Things To Do in London at Christmas

Things To Do in London at Christmas featured image
Published on November 9, 2023

Are you wondering how to sprinkle some extra magic on your festive season this year? London, a city renowned for its vibrant holiday spirit, offers an array of enchanting activities that capture the essence of Christmas. 

From the twinkling lights of Oxford Street to the charming Christmas markets that pop up around the city, there's no shortage of festive cheer. 

Whether you're looking to revel in the classic traditions, find the perfect gifts for your loved ones, or simply soak up the atmosphere of a city in full holiday mode, London's array of yuletide offerings won't disappoint.

Key Takeaways

  • Experience the world-famous holiday lights and decorations that transform London into a winter wonderland.
  • Explore traditional Christmas markets and pop-up ice rinks that provide festive fun for all ages.
  • Enjoy seasonal performances and carol services in historic venues throughout the city.

Don't miss the chance to make your holiday season truly unforgettable. Keep reading to discover the top Things To Do in London at Christmas and plan your perfect festive getaway.

The 17 Best Things To Do in London at Christmas

1. Visit Hyde Park Winter Wonderland

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland, a spectacular Christmas market and amusement park, transforms London's Hyde Park into a winter wonderland during the holiday season. 

This expansive celebration is filled with festive attractions, making it a must-visit destination for those seeking Christmas joy in London.

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland

When to Visit

For a more serene and budget-friendly experience, consider visiting Hyde Park Winter Wonderland at lunchtime on a weekday in early December. 

At this time, prices are comparable to other Christmas markets, and the crowds are generally sparse. To avoid the heavier crowds, it's advisable to plan your visit before 4 p.m. in the afternoon. 

Arriving around noon, as many do, ensures a tranquil encounter amid the enchanting holiday atmosphere.

Activities and Attractions

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland offers a little bit of everything to captivate visitors of all ages:

  • Rides: Experience thrilling rides that cater to both adventure seekers and families.
  • Performances: Enjoy live shows and entertainment throughout the day.
  • Magical Ice Kingdom: Step into a realm of enchantment with intricate ice sculptures.
  • Christmas Market: Stroll through a charming Christmas market filled with unique gifts.
  • Bavarian Village: Savor Bavarian delights and festive beverages in a cozy setting.
  • Bar Ice: Visit an ice bar, appropriately named "Bar Ice," to savor drinks in a frosty atmosphere.
  • Santaland: Don't miss the chance to meet Santa Claus, who makes daily appearances to spread holiday cheer.

Tips and Tricks

  • Timing is Key: Arrive at Hyde Park Winter Wonderland during the early afternoon on a weekday in early December for a more peaceful experience.
  • Check the Official Website: Stay updated on pricing, opening hours, and any special events through the official Winter Wonderland website.

2. Volunteer to Help Others

Christmas in London is a time of giving and spreading joy to those less fortunate. There are numerous opportunities for volunteering and lending a helping hand during the holiday season. 

Engaging in acts of kindness can enhance your own happiness and well-being, making it a perfect way to celebrate Christmas while away from home.

Volunteer To Help Others on christmas

Opportunities for Volunteering

London offers various avenues for contributing to the community during Christmas:

  • Carol Singing: Participate in carol singing events organized by institutions like Royal Holloway University, where funds are collected for charity.
  • Offering Companionship: Extend a warm welcome to international students who may be spending the Christmas break away from their families. Inviting them into your home for a few days can be a heartwarming way to connect and share cultural experiences.

Tips and Tricks

  • Plan Ahead: Reach out to local organizations or institutions well in advance to inquire about volunteering opportunities during the Christmas season.
  • Spread Joy: Consider donating items like warm clothing, blankets, and non-perishable food to local shelters and charities to make a positive impact.

3. Seeing the London Christmas Lights

London's magnificent Christmas lights transform the city into a sparkling wonderland each year. 

From the iconic Oxford Street to charming neighborhoods like Mayfair, Kensington, Hampstead, and Chelsea, the entire city dazzles with festive illuminations. Exploring these lights is an enchanting way to soak in the holiday spirit.

London Christmas Lights

Where to Find Christmas Lights

Discover the most breathtaking Christmas light displays in London:

  • Oxford Street: This famous shopping destination is adorned with stunning lights that create a magical ambiance.
  • Carnaby Street: Known for its trendy vibe, Carnaby Street's Christmas lights feature unique and artistic displays.
  • Bond Street: Luxury and glamour come alive with Bond Street's opulent Christmas decorations.
  • Leicester Square: Enjoy dazzling lights in the heart of London's entertainment district.
  • Regent Street: Admire the historic architecture along Regent Street, adorned with captivating Christmas lights.
  • Upscale Neighborhoods: Take a stroll through some of London's wealthier neighborhoods, such as Mayfair, Kensington, Hampstead, and Chelsea, where many homes are elegantly decorated for the season.

Christmas Lights Pub Walk

For the ultimate Christmas lights experience, consider joining the Christmas Lights Pub Walk

This guided tour combines the best of London's festive lights with visits to upscale accommodations, offering a truly glamorous holiday experience. 

You'll hear delightful holiday tales and enjoy stops at charming pubs to enhance the merriment.

Tips and Tricks

  • Timing is Everything: Plan your visit during the early evening to fully appreciate the beauty of the Christmas lights.
  • Stay Informed: Keep an eye out for exclusive opening weekend celebrations that often include DJs and personalized presents.

Exploring the Christmas lights in London is a captivating experience that transports you into a winter wonderland. 

Whether you're strolling along famous shopping streets or admiring the tasteful decorations in upscale neighborhoods, the city's festive lights will leave you enchanted and in the holiday spirit. 

Don't forget to consider the Christmas Lights Pub Walk for a glamorous twist on this festive tradition.

4. Explore London Christmas Markets

London Christmas Markets

London's streets come alive with the spirit of Christmas as numerous Christmas markets pop up throughout the city in December. 

These charming markets offer a delightful mix of street food, mulled wine, artisanal gifts, stocking stuffers, and seasonal decorations. 

Exploring these London markets is an excellent way to immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere and find unique presents for loved ones.

Four Well-Known Christmas Markets

Discover the magic of these four renowned Christmas markets in central London:

Christmas Market at Trafalgar Square

Christmas Market at Trafalgar Square
  • Location: Situated on the terrace in front of The National Gallery, this market offers a unique view of Parliament and Big Ben along Whitehall to Trafalgar Square.
  • Highlights: Find Christmas decorations, hats, gloves, a variety of street food options, and original presents for your loved ones.
  • Address: 5 Trafalgar Sq, London WC2N 5DS, United Kingdom

Southbank Centre Christmas Market

Southbank Centre Christmas Market
  • Location: Located on the bank of the River Thames, near the London Eye.
  • Focus: This market primarily features food and beverages, making it an excellent choice if you're looking to sample different cuisines and warm up with hot cider or mulled wine.
  • Address: The Queen's Walk, London SE1 8XX, United Kingdom

Christmas at Leicester Square

Christmas at Leicester Square
  • Location: Charming and decorated, this pop-up market in Leicester Square offers a range of unique stores not typically found in other Christmas markets.
  • Highlights: Enjoy mulled wine, shop for handcrafted goods, toast marshmallows over an open fire, and savor street delicacies.
  • Address: Shakespeare Water Fountain, 4 Leicester Square, London WC2H 7DE, United Kingdom

Christmas By The River at London Bridge City

Christmas By The River at London Bridge City

Photo via Secret London

  • Location: Situated between the London Bridge and the Scoop, this pop-up market offers standard fare, including homemade presents, sweets, and Christmas ornaments.
  • Scenic Feature: Enjoy breathtaking views of Tower Bridge while exploring this market.
  • Address: The Queens Walk, London SE1 2AA, United Kingdom

5. Shopping at London's Department Stores

London's prestigious department stores go all out during December, adorning their establishments with lavish and creative window displays that capture the spirit of the season. 

These iconic shopping destinations offer a unique Christmas shopping experience, combining luxury goods, festive decorations, and delightful surprises.

London Department Stores

Notable Department Stores to Visit

Explore some of London's renowned department stores that transform into winter wonderlands during the holiday season:


Situated on Brompton Road in Knightsbridge, Harrods is London's premier department store. Discover premium goods sourced from around the world, and don't miss the opportunity to enjoy afternoon tea. Marvel at the opulent holiday decor that graces every corner of Harrods.

  • Website: Harrods
  • Address: 87-135 Brompton Rd, London SW1X 7XL, United Kingdom

Liberty London

Found on Great Marlborough Street in the West End, Liberty London is a historic and picturesque department store. Explore men's and women's apparel, unique jewelry, and Liberty fabric known for its vivid prints. Even the exterior of Liberty London resembles a Tudor structure, adding to its charm.

  • Website: Liberty London
  • Address: Regent St., Carnaby, London W1B 5AH, United Kingdom


Selfridges is located on Oxford Street, known for its imaginative window displays that have been featured in top fashion magazines. During December, the window decorations take on a festive Christmas theme.

  • Website: Selfridges
  • Address: 400 Oxford St, London W1A 1AB, United Kingdom

Fortnum and Mason

Founded in the 1707, Fortnum and Mason originally imported exotic products and is now renowned for its tea and biscuits. The store's exterior is adorned with an advent calendar motif, with a different window counting down the days until Christmas each day in December.

  • Website: Fortnum and Mason
  • Address: 181 Piccadilly, St. James's, London W1A 1ER, United Kingdom

6. See The Famous Trafalgar Square Tree

Since 1947, a heartwarming tradition has taken place in Trafalgar Square, where Norway has generously gifted a tree to Great Britain each year as a token of appreciation for British assistance during World War II. 

This cherished custom continues, and the lighting ceremony is a beloved event that marks the beginning of the Christmas season in London.

Trafalgar Square Tree

Historical Significance

The tradition of gifting a Christmas tree to London holds historical significance that dates back to the aftermath of World War II. It all began as a symbol of gratitude from Norway, a gesture to thank Britain for its support during the war. 

Since then, the tradition has continued, and each year, Norway sends a splendid Norway spruce to London to commemorate this enduring bond.

The highlight of this heartwarming tradition is the annual lighting ceremony that takes place on the first Thursday in December. 

This ceremony is a beloved event in London's Christmas calendar, bringing people together in the spirit of the season. 

The lighting ceremony is a festive spectacle accompanied by a band playing Christmas carols, creating a joyful atmosphere that captivates both locals and visitors alike.

One cannot help but be enchanted by the tree's exquisite decorations. Adorned with lights from top to bottom in a classic Norwegian fashion, the Trafalgar Square Christmas tree becomes a breathtaking symbol of the holiday season. 

Its radiant display adds to the festive ambiance of the square and serves as a reminder of the enduring friendship between two nations.

7. Go Shopping at Covent Garden

Covent Garden, a popular tourist destination year-round, undergoes a stunning transformation during December, becoming a festive holiday hub in London. 

The area is adorned with hundreds of Christmas lights, captivating decorations, and a Christmas tree that grows more splendid each year. Visiting Covent Garden during the holiday season promises a magical experience.

Shopping At Covent Garden

Festive Atmosphere

  • Christmas Lights: Covent Garden is illuminated with hundreds of Christmas lights, creating a dazzling and enchanting atmosphere.
  • Holiday Decorations: The streets come alive with holiday decorations, including festive wreaths and sparkling ornaments.
  • Christmas Tree: The central piazza features a towering Christmas tree that is a focal point for visitors and locals alike.

Shopping and Dining

  • Boutiques: Explore a variety of boutiques offering unique and charming gifts for the holiday season.
  • Luxury Brands: Discover well-known brands alongside charming independent shops.
  • Dining Options: Enjoy festive meals and treats at Covent Garden's numerous eateries, which cater to all tastes.

Tips and Tricks

  • Arrive in the Evening: Covent Garden is especially magical in the evening when the lights and decorations are at their most enchanting.
  • Plan a Meal: Consider booking a reservation at one of Covent Garden's restaurants to enjoy a festive meal in this charming atmosphere.

Visiting Covent Garden during December is like stepping into a holiday fairy tale. The dazzling lights, festive decorations, and vibrant shopping scene make it a delightful destination for both locals and tourists looking to immerse themselves in the magic of Christmas in London.

8. Sip On Mulled Wine

Mulled wine is a beloved holiday tradition, and in London, you'll find it readily available at Christmas markets, restaurants, and cozy pubs throughout the city. 

Sipping on mulled wine is not only a delightful way to stay warm during the chilly winter days but also a cherished experience that adds a touch of festive cheer to your London visit.

Sip On Mulled Wine

Where to Enjoy Mulled Wine

Discover the best places to savor mulled wine in London during the Christmas season:

  • Christmas Markets: Most Christmas markets feature stalls serving steaming cups of mulled wine, often infused with spices and citrus flavors.
  • Restaurants: Many restaurants and cafes offer mulled wine as a seasonal specialty to accompany your meal.
  • Pubs: Traditional English pubs are excellent places to enjoy mulled wine by a cozy fireplace or with friends in a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Variations of Mulled Wine

In London, you might come across various renditions of mulled wine, including:

  • Traditional Mulled Wine: The classic version, typically made with red wine, spices like cinnamon and cloves, citrus fruits, and sometimes a hint of brandy.
  • Cider-based Mulled Wine: Some places offer a delightful twist by using cider as the base instead of red wine, creating a warm and fruity alternative.

9. Go Ice Skating

London embraces the winter season with open arms, and one of the most beloved holiday activities is ice skating. 

Across the city, you'll find enchanting ice rinks that provide a magical experience for visitors of all ages. 

Whether you're a seasoned skater or a beginner, ice skating in London is a festive and fun way to celebrate the holiday season.

Go Ice Skating London at Christmas

Notable Ice Skating Rinks

Discover some of the best ice skating rinks in London during Christmas:

  • Skate at Somerset House: Located at Somerset House, this iconic ice rink offers a grand setting with surrounding historic architecture. Enjoy skating while classical music plays in the background. Nearby shops and dining establishments add to the experience.
  • Natural History Museum Ice Rink: Skating beneath the enchanting backdrop of the Natural History Museum is a delightful experience. The rink is beautifully illuminated, creating a magical atmosphere.
  • Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink: Located at the historic Hampton Court Palace, this ice rink allows you to skate in a truly regal setting. 

The palace's stunning architecture and the glow of festive lights provide a unique skating experience.

Activities at Ice Rinks

Apart from ice skating, many rinks offer additional activities and amenities:

  • Dining: Enjoy hot drinks, snacks, and hearty meals at nearby cafes or pop-up restaurants.
  • Skate Aids: Some rinks provide skate aids for beginners, making it easier for everyone to join in the fun.
  • Themed Nights: Look out for themed skating nights or events, such as disco skating with music and lights.

Tips and Tricks

  • Check Opening Hours: Be sure to check the opening hours and book your skating session in advance, especially during peak times.
  • Dress Warmly: Layer up and wear warm clothing, as ice rinks can get chilly.

10. Enjoy Christmas at Kew

Kew Gardens, an expansive botanical garden located west of central London, transforms into a mesmerizing winter wonderland during the holiday season. 

Christmas at Kew is a spectacular event that features enchanting light displays, immersive installations, and a magical atmosphere, making it a must-visit destination for a festive experience in London.

Enjoy Christmas At Kew

Highlights of Christmas at Kew

Explore the enchanting elements of Christmas at Kew Gardens:

  • Dazzling Light Displays: The gardens come alive with mesmerizing light installations, including tunnels of light, sparkling trees, and illuminated flora.
  • Synchronized Light Shows: Witness spectacular light and sound shows that add a dynamic and immersive dimension to the experience.
  • Festive Food and Drinks: Enjoy seasonal treats, hot beverages, and mulled wine available at various locations within Kew Gardens.
  • Artistic Installations: Admire the creativity of artists who contribute to the event, crafting unique and captivating installations.
  • Traditional Carousel: Take a spin on the vintage carousel adorned with festive decorations.

Tips and Tricks

  • Book Tickets Early: Christmas at Kew is a popular event, so it's advisable to book tickets in advance to secure your visit.
  • Dress Warmly: The outdoor setting can be chilly, so wear warm clothing and comfortable shoes.
  • Arrive Early: Arriving early allows you to make the most of your time and enjoy the displays before it gets too crowded.

Christmas at Kew offers a magical experience for visitors of all ages, combining the beauty of nature with the wonder of festive lights and art installations. 

Strolling through the illuminated gardens and witnessing the enchanting displays is a captivating way to embrace the holiday spirit in London.

11. Attend A Service at Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey, one of the most iconic landmarks in London, takes on a special significance during the Christmas season. 

Attending a service at Westminster Abbey is a meaningful and spiritual way to celebrate the holiday and immerse yourself in the rich history and traditions of this historic church.

Service At Westminster Abbey

Unique Aspects of Westminster Abbey

Discover what makes attending a Christmas service at Westminster Abbey a unique experience:

  • Historical Significance: Westminster Abbey has hosted numerous significant events in British history, including royal weddings, coronations, and state funerals.
  • Tombs of Notable Figures: The abbey is the final resting place of many notable individuals, such as Mary Queen of Scots, Charles Darwin, and Stephen Hawking.
  • Architectural Grandeur: The stunning Gothic architecture and intricate details of the abbey make it an awe-inspiring place to visit.

Christmas Services

  • Carol Services: Westminster Abbey hosts beautiful carol services featuring traditional Christmas hymns and choral performances. These services are open to the public and create a serene and festive atmosphere.
  • Midnight Mass: Attending Midnight Mass at Westminster Abbey is a remarkable way to welcome Christmas Day in a spiritual setting.

12. Visit The Gingerbread City

The Gingerbread City is a unique and delightful Christmastime attraction in London that combines creativity, artistry, and a touch of whimsy. 

It features an intricate miniature city entirely crafted from gingerbread and other sweet confections. 

This tasty and imaginative display is a must-visit for those looking to add a dash of sugar and spice to their holiday celebrations.

Visit The Gingerbread City

Photo via The Sauce Mag

Highlights of The Gingerbread City

Explore the enchanting elements of The Gingerbread City:

  • Gingerbread Architecture: Marvel at the stunning architectural creations, from gingerbread houses to skyscrapers, all meticulously crafted with incredible detail.
  • Festive Themes: Each year, The Gingerbread City follows a unique theme, offering a fresh and imaginative take on the holiday season.
  • Interactive Exhibits: Some displays include interactive elements, allowing visitors to engage with the gingerbread city and even contribute their own creative touches.

Tips and Tricks

  • Plan Your Visit: Check the opening hours and ticket availability for The Gingerbread City, as it's a popular attraction during the Christmas season.
  • Indulge Your Sweet Tooth: Enjoy the opportunity to taste some gingerbread treats and holiday sweets while exploring the exhibit.

13. Enjoy a Christmas-Themed Afternoon Tea

Indulging in a Christmas-themed afternoon tea is a cherished and delicious tradition in London during the holiday season. 

Many renowned hotels and tearooms offer festive afternoon teas that are a perfect blend of culinary artistry and holiday cheer. 

It's an opportunity to relax, enjoy delectable treats, and bask in the ambiance of a beautifully decorated setting.

Are you looking for The Best Afternoon Tea Shops in London? Make sure you check out our helpful blog post here!

Christmas-Themed Afternoon Tea

Highlights of Christmas-Themed Afternoon Tea

Experience the joy of Christmas-themed afternoon tea in London:

  • Festive Decor: Tearooms and hotels are adorned with holiday decorations, including twinkling lights, Christmas trees, and charming table settings.
  • Seasonal Delicacies: Indulge in an array of mouthwatering treats such as mince pies, yule logs, gingerbread cookies, and sandwiches with seasonal fillings.
  • Specially Crafted Teas: Sip on a selection of fine teas, including special Christmas blends that complement the flavors of the season.
  • Live Music: Some venues offer live music, carolers, or pianists playing Christmas melodies to enhance the festive atmosphere.

Iconic Venues

Consider visiting these iconic venues known for their exceptional Christmas-themed afternoon teas:

  • The Ritz London: Experience the opulence of The Ritz with their celebrated festive tea served in the Palm Court, complete with elegant surroundings and live piano music.
  • Claridge's: Enjoy an enchanting afternoon tea at Claridge's, where the artistic presentation of the seasonal delights is a true culinary masterpiece.
  • The Dorchester: Indulge in a luxurious afternoon tea at The Dorchester's Promenade, featuring a delightful selection of Christmas pastries and traditional finger sandwiches.

Tips and Tricks

  • Make Reservations: Due to high demand, it's advisable to make reservations in advance, especially for popular venues.
  • Dress Code: Some establishments may have a dress code, so check in advance to ensure you meet the requirements.

14. Visit Christmas-themed Pop-up Bars

London's nightlife gets a festive makeover during the Christmas season with the emergence of charming Christmas-themed pop-up bars. 

These temporary establishments are adorned with holiday decorations, twinkling lights, and seasonal cocktails that bring merriment and cheer to the city's nightlife scene. 

Visiting a Christmas pop-up bar is a fun way to celebrate the holiday spirit with friends and fellow revelers.

Christmas-Themed Pop-Up Bars

Highlights of Christmas-themed Pop-up Bars

Experience the joy of Christmas-themed pop-up bars in London:

  • Immersive Decor: Step into a winter wonderland as these bars are transformed with Christmas trees, garlands, and an array of holiday-themed decor.
  • Creative Cocktails: Sip on imaginative and festive cocktails crafted with seasonal ingredients and flavors. From mulled wine to gingerbread-infused concoctions, there's a drink to suit every taste.
  • Themed Events: Many pop-up bars host themed events, such as Christmas sweater parties, live music nights, and even visits from Santa Claus himself.

Notable Christmas Pop-up Bars

Explore some of the popular Christmas-themed pop-up bars that grace London during the holiday season:

  • Miracle at Henrietta: Known for its extravagant holiday decor, Miracle at Henrietta features whimsical decorations and a menu of Christmas cocktails that are sure to delight.
  • CahootsTransport yourself to a vintage underground station turned into a Blitz-themed bar. Cahoots offers an immersive 1940s Christmas experience with themed cocktails and live entertainment.
  • Winterland's Alpine Club in Fulham: This pop-up bar transforms a riverside space into a cozy alpine lodge, complete with heated igloos, curling lanes, and a selection of winter-inspired drinks.

Tips and Tricks

  • Check Operating Dates: Pop-up bars have limited seasonal operating periods, so check their schedules to ensure they are open during your visit.
  • Arrive Early: These bars can get crowded, so consider arriving early to secure a spot, especially on weekends.

15. Attend a Christmas Carol Concert

Immerse yourself in the soul-stirring melodies and timeless traditions of Christmas by attending a festive carol concert in London. 

These heartwarming events feature choirs, orchestras, and soloists performing classic Christmas carols and holiday songs, creating an enchanting atmosphere that captures the true spirit of the season.

Christmas Carol Concert London

Highlights of Christmas Carol Concerts

Experience the magic of Christmas carol concerts in London:

  • Musical Brilliance: Enjoy live performances by talented musicians, choirs, and soloists who bring the beauty of Christmas music to life.
  • Sing-Alongs: Many concerts encourage audience participation, allowing you to sing along to your favorite carols and hymns.
  • Historic Venues: Some concerts take place in historic and iconic venues, enhancing the overall experience with their architectural grandeur and festive decorations.

Notable Christmas Carol Concerts

Explore some of the renowned Christmas carol concerts held in London:

  • Carols by Candlelight: Held at the Royal Festival Hall, this enchanting concert features timeless carols, festive classics, and a magical candlelit setting.
  • Christmas at St. Paul's Cathedral: Attend a breathtaking concert in the awe-inspiring St. Paul's Cathedral, where the soaring architecture and acoustics create a sublime backdrop for Christmas music.
  • The Royal Albert Hall Christmas Spectacular: Experience a festive extravaganza with a mix of carols, seasonal songs, and dance performances at the iconic Royal Albert Hall.

16. Experience Christmas Dinners on a Thames River Cruise

Add a touch of elegance and scenic beauty to your Christmas celebrations by embarking on a Thames River cruise with a festive twist. 

London's iconic river provides a picturesque backdrop for a memorable Christmas dinner cruise, where you can savor delectable cuisine, enjoy live entertainment, and take in the city's illuminated landmarks along the riverbanks.

Dinner Thames River Cruise

Highlights of Christmas Dinners on a Thames River Cruise

Experience the magic of Christmas dinners on a Thames River cruise:

  • Scenic Views: Cruise along the Thames River and admire London's iconic landmarks beautifully illuminated for the holiday season, including the Tower Bridge, the London Eye, and the Shard.
  • Gourmet Dining: Enjoy a sumptuous Christmas dinner featuring a range of culinary delights, from traditional roast turkey to festive desserts.
  • Live Entertainment: Many Christmas cruises offer live entertainment, such as live bands, singers, and even dance performances, ensuring a lively and festive atmosphere onboard.

Notable Christmas Dinner Cruises

Explore some of the renowned Thames River cruises that offer Christmas dinners with a view:

  • Bateaux London: Bateaux London offers elegant dining experiences with panoramic views of London's landmarks. Their Christmas cruises include a festive three-course dinner and live entertainment.
  • City Cruises: City Cruises hosts a variety of Christmas-themed cruises, including Christmas Day and Boxing Day cruises, allowing you to celebrate the holiday on the water with a delectable meal.
  • Thames Dinner Cruise by Evan Evans Tours: This cruise offers a delightful evening of dining with a four-course Christmas dinner, live music, and stunning views of London's skyline.

Experiencing Christmas dinners on a Thames River cruise combines the joy of festive dining with the beauty of London's iconic landmarks. 

It's a memorable way to celebrate the holiday season while enjoying gourmet cuisine, live entertainment, and breathtaking views of the city's twinkling lights along the river.

17. Attend Christmas Film Screenings

Embrace the cozy and nostalgic spirit of Christmas by attending film screenings of beloved holiday classics and seasonal favorites in London's cinemas and special pop-up screening events. 

Whether you're a fan of heartwarming classics like "It's a Wonderful Life" or modern favorites like "Love Actually" there's something magical about watching Christmas films on the big screen.

Christmas Film Screenings

Highlights of Christmas Film Screenings

Enjoy the magic of Christmas film screenings in London:

  • Classic Films: Revisit timeless classics like "A Christmas Carol", "Home Alone" ,and "Miracle on 34th Street" as they come to life on the big screen.
  • Themed Screenings: Many screenings offer unique experiences, such as themed venues, sing-along sessions, and interactive elements that make the films even more immersive.
  • Double Features: Some events feature double features, allowing you to enjoy multiple holiday films in one sitting.

Notable Christmas Film Screenings

Explore some of the popular venues and events that host Christmas film screenings in London:

  • The Luna Cinema: The Luna Cinema hosts outdoor and indoor screenings of Christmas classics in stunning settings such as Royal Parks and historic venues.
  • The Prince Charles CinemaKnown for its eclectic film lineup, this cinema often hosts Christmas-themed movie marathons and sing-along screenings.
  • Rooftop Film Club: Experience Christmas films with a view at Rooftop Film Club's special seasonal screenings held on picturesque rooftops across London.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is London a good place to visit at Christmas?

Absolutely! London is a wonderful place to visit during Christmas. The city comes alive with festive decorations, Christmas markets, and a wide range of holiday activities, making it a magical destination for visitors of all ages.

2. What are the best things to do in London at Christmas with kids?

London offers a plethora of family-friendly activities during Christmas. Some top options include visiting Christmas markets, ice skating, taking afternoon tea with a Christmas theme, exploring festive art exhibitions, and attending Christmas film screenings. Kids will be enchanted by the holiday spirit in London.

3. What is the weather like in London at Christmas?

In December, London experiences relatively cool temperatures. The average high temperature is around 9°C (48°F), while the average low temperature is approximately 5°C (41°F).

London can be quite cloudy and rainy during December, with short daylight hours. While snowfall is rare, it adds to the enchantment when it occurs.

4. Are Christmas-themed afternoon teas popular in London?

Yes, Christmas-themed afternoon teas are highly popular in London during the holiday season. Many hotels and tearooms offer festive afternoon teas with seasonal treats, creating a delightful culinary experience amidst beautifully decorated settings. It's advisable to make reservations in advance to secure your spot.

5. What are some unique experiences at Christmas-themed pop-up bars in London?

Christmas-themed pop-up bars in London offer unique experiences such as immersive decor, creative and festive cocktails, themed events like Christmas sweater parties, and live entertainment.

These bars transform into winter wonderlands, providing a lively and cheerful atmosphere for visitors.

6. Are Christmas carol concerts in London a traditional holiday activity?

Yes, Christmas carol concerts are a cherished holiday tradition in London. These concerts feature choirs, orchestras, and soloists performing classic Christmas carols and holiday songs in stunning venues.

Many concerts encourage audience participation, allowing attendees to sing along to their favorite carols.

7. What can I expect at festive art exhibitions in London during Christmas?

Festive art exhibitions in London showcase a diverse range of art forms inspired by the holiday season.

Visitors can explore paintings, sculptures, installations, and multimedia displays that depict winter landscapes, holiday traditions, and festive symbols. Some exhibitions offer interactive elements for an immersive experience.

8. How can I book a Thames River cruise for a Christmas dinner experience?

To book a Thames River cruise for a Christmas dinner experience, it's advisable to check with reputable cruise operators like Bateaux London, City Cruises, or Thames Dinner Cruise by Evan Evans Tours.

Booking in advance is recommended, especially during the holiday season, to secure your place on the cruise.

9. What are the best Christmas films to watch in London during the holiday season?

London hosts screenings of a wide range of Christmas films, from timeless classics like "It's a Wonderful Life" and "A Christmas Carol" to modern favorites like "Love Actually" and "Home Alone."

The best film for you depends on your personal preferences, but there are options for everyone to enjoy.

10. Are there outdoor Christmas film screenings in London?

Yes, some outdoor venues in London host Christmas film screenings in picturesque settings, often with blankets, festive decorations, and a cozy atmosphere.

Be sure to check the schedules and locations of outdoor screenings, as they offer a unique and memorable way to watch holiday movies.

Conclusion - Embrace the Magic of Christmas in London

London during the Christmas season is a true winter wonderland, where the city's vibrant energy blends seamlessly with the enchanting spirit of the holidays.

From dazzling Christmas lights to festive markets, from heartwarming carol concerts to unique art exhibitions, the British capital offers a wide array of magical experiences that will fill your heart with joy and wonder.

Whether you're visiting with family, friends, or solo, there's something for everyone in London at Christmas. Children will delight in ice skating adventures, visits to Santa Claus, and festive afternoon teas.

Adults can indulge in gourmet Christmas dinners on the Thames, explore art exhibitions inspired by the season, and toast to the holidays in Christmas-themed pop-up bars.

As the city comes alive with the sounds of carolers, the aroma of mulled wine, and the glow of twinkling lights, you'll find that London's Christmas spirit is truly infectious.

So, bundle up, don your festive attire, and immerse yourself in the joyous festivities that make London a top destination for celebrating Christmas.

May your London Christmas adventure be filled with warmth, wonder, and cherished memories that will last a lifetime. Merry Christmas and happy travels!

Ryan S. Mills
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