It's the most wonderful time of the year! Here are 5 things you can do in London this Christmas.

The winter may get a little on the chilly side in London, but that doesn’t seem to deter people from joining in the festivities laid on across the city every year - in fact, December is one of the most popular months to visit.

If you’re planning to spend a little time there this Christmas, whether as a visitor or a local, here are five things you should do.

1. Visit the Winter Market at Southbank Centre

If Hyde Park's Winter Wonderland seems a little overwhelming, but you’d still like to get into the festive spirit, the Winter Market on London’s Southbank may be a more viable option for you.

Essentially Winter Wonderland on a smaller scale, there’s delicious foods from around the world served from cute, wooden huts and intricate, handmade gifts for you to browse, as well as a circus, pop-up cinema and more! There's also Tower Bridge Christmas Market, with an impressive view of the iconic bridge and its surroundings.

2. Enjoy some Christmas carols in Trafalgar Square

Trafalgar Square is iconic at the best of times, but it looks truly magical at Christmastime, with all its twinkling fairy lights and its gigantic, Norwegian tree. In the build-up to 25th December, different choir groups take it in turns to perform carol concerts under the square’s grand tree to raise money for good causes.

The concerts are free to attend - just make sure you bring whatever you can contribute to show your appreciation and help others in need.

3. Get your Christmas shopping done and dusted

From lovely local businesses and market stalls, to High Street giants, Christmas shopping in London shouldn’t be difficult, except perhaps the fact you’ll be spoilt for choice! No matter who you’re buying for and what their interests, you’re bound to find a suitable gift while exploring areas like Covent Garden, Hampstead or St Christopher’s Place.

Try planning to get your Christmas shopping finished early, and then you can enjoy the London festivities without thinking about all the things you need to get done.

4. Explore Christmas at Kew Gardens

Kew Gardens is beautiful all year round, but this Christmas brings the return of its after-dark trail, illuminating the iconic Temperate House and the surrounding grounds. With twinkling light features and street food to indulge in along the way, you and your family will have a night to remember.

An adult ticket to the light show will set you back £18, so it isn’t cheap – but as a one-off experience, you could consider it a Christmas treat to yourself, and use it as a chance to relax and unwind.

5. Create a bespoke gift at Art 4 Fun

If you’re feeling creative this year, forget Christmas shopping on Oxford Street – why not get crafty and create a handmade gift for someone instead? Art 4 Fun in Hampstead gives you the chance to get stuck in and paint ready-made pottery.

There’s a small charge for booking your preferred time slot, and pieces to paint are reasonably priced. It’s a great way to de-stress and spend some time with friends and you get a gift ticked off the shopping list. It’s a win-win!

London is such a diverse city, and has a lot to offer all year round, not just at Christmas! If you’re thinking of studying, Arden University has three study centres dotted around London, so you can make the most of extra-curricular activities and events in all four corners of the city.

Discover Arden's London study centres

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