To act as inspiration for your theatre breaks, here is our seasonal selection of things to do in London for winter 2009
London offers an incredible array of shops, from the largest shopping center in Europe to a range of unusual markets:
- There is a German market Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park with mulled wine and Father Christmas or enjoy stunning panoramic views of London via the giant ferris wheel.
- The Portobello Road market which has existed since the 1800s is a real mecca for bargain hunters and collectors of rare vinyl records.
- With its 275 stores, Westfield is the largest shopping centre in Europe.
Heritage and Culture:
- On 11 December there is a free guided tour “Christmas Through the Ages” around Hyde Park. Discover the folklore of Christmas and the role the royal parks once played in entertaining the population during the darkest months.
- Until January 5, the city reverberates to the sound of traditional singing of Christmas carols, with open air public concerts and organised choir.
- The Cathedral of St. Paul hosts a series of events: December 15, the Cathedral Choir and Orchestra of the City of London will perform Christmas carols at 18:30 and well known personalities will be doing the readings.
London in winter provides lots of opportunities for ice skating:
- In the dry moat of the Tower of London.
- Somerset House on the banks of the Thames, by torchlight complete with guest spots from surprise DJs.
- In the business district of Canary Wharf surrounded by tower blocks.
- For serious fans of skating, Wembley Stadium rink is 350 metres long. The largest that has ever existed in Britain.
- At the ExCeL London “A Taste of Christmas” exhibition will run from Dec 4th. Celebrity chefs including Heston Blumenthal will share their know-how. More than 150 producers will also be present to share some delicious cheese or an authentic panettone.
- Borough Market is a favorite for gourmets. Small producers, farmers and fishermen from all over the UK have regular stalls. Wander around, do a little gentle shopping and enjoy a wide variety of street food.