London loves Christmas, and it shows. Dozens of attractions, markets, ice rinks, and so much more for you to enjoy! But when you are spoilt for choice, it’s difficult to decide what to do. Fortunately, we've done the hard work and looked at the best things to do so that you don't have to. From the staples like Selfridges on Oxford Street, to more hidden gems like Kingston High Street - there's something for everyone to do in London.
 
To make the most of a day, you can book in advance and save up to 50%. Or upgrade your ticket with a travelcard for unlimited travel around London all day. If you're travelling with the family, why not try a Railcard or Groupsave ticket to save even more?

Christmas Markets

Southbank Centre
southbankcentre.co.uk
It's no surprise that we're big fans of Southbank - it's just around the corner from Waterloo after all! And this year they're putting on a fabulous Christmas Market. Whether it's warming up at the Circus Bar, trying a Blood Orange Paloma at Bar Under the Bridge, or making the most of the opportunities to sample street food from around the globe, this market with its stunning location in the shadow of the London Eye is definitely on our list to visit this year.

 
Christmas by the River
londonbridgecity.co.uk
A bit further along the river, with views of London Bridge and the Tower of London is Christmas by the River. Christmas by the River is a boutique and artisanal paradise for anyone looking for something that little bit different this year, and the frosted cabins sparkling in the London lights make this a particularly beautiful place to shop.
  
Throughout December, Christmas by the River will host a wide range of workshops at its very own chalet style event space to make sure you’re absolutely ready for the holiday season.
Body Image - Sign displaying "Mulled Wine"
Kingston Christmas Market
inkingston.co.uk
If you fancy something a bit further out of the city centre, why not look at Kingston? Starting in Ancient Market Place and spilling over to the surrounding streets, Kingston's traditional Christmas market is perfect for unique and handmade goodies. You'll also find copious servings of mulled wine, and classic German winter food to help keep the cold away.
 
The Candy Cane Forest opens a few weeks before Christmas, with festive fairground rides and some extra surprises for young visitors!

 
Wimbledon
lovewimbledon.org
If you're in the area on a weekend then you can try lovewimbledon's Christmas Market on the Piazza. Full of handmade gifts and street foods from around the world - from bratwurst and gluwein to traditional Indian cuisine or Portuguese and Brazilian cakes!

Attractions

Chessington World of Adventures
chessington.com
This year you can celebrate Christmas with the Gruffalo! Chessington World of Adventure's Winter's Tail gives you the chance to visit Father Christmas, enjoy family favourite rides, and meet the amazing animals at the Zoo and SEA LIFE centre. Open weekends throughout December and with extra twilight open evenings to see the lights twinkle.

 
LEGOLAND Windsor
legoland.co.uk
Weekends at LEGOLAND Windsor mean the Ultimate LEGO Christmas! Build LEGO decorations with Mrs Christmas, find the elves, or meet Father Christmas himself and receive a special LEGO gift. Remember to say hello to Ollie the Dragon!

 
Hyde Park Winter Wonderland
hydeparkwinterwonderland.com
With more than 100 rides and attractions, Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park has been drawing crowds for more than 10 years. This year sees Peter Pan on Ice, the UK's largest ice rink, the Circus Megadome and many others putting on family-friendly entertainment from November until January. Advance booking is recommended for paid events if you're going in the evening as many of the attractions sell out quickly.

 
ZSL London Zoo
zsl.org
ZSL London Zoo are transforming their grounds after dark this year with an incredible illuminated display. From tunnels carrying more than 100,000 pea lights, to singing trees and dancing penguins, this unique and innovative view of the ZSL London Zoo site is not to be missed. Just don't forget to look out for Father Christmas and his Elves!

Ice Skating

Somerset House
somersethouse.org.uk
Cross Waterloo Bridge from the south to the north and the spectacular Somerset House stands proudly on your right. Inside, in the Edmond J. Safra Fountain courtyard, is one of London's most beautiful ice rinks. With late night music, Fortnum's Lodge for after-skate drinks and a bite to eat, and the Christmas Arcade, this is a great evening treat after a day in the city.

 
Hampton Court
hamptoncourtpalaceicerink.co.uk
In the shadow of King Henry VIIIs palace home, Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink has spectacular views of the front of the Tudor Palace. The Palace remains open to visitors, so you can make the most of your visit with a tour or by exploring the gardens and maze.

 
National History Museum
nhm.ac.uk
The Natural History Museum's ice rink is nestled in the shadow of the trees that line the border of the museum grounds. Festooned with fairy lights, the rink has a unique atmosphere unmatched by any other we know! Once your session is over, warm up at the Café Bar and watch the rest of the skaters with a hot chocolate and a slice of cake.

 
Tower of London
toweroflondonicerink.co.uk
The Tower of London is rightly one of the most famous castles in the UK, if not the world. So, what could be more dramatic than skating in the castle? The unforgettable setting is available from early morning to late evening, offering an opportunity to skate whenever you fancy. And why not take in the tower itself while you're there?

Shopping

Body Image - Harrods Store external decorated for ChristmasOxford Street
oxfordstreet.co.uk
Oxford Street is, of course, the most well-known of London shopping locations, and for good reason. With more than 300 shops, it's about everything you could wish for! From Selfridges to Primark, Omega to Moleskine, it's a gift-givers paradise.
 
This year, Oxford Street are giving away 100 free one-hour style sessions in association with Style Doctors. So if you're looking for that special party outfit for Christmas, or just a wardrobe update ready for the New Year, then Oxford Street is definitely the place to go.

 
Kingston
inkingston.co.uk
Kingston's vibrant independent scene is a draw from across South West London. Make your way to Eden Walk, the streets by the Ancient Marketplace, and Fife Road (just outside Kingston Station) for specialist boutiques and independent stores for those unique gifts. Head to the Bentall Centre for Bentall's, Kingston's own department store, and more than 75 high street names over 4 floors. The Kingston Christmas Market is also here, giving you an extra opportunity to make sure you've got the whole list crossed off.

 
Westfield Stratford City
westfield.com
One of the UK's largest shopping centres, Westfield Stratford City is an all-in-one destination. With 250 stores, 65 restaurants, and situated an easy walk from Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, it's just a quick trip on the Jubilee line away from London Waterloo. Westfield also have another shopping centre in Shepherd's Bush (Westfield White City) - just a short hop on the London Overground from Clapham Junction.

 
Gabriel's Wharf
coinstreet.org
A short walk along Southbank from Waterloo leads you to Gabriel's Wharf, a collection of boutique shops selling everything from artwork to limited edition vintage-style dresses. Perfect for unique gifts that will leave people asking "where did you get that from?" And if you can't find what you're after here, try Oxo Tower Wharf, just five minutes away along the bank.

None of these take your fancy? Why not try Carnaby Street, the epicentre of Swinging London in the 1960's, or Covent Garden - the must-visit location for any Moomin fans! We also quite like Seven Dials, with its unique streets and stores.

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