Festive outings in England

Goodbye Halloween, hello Christmas season! And just like that, November 1 has arrived. While it’s not the *official* Dec 1 advent calendar Christmas countdown, this is the perfect time to start booking and thinking about what you want to do this festive season. Things do get booked up quick, but there’s still time to buy tickets and make reservations for the festive season.


Christmas skating is my thing, through and through. Natural History Museum was an annual trip (now closed unfortunately), but this year I’m going back to Somerset house but specifically on Nov 18 when a few South Asian DJs will be blessing the decks! I’ve been a big fan of the two recent Dialled In festivals and a few of their DJs will be playing. Here are the details.

Other festive skating options include Hampton Court, Winter Wonderland, Greenwich and Battersea Power Station. Location-wise, I’m thinking Hampton Court and Battersea will be the most vibey.


I always love Winchester Christmas market. Direct train from Clapham and a short walk from the station into town. Enjoy the stalls, music, roasted chestnuts and mulled wine. Perfect day out and not much planning needed! Birmingham market is also really festive if you’re in the area.


Every corner of London seems to be having ‘switching on of the lights’ dates so that’s a nice way to get into the festive spirit. If you miss lights-on day or can’t make it, you can always enjoy them after and do a walking tour that includes the Christmas windows too.

Check out Oxford street, South Molton street, Regent street, Covent Garden for christmas lights, and festive windows include Harrods and Fortum and Masons.



  • Kew Gardens – would recommend but they sell out fast so hurry!
  • Blenheim Palace – beautiful grounds and would recommend, they even have a mini Christmas market with stalls which felt really festive.
  • Winter Wonderland – fun to walk around but I think they charge now?! I don’t love it that much
  • Covent Garden had their tree up and were selling mulled wine. Not really worth a special trip, but good if you’re already roaming the area.


  • I haven’t been before (would like to one year), but The Royal Albert Hall have lots of Christmas music and shows and I can imagine it being really special and festive. Here’s the schedule.
  • Backyard Cinema is good fun! It’s like a festive cinema where you watch your favourite Christmas movie.
  • Worth checking out a nearby church as they might have a Christmas concert put on by the local choir. I joined one a few years ago and we performed all the favourites (in a nice jazzy way) at a local church. Good times.
  • The Churchill Arms is the most festive pub at Christmas! Take a photo outside, have a drink inside, or enjoy their thai menu for dinner. Yum!

The simple pleasures…

  • Enjoy a holiday drink from your favourite coffee shop. Famous ones being Starbucks and Cafe Nero.
  • Start creating your Christmas playlist! My favourite song is ‘Underneath the Tree’ by Kelly Clarkson.
  • Book tickets to your local panto – one of my favourite theatres for panto is Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith. This year’s panto is Jack and the Beanstalk.
  • Walk along the river by Tower Bridge (known as Christmas by the River) and you’ll see Christmas stalls set up. That’s always a nice stroll.

Happy festive season all! This year I’ll be skating at Battersea, exploring the Colmar and Strasbourg Christmas markets in France, and visiting Richmond Theatre for their panto Goldilocks and the Three Bears, all for the first time. I’ll be sure to report back!

PS – Since when did Kinder Bueno have an advent calendar?! (*buys from Tesco before Nov 1*)


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