Your guide to the best Christmas markets in London!
One of my favourite things to do in the cold winter months is to visit many Christmas markets in London! I’ve lived here for over 10 years now, and during that time I’ve managed to go to my fair share of these winter festivals, and its become a must do when the weather gets cold and the days get shorter.
England is gets cold around November time, and a lot of these markets start popping up early on. Because Thanksgiving isn’t widely celebrated here in the UK, Christmas is usually the next biggest event after Halloween. It’s so nice to get out and about during the day, and these markets are usually full of warm drinks, food and fun rides and activities.
Please share your favourite Christmas markets where you are, or if you don’t go to them let me know what your favourite Christmas activities are during the holidays! Let me know down below in the comments or on twitter/instagram, I’d love to know! Are you also in London? Please share your favourites here!
So here we go: my favourite Christmas markets in London!
Hyde Park, Knightsbridge
Free entry: 21 November 2019 – 5 January 2020
Open at 4pm 21 Nov 2019
10am – 10pm every day until 5 Jan 2020
This is probably the most famous and also the biggest Christmas market in London, and no wonder, because it has more than 200 wooden cabins! Each one is filled with gifts, foods and drinks, and you can find so many individual and handmade gifts here.
There are also tons of rides, my favourite is the outdoor ice rink, which is the biggest one in London! There’s even a giant ferris wheel, and multiple other fun fair rides, but you need to pay for a ticket for these activities. I think this is one of the busiest places during the holiday period, especially in the evenings or weekend, but if you haven’t been before, its definitely worth checking out!
Free entry: 8 November 2019 – 5 January 2020
Sunday – Thursday, 11am – 10pm
Friday – Saturday, 11am – 11pm
I LOVE the Southbank, and I often say its one of my favourite places in all of London. The millennium bridge is one of my favourite bridges (I love bridges), and this area always seems peaceful to me, and the view is really stunning. So it makes sense that this is one of my favourite Christmas markets too!
Southbank hosts a food market every weekend, all through the year, but this expands to the areas under the bridge leading up to the London Eye during Christmas, with cute wooden cabins lining the large pedestrian area.
You can get mulled wine, cider, and so much toffee and fudge, and the view is gorgeous at night with the London eye all lit up. There’s also a mini market in the market itself, called Udderbelly, and this has more food stalls and seated areas as well.
Theres a merry-go-round and other rides as well, which are ticketed, but can make a fun day out for the whole family!
Leicester Square, London
Free entry: 8 November 2019 – 5 January 2020
I usually am not a big fan of Leicester square. I find it way too chaotic, no matter what time of day, and on a weekend and evenings, it can get quite unpleasant as well. But this contained Christmas market in the heart of Soho was actually quite nice!
What was nice was that because its all in a fenced off area, the stalls are all lined up in this space, making it almost like a tiny little Christmas town. There are over 25 stalls, full of little toys and gifts, and a few food stalls as well.
Because its in Leicester Square, its convenient and easy to get to, especially if you’re already in the city. It isn’t something you would need to schedule a whole day for, rather somewhere to just pop in after a day in the city, for a drink or bite to eat.
London Bridge, Southwark
Free entry: 26 November 2019 – 5 January 2020
I went to this Christmas market for the first time last Christmas, and it was so beautiful! I love things by the riverside, and this one is set against the views of Tower Bridge, which makes it so pretty.
The stalls, each one in little wooden cabins look so pretty lit up by the river, and each one is full of food and gifts, similar to the other markets. I particularly like one of the stands here selling hot chocolate with marshmallows, and I love just sitting by the market and the river, and having a relaxing day.
Kingston Upon Thames, Surrey
Free entry: 4 November – 31 December 2019
Sunday – Wednesday 10.00am – 6.00pm
Thursday – Saturday 10.00am – 8.00pm
Okay so technically, this one isn’t in London (not a London postal code) but it’s much closer than some parts in the east and north of London which are considered still ‘London’!
This corner of south west London is close to where I grew up, and I’ve spent a lot of time in Kingston over the last few years, and it’s such a lovely town by the river. The Christmas market doesn’t disappoint either, and there are tons of little shops selling unique and interesting gifts, and tons of food stands!
My personal favourite winter food here are the chestnuts! They’re only £4 for a 1kg bag, and they are so delicious and almost remind me of the super sweet ones we get back home in Japan!
Thank you so much for reading, I really hope you enjoyed and if you live in London, please let me know if you’ve been to any or what your favourites are! Please share and leave a comment down below or on twitter/instagram, I’d love to find out more about Christmas in other countries! I love Christmas markets in London, something about it always makes me feel all warm and cosy despite the weather!
See you in the next one,
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