Christmas in London is entirely a different show. An old world charm exudes every corner of the city. The shops and houses are encapsulated in dazzling colorful lights. Gorgeous Christmas trees adorn the shopping malls and prominent squares and a sweet aroma of chestnuts fill the air. And the enchanting London Christmas markets throughout the city make for one of the favorite things to do in London at Christmas.
A trip to the UK for Christmas was on cards and we were all agog to experience the charm of London and its Christmas markets.
If you are visiting London in December and wondering what to do, then you should definitely check out these wonderful Christmas Markets in London. Here are some of the best London Christmas markets to soak up the festive spirit and go shopping to your heart’s content.
Winter Wonderland Hyde Park
Winter Wonderland is one of the biggest Christmas markets in London. More than 200 wooden chalets sell Christmas delights from beautiful lamps, ample of gift options, handmade crafts, and accessories, chocolates, mulled wine and other festal food treats. Hyde Park Christmas market makes for a great family fun outing, go skating on the UK’s largest ice skating rinks, explore the ice sculptures in the Magical Ice Kingdom, behold the spectacular views of the city from Giant Observation Wheel, enjoy the fun-filled circus shows and hop onto one of the 100 fun rides for thrilling experience. Santa Land is one of the enchanting experience for kids with rides, games and a chance to meet the Santa himself.
Winter Wonderland Tickets – Entry to the Winter Wonderland is free though access to some of the activities and attractions may require a ticket.
Winter Wonderland Opening Times – Winter Wonderland is open daily from 10 am to 10 pm except for Christmas Day.
London Bridge Christmas Market
By Savored Sips
Of all the Christmas markets in London (and there are loads!), the London Bridge City Christmas market has always been my favorite, because the beautiful Tower Bridge looms in the background, distinguishing this market from all the rest. The market runs from the end of November to just after the new year. German-style log cabins are set up along the Queen’s Walk path between London Bridge and Tower Bridge, complete with a giant Christmas tree and tons of twinkling Christmas lights. The vendors in the market sell all kinds of things that are perfect for last-minute shopping. But my favorite thing to do is get a steamy mug of mulled wine, or a festive cocktail, and just walk around, taking in the sights. The market has about 40 vendors, though it’s growing every year, plus plenty of food and drink options.
Southbank Christmas Market
Christmas is one of the best time of the year to visit London. You will find a lot of Christmas Markets in the city, but my favorite is still Southbank! Three main reasons. First, this market is on the riverbank and give you the unique opportunity to see most of London landmarks in one go. You cannot be more central: big ben on one side, London eye behind you and St Paul and Tower Bridge around the corner. Second, it’s very close to the Southbank center where there is usually free exhibitions, concerts and other at Christmas season. Third, you can find some London Christmassy souvenir to bring back home. And the atmosphere! There is always some street performers or chorals around at this time of the year. So dive in the Christmas feeling and enjoy!
Columbia Road Market
Columbia Road Market is a flower market held on Sundays throughout the year in Shoreditch, East London. What makes this market so special is that an entire street shuts down every Sunday and comes alive with the calls of the salesmen, “Three for a fiver, love!”, “Come on! Get your cash out!” – I love the East-end camaraderie amongst the sellers and the hustle and bustle that you just know have been the same for decades. In the run up to Christmas, Sundays are even more special – the normal flower displays are still there but they are joined by sparkling wreaths, mistletoe and holly by the barrel load! The pub sells mulled wine, Christmas trees and Poinsettias are everywhere and groups of carol singers drift up and down, bundled up in scarves and coats against the cold whilst singing us into a very Merry Christmas!
Leicester Square Market
At the beginning of December London gets dressed in its holiday clothes and the entire capital becomes a sea of lights and decorations. While Winter Wonderland is the largest Christmas market in the city, it is aimed more at families and children, with plenty of rides, meeting with Santa, hot chocolate and giant teddy bears. For a less crowded and a more adult focused market, I recommend you to head down to Leicester Square. The Leicester Square Christmas market is small but full of yummy treats like mulled wine, German sausages or Swiss raclette but also of different products which can make perfect gifts: dried fruits house air fresheners, handmade jewelry or tree baubles and other decorations. The market features a wooden venue called “Spiegeltent”, where different Christmas shows including the famous La Soiree circus take place here for almost 8 weeks. The Leicester Square Christmas market partnered last year by the Hilton who sponsored a competition to win a trip for 4 people to Dubai as a Christmas gift.
Other Christmas Markets in London
Tate Modern Christmas Market
The Tate Modern Christmas Market is held in front of the famous Tate Modern art gallery. The highlight of the market is a wonderful Victorian Carousel and kids ride. Browse through the pretty wooden chalets filled with festive delights like handmade gifts and toys, clothing, and exquisite jewelry backed by a lovely music. The market also hosts food stalls selling some delicious food delights like waffles, ice cream, and chocolates.
Greenwich Market at Christmas
The historic market is set up in the Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site and exhibits more than 100 chalets selling a wide range of crafts, jewelry, food, drinks and shopping options. Do not miss the beautiful Lantern procession by school children on 23 November. The highlight of the market would be a chance to meet Santa waiting with his gift bags which we are sure would be a memorable festive moment for the kids.
Camden Christmas Market
The market is held at the Camden passage, Upper Street, Islington. From designer made clothes and accessories to vintage collection Camden Christmas market is a shoppers paradise. Camden Christmas market is a great option if you are looking for a foodie treat with options of different cuisines, chocolates, and desserts.
Kingston Christmas Market
The picturesque set up of Kingston Christmas Market on the bank of Thames boasts of more than 100 stalls overflowing with shopping, food and gift options. The large outdoor bars make for a great meeting place serving mulled wines and street food accompanied by loads of entertainment. The market hosts a variety of games, competitions and entertainment programs, especially for the kids.
Borough Christmas Market
The gorgeous Borough market is one of the oldest food markets in London and is set up south of River Thames close to the London Bridge and is popular for the variety of food stalls. While beautiful decorations bedeck the historic market the scent of the mulled wine and bread wafts through the air. The highlight of the market is the guest chefs at the Demonstration Kitchen who will assist you with preparing the most delicious festive treats.
Have you visited these London Christmas markets? We know this is not an exhaustive list so is there something you highly recommend to the visitors to London this Christmas? Please share with us in comments.
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