Seasonal travel

Top 10 London Christmas Events 2016

Our favourite London Christmas events that'll get you feeling festive!

The festive season is fully upon us - London Christmas events are in full swing, with plenty of fun to be had all across the city. Whether it’s ice skating in front of famous attractions or taking a relaxed stroll around one of the beautiful Christmas markets, there’s something for everyone in London this Christmas. The city is transformed into a truly magical place full of festive cheer and here are the top Christmas events we think you’d like to hear about!

Image sourced via Harrods facebook

Harrods Christmas Range

With its magnificent food halls, seven floors of shopping and 4.5 acres of space, it’s really not surprising that Harrods receives over 15 million customers a year. Regardless of whether you’re planning to pick up one of their famous hampers, a gift, or just browsing, the store’s enormous Christmas department could well be worth a visit. When: Now Where: 87-135 Brompton Road, Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7XL

Southbank Centre Winter Market

The Southbank Centre Winter Market offers a wide variety of wares, such as warming mulled wine, delicious food and plenty of cute handicrafts. Each stall is housed in a quaint little chalet, along the banks of the Thames. It’s the perfect place to take in the sights and sounds of a Christmassy London. The market is just one part of the Southbank Centre Winter Festival, so look out for the funfair, roller disco, Carol singing and many other cultural events taking place nearby. When: Now until 8th January 2017 Where: Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London SE1 8XX The Lodge Clapham This festive Alpine retreat is a pop-up lodge, brought to you by the TV chef Jimmy Garcia. Jimmy is often referred to as the pop-up king and has launched different temporary eateries across the capital in recent years. In this particular restaurant you can taste delicious seasonal dishes such as roast Crown Prince pumpkin, while sipping on hot cocktails like Baked Alaska Buttered Rum. When: Now until 28th February 2017 Where: The Lodge, 409 Clapham Road, London SW9 9BT

Image sourced via Winter Wonderland facebook

Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland is held each winter in Hyde Park. Consisting of a huge collection of market stalls, fairground rides, ice skating, grottos and more, it’s always popular among tourists and locals alike. It’s open daily between 10:00-22:00 and entry is free (rides and attractions are paid for individually). Winter Wonderland is ideal for all age groups: entertain the kids at the Sooty Christmas Show, go for a spin on the Munich Looping (the world’s largest portable rollercoaster) or chill out at the Ice Bar. When: Now until 2nd January 2017 Where: Hyde Park, London W2 2UH Want to find out more about London's Christmas markets? Check out our guide to the capital's best Christmas markets this year!

Christmas Carols at Trafalgar Square

Every December, over 50 different groups of carollers get together and sing beneath the Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square. Each group sings for around an hour and raises funds for a different charitable causes, so why not join in? You’ll be hard-pressed to find more jovial London Christmas events than this! When: Throughout December Where: Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN Father Christmas at the Hall Embark on a magical adventure through the Royal Albert Hall, led by the Victorian doorkeeper who knows all of the Hall’s secrets. Solve puzzles and follow clues to find the secret key to open Father Christmas’s grotto, where the little ones will receive a present from the big man himself. When: 6th-24th December 2016 Where: Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, London, SW7 2AP

Image sourced via Kew Gardens facebook

Kew Gardens

Worlds away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre, Kew Gardens comes to life in the winter evenings. With a twinkling Tunnel of Lights, spectacular laser shows and more, this is an atmosphere conducive to family fun and togetherness, making it the ideal place to visit this Christmas. When: Now until 2nd January 2017 Where: Kew Gardens, Richmond, Surrey TW9 3AB

The Nutcracker at the Royal Opera House

A traditional entry in the Christmas calendar, the magical world of The Nutcracker and Tchaikovsky’s famous score are brought to life before your eyes at the Royal Opera House. Watch as young Clara embarks on a mysterious adventure - featuring the Sugar Plum Fairy and of course, the Mouse King. When: Now until 12th January 2017 Where: Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London WC2E 9DD

Christmas Day Traditional Lunch Cruise on the River Thames

Indulge in a three-course festive lunch aboard a Thames river cruise on Christmas Day. You’ll be welcomed onto the specially decorated vessel with a glass of sparkling wine, as well as music and carols to help you get into the yuletide spirit. One of only a few attractions to open on Christmas Day itself, it’s a great way to take in the sights of London while you feast. When: 25th December, boarding at 11.30am Where: Westminster Pier, Victoria Embankment, London SW1A 2JH

Ice Skating at Hampton Court Palace

The Hampton Court Palace ice rink is a truly scenic spot for a skate this winter. Sessions are available during the day and in the evening, with the beautiful Tudor palace - a former home of Henry VIII - providing the backdrop. The Palace itself is hold an Elizabethan Christmas event with drama, dance and musical performances, as well as some of the Tudor period’s favourite yuletide treats from the historic kitchens. An advent experience fit for a queen (Queen Elizabeth 1, that is). When: Now until 8th January 2017 Where: Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey KT8 9AU Have you thrown your best/worst Xmas jumper on yet? Are you sipping mulled wine? Or are you halfway out the door heading to one of these activities? Tell us in the comments which London Christmas events sound the most fun to you!

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