London acquires a special sparkle around Christmas time. The weather is frosty, the Christmas lights are twinkling, and shoppers line the streets.
The centrepiece of London's Christmas spectacle is the giant pine tree – a gift to London from the people of Norway – which is beautifully adorned and set up in Trafalgar Square each year. Singers gather around the tree for special carol services.
There's a wealth of family entertainment, events and activities on offer over the festive season, from temporary ice skating rinks to Santa's grottos and pantomimes.
On Christmas Day, London's hundreds of Christian churches, chapels and cathedrals hold Christmas services, which everyone is welcome to attend. Book into a restaurant for a special Christmas Day lunch, or go on a festive tour.
Holidays and Closures Over Christmas
Christmas Day (25 December) and Boxing Day (26 December) are the one time of the year when London feels quiet.
There is no public transport on Christmas Day and a reduced service on Boxing Day. Most London attractions and shops and many restaurants are closed on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.