When you think of christmas, what comes to mind? For me its cosy jumpers, big boots, german markets and sparking lights and this year I decided to travel to somewhere that has all this and more.
Anyone who has visited London will tell you that it is beautiful all year round with plenty of attractions to visit and things to do, a trip here is never wasted however you’ve never seen the city if you haven’t been for Christmas.
‘Christmas in London? are you mad!?’ well yes I understand where you’re coming from. It is the city’s busiest time of year with rail, train and plane strikes, weather delays, overpriced food and angry mobs of last minute shoppers but that doesn’t take away from the magic of the city. (Okay.. it does but just a bit) We started our journey on a short hour’s flight from Edinburgh to Gatwick and after an expected weather delay and traffic ridden taxi journey, arrived to stay with family in Kingston. Since we weren’t staying in the city centre I feel like we got to enjoy this time of year since we had a break from the relentless crowds of tourists.
During our stay we visited the Natural History museum which is a must if you have children or are a science nerd like me. From there you can walk past Harrods which was so busy that we had to queue to move from room to room. However well worth the wait to see the impressive Egyptian staircase. We then moved on to Hyde Park where we hoped to see their Winter Wonderland but it was queued for miles at only 1pm so maybe something for earlier in the day. We also stereotypically done some shopping on Oxford Street and visited my favourite place in the world Choccywoccydoodah which was also (wait for it, can you guess?) Queued out the door. The theme here seems to be that Christmas in London is chaotic if you do the main tourist attractions but if you manage to find some little out of the way places it truly is magical. However the Oxford street lights were fantastic as is the Christmas spirit in the city even if we only got to see some of it.
A ‘hidden’ gem for the city at Christmas time has to be Kew gardens, we explored the park at night and wandered along the festive trail that is lit up with light shows and exhibits. Theres even a market complete with mulled wine and roasted chestnuts. Although at 20 I was still denied drink because of my baby face.. However if you are going to be travelling to the city during winter make sure to wrap up warm so you don’t end up with a rotten cold for returning home like me.
All in, we had a great weekend and I think I need a week in bed to recover. London you are beautiful however I think for the safety of my health and sanity I’ll be spending the next few christmases in Edinburgh.