Just like that, Christmas has come around, which means it’s time to celebrate the festive season. Most places worldwide will wax lyrical about how great their home cities are to celebrate Christmas, but I am here to tell you why London is great this time of the year.
Chris, an office worker who has lived in London for a few years now, told me, “Being from the north of England, we get very intimate and serene Christmas markets. London is just spectacular. There are so many markets, and the lights around the city are magnificent.”
Even if you didn’t adore the festive season, you would be sure to change your mind once you find out the sheer breadth of activities that Londoners can enjoy around this time of year. Whether it’s skating around an ice rink or swaggering through a Christmas Market under the lights, it’s safe to say London is pretty spoilt for festive choices.
When I think of Christmas markets, I picture mugs of brewing mulled wine, bargains to be had on homemade crafts, and Christmas tunes being played to lighten up the mood. Not to mention being wrapped up from head to toe with freezing temperatures.
After last years Christmas markets being virtual in most places around the world, this is the time to get out and enjoy what London has to offer as it will be bigger and better than it has ever been. Supporting the local and small businesses is what will help boost the local economy as well.
Therefore, look no further than to spend your time in London for Christmas as it is one the best cities in the world to celebrate. In terms of the U.K., London has taken the crown with ease thanks to a whopping sixteen Christmas markets, with a good chance of seeing snow and high popularity during the season.
One of my favourite places to visit during the Christmas period is Covent Garden Christmas Village. Every year, you get to see the 60ft Christmas tree sparkling with more than 30,000 colourful lights. You must get yourself down there to see it positioned in its glory and, whilst you’re there, head down to the magical Christmas Village spread across the East Piazza of the market building. Sanjay, who has visited over the years, told me, “This is where you can find the festive food market surrounded by a Christmas fir tree forest. A wintry igloo dining experience is hidden under baubles, making the whole experience delightful.”
The rising stars from London’s West End productions are there daily with live performances of Christmas choirs with the chance for you to take a photo with Santa’s sleigh. This market is open until the 9th of January 2022.
Another place which is a must when you are in London is the Southbank Market. The Thames looks spectacular and never looks better than it does at this time of year, enchanting the stretch along the Southbank during the festive season. The twinkling Christmas lights of the market are split over its banks between the Southbank Centre and the London Eye.
Once again, I recall my last visit there and browsing through finding gifts, decorations and crafts from independent sellers. One owner of the stall told me once, “What’s better than doing your shopping with hot chocolate and a duck wrap in hand?” This market is open until Christmas Eve.
Many other markets are available, including the Borough Market, open all year round but decorated for Christmas. Festive Flea, Selfridges Christmas Market and Greenwich Late Christmas Market. Whatever market you decide to go to, you won’t be disappointed.
London is by no means the cheapest place to stay during the festive season, but with its impressive array of markets, the Big Smoke is definitely a place to spend this holiday season.