Christmas in London in 2021
Christmas is the one time of year when everyone gets together and celebrates, and what better place to do so than London? There’s something truly magical about London at Christmas time.
Christmas Eve is an amusing occasion. There aren’t many one-time London Christmas events , but if you’ve finished your Christmas shopping and find yourself with a few hours to kill, there are still lots of festive things to do — just keep in mind that shops may close earlier than usual.
BEST PLACES TO SHOP FOR CHRISTMAS IN LONDON
If you’re looking for Christmas shopping ideas in London, you’re in luck! There are plenty of great places to find Christmas gifts and festive cheer.
Here are some of the best spots to shop for Christmas in London.
Westfield Shopping Centre
If you’re looking for a one-stop-shop for Christmas in London, head to Westfield Shopping Centre in Shepherd’s Bush. With over 300 shops, you’re sure to find everything on your list.
There’s also a festive market with Christmas trees, Christmas lights, and Christmas gifts. You can even enjoy a glass of mulled wine while you shop!
Old Spitalfields Market
If you’re looking for something a little different, head to Old Spitalfields Market in the East End of London. This historic market has been around since 1638 and is now home to a range of Christmas stalls. You’ll find Christmas trees, Christmas decorations, Christmas gifts, and even Christmas food!
Columbia Road Flower Market
At Christmas, Columbia Road Flower Market becomes a Christmas market – and it’s just as beautiful! The Christmas stalls sell Christmas trees, Christmas decorations, Christmas lights, Christmas gifts, and much more.
London’s Southbank Christmas Market
You may still need to wrap a few Christmas gifts? Then go to the Southbank Christmas Market! One of London’s most beautiful settings is home to this Christmas market.
While browsing the numerous stalls, take in views of Big Ben, Parliament House, and the London Eye. Don’t miss Southbank if you want to enjoy a pleasant walk with a warm mulled wine in your hand.
Greenwich Market South London
Greenwich Market is one of our favorite places to go Christmas shopping in London! Greenwich is a gorgeous South London community near Canary Wharf, which is accessible by train or boat. To get to this delightful village, take the Docklands Light Railway from Bank or one of London’s high-speed Thames Clippers.
The market is housed in a magnificent market hall with genuine shops, market stalls, and delicious London street food.
Portobello Road Market Notting Hill
The Portobello Road Market, which is regarded as a London institution and even appeared in Disney’s Mary Poppins film, is held on Monday through Thursday and Saturday. They are indeed dancing down Portobello Road! The market is generally open Monday through Thursday and Saturday.
There’s no market on Friday or Sunday, but Portobello Road has miles of tiny boutique shopping and some of London’s greatest antique shops and vintage stores.
Known as the world’s largest antique market. But this isn’t all! The majority of stores on Portobello Road are small businesses that are privately owned and run with a personal touch.
With pleasant locals and tastefully merchandised boutiques, the Christmas shopping experience in this area is wonderful.
Winter Wonderland London Hyde Park Christmas Market
Winter Wonderland is an annual event in Hyde Park that runs from Sunday to Monday. The attractions are open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. There’s also a traditional Christmas markets with everything from jewelry, hand-knitted goods, local fruits, and homeware.
Knightsbridge London Luxury Shopping
For some exquisite London Christmas shopping, Knightsbridge is the place to go. It’s the ideal location to get your hands on some of the world’s most exclusive designer brands.
There are several fantastic locations to shop in Knightsbridge. However, we recommend visiting Harrods and Harvey Nichols during the holidays!
Jubilee and Apple Market Covent Garden Central London
Covent Garden becomes all the more amazing during the Christmas season, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find better presents anywhere else in London.
With the magnificent Christmas tree and decorations honoring the beautiful plaza, it creates a genuinely magical Christmas atmosphere that is well worth experiencing even if you don’t buy anything!
Around are several designer shops, luxurious bakeries, and a Disney store in the Square. There is an Apple store nearby if you need more technology items, and all in all there’s something for everyone. If you’re searching for a handcrafted present or something unique, Covent Garden Christmas Markets are a must-see.
WHERE TO EAT CHRISTMAS DINNER IN LONDON
If you’re looking for somewhere to eat out on Christmas Eve in London, here are some of the best options:
Christmas is a time for family, friends, and good food. If you’re looking for somewhere to eat your Christmas Eve dinner in London, we’ve got you covered. From traditional roast turkey to festive afternoon tea, here are some of the best places to dine this Christmas Eve.
If you’re looking for a truly luxurious Christmas Eve dinner, The Ritz is the place to go. With a mouth-watering menu that includes roasted turkey, beef Wellington, and Christmas pudding, you’re sure to have a feast fit for a king (or queen).
The Ritz, 150 Piccadilly, London W1J 9BR
Galvin at Windows
If you’re looking for a stunning view to accompany your Christmas spread, head to the 28th floor of London’s Park Lane Hilton hotel for a meal at Galvin at Windows.
Enjoy the panoramic views of Hyde Park while you tuck into your Christmas Eve dinner with options like roasted turkey and mulled wine gravy on offer.
Galvin at Windows, 28th Floor, London Hilton on Park Lane,
The stunning architecture of 30 St. Mary Axe (also known as ‘the gherkin’) is the backdrop for a very special festive edition of Jamie’s Italian. Delve into pigs in blankets, turkey Milanese, mulled wine jelly, and more this Christmas Eve.
Jamie’s Italian, The Gherkin Building 30 St Mary Axe EC3A 8EP
This festive season, dine like royalty at The Savoy. Their three-course Christmas menu includes mulled wine mulled wine jelly and a trip to the ice rink as well as festive cocktails for guests to enjoy.
The Savoy , Strand, London WC2R 0EU
Fortnum & Mason Afternoon Tea
If you’re looking for a more traditional Christmas Eve meal, Fortnum & Mason’s festive afternoon teas are hard to beat. With a range of festive treats on offer like Christmas cake, mince pies, and roasted chestnuts, it’s the perfect way to celebrate the holidays.
Fortnum & Mason, 181 Piccadilly, London W1A 1ER
Treat your friends and family to a more casual Christmas dinner with the help of Nandos.
Their special “Twofer Meal” is of great value, especially for groups or families, with two whole chickens, one regular side, coleslaw, corn on the cob, and two drinks included in the price.
Nando’s, Multiple locations across London
La Dame de Pic
The world-famous eatery of Anne-Sophie Pic, the most decorated Michelin-starred female chef in the world, will be open throughout the festive season, including on Christmas Day.
For the ultimate in seasonal elegance, look forward to chef’s specialties — including a showstopping chapon marinated in genmaicha and tonka-bean tea with pumpkin parcels, chestnut, and yuzu. There’s nothing else like it. Pure class.
La Dame de Pic, 20 Queen Victoria Street, London EC4V 4BJ
The Cinnamon Club
If you’re looking for an Indian-inspired Christmas Eve dinner, The Cinnamon Club is the place to go. With a menu that includes dishes like mulligatawny soup and roasted leg of lamb with pistachio and cardamom crumb, you’ll be sure to get your fix of Indian flavours this Christmas.
The Cinnamon Club, 30 Great George Street, London SW1P 3AE
The Grill at The Dorchester, Mayfair
If you’re looking to dine like a king (or queen) this Christmas Eve, The Grill at The Dorchester is the place to go. They offer a three-course menu that includes options like roast turkey with panettone bread and butter pudding as well as smoked salmon fishcakes and baked cod, as well as festive christmas cocktails.
The Grill at The Dorchester, Park Lane, London W1K 1QA
Celebrate Christmas in style with a meal at Zuma. Their festive menu includes dishes like sushi Christmas cake, black cod miso, and Wagyu beef tataki, as well as festive cocktails.
Zuma, 5 Raphael St, London SW7 3PA
Best Christmas Events in London 2021
There is no shortage of London Christmas events. The city is lit up with Christmas lights and decorations, and there are Christmas markets, performances, and other events to enjoy.
1. Take a Tour of the London Christmas Lights
Even the most Christmas-averse individual can’t help but beam with delight at the sight of a fantastic holiday light show. London is always teeming with some great ones. Anyone’s heart will be full of joy while seeing one of these magical setting and magnificent illuminations light up our city while listening to traditional Christmas songs and waiting for Father Christmas to visit.
The Southbank Centre’s Winter Light Exhibition
The popular cultural gathering spot Southbank Centre will once again be lit up in festive colors. Winter Light is a free, open-air light show showcasing ten Lightworks from some of the world’s most well-known and renowned artists.
Nature, technology, urban life, and spirituality are just a few of the themes that they deal with innovatively. They use light, color, and even boundary-pushing film to tackle issues and themes linked to nature, technology, city living, and spirituality.
Crystal Palace Park’s Lightopia
The renowned light festival will take place in Crystal Palace Park from November 19 to January 2, 2022, giving you plenty of time to enjoy the show and festive vibes.
The lanterns, which were handcrafted and hand-painted using ancient Chinese techniques dating back to the Tang dynasty, will provide multi-sensory interactive lights, and installations that tell a tale of wonder and rebirth. A never-before-seen illuminated path will be part of the event.
London Christmas Lights on Oxford Street
Oxford Street is a great spot to visit this winter if you’re seeking for London’s major light attractions. This year’s display on Oxford Street, which features mainly lovely, restful stars, has been updated and redesigned. It’s really quite magical festive atmosphere.
Oxford Street is traditionally the first to light its lights, but this year, 20 streets throughout the West End, including Regent Street, Bond Street, and parts of Mayfair and Piccadilly, were all illuminated in unison for what was the world’s biggest switch-on.
Christmas at Kew
This year’s Kew After-Dark Events, as always, will allow you to stroll around the gardens while enjoying a stunning variety of twinkling lights Christmas shows to put you in the Christmas mood.
The journey begins with the stunning Palm House light display, which is bathed in golden rays. Then you’ll pass through sparkling tunnels of light, dancing waterside reflections, and trees drenched in what resembles precious metals before reaching the well-known panoramic Palm House light display.
The friendly and enthusiastic hosts will be on hand to guide you throughout the week, as well as answer any questions you might have about buying or selling in the area. The event is free to attend, so bring your family and friends!
Carnaby Christmas Lights
Carnaby Street’s Christmas lights are usually unique. This year’s version appears to continue that trend. Not only will they make the commercial street look lively, but the new constructions are intended to raise awareness for Choose Love, a store run by the charity Help Refugees that helps refugees all around the world.
The Christmas Wonders on Regent Street
The long shopping thoroughfare is lit up with decorations along its length each year. Starting November 13, watch those magnificent golden angels soar high above Regent Street.
Although the nights may be drawing in, that doesn’t imply the sky will be any less magnificent this winter. It very well might be brighter than normal in the city. And for what has been dubbed Western Europe’s highest seasonal light display, London’s tallest building.
The Shard, will illuminate with the top 20 floors lighting up with a four kilometre long, “wraparound” display. Put on by the team behind New Year’s Eve celebrations in London, the 20-minute show will pull in over 800,000 visitors annually.
2. Christmas Shows in London 2021 for Family
Beauty and the Beast
Christopher Haydon, the current Rose director, has not altered much of the Kingston venue’s Christmas program, which includes Ciaran McConville writing the annual family show (NB: not a panto), as he has for years.
Bring It On: The Musical
Finally, after Netflix’s hit series “Cheer,” here is a chance to be immersed in the pom-pom-waving, high-stakes world of another squad of cheerleaders.
If you’re searching for a different spin on “A Christmas Carol” this holiday season but not too alternative, Alexander Knott’s adaptation of the Dickens classic, in which Bob Cratchit, Scrooge’s harassed employee, visits three spirits.
The Book of Dust
La Belle Sauvage – In ‘The Lost Prince,’ Bryony Lavery follows Philip Pullman’s “La Belle Sauvage,” which is a prequel to “His Dark Materials,” as two young people, Malcolm and Alice, are tasked with keeping the infant safe while fleeing the malevolent forces of the Magisterium on the eponymous boat.
Wanna go viral? We’re in a mini golden age of contemporary circus, with companies like Circa and Gandini Juggling injecting humor, ice-cool aesthetics, and ( gasp!) feminism into a centuries-old form. There’s no-nonsense in this hyper-trad homage to Barnum & Bailey’ era “The Greatest Showman”
3. London Ice Skating
Last year, our skating wings were removed, and the outdoor rinks had to close early. The good news is that for the 2021-22 season, most of London’s best ice-skating rinks have reopened. It’s the perfect place to take your loved ones for a Christmas classic spin.
Ice skating rinks at the Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum’s ice rink has returned for another year, and it will be your last chance to enjoy its chilly delights. This year, the ice rink at the South Kensington venue will stay for one more season before becoming a new urban garden.
Before our icy friend leaves us forever, get your skates on for one last spin around the twinkling Christmas tree.
Skate at Somerset House in London
What’s a London Christmas without Somerset House’s famous ice rink? On this massive, 900-square-meter outside rink with a 40-foot Christmas tree in the middle for maximum Instagram appeal, skate around the magnificent neoclassical courtyard.
Skate Lates is a big draw, with DJs like Mia Lily, Mal, Chloe English, Heléna Star, and the collective Girls Don’t Sync performing on the ice rink’s rink side decks for huge outdoor events.
Skylight Tobacco Dock
The venue’s rooftop area will be transformed with seasonally appropriate seating, such as igloo-shaped pods and heated covered tables.
You’ll be able to skate on the glass roof of the Shard, which will have an ice rink again so you can gliding around as London twinkles in the distance. Don’t forget to visit the Christmas cinema, secret speakeasy, and après ski hotel while you’re there.
Ice Rink at the Natural History Museum
The tradition of skating on the ice skating rink at the Natural History Museum will return to us in October, but it’ll be your last opportunity to enjoy its icy delights. This year’s festive period will be the final one for the ice rink at South Kensington before it is transformed into a new urban garden. We’re about to say goodbye to our chilly friend for good, so get your skates on for one last spin around the glittering Christmas tree.
4. Christmas Carols In London
There’s nothing quite like the sound of Christmas carols to get you in the festive spirit and Christmas fun. If you’re looking for a traditional Christmas carol service in London, here are some of the best places to go:
CHRISTMAS EVENTS AT CADOGAN HALL, CHELSEA
Nearby Sloane Square, Chelsea’s Cadogan Hall has a Christmas program of events running through December. Highlights include A Choral Christmas with the Royal Philharmonia Orchestra, Christmas with Barts Choir, West End Does: Christmas, and Carols by Candlelight.
CHELSEA, ST LUKE’S CHURCH
The Royal Brompton Hospital Charity holds its Carols by Candlelight concert, with performances by its patient choir, Singing for Breathing, and Fortis Voices. This year’s funds will be used to support the post-Covid mental health initiative.
ST PETER’S CHURCH, BELGRAVIA
Joanna Lumley and Timothy West headline a Magical Candlelit Christmas Concert at ST PETER’S CHURCH, BELGRAVIA. A trumpet fanfare, school choirs, mince pies, and mulled wine are all part of the full holiday experience.