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Locals' top seven things to do at Christmas

London bloggers share their tips for enjoying the perfect Christmas moments in London, from Christmas dinner in cosy pubs to magical Christmas events.
Carnaby Christmas lights
Carnaby Christmas lights

Snap photos of London's sparkling Christmas lights

A Lady in London, Julie Falconer: My favourite Christmas lights in London are the lights on Carnaby Street in Soho. Every year they do a unique and creative display above the shops and restaurants that line the street. The best part is that it's easy to stop and enjoy them because there are no cars on the street. It's fun and easy to take photos, so bringing your camera is always a good idea!

Glide (or slide!) across the ice

Gretta Schifano from My family love the ice rinks that pop up in London for Christmas. We try a different one each winter, and my joint favourites so far are the rinks at Somerset House and the Tower of London.

Experience Christmas in Covent Garden

Melanie Todd from Christmas comes alive in London when the decorations hit the ceiling in Covent Garden Market. My husband and I love to walk to the Piazza and enjoy the decorations from the balcony of Punch and Judy. From here, you can see the street performers and beautifully decorated tree below and feel the warm spirit of Christmas, no matter what the outside temperature may be! There's also so many intoxicating smells of holiday treats like roasted nuts, Christmas cakes and sweets cascading from the market.

Tuck into a traditional roast dinner

London insiders, Jules Pearson and Ben Smith: Christmas in London is all about meeting up with your nearest and dearest for roast dinners and lashings of red wine in cosy pubs. We love The Alma in Newington Green. It's a real neighbourhood pub and does a cracking roast with all the trimmings - even the chicken and pork come with yorkshire puds. There's also a weekly Sunday night quiz which is great fun so get on down there early and make sure you score a good seat!

Beat the crowds at Winter Wonderland

Chloe Gunning from I love visiting Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park. It's always fun to grab a glass of mulled wine and wander over to the ice rink to watch the skaters. There are usually a few pros, but most are more like Bambi and provide a lot of entertainment! It can get really busy at weekends so go on a Monday just as it's starting to get dark. That way you can enjoy the bright lights minus the crowds!

Sip on winter warmers

Ayushi from The Foodie Diaries: This winter, I’m looking forward to sipping on lots of hot chocolate and hot cocktails. For a mid-shopping boost, I’d recommend Il Tetto at the top of Selfridges for a comforting drink, with or without alcohol. Of course, this being London, we also have our pick of festive drinks from around the world – from Turkish Salep, which is made with cinnamon and white orchid flower (find it at Kahve Dünyasi’s chocolate shop in Piccadilly); to Glögi – a Swedish twist on mulled wine, available at The Nordic Bakery in Seven Dials.

Explore twinkling Christmas markets

Ellie Quinn from I really love the markets in Leicester Square as they have a traditional feel to them. They cover quite a small area so they are very manageable, especially for families. There’s even a Santa’s Grotto! Not only that, but they are in a central location close to Covent Garden and the sparkling Spirit of Christmas lights at Regent Street for the perfect end to your evening!

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