If you’re thinking of visiting London this December, here are 12 festive reasons to help you decide!
1) Be enthralled by magical winter wonderlands
We’re not only talking about the mega-festive Hyde Park Winter Wonderland which takes over the park until the new year. Clapham Common’s Winterville, the Leicester Square Christmas Market, Southbank Winter Festival and Bankside’s Christmas by the River ensure that revellers can find Bratwurst and mulled wine in every part of London – all easily reachable from the Park Grand Paddington Court London.
2) Wander among Christmas trees and twinkling lights
We can’t guarantee snow in December but we can promise you sparkling lights, pretty Christmas trees and a whole lot of tinsel! Hotels near Paddington will be dressed up to set the Christmas mood and London’s streets will be alight with festive decorations. The Oxford Street lights are world-famous for a reason whilst a night-time stroll around Covent Garden in its winter gear will make you think Father Christmas must truly be real!
3) Catch a carol concert
A nostalgic carol concert puts everyone in the mood for some holiday merriment. The Royal Albert Hall host an annual Christmas Festival which includes a series of Christmas Carols and gospel choirs. Iconic St Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey host some free advent and choir services throughout the month, or if you feel brave – wrap up an enjoy an outdoor recital in Trafalgar Square. Performances take place nightly between Monday 9 and Tuesday 24 December.
4) Marvel at the spectacular Harrods and Selfridges Christmas windows
No December visit to London can be complete without a trip to appreciate the Christmas windows at department stores Harrods and Selfridges! Every year the displays get more creative, more flamboyant and even more spellbinding. Selfridges have announced that this year’s theme is ‘Future Fantasy: A Christmas For Modern Times’ complete with a metallic Father Christmas. The windows will feature all of your well-loved fairytale characters but not as you know them! Harrods usually reveal the theme later in November, so stay tuned.
5) Shop until you drop in the ‘January’ sales
If you spend the Christmas holiday in London, you’ll be in a prime spot to take advantage of the January sales which actually get started on 26 December, Boxing Day. All London shops offer phenomenal discounts, so make the most of the London Paddington hotel deals and make a start on next year’s Christmas shopping!
6) Twirl around London’s festive ice rinks
Wrap up in your winter woollies, get your skates on and show off your moves at one of the many rinks which pop up throughout London this month. Check out the Somerset House, Tobacco Dock, Tower of London, Winter Wonderland or Natural History Museum for the most central rinks, or venture further afield to Hampton Court Palace and make a full day of it. Perfect either for the whole family or a special date night!
7) Make a night of it with a West End Christmas spectacular
The West End draws theatre luvvies to scoop up London hotel deals year-round, but December is when the theatre district pulls out all the stops! This year, catch The Nutcracker at the London Coliseum, A Christmas Carol at the Old Vic, The Snowman at the Peacock Theatre or Nativity! The Musical at Eventim Apollo.
8) Dine in a real igloo
As part of the Southbank Centre’s winter season, you can book out one of the Coppa Club’s cosy ten-seater igloos for a festive dinner or drinks party. These candlelit igloos provide an unparalleled view of the Thames as you huddle under recycled wool blankets among evergreen trees and cruelty-free sheepskin rugs. The igloos are open every day dishing up breakfast, lunch and dinner. They also have a children’s menu for families and bringing the whole clan along!
9) Watch Love Actually (for the tenth time)
Love Actually, Home Alone, Elf, The Grinch, Die Hard… all your festive favourites will be shown throughout December in special Christmas screenings at London cinemas. Check out the programmes with the Luna Winter Cinema, the Prince Charles Cinema, Festive Film & Fizz with Curzon One Aldwych and Rivoli Pop Up Cinema to see who is sharing your favourite, and book yourself in or a night at the Park Grand Paddington Court to coincide.
10) Feast in a cosy pub or restaurant
Once you’ve exhausted yourself of the merry markets, there’s nothing cosier than taking a moment to unwind by a roaring fire in one of London’s pubs or settling into a restaurant decked with baubles, Christmas crackers and a festive menu. Go for a brisk walk in Hampstead Heath and warm up with a roast dinner with all the trimmings in a local pub before retreating to your lodgings at the Park Grand in Paddington.
11) You can meet Father Christmas
Of course he exists! Take the little ones to meet him in his grotto at ZSL London Zoo for a roar-some family outing. Whilst you’re there, give the kids an early Christmas present as they become ‘Keepers’ Little Helpers’ and give some of the zoo residents a special Christmas treat.
Hotels near Paddington can help you plan your visit to the nearby zoo.
12) Ring in the New Year in the capital
Last but certainly not least, spending 31 December in London guarantees a start to 2020 you won’t forget in a hurry! The bars of London put on incredible parties, many of which are themed and partygoers will often get a free drink included in the ticket cost. A major one to consider is the Southbank Centre’s New Year’s Eve Spectacular with its six themed nightclubs that take partygoers through decades from the ’20s to modern day. Alternatively, a night spent enjoying a delicious dinner at Park Grand hotel restaurant followed by watching the fireworks light up the sky will be an unforgettable evening.