If you love the festive holiday season filled with twinkling lights, merry carolers and winter cheer around every corner, there’s hardly a better city to visit at Christmastime than London. It’s a truly magical place that will leave you filled with the spirit of the holidays. So book your London hotel and check out the best places to experience the Christmas atmosphere in London:
Trafalgar Square Christmas Tree
For the full on Christmas spirit experience, this is the real deal right here! The famous Christmas tree towers every year over Trafalgar Square since 1947. It’s actually decorated in Norwegian style, since it was a gift from the Norwegians to the British. The best time to visit is December 6 when they have the tree lighting ceremony, complete with singing and a whole evening leading up to the big lighting. But if you can’t make it then, you can enjoy the tree all the way through January. Visit in the weeks leading up to Christmas to hear groups of carolers perform beside the tree to engage the crowd in Christmas cheer.
Christmas Lights on Oxford Street
Another popular lighting ceremony is on Oxford street, where massive crowds gather each year to watch hundreds of thousands of Christmas lights emblaze the street. The lighting ceremony includes a star-studded musical performance so check the schedule to see if you can make it for that. Otherwise, just enjoy taking a stroll up and down the festive street during the holidays and people-watching as everyone merrily bustles around under the twinkling lights.
Hyde Park Winter Wonderland
At Christmastime, London’s largest and most famous park dedicates a corner into a magical winter wonderland that will enthrall both children and adults. They have fairground rides, Christmas markets, Santa’s grotto, festive food and drinks…and the list goes on. Ride the Observation Wheel to the top to see the whole wonderland from the sky. Check out the Magical Ice Kingdom, which children will love. It’s set up as a fairytale-like ice and snow world with woodland and fairytale creatures.
Hampton Court Palace Ice Skating Rink
What’s the Christmas season without some outdoor ice skating? And in London, the Hampton Court Palace turns into a massive skating rink with incredible views of the palace itself. It’s adorned with festive decorations and surrounded by cafes selling mulled wine and minced pies to satisfy you after your skate, before heading back to cozy up in your London hotel.