Christmas in London is truly enchanting. So if you are planning to spend the holiday season in the heart of England’s capital, we’ve got you covered.
From free activities to the most luxurious ones, you won’t run out of Christmas Things to Do in London with our carefully crafted list. But hey, don’t forget to bring the most thoughtful gift or gift experience to wrap up the best Christmas ever for you and your loved ones.
What will be your London Christmas story this year? Explore the possibilities in this article.
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Free Christmas Things to Do in London
Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park
Experience the festive magic at Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park. While some attractions may require a fee, entry to the park itself is free. Wander through the Christmas markets, marvel at the lights, and soak in the holiday atmosphere.
Christmas Lights on Oxford Street
Take a leisurely stroll along Oxford Street to admire the spectacular Christmas lights. The iconic street transforms into a glittering wonderland, offering a perfect setting for a festive evening walk without spending a penny.
The ‘turning on’ of Christmas lights has become an event somewhat exclusively pertaining to children. Rather, the best time to see them is during a post-light shopping spree or after drinks with friends.
Southbank Centre Winter Festival
Head to the Southbank Centre for their Winter Festival, featuring free events and performances. From live music to seasonal markets, this cultural hub on the Thames has something for everyone seeking a joyful Christmas experience. If you wonder further down river towards London Bridge and Tower Bridge, you will be greeted by another Christmas market along the river.
Covent Garden Decorations
Explore the enchanting decorations in Covent Garden. The market area comes alive with festive lights and decorations, providing a picturesque backdrop for your holiday moments. Enjoy street performances and the cheerful ambiance.
Trafalgar Square Christmas Tree
Marvel at the iconic Trafalgar Square Christmas tree, an annual gift from Norway to London since 1947. The tree is beautifully adorned and lit, creating a stunning focal point in one of London’s most famous squares.
National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery
Visit the National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery, both located in Trafalgar Square, to enjoy world-class art collections. Entry to the main galleries is free, offering a cultural escape during the festive season.
Christmas Carol Singing in St. Martin-in-the-Fields
Immerse yourself in the Christmas spirit with free carol singing at St. Martin-in-the-Fields. This iconic church hosts various festive concerts, and joining in the carol singing is a heartwarming experience.
Wander Through Christmas Markets
While the market itself is filled with tempting treats, wandering through Christmas Markets is free. London sees some fantastic markets and fairs come the winter. The best one, however, is open to hot debate. Some say Southbank’s Centre Winter Market is not to be missed, while others claim Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland festivities are both vast and difficult to match. Whatever the case, it’s rarely a bad thing to see competition so healthy.
For the top markets to visit in London and beyond, have a look at this list of the Best Christmas Markets in the UK.
Luxurious Christmas Things to Do in London
Stay at The Ritz London
Indulge in the epitome of luxury by booking a stay at The Ritz. Experience opulent accommodations, festive decor, and world-class service in this iconic hotel. Enjoy a lavish Christmas getaway in the heart of London.
Private Ice Skating at Somerset House
Elevate your ice skating experience by booking a private session at Somerset House. Glide across the ice with exclusivity, surrounded by the stunning architecture of this historic venue, creating a magical and intimate winter wonderland.
In addition, Hampton Court’s rink, set right outside the red-bricked Tudor palace might just be the most romantic, while Hyde Park’s efforts can’t go unnoticed as they claim to have the biggest outdoor rink in the UK.
Cultural London Exploration
Make sure you have time to experience some of Britain’s finest museums and historic sites. Explore centuries of fascinating stories, see famous landmarks, and follow the path of historical figures with Unique London History Tours.
Christmas at Kew Gardens
With the changing of the seasons, the landscape around us undergoes so many transformations it can all pass you by too quickly. Now with this wonderful day and evening out, it needn’t. The winter landscape is wonderfully reflected at Kew Gardens where you’ll be able to go from traditional British gardens, frosted and iced, to sub-tropical glasshouses.
Michelin-Starred Christmas Dining
Treat your taste buds to a Michelin-starred Christmas dining experience. London boasts numerous acclaimed restaurants that offer specially curated festive menus, ensuring a culinary journey of luxury and decadence.
Private Thames River Cruise
Charter a private Thames River Cruise for a luxurious Christmas celebration. Enjoy breathtaking views of London’s illuminated landmarks, accompanied by gourmet cuisine and attentive service for an unforgettable evening.
Go Christmas Shopping
Embark on a high-end shopping spree on Bond Street, renowned for its designer boutiques and luxury brands. Find the perfect gifts for your loved ones while immersing yourself in the glamour of this exclusive shopping district.
Private Viewing at The Shard
Enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of London with a private viewing at The Shard. Sip champagne as you take in the city’s sparkling lights, making this an exclusive and romantic way to celebrate the festive season.
Relaxing Luxury Spa Day
Indulge in a pampering spa day this Christmas. Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and rejuvenate with personalized treatments in a luxurious and serene environment, ensuring a truly relaxing Christmas experience.
Drink the Ultimate Hot Chocolate
When a well-established Rome based chocolate shop opens a branch in London then you know it must be worth investigating. This is certainly the case with the hot chocolate made by Said, which can be found in the heart of Soho. An upmarket, luxury chocolate shop, their hot chocolate can be found bubbling away in little vats behind the counter. Sit inside and enjoy the rich, thick piping hot beverage and watch the world go by.
Make this Christmas in London an affair of luxury and sophistication. You can find more of these opulent experiences in London and create lasting memories here.
Whether you found yourself gliding on ice, fine dining, or strolling beneath the glittering lights of iconic streets, London’s magic has woven itself into your holiday season. What else can complete your Christmas story? Right, the gifts!
Have a happy holiday!
Tom’s travel writings are a testament to his insatiable curiosity and love for the road less traveled. Eschewing the typical tourist spots, Tom has built a reputation for uncovering hidden gems known only to locals.
From secluded mountain villages in the Himalayas to untouched beaches in the South Pacific, his adventures have taken him to the world’s most undiscovered corners.