FROM ICE-SKATING TO A POP-UP CINEMA, THESE ARE THE BEST PLACES TO HIT IF YOU’RE SPENDING CHRISTMAS IN THE CAPITAL
London during the Christmas period is the most magical time of the year - so it’s no surprise that there’s an overload of exciting things to do. And with so many places to go and so little time, you only want to visit the best. We’ve compiled a roundup of fun places to go that are a little more unique than the usual Christmas markets - and are certain to get you pumped for the 25th. So wrap up warm and soak up the festive vibes of the city with the 5 best things to do this December. We can taste the warming spices of hot mulled wine already...
1 ICE SKATING, SOMERSET HOUSE
Photo by Ellie Roberts
Somerset House is a stunning Neoclassical building located just south of the Strand, worth a visit any time of the year. However, it’s at its prime during the Christmas season. As you enter, a magnificently decorated Christmas tree taller than the building itself acts as a centrepiece for the venue. The ground is illuminated with a beautiful glowing ice-rink that changes colour while people skate to lively, chart-topping music. We went skating at Somerset House for our work Christmas party and it was definitely an evening to remember. We spent an hour on the ice, some of us better than others at pulling our best figure skater poses - and then enjoyed some après-skate drinks inside the cosy Fortnum’s lodge. A perfect winter evening out.
2 LITTLE FEAST, GOLDHAWK ROAD
For the food lovers amongst you, Little Feast near Shepherd’s Bush Market is the ultimate foodie’s paradise. From the outside it doesn’t look like much, but enter the marquee and you’ll find yourself transported to a charming English winter garden, surrounded by sparkling fairy lights and Christmas trees. Little Feast hosts 5 edgy street food kitchens serving up delicious hot grub from hearty gourmet burgers, British shellfish, barbequed pork and special meaty buns. We particularly enjoyed the curly fries with aioli from Nanny Bill’s and the peanut butter burger from Cheeky Burger. Each of the kitchens take street food to seriously quirky places, and if you’re anything like us you’ll find yourself spoilt for choice. The heated seating area fits up to 240 people, so find a bench, grab a fork and enjoy!
3 FOREST ON THE ROOF, SELFRIDGES
Had a tiring day Christmas shopping in London? Escape from the hectic rush of Oxford Street and find some peace and serenity at Forest on the Roof. This restaurant and bar lies on the rooftop of the luxury department store Selfridges - and has been transformed into a beautiful alpine winter forest. It’s the ideal place to rest your legs and recharge, serving a winter-inspired menu from suckling pig to a melt-in-the-mouth cheese fondue sharer. Snuggle up on the outdoor terrace with a blanket and a ‘choctail’ (yup, an alcoholic hot chocolate). Or maybe grab a cosy spot inside one of the festive heated huts. Forest on the Roof is open all day and serves food from breakfast until dinner.
4 WINTER WONDERLAND, HYDE PARK
We couldn’t not put Winter Wonderland in here since it’s London’s biggest and best Christmas attraction boasting an electric theme park atmosphere. From December to the 2nd January, Hyde Park is filled with German-style markets serving mulled wine and hot dogs, amazing stalls and over 100 rides. Whether you’re with friends or family there’s something on offer for everyone to enjoy. Consider yourself a bit of an adrenaline junkie? See if you can brave the ‘The Munich Looping’, the world’s largest transportable roller coaster, new to Winter Wonderland to celebrate its 10th anniversary. Or head to the Bavarian Beer Gardens and enjoy a hot cider in the wooden winter chalets. There’s also a fire pit where you can roast marshmallows with your friends - not to mention a beautifully sculpted ice bar. The list goes on...
5 WINTER FILM CLUB, PECKHAM
The Winter Film Club takes the cinema experience to a whole new level with its new pop-up in Peckham. Whether you’re looking for a perfect date idea, or just a chilled out evening with your friends, this is a superb thing to do if you’re the ultimate movie lover. Situated in one of London’s oldest cinemas, the prestigious Electric theatre, you can watch a film on a massive projector screen from the comfort of a deck chair. Choose from some of your favourite Christmas films from Elf to Home Alone, feast on some popcorn and enter Christmas enjoying the best of the silver screen. You can buy tickets from £13 and films are showing all throughout December. Find out what’s on here.