Since moving to the UK from South Africa, Christmas has been a very different experience in comparison to living in the southern hemisphere. December in South Africa is summer time where the festive season is reminiscent of hot summer days, lounging outside, meat on the braai and splashing around in the pool. For me, Christmas in London definitely feels so much more festive when it’s cold and dark, surrounded by all things Christmassey. Perhaps it is a little over-the-top and commercialized but I am a sucker for fun festivities.
5 Reasons to experience Christmas in London
Christmas lights and decorations
Every year my hubby and I have the intention of checking out the Christmas lights and decorations around the city. But usually the cold weather and crowds is enough to deter us and the appeal of lazing on the couch always seems like a better option 😉 A benefit of starting my blog is that it’s motivated me to get off my lazy bum and get out the house. So believe it or not, we got up early one Sunday morning to take photos around Oxford Circus. And wow, it was definitely worth the 5:15am alarm clock!
Festive themed sandwiches and drinks
Every year retailers such as Marks and Spencer, Pret and Eat make yummy festive sandwiches and foods filled with ingredients such as turkey, stuffing, fruity chutney and cranberry sauce. The same goes for the coffee shops like Starbucks who serve seasonal hot drinks such as Gingerbread latte and Eggnog latte. Because I love my food and enjoy trying different flavours, I always look forward to this time of the year when lunch time becomes a little more interesting than the plain coffee and ham and cheese sandwich.
Christmas themed events
There are always so many things happening in London but at this time of the year you really are spoilt for choice. There are many Christmas themed events to attend such as Christmas shows, Christmas carol concerts, festive afternoon teas and wintry pop up bars and restaurants. Watch this space for my recent festive afternoon tea experience.
Until I came to London, I hadn’t really experienced Christmas markets. Memories of my first London Christmas Market experiences are from the Southbank Winter Festival and the Hyde Park Winter Wonderland. The Christmas shopping, mulled wine, twinkling lights and festive entertainment were all enough to satisfy the senses. Christmas markets on my list to see this year are the London Bridge City Christmas Market and the Geffrye Museum Christmas Event
Outdoor ice rinks
Every year the return of London’s ice rinks marks the beginning of winter and the approaching Christmas season. Located all over London there are many outdoor ice rinks to choose from. These are just some on my list of which I’m hoping to visit at least two: Broadgate Ice Rink, Natural History Museum Ice Rink, Tower Of London Ice Rink, Skate at Somerset House, Canary Wharf Ice Rink.
These are 5 reasons why I think you should experience Christmas in London at least once in your lifetime! If you live in London, what do you enjoy about Christmas in London? Do you have any must-do’s or favourite things to do at this time of the year? I’d love to hear in the comments.