Since we are about to embark on our travels early next year and are packing/selling/giving away our stuff, including the Christmas tree (sob), we chose one of the less rainier evenings and did a Christmas lights walk around London.
Christmas Market at Tate Modern
Charlie and I met up at Borough Market, but on the way to the market I peeked in to the Christmas Market at Tate Modern. So if you find yourselves near St Paul’s Cathedral looking for something else to do, cross the Millennium Bridge to reach the market, it’s only a 5 minute stroll.
The market is quite cosy and has a few wooden huts selling all sorts of traditional Christmas crafts, jewellery and other festive stuff.
Christmassy Borough Market
After snooping a little around the Xmas market I trotted to meet Charlie at London’s famous Borough Market. It’s a great space for food or a quick drink after work. As a hopeless coffee lover, I especially love the artisan coffee shop Monmouth located on 2 Park Street. Or if you fancy a good dose of hot chocolate, pop into Rabot 1745 on 2-4 Bedale Street. Add a splash of rum to your chocolatey drink for an extra festive feel.
It kind of feels Christmassy in the market with a few Christmas trees and random fairy lights, unfortunately the spectacular bit was closed when we arrived so that was a bit disappointing. However, we found a few stalls selling mulled wine and spiced apple cider at £4, slightly cheaper (by £0.50) than in other Christmas markets. So stop by if you fancy a festive brew.
London Bridge City Christmas Market
For more fairy lights and some food, we strolled towards Tower Bridge. London Bridge City Christmas Market is an addition to the Riverside Christmas Market. It runs till 3rd January and is packed with wooden huts selling all sorts of things. Check out the various events happening throughout the festive season.
We spent a fair amount of time checking out the stalls. My favourite was a little cosy wooden hut selling handmade Christmas decorations. The decorations were beautifully presented and if we weren’t travelling next year and I haven’t given my Christmas tree away, I would have bought a bauble or two.
Food wise I settled for a Moroccan falafel wrap at £6. Quite pricey for a small tortilla wrap, but to be fair it was stuffed with a variety of fillings like hummus, olive, salad, yoghurt, falafel and chilly sauce. To my disappointment, the falafel was a bit over fried and quite dry round the edges.
If I still ate red meat, I would have definitely gone for the German Christmas speciality. Charlie seemed to enjoy his Krakauer Kaze, a smoked sausage with cheese which cost £5 with all the trimmings.
Covent Garden Christmas lights
After filling our stomachs with food we took RV1 bus to Covent Garden. This year the theme is mistletoe, so don’t forget to kiss when your are in the market under the giant mistletoe.
I always love the glistening ball projections on the walls, which make the market look magical.
Fortnum & Mason
Fortnum & Mason at 181 Piccadilly Street looks impressive throughout the year, but their Christmas decorations are not to miss. The windows stacked with sparkle, booze and yummy things will fill your heart with festive cheer.
This extravagant shop reminds me of the British costume drama The Paradise. The sparkle and detail is almost too much, but at the same time so festive.
Fortnum’s is home for Christmas since they have the whole floor dedicated to Christmas decorations.
A short walk from the Fortnum’s extravaganza is London’s finest luxury 5* hotel The Ritz. If you are brave enough and have some extra cash, pop in to soak up some festive atmosphere.
Old and New Bond Street
Just a few steps away across the road from The Ritz is Old Bond Street. You can’t miss it. The giant sparkly diamond in the air will indicate you’re in the high end fashion zone.
I rarely do window shopping, but just could not take my eyes of this amazing Alexander McQueen creation. Wouldn’t it be a perfect Christmas dress? I couldn’t see the price tag though.
While window shopping, I stopped for a minute to admire The Royal Arcade constructed in 1879. I loved the combination of deep purple and orange colours and the lights reflecting in the windows.
Tiffany & Co caught my eye with their simple yet impressive window display. I wished it was breakfast time and I had my take away coffee with me.
After feasting our eyes on high end glitz, we strolled to our ultimate destination. Carnaby Street is always fun.
I loved last year’s Christmas decorations and this year they gone full on disco, with colourful stars and disco balls hanging in the sky. Good fun as ever.
We also popped into Trafalgar Square to check out the Christmas tree. The tree, especially from afar, looks kinda sad if you (like me) don’t know the story. But once you come closer and learn what the tree is all about, it really springs to life. Watch our video above (or visit our youtube channel) to learn the story.
We hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!