Christmas and New Year in London for families

December in London - the best ways to celebrate Christmas and New Year with your family

Add This

Gillian Crawshaw

Gillian Crawshaw
HomeAway travel expert


The Eye through my eyeIt’s beginning to look at lot like...Christmas, in London. The festive season is a magical occasion - it really is the most wonderful time of the year - and what better place to spend it in than one of the best cities in the world? The trees are up, the lights are on and London really comes alive at this time of year. There are festive decorations wherever you look, fun activities for all the family, and bustling crowds of unusually happy people.

Did you know that since 1947 the people of Norway have given London a Christmas tree in gratitude for help received during World War II? It stands each year in Trafalgar Square and is just one of the hundred's of Christmas traditions in the capital. There’s so much going on, and lots to do to entertain people of all ages, from ice rinks, to magical grottos, carol concerts, light displays and present shopping. So here’s our top five favourite festive suggestions for ways to entertain babies, toddlers and families in the capital this Christmas, and help you have a cracker of a time.


 

Gillian Crawshaw's guide to family festivities in London


   

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland Hyde Park Winter Wonderland

Wrap up warm and head on over to Hyde Park in central London, home to the Winter Wonderland. A giant Christmas spectacular, Winter Wonderland has a Christmas market, magical ice kingdom and ice rink, a circus and a Santa Land - everything you could need to help you get into the festive spirit. There are rides for children, and a Bavarian Bar for parents. You can view all the festivities from above on the giant wheel that towers over the park. It’s Christmas every day throughout December.

View lettings in Hyde Park

 
   
 

   

Harrods, Knightsbridge Harrods, Knightsbridge

No child’s Christmas is complete without a visit to see the great man himself, and Santa’s grottos don’t get much bigger or better than the world famous one at iconic department store Harrods. Children can meet Santa and have their photo taken with him in a magical library setting. The shop windows and festive displays of the store are also worth a look - they take over 500 hours to build. And mums and dads can pick up some last-minute luxury Christmas presents, and check out the legendary food hall for some festive dinner inspiration.

View holiday lettings in Knightsbridge

 
   
 

   

Christmas lights, Oxford Street and Soho Christmas lights, Oxford Street and Soho

Small children love lights and sensory play, so the bright and visual spectacle of Christmas illuminations offer perfect entertainment. Regent Street and Oxford Street have big, themed light displays, and the major department stores will also all be lit up. You can head over to the less busy but equally magical lights on Carnaby Street. And to avoid any tears before bedtime, head down to Regent Street and take your children Christmas toy shopping at the best place in London, Hamleys.

View Soho holiday homes

 
   
 

   

Ice rink at Somerset House, The Strand Ice rink at Somerset House, The Strand

Are there many things more festive than an open-air ice rink? There are several throughout the city, but the ice rink set in the courtyard of Somerset House is one of the most magical. Small children can join in and have lessons at the Penguin Club, where they can take their first steps on the ice with the help of a colourful penguin stabilizer. Even if they are too little to go on the ice it’s still fun to watch from the side with a hot chocolate. There’s also a rink-side bar, and special after-dark skating sessions for adults with a DJ. If you’re lucky, it might even start snowing.

View Charing Cross apartments

 
   
 

   

The London Eye, Southbank The London Eye, Southbank

At the stroke of midnight, the fireworks at The London Eye spectacularly mark the start of the New Year and are seen the world over. If you'd like to watch the festivities unfold, good viewing spots for adults and children alike include the north bank of the Thames, and the major bridges (Waterloo and Westminster offer good vantage points). Make sure you get there in enough time though, as it tends to get busy early on in the evening. Have a happy new year!

View holiday rentals by London's Southbank

 
   
 

Images
Main image by Jo Mundyay
Image 1 by Ben Sutherland
Image 2 by Michael Caven 
Image 3 by Magnus D
Image 4 by oatsy40
Image 5 by Chris Worden

London Family Holiday Homes

Superbly Located, newly-refurbished London Apartment, Near Brick Lane

A contemporary, spacious and comfortable two bedroom apartment in an elegant Victorian building on the edge of the City of London, a few minutes walk from Brick Lane. The apartment is in a great location, on a quiet, residential street, yet surro...

Luxury Victorian apartment, very spacious & centrally located in Kensington

* I just renovated one 2 bedroom and 2 bathrooms apartment in the close by area, very spacious, 2 floor of a Victoria House, nearly 90 square metres, please check the detail: Property No: 3853731 http://www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p3853731 ...

2 Bedroom Apartment With Free WiFi

THANK YOU to our 400+ guests! And for our 200+ positive reviews, across Homeaway, VRBO, TripAdvsor and AirBNB! Come and enjoy the Club Living experience for yourself! By choosing one of our apartments you are guaranteed: - Warm, friendly pe...

Heart of the London's West End! Leicester Square, Covent Garden, Soho 2 bedroom

Enjoy a bright, warm and spacious apartment for your London visit. Our stunning 4th floor 2 bedroom apartment is complete with everything you need for a fun, relaxing and comfortable stay in central London. As with all of our apartments, it has t...

Oxford St., Marble Arch, Beautiful One Bedroom apartment. Central London, WIFI

Stay in the heart of Central London! Enjoy your own stylish, comfortable boutique 1 bedroom (sleeps 4) second floor apartment. Located in beautiful Marylebone, right near Marble Arch, you are walking distance from Hyde Park, Oxford Street, Baker...
MapWorld USA Europe Northern Ireland Scotland Northumbria Cumbria Isle of Man Yorkshire North West Wales West Midlands East Midlands Cotswolds East of England London South East England West Country
       

Search for holiday rentals
Search for holiday ideas
 

new years eve accommodation

Related Articles



Other Categories



Popular Articles