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Enjoy Christmas Festivities for Less in London

The Christmas lights are lit, the familiar tingle of winter has arrived and London town is beginning to feel festive. This means that the Christmas celebration in Great Britain has officially begun! Therefore, high numbers of “official” Christmas activities will increase over the next few weeks, and you may discover that many, such as the array of ice rinks that have popped up all over the city, don’t accommodate a limited budget.

So here is a guide on how to enjoy the festivities without leaving yourself penniless for Christmas.

1.The London pub

A hub for all Londoners and tourists throughout the year, London’s traditional pubs come to life at Christmas time. Decorated with atmospheric Christmas decorations, serving up soothing mugs of mulled wine and cider against log fire backdrops which will warm your bones from the bitter cold, you must make the pub your first stop. A worthwhile feature is the Water Poet in Shoreditch, which gets into the typical Christmas spirit with seasonal ales and festive food.

2.“Ding Dong Merrily on High”

Nothing sings Christmas like caroling and performing some traditional carols will make you feel oh so feel festive, especially in Trafalgar Square around its impressive Christmas Tree. This enormous Christmas icon is an annual gift from Oslo to London, in gratitude for Britain’s support during the Second World War. If this sounds like the perfect way to enter the Christmas spirit, four hours of carol singing takes place daily between 8th and 23rd December from 4-8 pm on weekdays and 2-6 pm on weekends. Fortunately, for penny-savers, it is free to attend but charity donations are welcome.

3.Toys Shops

Whether you are a parent or not, a trip to Hamleys is an infallible way to get into the Christmas mood. This enchanting toy store is the oldest in the world and is filled with excitement around the Christmas period. It contains a staggering 50,000 toys across its expansive seven floors, it is another great pit stop to get some welcome respite from the cold, whilst indulging in the pre-Christmas buzz which only Hamleys can invoke for all the family! Additionally, a treat for the kids is the Hamley’s Christmas Grotto where your little nipper can meet Santa Claus and get a present, but only if they’ve been a good little boy or girl!

4. Light up the City

It is common knowledge that one of the best ways to feel Christmassy is to explore the Christmas lights that illuminate London. The most elaborate displays can be found on the main shopping districts Oxford Street and Regent Street, however the closely located Carnaby Street and South Molten Street boast some truly magical creations. The Christmas tree and dazzling decorations within Covent Garden are another must-see, and the fantastic festive window displays at s Harrods, Fortnum & Mason and Selfridges are famous around the world and can be seen for free. However, it can get extremely busy with shoppers, so come prepared.

5.Welcome to Winterville

A whole array of mini festivals pop up in the weeks before Christmas and generally stay open until the first week of January. There is no entrance fee, although you’ll probably pay a premium for the mulled wine. A typical example of such an event is Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland, which has entertained the masses for years and while it is a firm family favourite, it’s also known for its hoards of visitors and for taking chunks out of bank balances. However, 2014 introduced ‘Winterville’, a more modern and hipper version of Winter Wonderland. Located within Hackney’s Victoria Park, this little “town” features a fairground, street food stalls, roller disco, a hot cider bar and a Christmas marketplace. In addition to this, there’s a full program of pantomime, comedy and free club nights and gigs so you can celebrate the Christmas season well into the early hours.

6. Wonderful winter walks

Whether it’s taking in the Serpentine, within Regent’s Park, or admiring the graceful deer in Richmond Park,; clear, crisp blue skies and a layer of frost can make London’s numerous parks appear truly pictur-esque. However, if you desire a peaceful walk in a real winter wonderland, head out to Epping Forest, where the feel of the English countryside surrounds you. There are also a selection of local pubs that allow you to refuel and warm yourself while tucking into a hearty meal.

7.Shop at a local market

Local Market Shopping

London is famous for its street markets but an indoor market can be easier to explore during the chilly winter months. A fine example of such an establishment is Alfie’s Antique Market, which is distributed over a handful of floors and has a wonderful selection of antiques and collectables, available at differing price levels. There is also the covered Brixton Market Row and Brixton Village, located in South London, which combines a long-established market with a large selection of vintage stores. Perfect for the regular bargain hunter!

8.Won’t you stay another day?

If the numerous Christmas-themed activities and shopping opportunities seem like too much to do in one sitting, why not stay for a night or two in a luxury budget hotel to fully experience the joys of London during the Christmas period? The winter season sees the number of affordable London hotel deals soar, as this is known as the off-peak season. Additionally, with the arrival of Christmas, hotels begin to offer discount rates, shopping packages and even deals that allow you to spend Christmas Day in London and enjoy a visit from Santa in one of the many luxurious hotels. The Shaftesbury Hotel London offer a wide range of budget hotels, such as The Shaftesbury Premier London Paddington, Park Grand London Hyde Park and The Piccadilly London West End at affordable prices all located within the enticing locations of London!

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Related posts:

  1. Top 10 Christmas-Related Things To Do In London
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  3. This Christmas Enjoy the Delights at Fortnum & Mason in London
  4. Places to Enjoy Winter Events 2012-13 in Great Britain
  5. Get into the Festive Spirit With a Visit to Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park

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