London is without a doubt one of the best cities to visit during the festive period. The streets are lit up with vibrant colours and the city is glittering with Christmas markets, decorated trees, ice-rinks and festive light shows. This year we can expect Christmas in London to be bigger and better than ever before. After all, it has some making up to do following last year’s cancellation.
London’s ice rinks are known for their magical settings, set up with some historic monuments as their backdrops. This year, you can choose from a variety of outdoor ice-skating rinks including those set in front of the Natural History Museum and Somerset House. The former will operate in 2021 for the final time before the space is transformed into a hub for urban wildlife.
London is set to light up from November, with Marylebone Village doused in a snow-machine-induced haze complete with wreath making and Santa’s grotto. Always a favourite among central London Christmas lights displays is Covent Garden, hosting an impressive 115,000 lights spread across the main market building, complete with a huge 60-foot Christmas tree adorned with 30,000 festive lights.
From 19th November, the festive extranvaganza in London’s Hyde Park will be back bigger than ever this Christmas. It’s not quite visible from space, but if you arrive into London’s Heathrow Airport at night you’ll spot it out of your window as you come into land (make sure to sit on the right hand side). Whilst there will be a few changes to the usual festival, it’s time to get excited about the return of gift-filled huts, fairground rides, and the UK’s largest outdoor ice-rink.
Harry Potter Studios – Hogwarts in the snow:
An exciting new edition to the mesmerizing Harry Potter Studios will see the woodland in the Forbidden Forest undergo a festive makeover, draped in layers of filmmaking snow, as well as the cobbled stones and magical shop fronts of Diagon Alley, Hagrid’s Hut and the Hogwarts castle model.
Once again, the enchanting Great Hall will be dressed for the occasion with wreaths, garlands and trees topped with witches on miniature broomsticks. The long dining tables will be dressed as they were for the seasonal feast in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, complete with SFX flaming Christmas puddings and prop versions of the mouth-watering roast turkeys and hams studded with cherries.
The Royal Ballet: Nutcracker
The Nutcracker has long been one of the most enchanting performances in ballet. Tchaikovsky’s much-loved music is matched to a story of magic on Christmas Eve, designed to spark instant excitement for the festive period. The beauty and history of the Royal Opera House is an experience in itself, and an absolute must-do for those visiting London.