London’s Christmas markets all offer something different and an opportunity to enjoy yourself while you’re getting the last of your festive shopping done.
Christmas markets are a great way of tricking yourself into thinking that you’re doing something fun, when actually you’re ticking items off your to-do list. That’s right, these seasonal events make the process of buying everyone’s gifts much more enjoyable, mainly through the administering of gluhwein or mulled wine.
There are plenty of Christmas markets to choose from across London, so hit the capital with a stay at a serviced apartment and enjoy playing Father Christmas this year.
Tate Modern Christmas Market
Located right on the banks of the River Thames next to the Tate Modern, this traditional market is made up of a cluster of wooden huts filled with beautiful items. For your friends and family, there are beautiful decorations and handmade wooden toys. As a reward for yourself, you can indulge in German bratwurst and festive roasted chestnuts, as well as a glass of gluhwein. Meanwhile, the kids will probably be found on the various fairground rides.
Open from 11am to 8pm Monday to Thursday and until 10pm on Friday. On Saturdays, you can enjoy extended opening times from 10am to 10pm, while on Sundays the market closes at 8pm, having started at 10am. On until December 23rd.
Southbank Centre Winter Market
The Southbank Centre has plenty going on for the festive period and a winter market is among the attractions. Follow the twinkly lights and sound of carol singers to the group of chalets on the riverside. Whether you’re looking for homemade crafts or foodie items, you’re bound to find presents to suit everyone on your list. Then celebrate with a mince pie and a glass of mulled wine.
Pop by between 11am and 9pm Sunday to Thursday and from 11am to 10pm on Fridays and Saturdays. Those who have really left it until the last minute have until 6pm on December 24th to pick up their gifts.
Camden Christmas Market
A weekly event held on Thursdays in the run-up to Christmas, Camden Market is taking on a different theme each time. On December 15th, it will be Deck the Walls, allowing you to stock up on all your art and design gifts, then on December 22nd it’s Season’s Eatings. You guessed it, the latter is a festival of all things Christmas food and will be a great opportunity to get some local products for your festive table, as well as the last-minute foodie gift for a loved one.
10am to 9pm, but remember, only on a Thursday.
Christmas in Leicester Square Market
Inside the array of Bavarian huts set up at this world-famous spot in London, you’ll find traditional snacks from all over Europe, piles of brightly-coloured confectionary and a welcome glass of mulled wine to warm you through. Once you’ve sorted yourself out, you can turn your attention to buying bags of flavoured coffee beans for your aunt Edna, a wooden owl ornament for cousin Lucy and a garland of dried festive fruits to hang about the house.
Open to the public from 12 noon Monday to Friday and at 10am during the weekends. Closes at 10pm daily. Unusually, the market will run into the New Year, finishing on January 8th.
London Bridge City Christmas Market
Handily located just across the river from SACO – The Cannon, this award-winning market is one not to be missed. In excess of 100 independent traders will be in attendance, selling a wide variety of interesting and unusual gifts. It’s also about treating yourself, however, as the many pop-up food stalls will be hard to resist, while Christmas cocktails and hot cider are bound to get you into the festive spirit.
Drop by daily between 10am and 8pm until January 3rd.