London’s 5 best places for free festive cheer

oxford street christmas lights

It might only be a few days before Christmas but it’s not too late to cram in some extra festive cheer if you’ve been stuck in a busy office like me most of December and therefore in dire need of extra Christmas joy.

For those living in London or those lucky enough to be on holiday here, make sure you check these places out. Some are Christmas markets and some are just Christmas trees or Christmas lights but all are free to attend.

In no particular order, here are my favourite places to get some last-minute Christmas joy…

 1. More London Christmas Market – until 4th January 2016

more london christmas tree and markets

I know I said this list wasn’t in any particular order but I definitely recommend this as the top place to go. Also known as the London Bridge City Christmas Market, next to City Hall in Southwark, this growing collection of market stools are housed in authentic little German-style wooden huts. Those huts and the smell of mulled wine alone are enough to make you feel Christmas-y! Unfortunately I didn’t get any photos this year, but there’s a huge selection of goods; all handmade/homemade ranging from crafts, clothing, decorations, cheese, sweets and a massive selection of freshly cooked dishes from all kinds of global cuisines. Definitely a great place to  get any last minute gifts as well as Christmas cheer.

 

2. Hay’s Galleria

hays galleria christmas tree

On your way to the More London Christmas markets, be sure to walk through Hay’s Galleria, only a few minutes away. There aren’t any seasonal shops in here but they’ve got a beautiful tree (my photo doesn’t do it justice) and the biggest single collection of fairy lights I’ve ever seen. Also, year-round craft stools are here selling cute handmade potential gifts.

 

3. Regent Street/ Bond Street/ Oxford Street/ Selfridges

oxford street christmas lights

christmas lights

I don’t think I need to explain how great and vast the infamous shopping is here but nonetheless, you need to check these streets out. Some spectacular Christmas lights and some oddly festive and catchy Christmas tunes played on the street by a steel drum band make for some great free festive cheer. (Picture being played ‘Jingle Bells’ while on a beach in the Caribbean – it’s bizarre but somehow perfect). Only thing I would say is it’s absolutely carnage around this area. Some people love it because of the atmosphere but some hate it because of the inescapable crowds. Be prepared!

 

4. Harrods/ Harvey Nichols

christmas window display

christmas window display

Located in Knightsbridge, West London, think along the same lines as Selfridges/Oxford Street but slightly less manic and crowded. Still, an impressive amount of fairy lights to match Selfridges and famous Christmas window displays at all. If you’re on holiday in London and feeling generous, you could pick up some beautiful gifts at either to take home – some ARE reasonably affordable, depending on how much you like someone!

 

 

5. Leadenhall market/Bank area

As this is predominately a business area, there isn’t anything specific to do for fun but I do just love the old iconic buildings, like the Bank of London. Leadenhall market is also in the area which makes for a nice walk (and for any fans, it’s also where they filmed some Harry Potter Diagon Alley scenes). More like a parade of shops rather than market stools, but still, a pretty area. And some lovely Christmas trees to be spotted.

 

6. Drury Lane?

And lastly, I’m not sure this really counts as Christmas-y but I saw this cute little pub on Drury Lane doused in fairy lights and greenery. Is this not somewhere where a hobbit could live?!

woodland pub

woodland pub

Do you also have a fairy lights addiction? Where are your favourite festive places in London? What about your favourite city in the world to visit during the Christmas season? Let me know in the comments below!


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