London at Christmas - 7 Things to see & do in the capital

London at Christmas - 7 Things to see & do in the capital

London at Christmas - 7 Things to see & do in the capital
30th November 2023

In 2022, London welcomed around 16 million inbound tourists, making it one of the most visited cities in the world. At Christmas London transforms into a winter wonderland, with bustling markets, dazzling lights, and amusements galore. Whether you are a solo business traveller or a family relocating to the UK, don’t miss the opportunity to get festive in London!  

If you are heading to the capital at any point during the holiday season, read on to discover 7 things you need to see and do in London at Christmas. 

 

1. Dine in an Igloo 

Enjoy a cosy meal and cocktails inside the snug confines of a private Igloo in festive London. Take yourself away from the hustle of the Christmas markets and treat yourself to winter themed dining. All possessing a different seasonal charm and perfect for small groups, check out four of our favourite locations listed below that offer this experience.  

 

Upscale glass Igloos overlooking the South Bank skyline. 

 

Transparent luxury Igloos equipped with blankets suitable for up to eight people.  

 

Private dining Igloos, known as Snow Globes, on South Bank which seat up to 10 people.   

 

  • Bar Elba – 109 – 117 Waterloo Road 

Pop-up Igloos perfect for groups and business travellers in London wanting to enjoy cocktails in a festive setting. 

 

2. Christmas at St. Paul’s  

During Christmas in London, there’s no place more festive than St. Paul’s Cathedral with a warm, inviting atmosphere you just can’t beat. The grand Baroque-style architecture combined with the echo of carols make visiting this breathtaking Cathedral over the festive period a magical experience. Those wanting to take in the spiritual significance of Christmas should check out events at St. Pauls. Some services including Family Carols and The Christmas Day Choral Eucharist are free and unticketed, whilst others you must pay for. There’s plenty more going on at this wonderful venue, check out the full event schedule here.  

 

3. Ice Skating in London 

Make the most of your time in festive London and get your skates on. The capital has a fantastic array of pop-up ice rinks throughout the city.  Capture wholesome moments with family and friends on the ice this Christmas, great for couples, ice skating in London is ideal for those seeking a dose of seasonal excitement. Ice skating is beginner-friendly and approachable for those less experienced. If you are spending Christmas in London, check out our four favourite ice rinks listed below.  

 

Battersea Power Station Glide Ice Rink – SW11 8EZ  

Somerset House Ice Rink – WC2R 1LA 

Ice Rink Canary Wharf – E14 5AB 

Alexandria Palace Ice Rink – N22 7AY 

Ice skating rink in London with a Christmas tree in the middle
Did you know that the first covered ice rink in the world was built in Québec City in 1852
people near Christmas tree at night by Fas Khan on Unsplash

 

4. The Snowman Art Trail 

Running for 10 weeks up until the 5th of January 2024, explore the Walking with The Snowman Art Trail in Fleet Street Quarter. This is a great option for business travellers and their families seeking a free and fun activity in London at Christmas. This year, the trail is inspired by the carol ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas'. Each sculpture stands on recyclable plinths with plaques detailing the different artist’s work inspired by the song. Discover 12 unique decorated recreations of The Snowman using this map to help guide you.  

Be sure to check out the Fleet Street Quarter website for more joyful activities and events.  

 

5. Hogwarts in the Snow 

Step into the Wizarding World and experience ‘Hogwarts in the Snow’ at the Warner Bros. Studio in London from the 11th of November right through to the 14th of January next year. Whether you’re a ‘Potterhead’ or not, this is an enchanting Christmas experience. Stroll through snow-covered Diagon Alley and witness the grand festive décor in Hogwarts’ Great Hall. Everything from fan favourite film sets to props and gift shop items get a festive makeover. Hogwarts in the Snow is an unmissable interactive experience great for corporate travellers in London at Christmas wanting some downtime with children and families - check out ticket prices and more online here.  

 

6. Christmas Markets 

When it comes to festive activities, London’s Christmas Markets are simply a must. If you are relocating to London or on a business trip to the city over late November and December, be sure to add the markets to your to do list. Always abuzz with seasonal joy, the capitals markets’ see millions of tourists visit them each year. Offering tempting treats, homemade crafts, authentic gifts, ceramics and more, keep warm with a mulled wine whilst making your way through one of festive London’s Christmas Markets’.  

Here are out top 4 Christmas markets in London: 

Southbank Centre Winter Market (2nd of November – 26th of December) 

Christmas in Covent Garden (7th of November – 3rd of January) 

Winter Wonderland Christmas Market - Hyde Park (17th November – 1st of January) 

Kingston Christmas Market (16th of November – 31st of December) 

Christmas market stall serving waffles and food
There are 12 different Christmas markets in London
Waffles Store photo by Arthur Edelmans on Unsplash

 

7. Rivoli Ballroom Pop Up Cinema 

What would Christmas be without some good old festive flicks? Built in 1913 and located in South London, the Rivoli Ballroom is transformed at Christmas into a beautiful cinema space. A grade two listed building with original décor, chandeliers, and red velvet, this lavish venue makes you feel like you’ve stepped back in time. This is a unique budget-friendly festive experience that is great for business travellers seeking a winter date night. With films such as Home Alone and Die Hard being shown in late December, find out more details and ticket information online here.  

 

Don’t forget about all the free activities. Consider exploring London’s famous Christmas lights, especially the following: 

  • Regent Street 
  • Grosvenor Square 
  • Carnaby Street 
  • SouthBank & The London Eye 
  • Churchill Arms 
  • Bond Street  
Christmas lights at Regent Street
Regent Street was first lit up in 1954
Photo of bus passing on city with lights by James Davies on Unsplash

 

Narrowing down your Christmas in London to-do-list down can be difficult. No matter if you are on a business trip, relocating with family, or with a partner, make your trip to festive London a memorable one by checking out our 7 recommended things to see and do.  

Check out our London corporate traveller guide for more on Britain’s largest metropolis or have a look at our ultimate moving guide if relocating to the city. Browse serviced apartments in London on the SilverDoor website and contact us if you have any queries.  


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