Christmas is most definitely on its way. The Christmas lights are turning on, Michael Bublé has nearly defrosted, Mariah’s ready to get her warble on, and London’s remarkable Christmas trees are being unveiled. With a few still to be unveiled in the coming weeks, here are some Christmas trees you can see already, some dates to pop in the diary, and some predictions based on years gone by.
Without further ado, here are 20 Christmas trees that Santa himself would approve of:
Covent Garden is home to the largest hand-picked Christmas tree in the city at a whopping 60-feet-tall! This show-stopping tree is from the same farm that the Royal Family get their tree from and it’s draped in twinkling lights and festive decorations. The tree forms just one part of their festive display, which features over 115,000 lights. Covent Garden has also decided to grant us the white Christmas we truly deserve by dusting the area with flurries of snow throughout the season. There’s a whole heap of Christmassy cheer awaiting you at Covent Garden.
Covent Garden Piazza, WC2E 8RF. Nearest station is Covent Garden.
2. Kew Gardens
Christmas at Kew is one of the highlights of the festive season, with a 2.7km trail winding you through the awe-inspiring gardens. Alongside the incredible light shows and decorations, the Christmas tree almost pales in comparison. Almost. But not quite, as it’s still an incredible display of lighting and festivity. Definitely not one to be missed, especially given everything else that the Christmas at Kew light trail holds.
Kew, Richmond, TW9 3AE. Nearest station is Kew Gardens.
3. Coal Drops Yard
This lovely central London spot has always got something going on, and it’s full of fantastic shops and restaurants. And their Christmas tree makes the place all the more of a must-visit London destination. The whole square has had an alpine, après-ski-themed makeover for the Christmas season, and the whopping 47ft tall tree highlights that with neon ski accessories all over it. In a move towards sustainability, when the tree comes down, its needles will be ground down and used to make pine essence for candles that will be sold in Coal Drops Yard. You could quite literally own a bit of one of London’s prettiest Christmas trees.
Coal Drops Yard, Stable Street, King’s Cross, N1C 4DQ. Nearest station is King’s Cross St Pancras.
Ever since it finally re-opened, it’s been clear that Battersea Power Station is not set to be doing anything by half-measures. And for the festive season they unveiled a gorgeous Christmas tree smack in the middle of a wonderfully large ice-skating rink, complete with igloos, fairground rides, and plenty more to enjoy. It’s no dinky little tree, either, standing 30ft tall and almost, but not quite, measuring up to the power station itself.
Battersea Power Station, Nine Elms, Battersea, SW11 8EF. Nearest station is Battersea Power.
This magical market represented Diagon Alley in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, and it’s equally fantastical during the festive season. Leadenhall Market‘s extraordinary tree is now illuminating the area with its dazzling lights and striking decorations. They’re also offering up all sorts of Christmas workshops – including wine tasting and wreath-making – throughout the Christmas season. So, why not dial that festive feeling all the way up to a hundred?
Gracechurch Street, Langbourn, EC3V 1LT. Nearest station is Monument.
6. The Connaught Hotel
The Connaught Hotel is not only home to one of the best bars in the world, you’ll also find a pretty spectacular Christmas tree waiting outside to greet you during the festive season. Previous years have seen the likes of Damien Hirst, Antony Gormley, Tracey Emin, Michael Craig-Martin, Sean Scully, Idris Khan and Annie Morris designing the must-see tree. This year’s tree has been designed by London-based artist Suzy Murphy, who has designed a 30ft tall Nordmann Fir bedecked with 34 ‘soft white’ neon dogs.
Carlos Place, Mayfair, W1K 2AL. Nearest station is Bond Street.
Previous years have seen St Pancras International collaborating with the likes of Disney, Cirque Du Soleil, Tiffany & Co., and more on their glorious display. Last year they worked together with ZSL London Zoo for a story book installation based on the zoo’s “Tails from the Zoo” bedtime story, which was released during the pandemic. And this year the Christmas tree at St Pancras International finds them working together with The Prince’s Trust on a tree inspired by the London skyline. Their interpretation of the word ‘tree’ might be a bit loose, but it’s a splendid installation nonetheless!
Euston Rd, King’s Cross, N1C 4QP. Nearest station is, erm, St Pancras International.
8. Shangri-La, The Shard
London’s highest hotel is looking ahead to the future with their space-age Christmas tree. Constructed out of geometric metal cubes, preserved and dried blue, silver and gold florals, glittering disco balls, and crinkled silver foil, the whole affair is accented by swirling neon lights that travel down the tree, changing colour from purple to white as they do. The space age theme, designed by McQueens Flowers, extends throughout the rest of the Shangri-La hotel, taking guests on a journey through space and time. Is this what Christmas trees will look like in 2222?
31 St Thomas St, London Bridge, SE1 9QU. Nearest station is London Bridge.
9. Four Seasons Hotel London at Park Lane
How to make a Christmas tree stand out from the rest, in a city where each installation seems to outdo the last? How about housing it inside a life-size snow globe? Well that’s exactly what the Four Seasons Hotel has done with their lobby display, whisking visitors away to the mountain with snow-covered trees and a weekly hot-chocolate pop-up. They’re never going to be able to kick us out of the lobby!
Hamilton Place, Park Lane, W1J 7DR. Nearest station is Hyde Park Corner Undergound.
No stranger to striking Christmas trees, Claridge’s 2022 effort is another sparkling contender. Each year the famous luxury hotel enlists one of fashion’s biggest names, and this year it’s Sandra Choi, Creative Director for Jimmy Choo. The tree is made out of reflective mirrors, with lights pulsing and undulating inside to accent the whole affair, all topped off with a giant, glittering bow – one of the brand’s key design themes of the winter collection. Titled, ‘The Diamond’, viewers are able to step inside the tree, fulfilling Choi’s dream of stepping inside a diamond. Who doesn’t love a Christmas tree that you can step right into?
Brook Street, Mayfair, W1K 4HR. Nearest station is Bond Street.
Visitors to Westfield’s Winter Village will no doubt be stopped in their paths when confronted by Europe’s tallest Christmas tree on an ice rink. The all-new ice rink, covering 1,000 square metres, allows revellers to skate their way around the towering festive instalment for a delightful experience.
1081 Ariel Way, Shepherd’s Bush, W12 7GF. Nearest station is Shepherd’s Bush.
12. The London EDITION
Now, we may have poked a bit of fun at St Pancras International’s Christmas ‘tree’, but The London EDITION’s tree is a whole other matter. An incredibly unique display, the tree – titled “The Angel of Christmas Destruction” – is inspired by the over-consumption and high levels of waste that Christmas so often brings. Designed by designed by artist Daniel Lismore in collaboration with producer Lyndon Ogbourne of LSD Studio, the tree also acts as a commentary on the fashion world’s wasteful usage of fabrics. The tree/angel/display makes use of repurposed fabrics, including discarded Christmas jumpers. There is supposedly a secret hidden around the back of the display, so visitors will definitely want to take a peek! To be honest, it scares us a bit and we don’t want to get that close…
10 Berners St, Soho, W1T 3NP. Nearest station is Tottenham Court Road.
13. The Landmark London
Head to the Winter Garden in The Landmark London and you’ll find one of London’s tallest Christmas trees sheltering inside the eight-storey-high glass Atrium. The absolutely stunning tree is flanked by palm tress, and has been made up with gold and teal decorations. It’s a gorgeous centrepiece for the room. In a stunning setting, it doesn’t distract from the room’s other beautiful touches, but it sure doesn’t shy away from being noticed either.
222 Marylebone Rd, Marylebone, NW1 6JQ. Nearest station is Marylebone.
14. Tower of London
Two Christmas trees await visitors at the Tower of London as part of their 12 Days of Christmas-themed celebrations, from November 23 – January 3. The first Christmas tree can be found near the entrance. It stands 14 ft tall, and has three lions stationed around it in reference to the three given as a gift to King Henry III. The second tree has been dropped down onto Tower Green, where it stands an impressive 22ft tall. Twelve wooden Beefeaters have been positioned around the tree, ‘guarding’ it. No word yet on their efficacy as guardians!
Tower of London, London, EC3N 4AB. Nearest station is Tower Hill.
15. The Goring
Though less impressive in stature than other entries on this list, what The Goring‘s two Christmas trees lack in size they make up for with sheer sparkly-ness. For this year’s trees, visible from November 22 – January 5, the hotel has partnered with world-renowned British jewellers, Garrard, on tiara-themed trees inspired by Garrard’s historic tiara’s worn by Her Majesty and The Royal Family. That’s right: Tiara Trees. They’ve bedecked the trees with four types of tiaras modelled after those favoured by the late Queen. Did we mention they had the most ADORABLE Shetland pony, Teddy, at the unveiling?
15 Beeston Place, Belgravia, SW1W 0JW. Nearest station is Victoria.
16. The Mondrian Shoreditch
A collaboration between Mondrian Shoreditch and East-London artist Martin Richman has resulted in this year’s abstract Christmas tree. The tree is made out of acrylic blades that hang on nylon threads, reflecting and refracting an array of colours around the hotel to add an extraordinary visual experience to the already dazzling display.
45 Curtain Rd, Shoreditch, EC2A 3PT. Nearest station is Shoreditch High Street.
17. Television Centre
Television Centre’s impressive Christmas tree is topped this year with a design from London-based jewellery brand, Alighieri. Floating above the 12-metre tall tree is The Alighieri Hand of Protection, a large-scale version of one of the brand’s signature talismans, ‘The Curator’. Clad in gold, it’s a symbol of strength and hope in support of Refuge, with 15% of Alighieri’s sales of the Curator Necklace being donated to the charity this festive period. You’ve got to hand it to these guys, they’ve put up a pretty impressive display!
BBC Studios, 101 Wood Ln, White City, W12 7FW. Nearest station is Wood Lane.
18. Trafalgar Square
There aren’t many things you can guarantee in life, but Trafalgar Square‘s festive tree making a return over Christmas is definitely one of them. Every year since 1947, Norway has donated an eye-catching tree as a thank you for helping them out in WW2. This year’s tree will hit Trafalgar Square on December 1, a veritably late-feeling reveal compared to the rest of London’s early openings and illuminations.
Trafalgar Square, Westminster, WC2N 5DX. Nearest station is Charing Cross.
19. Aqua Shard
Aqua Shard’s Christmas tree is always a stunner, and this year is no exception. Partnering up with Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity, the tree features ornaments and decorations that pay homage to the different animal wards of the children’s hospital.
Level 31, The Shard, St Thomas Street, SE1 9RY. Nearest station is London Bridge.
20. Mandarin Oriental
Hyde Park’s Mandarin Oriental hotel have popped up their Christmas tree too, treating Londoners to the return of the ‘Wishing Tree.’ Not only is it a gorgeous sight to behold, it also gives back to the community by raising funds for the Make A Wish Foundation. Decorations come from local boutiques and school children, and guests can write down their holiday wishes and entrust them to the Wishing Tree.
66 Knightsbridge, SW1X 7LA. Nearest station is Knightsbridge.
Also published on Medium.