greatchristmasfeast.com/


3 | Winterland

For a unique experience of the festive cheer, sip mulled wine, move to the sounds of the music, or relax on a sofa in an enchanting Alpine setting at an outdoor bar.

Website: https://www.winterlandlondon.com/


4 | The Piano Works

For an unforgettable fun evening, head over to the Piano Works. A bar with non-stop music of audience requested songs. Sing-a-long into the night with steak or ribs, buddha bowls and vegan shepherd’s pie. A favourite for music lovers.

Dinner is available from Tuesday to Saturday | Brunch on Saturday between 12 and 4 pm.

Website: https://pianoworks.bar/


5 | Archipelago Restaurant

Right in the heart of London Fitzrovia is an exotic restaurant in an exotic setting serving exotic dishes such as kangaroo, python, crocodile and crispy zebra “jerky” alongside traditional dishes of chicken and fish. A visit to Archipelago is, without a doubt, an evening to remember.

Website: https://www.archipelago-restaurant.co.uk/


6 | Invisible City

A short journey from the city of London, in Willesden is The Invisible City. This is an unusual experience to have at Christmas but I wanted to add it here for any one who wishes to experience the new sound art installation at Willesden Jewish Cemetery. A 21-acre landscape features the stories of people laid to rest in this, one of the most prestigious cemeteries in UK. Most of the ‘1970’s High Street’ can be found here including Jack Cohen (1898 – 1979) who founded Tesco.

Entry is Free. You can download the QR code onto any smartphone when you are onsite. There is a short trailer on the website.

Website: https://www.willesdenjewishcemetery.org.uk/events/invisible-city/


7 | Harry Potter Studios at Warner Bros. Studio Tour London

Have a magical day and experience winter in Warner Bros Studio Tour. Join this behind-the-scenes tour of the making of Harry Potter series. Get close to the whimsical costumes and props, especially Dumbledore’s office and Hagrid’s Hut. This magical experience sells out fast so book your tickets several months ahead.

Harry Potter Tour from Kings X

Learn how the iconic train scenes were filmed, and browse through your favorite character’s luggage! For the first time ever, enter the set of Gringotts Wizarding Bank! Walk through the wizarding bank of Gringott’s, the Lestrange vault, a gallery of goblins, and much more. Admire the imposing marble columns and discover the costumes and prosthetics belonging to Bogrod, Griphook, and many other Golbin bankers. You’ll have approximately 4 hours to enjoy the magic of the Harry Potter studio.

Get Your Guide

8 | Tour of London Christmas Lights at night

See London at its best at Christmas and be dazzled by the glittering festive lights display from onboard an open top bus tour. The tour is led by an expert guide and the journey takes the route along all the Christmassy shop display. As well the Regent Street, Oxford Street, Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus, Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, the London Eye and Tower Bridge.

Regent Street Christmas Lights
Regent Street Christmas Lights | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

Have you experienced any quirky and fun activities in London which you may want to share? I would love to know your story or stories. Please share in the Comments box below.

As always, I am available to answer any questions you may have on this post or any other articles that may interest you. Please get in touch with your queries. Leave a comment.

Have a splendid Christmas and stay safe.


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Alongside the age-old Christmas traditions of dazzling lights and markets there are some quirky experiences at Christmas in London to explore | Christmas in London | London at Christmas | Christmas 2020 | Quirky things to do at Christmas | Fun things to do at Christmas via @GGeorgina_timelesstravelsteps/Alongside the age-old Christmas traditions of dazzling lights and markets there are some quirky experiences at Christmas in London to explore | Christmas in London | London at Christmas | Christmas 2020 | Quirky things to do at Christmas | Fun things to do at Christmas via @GGeorgina_timelesstravelsteps/

Coal Drops Yard at Christmas in Kings Cross London

Coal Drops Yard at Christmas in Kings Cross London


In the heart of Kings Cross, there is a beautiful area that brings a totally different atmosphere to the hustle and bustle of London City life. This hidden gem of traffic-free Victorian cobbled streets and red-brick arches adds a unique flavour to the shopping and dining culture in London. It is even more spectacular during the festive season. Located within a 5-minute walk of Kings Cross Station, the Coal Drops Yard at Christmas is a destination not to be missed. The magical, merry and bright lights at the upscale Coal Drops Yard shopping and dining area is atmospheric, presented in an unusually Christmassy tree entwined with a ‘green spirit’.



Coal Drops Yard at Christmas and its very special untraditional Christmas tree

The Terrarium Tree at Coal Drops Yard at Christmas in Kings Cross London
The Terrarium Tree in Coal Drops Yard, Kings Cross, London | Christmas 2020 | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

The unusual Christmas installations at Coal Drops Yard is a huge 8.5 metre (28 ft) high Terrarium Tree, a creation by the Botanical Boys. This magnificent creation feature 70 terrariums with each containing a unique, individual mini garden. The terrariums are surrounded by 168 mirrored baubles in differing sizes, bringing the unconventional Christmas tree to life with its glowing reflections. Added to this is the illumination from below, casting a beautiful warm glow across the courtyard.

Coal Drops Yard at Christmas
A closer look at the terrariums in their glass bauble, The Terrarium Tree at Coal Drops Yard, Kings Cross |© mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel
The Terrarium Tree Baubles radiating a warm glow with illumination from below | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

In keeping with their green spirit, the terrariums will grow in their baubles throughout this festive season. When the festivities are over, the terrariums will be re-homed in 2021. As well, the main structure of the tree is reusable and will be transformed into new tree designs.

Coal Drops Yard – A place to Shop, Eat, Drink & Explore | Coal Drops Yard at Christmas

Shop

Along with the magical and festive spirit, the shops at Coal Drops Yard are adding to the merry cheer of Christmas shopping. With Christmas being a little different this year with much of Christmas shopping done online, the many brands home to Coal Drops Yard are offering exclusive in-store discounts.

From new names to well-known brands such as &- Other Stories, one-stop styling destinations, to Wolf & Badger, an independent homeware and beauty brand, Coal Drops Yard is the place for unique and extraordinary gifts.

Christmas 2020: From 3 December through to 24 December, many resident brands at Coal Drops Yard have teamed up with United We Shop campaign to offer up to 30% discounts on selected in-store purchases. There are also gifts with selected purchases and deals. For more information, go to https://www.coaldropsyard.com/united-we-shop/

For a full listings of places to shop and brands to look-out for, check this website: https://www.kingscross.co.uk/shopping-at-kings-cross-listing

Eat and Drink | Coal Drops Yard at Christmas

Wider Kings Cross area is a foodie hotspot that has something for everyone and for every budget. The restaurants, bars and cafes at Coal Drops Yard offer cosy terraces and covered spaces to welcome diners for authentic dining experiences.

*As from December 4, London is in Tier 2. Along with Government guidelines, the rule of six and the same household guidance, restaurants at Coal Drops Yard are welcoming diners for both in-door dining as well as on the terraces.

Many of the eateries at Coal Drops Yard have beautiful terraces with al fresco dining along with outdoor heating and blankets to ward-off the winter chill.

For fun and authentic Mexican corn tortillas, tacos and tostadas with refreshing tequila, head over to Plaza Pastor. It is a permanent outdoor venue, totally covered and heated.

The Drop is an elegant wine bar nestled under the old Victorian arches and has seating outdoors with good heating. The wine list is said to be one of the best around and they serve responsibly sourced oysters, meat and cheeses.

For a full listings of cozy terraces and eateries go to: https://www.coaldropsyard.com/cosy-outdoor-terraces-at-coal-drops-yard/

Explore the surrounds of Coal Drops Yard, Kings Cross London

Granary Square Christmas Lights
Granary Square, Christmas 2020 | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

Explore the surrounding areas such as the Granary Square which is home to some fantastic places to eat and drink. There are a good selection of terraces where you could enjoy a coffee or a cocktail and watch the goings-on. The most popular place, without a doubt is the Granary Building, home to Caravan and Granary Square Brasserie. Also, either watch or experience the Fountains at Granary Square – the aqua-choreography of 1080 jets!

As well, you could grab yourself a drink or immerse yourself in a book on the steps by Regent’s Canal. Regent’s Canal runs through the heart of Kings Cross and has been transformed to be an important part of this neighbourhood at Coal Drops Yard and Granary Square. As you walk along the canal from Granary Square towards Gasholder Park, you will see Camley Street Nature Park.

A nature reserve, Camley Street Nature Park was created from a two-acre coal yard in 1984. The beautiful woodland, the grassland and wetland habitats provide a haven for birds, butterflies and plant life. A little further along the towpath, you will reach Gasholder Park and St Pancras Cruising Club. St Pancras Cruising Club is a lovely spot to enjoy a slower pace of life.



A little background to Coal Drops Yard, Kings Cross London

Eastern-coal-drops-1976-Malcolm-T-Tucker

Opened in October 2018, Coal Drops Yard is part of the wider redevelopment of Kings Cross area in Central London offering high-end shopping and dining experiences. Home to a wonderful mix of independent shops and signature brands from both home and abroad, visiting Coal Drops Yard is an experience in itself. Seeing how beautiful it is today, you would never know that this area was once used as warehouses for storing coal, colonised by a nightclub and formed part of derelict London branded by prostitution and drug-dealing.

Built in 1850, the two long Victorian warehouses has attached train viaducts. The two-storey brick and cast-iron sheds were used to receive and store coal for London from South Yorkshire, North of England. About 8 million tonnes were transported each year, trans-shipped via the Regent’s Canal and horse-drawn carts to heat homes and businesses in the City of London. As coal usage declined, the warehouses were adapted for light industry and storage. There was a nightclub here as well, Bagley’s which was closed in 2007. Eventually, the area fell into disuse by the late 1990s.

Coal Drops Yard at Christmas
The design by Thomas Heatherwick | Photo: Luke Hayes, architectmagazine.com

The redevelopment was designed by Thomas Heatherwick to a clean, prosperous, managed area and opening the area up to the public, linking the long viaducts and the space between them for people to enjoy. While adapting the space to modern use, the historic significance of the Victorian viaducts and cobbled streets are respected.



Practical Information for Coal Drops Yard, Kings Cross, London

Location:

Stable St, Kings Cross, London N1C 4DQ

Opening hours

Coal Drops Yard is open to visitors between 10am-11pm. Please check individual retailer pages for opening hours and information.

How to get to Coal Drops Yard, Kings Cross, London

As it is in the heart of the City of London, the most convenient way to reach Coal Drops Yard is by public transport to Kings Cross Station or St Pancras Station. At Kings Cross Station, access via King’s Boulevard or King’s Cross Square – follow signs for Regent’s Canal, cross the bridge over the canal, and Coal Drops Yard is on the left, just off Granary Square.

Places to Stay near Kings Cross London

As Kings Cross is in the heart of London, there are many possibilities for accommodation. From budget, mid-range apartments to luxurious 5-star accommodation near Kings Cross London. If you are considering a stay at a beautiful affordable reputable hotel, I would recommend staying at the Copthorne Tara Hotel, Kensington. or the Millennium Gloucester Hotel Kensington

Firstly, Copthorne Tara Hotel Kensington is a 4-star rated accommodation and offers easy access to transportation at High Street Kensington. You could dine on site for a modern British and European cuisine – but why would you when you can get to Coal Drops Yard in an easy taxi ride or by the London Underground to Kings Cross.

Secondly, the Millennium Gloucester Hotel Kensington is also a 4-star rated accommodation set against fashionable South Kensington, with easy access to Victoria Albert Museum, Hyde Park and Gloucester Road tube station. Staying here will also give you easy access to Coal Drops Yard and surrounds of Kings Cross.

The Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Group offer run seasonal campaigns and offer discounts for their members as well which may be something of value to you if you are considering travels and enjoying their hospitality at your selected destinations. Use the link below and search for your stay.

For a greater selection of accommodation to suit every budget, including self-catered apartments, long-stay, family vacation, look-up booking dot com who are my go-to search engine for good quality places to stay.


Activities to do when in London

London is a grand city that has quirky, and extraordinarily memorable activities to fulfill every wanderlust. From traditional sightseeing landmarks such as the St Paul’s Cathedral, or visiting a Monument dedicated to the resilience of Londoners to fun rooftop bars and climbing The O2 – your visit to the City of London will not disappoint. In addition, there are so many choices to experience a little of the English countryside on a day trip from London. Highly recommended are visits to the Roman Baths and a visit to Somerset to experience the ancient architectural marvel as well as the Lake District.

For an extraordinarily special experience when visiting London, enjoy a trip on 1st class and go on a scenic train journey. Learn more about train tickets and choices you have from Trainline and FirstTranspennine Express.

Read related articles on Train Travel:

All about Train Travelling and Unique Experiences | Train Travel in UK – A Quintessential Odyssey – Best 8 UK Scenic Train Journeys



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My thoughts…

A visit to Coal Drops Yard at Christmas or at any time of the year and you will find that it is a place of culture, food and great vibes with so many choices to satisfy one’s gastronomic cravings with a great combination of boutiques, restaurants, coffee bars and plenty of outdoor spaces. Both Granary Square and Regent’s Canal are great for people watch or to read a book. Coal Drops Yard is a destinations that should top your list when in London.


Have you visited Coal Drops Yard? If you have, please do share your experiences in comments below. If you are yet to, was this article valuable to you in planning your visit to Coal Drops Yard? If so, let me know in comments below. Would love to hear from you. As always, I am available to answer any questions you may have. Please get in touch via Contact Form or ggdaniel166@gmail.com. Look forward to connecting with each of you.

Have a splendid time at Coal drops Yard at Christmas or at any time you choose to visit this hidden gem in London.

Georgina xx

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This hidden gem of traffic-free Victorian cobbled streets and red-brick arches adds a unique flavour to the shopping and dining culture in London. Coal Drops Yard | Things to do in Kings Cross London | Christmas at Kings Cross | Christmas spirit | London at Christmas | Christmas in London. via @GGeorgina_timelesstravelsteps/This hidden gem of traffic-free Victorian cobbled streets and red-brick arches adds a unique flavour to the shopping and dining culture in London. Coal Drops Yard | Things to do in Kings Cross London | Christmas at Kings Cross | Christmas spirit | London at Christmas | Christmas in London. via @GGeorgina_timelesstravelsteps/

London’s Christmas Lights | An Unmissable Festive Cheer

London’s Christmas Lights | An Unmissable Festive Cheer


The Christmas season is one of the best times of the year to be in London. The streets of London dazzles, with brightness and warmth. London’s Christmas Lights are one of the greatest joys of Christmas as they fill people’s heart with festive cheer no matter the weather, come rain or shine. The most prominent displays and the unmissable London’s Christmas Lights are in Oxford Street, Regent Street, Carnaby Street, Covent Garden and in some prominent parks such as Kew Gardens.

Despite the pandemic, this year has made no difference. In fact, to kick-off the festive season, London Oxford Street and Carnaby Street have put up beautiful illuminations with heartwarming messages of Love, and Unity a little earlier than usual.

London’s Christmas Lights 2020 | Oxford Street



Oxford Street | Christmas Lights 2020

Though low keyed with no celebrities present (understandably), the unmissable London’s Christmas Lights in Oxford Street were switched-on just before lockdown 2.0 on Monday 2 November. The twenty-seven LED light curtains made up of twinkling lights drape the length of the premier shopping street in London. The lights burst into sparkling life with an uplifting message “To London with Love” .

London's Christmas Lights
Oxford Street | London’s Christmas Light | 2 November 2020 | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

Along with messages of goodwill, the Oxford Street Christmas Lights is pandemic related and is dedicated to the Heroes of 2020. Every week, the display will feature the name of a “hero” – a person who has gone that extra mile to help others during Covid-19 pandemic 2020.

The first of London’s Heroes whose name was featured is Anis Ali, a NHS Volunteer Responder who completed an astounding 733 tasks since March while also holding down a full-time job.

Location: Oxford Strret, London

Getting here: Oxford Circus Station on the Central and Jubilee lines of the Underground

To support the Royal Voluntary Service, Oxford Street is selling To London with Love T-shirts with all proceeds going to RVS.

London's Christmas Lights

Carnaby Street Christmas Lights

Carnaby is one of the most fashionable areas in the heart of London. The area covers fourteen streets, over one hundred shops, sixty restaurants, bars and cafes. Each year Carnaby chooses a theme and puts up a spectacular display of lights. This year’s dazzling display is one with a strong message of Love and Unity, in partnership with the charity Choose Love.

Carnaby Street | London's Christmas Lights 2020
Carnaby Street | London’s Christmas Lights 2020 | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

As from 2 November, the length of the Streets is immersed in a series of lightboxes of pink neon lights. The message on each of the lightboxes is positively powerful, paying tribute to the strength and courage of Londoners as well as the whole of UK. The messages of love and unity is an encouragement to continue with hope and kindness to each other.

Location: Carnaby Street

Getting here: Nearest station is Oxford Circus

London's Christmas Lights

Covent Garden Christmas Lights

The annual magical haven at Covent Garden is going ahead this year without the usual switching-on ceremony. The unique market offers visitors a very special shopping experience. From high-end names, market traders. and bespoke designers, you will find Christmas gifts for everyone.

20 metre Norwegian spruce that took some 300 hours to put together – tree, lights and baubles at Covent Garden, 2020 | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel
Apple Market, Covent Garden, 2020 |© mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

The splendidness of the Christmas atmosphere is in the cobbled piazza and the market buildings that create a wonder-perfect backdrop for the twenty metre (sixty foot) Christmas tree. Decorated with some thirty thousand sparkling lights, the piazza glows! An unmissable Christmas lights experience in London for sure.

Location: Covent Garden

Getting here: Covent Garden Station on the Central, Northern and Piccadilly Underground lines.

London's Christmas Lights


Regent Street Angels at Christmas

Regent Street Christmas Lights is the largest festive display in the UK. The stunning Spirit of Christmas returns to celebrate the festive heritage of the upscale shopping district.

Spirit of Christmas, Regent Street Christmas Lights | London 2019 | © mytimelessfootsteps | georgina_daniel

The illumination of more than three hundred thousand twinkling Christmas lights light up the skies of Regent Street and St James’ running from Oxford Circus all the way to Waterloo Place. It is a breathtaking sight and one that will have you in awe.

As with other Christmas Lights switching on ceremony, the annual grand event at Regent Street is cancelled. The lights will dazzle daily from 3:30 p.m. to midnight.

Location: Regent Street

Getting here: Oxford Circus Underground Station: Victoria, Bakerloo & Central Line.

Piccadilly Circus Underground Station: Piccadilly & Bakerloo Line

London's Christmas Lights

Kew Gardens | An amazing magical trail of lights after dark

Kew Gardens at Christmas is one of the best times to visit. The grounds turn into an enchanted magical trail of lights taking you through dazzling sparkly tunnels, trees wrapped in glowing lights and a beautiful dynamic laser projections of Christmas colours on the iconic glasshouse. The grand finale at the Palm House Pond is a stunning light show playing to a festive soundtrack.

Christmas at Kew is a perfect destination for families, and couples, both young and old. Enjoy a festive evening with marshmallows, mulled wine and hot chocolate. Open from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Book a time-slot and purchase tickets in advance

Location: Kew Gardens, Entrances at Victoria Gate, Lion Gate and Brentford Gate

Getting here: Kew Gardens Station on the District Line (Richmond branch)

London's Christmas Lights

Ways to experience the magical Christmas lights in London

Admire the famous and magical Christmas Lights in Oxford Street and Regent Street by booking one of the following tours:


Due to current lockdown measures (November 5 2020 – December 2 2020) mean we can’t go and see the lights in person. The lights will continue to glow and dazzle London streets for the rest of 2020 post lockdown and into early January. Visit when it is safe to do so.


I sincerely hope that this article is valuable to you in planning your trip to London at Christmas so you can experience the unmissable London’s Christmas Lights. If so please let me know in comments below or via Contact Form, I would love to hear from you.

Have a wonderful time experiencing the unmissable festive cheer at London’s Christmas lights and A Very Merry Christmas!

Georgina xx


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Christmas in London- Magical Markets, Dazzling lights and Fairytale Ice Rink

Christmas in London- Magical Markets, Dazzling lights and Fairytale Ice Rink

Lockdown 2.0 in London and England, from Thursday 5 November 2020 for 4 weeks, ending on Wednesday 2 December 2020. Events are scheduled for post lockdown with social distancing measures in place. Please check with event organisers directly via links provided for opening times, prices and ways to book your time slot. This article was initially published in December 2019. Whatever you do, always have fun and enjoy Christmas in London.

Christmas in London is special, magical and for me, it is the most wonderful time of the year. It is the time of year where Christmas Markets pop up with the best and unique gift ideas for your loved ones, the aroma of spiced infused mulled wine beckons you to try even if you do not want to! The mince pies and roasted chestnuts have their special appeal too. Streets of London glow with more lights than usual that it almost seems like walking through a magical fairyland. Added to this, the festive vibes that comes along with ice skating rinks accompanied by Christmas songs and hot chocolate with marshmallow topped. Without a doubt, you will also find some of the best decorated Christmas trees in London. There is no place more magical than London.

If you are looking for some festive fun and cheer this year at Christmas, come over to London and experience Christmas in London. London will not disappoint. Here is a list of places you can visit during this festive season.

Christmas in London | Magical Christmas Markets

Christmas in London means a visit to the Christmas Markets is a Must. The Christmas Markets in London are a total treat and it has so much to offer, not just mulled wine, mince pies, German sausages and fairground rides but also unique gift stalls of beautifully handcrafted gifts. There are several Christmas Markets in London but below, you will find my favourite top three.

1 | Christmas Markets at London’s Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland, Hyde Park, London. [Opens 10.00 a.m. to 10.00 p.m.]

Winter Wonderland, Christmas 2019
Winter Wonderland, London 2019
Winter Wonderland, Christmas 2019
Winter Wonderland, London 2019

One of the biggest Christmas Markets in London is Winter Wonderland although it is more like the biggest fun fair in London at Christmas!. It draws thousands of visitors, both near and far for an experience of the largest outdoor ice rink, festive food stalls and the many different rides, roller coasters and ferris wheel. There is an IceBar that serves unique festive cocktails,. The one attraction which I would highly recommend is the Santa Land, an enchanting experience for both young and old. Don’t forget to walk around the stalls for some beautiful handcrafted gifts. Entry is FREE but attractions and activities are not. For some attractions, prior booking is recommended. For more information on Winter Wonderland, check their official website here.


2 | Leicester Square Christmas Market

Leicester Square Christmas Market, London: [Opens: 12.00 p.m – 10.00 p.m Mon – Fri
10.00 a.m – 10.00 p.m Sat-Sun

Handpainted ceramics at Leicester Square Christmas Market

The Leicester Square Christmas Market is very much in the heart of London, in theatre land and just a stone’s throw from China Town. It is in the most vibrant part of the City of London. It is small compared to Winter Wonderland but the festive vibes are very present. You will find plenty of food stalls, handcrafted bespoke gifts stalls, festive ornaments and variety shows. In fact, I feel more “at home” here because it has more of a traditional feel than any of the other Christmas Markets in London. The stalls are authentic Bavarian-style wooden huts and this, for me adds to the warmth of the Christmas cheer. Entrance is FREE. Santa’s Grotto is £11.50 and the Cabaret Shows are ticketed. For more information on Leicester Square Christmas Market, check their official website here.


3 | Covent Garden Christmas Markets

Covent Garden, London

The 20m tree illuminates the cobbled piazza in Covent Garden, London | 2019 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel
Silver baubles and mistletoe at the Apple Market, Covent Garden, London
Apple Market, Covent Garden, London | Photo: Georgina_Daniel

Covent Garden is one of the most popular shopping destinations in London at anytime of the year. It is unique because it is one place where you will find highend fashion names alongside market traders, all offering a very special shopping experience. Over 200 stores and each offer their own speciality. There is a wide range of unique handmade crafts and goods, from jewellery and prints to watercolours, soaps and sweet treats – all presenting a perfect opportunity to shop under one roof for that special gift at Christmas for your friends and family.

Christmas is especially beautiful here when the Apple Market is decorated (don’t forget to look up) and the Market pulls out all stops when the Christmas decorations go up making Covent Garden a magical haven and an instagrammable hotspot! On 13th and 20th December, stores stay open till 9 p.m. and there will be carol singing. For more information on Covent Garden, check their official website here.


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4 | Christmas in London – Christmas by the River at London Bridge City

Christmas by the River has a vintage ski theme and comes with chalet-style stalls. All selling gifts, drinks and food to mark the festive season.

For more information, check their official website, londonbridgecity.co.uk here


5 | Christmas in London at Greenwich Market

Greenwich Market is a World Heritage Site and is a great destination all year round. It is especially magical with Christmas lights and mulled wine. There are 120 stalls offering a range of handmade gifts, food and drink. For more information on activities at Greenwich Market, check their official website,


Learn more about Greenwich Market and the beautiful town of Greenwich in Greenwich – 45 Experiences and more in 1 Day


Christmas in London – Dazzling Christmas Lights Display

Experience the magic of Christmas in London and be dazzled by some of the amazing Christmas Lights Display which will have you in awe. The lights display are a must-see event and the following should top any list.

1 | Oxford Street Christmas Lights Display, London

You know Christmas is here when you are in Oxford Street. You will be amazed at the seasonal window displays lining up the infamous shopping street in the world.

London's Christmas Lights
Christmas lights, Oxford Street, London | 2020 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel
Christmas Lights Oxford Street, London
Christmas lights, Oxford Street, London | 2019 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel

This year (2019) the lights are new and spectacular. The display features 27 LED light curtains, made up of 222,000 sparkling lights draped over the length of the shopping street. The Street is lit up until 5th January, be sure not to miss it.


Oxford Street Christmas lights gets better year on year and the lights for Christmas 2020 is an amazing experience as well. With a heart warming message and dedication to the City’s heroes, it is a destination in London not to be missed – when it is safe to travel. View London’s Christmas Lights | An Unmissable Christmas Cheer article.


2 | Carnaby Street Christmas Lights Display | Christmas in London

Carnaby Christmas lights displays a quirky underwater theme. This year (2019), Carnaby is highlighting an issue that is close to many hearts.

Carnaby Street and Project 0 London Christmas 2019
Carnaby Project 0 | 2019 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel
Carnaby Street Christmas Lights 2019
Carnaby Christmas display | 2019 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel

Carnaby teamed-up with ocean conservation charity Project 0 for this sustainable display. The display features bubble-blowing whale, glittering underwater creatures such as giant clusters of jellyfish and 200 illuminated vampire squid – all made using recycled and reusable materials.


2020 – Carnaby has teamed up with Choose Love to bring a message of Love & Unity, brightening up the fashionable street with uplifting messages in pink neon lights. View article on Christmas Lights in London


3 | Regent Street / Piccadilly Christmas Lights Display, London

The glorious and amazing golden angels over Regent Street

Christmas Lights Display at Regents Street
Regent Street Angels, London | 2019 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel

…adding that glittering sparkle to our festive shopping.


4 | Bond Street Christmas Lights Display, London

The glow of Christmas lights at Bond Street.

Bond Street Lights at Christmas 2019
Bond Street Lights | 2019 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel

5 | Christmas in London – Christmas at Kew Gardens

Christmas at Kew is a perfect festive winter event of magical light trail across its gardens.

These photos were taken in 2018, Christmas at Kew when I visited with a friend.

Christmas at Kew 2018
Tunnel of Lights
Christmas at Kew 2018 Tree of Life
Tree of Life
Christmas at Kew 2018
The grand finale – light show played to a seasonal theme.

Their sparkling after dark trail holds new surprises this year for visitors young and old. The new route will guide visitors along a mile long of illuminations. The highlight of 2019 is “a waterfall of lights” cascading from their 18 metre high Treetop Walkway with “spiralling columns of light cascading from the canopy above” – I can only imagine it to be a truly mesmerising experience as I have not seen it yet.

For detailed events on Kew at Christmas, and entry prices, check Kew’s official website here


Christmas in London – Fabulous Ice Skating Rinks

The festive season not only brings magical markets and dazzling lights into play but also some of London’s finest ice-skating rinks bounce into business. Ice skating is one of London’s winter traditions. Not everyone is Torville and Dean, and you don’t have to know how to slide and glide. You can get your skates on and inch your way on the handrail at one of these fabulous ice skating rinks in London that has the loveliest of backdrops I have seen. It all comes together with the music, the dazzling lights and round and round the Christmas tree.

1 | Somerset House Ice Rink | Christmas in London

Somerset House Ice Rink.Strand, WC2R 1LA. Nearest station: Temple. [Open from 10:00 am-10:45 pm]. Adult tickets start from £11.00

This is the most iconic of London’s ice rink and this year marks the 20th anniversary of the ice rink at Somerset House.

The most beautiful ice rink in London is at Somerset House
Somerset House Ice rink | 2019 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel

There is a 40ft tall Christmas tree and Fortnum & Mason runs the champagne and chocolate fondue at the Skate Lodge. It is open 24/7 on some days. Check their official website here for more details.


2020 Update:

Due to the current uncertainty and for safety reasons, the Somerset Ice Rink is not available. However, organisers are working towards

exciting new event to mark the festive season in a way that is both safe and celebratory, and that Skate will return in winter 2021. 

Somerset House

2 | Natural History Museum | Christmas in London

Natural History Museum, London. Cromwell Road, Kensington, SW7 5BD. Nearest station: South Kensington. [Open from 10:00 a.m – 9:00 p.m. until 12th January] Adult tickets start from £15.95 

The ice skating rink at Natural History Museum
Christmas in London | Natural History Museum Ice Rink | Photo: Georgina_Daniel

The Ice Rink at the Natural History Museum is one of the most enchanting of ice rinks in London. There is a 30ft tree, beautifully decorated with dazzling twinkling lights right in the centre. Benugo’s Cafe serves up hot chocolate, cream teas, prosecco and cake. There is a viewing platform providing a glimpse of all the sparkling action below.


2020 Update

The Natural History Museum Ice Rink is not open this festive season but the Museum remains open, in line with UK government guidelines throughout the festive season, welcoming visitors. View further updates on their official website Natural History Museum


3 | Tower of London | Christmas in London

Tower of London, LondonSt Katharine’s & Wapping, EC3N 4AB. Nearest station: Tower Hill. [Open from 11:00 a.m – 9:00 p.m on weekdays, and from 10:00 a.m on weekends].

For the first time, Tower of London has opened its doors to ice skating . The moat is converted to an ice rink with a cafe in an adjoining marquee. Skate away in the grounds of a castle that has stood 1000 years of history.


Other Ice Rinks that you may also like

4 | Covent Garden Ice Skating Rink – Inspired by Tiffany & Co > it is FREE

Covent Garden Ice Rink 2019 inspired by Tiffany & Co
Tiffany inspired ice skating rink at Covent Garden | 2019 | Photo: Georgina_Daniel

5 | Winter Wonderland Ice Skating, London

Click here for more details

6 | The Queen’s House, Greenwich Ice Rink, London

For the first time, a new ice rink opens its door in Greenwich, with the Queen’s House being the backdrop for an amazing experience.

Click here for more details


Visit Discover London with Georgina and MyCityMyTown Series for more articles on the City of London


My final say on Christmas in London

This easy guide, listing my top three on each of the Markets, Lights and Ice skating rinks is designed to give you a taster of Christmas in London. There is so much more to see and do in this beautiful City should you decide to visit us during the festive season.

My sincere wish is that this post is valuable to you in planning your visits to London during the Christmas festive season in any year. If so please let me know in comments below or via Contact Form, I would love to hear from you. Scroll all the way down for more ideas and inspiring travel stories. Subscribe to join us at My Timeless Footsteps to receive all the latest news and events. As always, I am contactable at ggdaniel166@gmail.com for any further info or to design your itinerary for you.

Enjoy the festive season, no matter what you get up to.

Happy holidays!

Georgina xx

February 2021, Update



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Christmas in London
Christmas in London
Christmas in London
An easy guide to the best magical markets, dazzling lights and fairytale ice rinks. 

London Travel Guide
A Resource for Mature Adventurers via @GGeorgina_timelesstravelsteps/An easy guide to the best magical markets, dazzling lights and fairytale ice rinks. 

London Travel Guide
A Resource for Mature Adventurers via @GGeorgina_timelesstravelsteps/

Christmas Markets in London | Unmissable Best 3 Christmas Markets

Christmas Markets in London | Unmissable Best 3 Christmas Markets

This article on Christmas Markets in London was initially published in December 2019. There are links provided for each of the event listed here. Please check with organisers directly for activities and timings.

Christmas Markets in London are a total treat and it has so much to offer. Not just mulled wine, mince pies, German sausages and fairground rides but also unique gift stalls of beautifully handcrafted gifts. There are several Christmas Markets in London but below, you will find the unmissable best 3 Christmas markets in London.

1 | Christmas Markets at London’s Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland, Hyde Park, London. November 21st – January 5th 2020 [Opens 10.00 a.m. to 10.00 p.m.]

Christmas Markets in London | Christmas 2019, Winter Wonderland
Winter Wonderland London 2019 | © mytimelessfootsteps

Winter Wonderland is the biggest Christmas Market in London,. It is more like the biggest fun fair in London at Christmas!. It draws thousands of visitors, both near and far for an experience of the largest outdoor ice rink, festive food stalls and the many different rides, roller coasters and ferris wheel. There is an IceBar that serves unique festive cocktails,. The one attraction which is highly recommend is the Santa Land, an enchanting experience for both young and old. Walk around the stalls for some beautiful handcrafted gifts.

Entry to the park is FREE. Attractions and activities will incur a fee. Prior booking is recommended for some attractions.

Nearest station is Marble Arch, Bond Street, Hyde Park Corner, Green Park.

For more information on Winter Wonderland, check their official website here.

2 | Leicester Square Christmas Market

Leicester Square Christmas Market, London: November 8th to January 5th 2020 [Opens: 12.00 p.m – 10.00 p.m Mon – Fri 10.00 a.m – 10.00 p.m Sat-Sun

Christmas Markets in London | Handpainted ceramics at Leicester Square Christmas Market
Handpainted ceramics at Leicester Square Christmas Market

Located in the most vibrant part of the city, the Leicester Square Christmas Market is in the heart of London, in theatre land and just a stone’s throw from China Town. It is small compared to Winter Wonderland but the festive vibes are very present. You will find plenty of food stalls, handcrafted bespoke gifts stalls, festive ornaments and variety shows. There is more of a traditional feel than any of the other Christmas Markets in London. The stalls are authentic Bavarian-style wooden huts and this, adds to the warmth of the Christmas cheer.

Entrance is FREE. Santa’s Grotto is £11.50 and the Cabaret Shows are ticketed.

Nearest stations are Leicester Square, Piccadilly Circus.

For more information on Leicester Square Christmas Market, check their official website here.


3 | Christmas Markets in London at Covent Garden

Christmas Markets in London | Covent Garden, Christmas 2019
Covent Garden Market, London | © mytimelessfootsteps | Image: georgina_daniel
Christmas Markets in London | Silver baubles and mistletoe at the Apple Market, Covent Garden, London
Apple Market, Covent Garden | © mytimelessfootsteps | Image: georgina_daniel

Covent Garden is one of the most popular shopping destinations in London at anytime of the year. It is unique because it is one place where you will find highend fashion names alongside market traders, all offering a very special shopping experience. Over 200 stores and each offer their own speciality. There is a wide range of unique handmade crafts and goods, from jewellery and prints to watercolours, soaps and sweet treats – all presenting a perfect opportunity to shop under one roof for that special gift at Christmas for your friends and family. Christmas is especially beautiful here when the Apple Market is decorated (don’t forget to look up) and the Market pulls out all stops when the Christmas decorations go up making Covent Garden a magical haven and an instagrammable hotspot!

Entry is FREE. On 13th and 20th December, stores stay open till 9 p.m. and there will be carol singing.

Nearest station: Covent Garden

For more information on Covent Garden, check their official website here

Other markets that you may like also

4 | Christmas Markets in London – Christmas Markets by the River at London Bridge City

This year, 2019, Christmas by the River has a vintage ski theme and comes with chalet-style stalls. All selling gifts, drinks and food to mark the festive season. Runs from 26th November through to 5th January 2020. Opens from 11.00 am to 10.00 pm. For more information, check their official website, londonbridgecity.co.uk here

5 | Christmas Markets in London at Greenwich Market

Greenwich Market is a World Heritage Site and is a great destination all year round. It is especially magical with Christmas lights and mulled wine. There are 120 stalls offering a range of handmade gifts, food and drink. For more information on activities at Greenwich Market, check their official website,

Peruse related article on Greenwich – 45 Experiences in One Day

For more things to do in London at Christmas, read all about London’s Christmas Lights – An Unmissable Festive Cheer and Christmas in London – Magical Markets, Dazzling Lights and Fairytale Ice Rinks.


I sincerely hope that this post is valuable to you in planning a trip to the magical Christmas Markets in London. Do let me know of your thoughts in comments below. If you have any questions in general about London, please do drop me line also. I am more than happy to assist in your queries.

Have a splendid holiday season, wherever you are and whatever you get up to 🙂

Georgina xx

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A Simple London Travel Guide to Christmas in London. As a resource for mature adventurers, here are Three  Magical Christmas Markets that should be on your list. via @GGeorgina_timelesstravelsteps/A Simple London Travel Guide to Christmas in London. As a resource for mature adventurers, here are Three  Magical Christmas Markets that should be on your list. via @GGeorgina_timelesstravelsteps/