Snowing London, Tower bridge in snow

25 Oct Things to do this autumn and winter in London

For many of us here at Citybase, the build-up to Christmas is just as much fun as Christmas day itself and luckily London supplies us with a spectacular selection of festive events to take part in. Throughout October, November and December there is much to get excited about in the big city. To help you get into the Christmas and New Year spirit we’ve compiled a list of some fantastic London events throughout the autumn and winter season for you to take part in!

October

Natural History Museum Ice Rink

Ice skating next to the Natural History Museum
Join in the magic at the Natural History Museum

Set against the background of the Natural History Museum is one of London’s biggest ice rinks. With a Christmas tree centred in the middle and fairy lights twinkling above, you can have a truly magical evening in front of one of London’s most iconic attractions. With a viewing platform and a Christmas café, you can enjoy some mulled wine while enjoying the skaters whizzing past.  

November

Alexandra Palace Fireworks Festival

Fireworks set off through the sky
Start off November with a bang

As one of London’s biggest and best fireworks displays, this event is an unmissable night of explosive fun. With live music and a mind-blowing display, you’ll never forget the Alexandra Palace fireworks! While at the Palace be sure to check out all other events they have on too, as it is always a jam-packed winter at Ally Pally.

Diwali at the square

Night time at Trafalgar Square
Come together to celebrate Diwali

Diwali on Trafalgar Square or, as it’s better known – DOTS. As various groups gather to celebrate the festival of lights, we are all invited to join in and have a wonderful time too. With a festival that symbolises love, joy, resolution and forgiveness, it’s the perfect celebration to attend before new years.

Southwark’s Fireworks Night in Southwark Park

Bonfire surrounded by people
Remember remember the 5th of November

Bonfire night is here and there is no better celebration than that of Southwark’s Firework night. With over 30,000 people attending, be sure to buy your ticket ahead of time to avoid the possibility of missing out. With entry from 5:00 PM, you can grab some lovely hotdogs and burgers before the fireworks start later on.

The Winter Forest at Broadgate Circle

People walking under an arch of Christmas trees.
Get excited and join in the festivities

From snow-covered pine trees to magical fairy lights, the Winter Forest is a ‘Christmassy’ as you can get. For the perfect place to meet up with friends throughout November and December, the Winter Forest creates the perfect white Christmas atmosphere to get you in the Christmas spirit. With 2019 being bigger than ever, the pub quizzes, gin tasting and possibly even a visit from Santa, are unmissable events at the Winter Forest. 

Southbank Centre Winter Festival

Christmas trees lighting up Southbank
Explore that magic of Christmas

As Christmas is fast approaching, there is nothing more exciting than a family or group trip to one of London’s best Christmas shows. Filled with festive goodies and belly-laughing comedy, you can sip on some hot chocolate while enjoying some quality Christmas entertainment. This year there will even be a turn-of-the-century circus returning with even more dazzling acts that will leave you speechless.

Covent Garden Christmas light switch on

People surrounding the Christmas tree in covent garden
Are you ready for Christmas?

One of London’s biggest piazza and tourist attractions is switching on the Christmas lights this November! Behold one of the largest Christmas trees in London and immerse yourself in the magic of Christmas in Covent Garden.

Somerset House

Somerset House ice rink
Ice skate your way into December

Get your skates and head on down to the Somerset House for a winter wonderland ice skating sensation. Join Somerset in celebrating 20 years of ice skating by even going to their ice skate all-nighter on Saturday the 7th of December.

Regent Street Christmas Lights switch-on

Regent Street and people shopping
Shopping for Christmas on Regent Street

While the street is closed to traffic, it is more than certainly open to the mass public. As this year’s special guests are yet to be announced, make sure to keep an eye on their website. With previous acts such as Dreamgirls the musical and Clean Bandit, who knows who’s this year’s lucky performers will be at Regent Street Christmas light switch on…

Syon Park’s Enchanted Woodland

A river and trees lit up at Enchanted Woodland
Take a walk on the wild side

Follow an illuminated trail that guides you on an adventure through the Syon Enchanted Woodlands. For an atmospheric evening of family fun adventures, make your way off to the Enchanted Woodland this winter.

Christmas at Kew Gardens

A light tunnel leading away
Take a guided tour through thousands of lights

The winter months may make you cold on the outside but Christmas at Kew gardens will fill you with warmth and joy once you witness the magic that it inspires. Envelope yourself in the fairy lights and spirit that presents itself at Kew this Christmas.  

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland

Christmas tree and Ferris wheel at the fair
The magic of Christmas begins here

Nothing says Christmas like a winter wonderland, especially one that offers lots to do. The Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is one of the best Christmas markets around. With an ice rink, live music and plenty of mulled wine to be drunk, an evening’s entertainment awaits you here. 

Christmas at ZSL London Zoo

A mum and baby giraffe made out of lights.
Explore the beautiful fairy lights at ZSL

The magic of Christmas has come to London Zoo and they’ve invited you to join the fun! With the opportunity to meet Santa and his elves too, the fun just gets better and better. While there, why not enjoy the free festive screen playing some of the best Christmas films around. With a hot chocolate in hand and some snacks to go with it, your family day at the zoo is complete.

December

Christmas tree at Trafalgar Square

A Christmas tree in Trafalgar square
Perfect at sunset

A Christmas tree unlike any other! With a traditional Norwegian style tree and fairy lights to be seen from all around, Trafalgar Square is waiting for you this Christmas. With hundreds of lightbulbs at the ready, get excited to celebrate the 25 Christmas tree turn on.

Enchanted Eltham at Eltham Palace

A garden full of magical lights
Full of festivities at Eltham Palace

From an ancient moat to fairground rides and stalls, the enchanting Eltham Palace is treating the public to an unmissable event of the season. With interactive colour displays and magical tunnels and paths to explore, there is much to do for all the family to get involved in. While you’re there don’t forget to stop at the Christmas gift shop!  

Nativity! The musical

The west end lit up for Christmas time
The west end is full of magic at Christmas

For the third year in a row, the successful musical, Nativity!, is returning to the London stage. With special guest stars father and daughter Danny and Dani Dyer, as well as Sharon Osbourne and Rylan Clark-Neal, the show promises a fantastic time for the whole family.

New Year’s Eve Fireworks

Fireworks being set off from on top of Big Ben
Get ready as the new year approaches

In true London fashion, the fireworks ignite the sky this year for New Year’s Eve! With thousands joining together to celebrate the New Year and new beginnings, no matter where you are in London, the night is not to be missed. As fireworks light up the sky, strangers from all around connect to enjoy this special time in the heart of London.

January

London New Year’s Day Parade

London New Year's Day band parading down the road
March into the new year with the London parade

As one of the world’s biggest New Year’s Day parades, London is proud to welcome everyone to this special occasion. For over 30 years the London parade has become more impressive each year, with this time being no exception. With participants from many countries around the world, the event reaches over three hundred million people worldwide.  Join the community and get involved in this year’s parade.

Chinese New Year in London

Chine Town decorated for New Year
Why not celebrate the new year twice?

Get ready to celebrate the year of the rat for Chinese New Year this January. If there has ever been a party in the streets to attend, this is definitely one for the bucket list. With traditional Chinese food and live entertainment, it makes for a great way to spend a winter’s day in January.

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park 10k run

Lots of people running through the park
Run into the new year with style!

The start of the new year is here and what better way to enter than running? With many 10K races happening across London throughout the year, it’s a great way to meet new people and have a bit of fun while doing it! Why not try something new in 2020!

Christmas in London is ones of the best times of the year and most certainly one of the best places. No matter the group and no matter the activity, there is plenty to do throughout winter that is perfect for everyone. You can even stay in many of our wonderful apartments located closely to each and every one of these fantastic events! Why not start planning your winter break now?

Still want more? There is still lots to take part in throughout London, check out our other London blogs for some inspiration!

Annabel Connell

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