23 Magical Things To Do In London This December

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It’s the final month of 2018, so make it count and make your way through these brilliant things to do in December.

It’s been quite a year, and we can’t believe we’re coming to the end of it. But it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, and we are so ready. So let’s press play on Bublé and have a jolly festive time! (Photo: @tmnikonian)

1. Go and see the Christmas lights

Photo: @hazel.parreno
Photo: @hazel.parreno

London is looking suitably sparkly and, frankly, we’re in our element. Check out all the best Christmas lights in the city.

2. Head to one of these amazing light festivals

Kew

From Kew Gardens to London Zoo, the city is literally littered with glitter. Check out these breathtaking light trails around London.

3. Get merry at one of many festive pop-ups

Photo: @broadgatelondon
Photo: @broadgatelondon

Dine an igloo, wrap yourself up in a blanket with a seasonal cocktail, or have a go at rooftop curling. Here’s a hefty list of wintery pop-ups happening in the city.

4. Immerse yourselves in a magical evening of festive feasting

dinnerstry-of-magic-2

The Dinnerstry of Magic are opening their doors and welcoming the wandless for a festive dinner and dance. Taking place in a Location That Must Not Be Named, this spellbinding event will be an immersive evening of bottomless (!) magic-themed cocktails, a two-course meal and immersive entertainment. Created by the team behind the ultra-successful Feasty Blinders experience, you can bet your bottom dollar this is gonna be good. Get your tickets here.

5. Experience a difference side to classical music

The Little Orchestra

This December, The Little Orchestra are putting on a beautiful performance of part 1 of Handel’s inspired masterpiece Messiah. Putting a casual twist on the classic classical concert, this event will be an intimate and atmospheric affair. There’ll be comfy sofas, festive food and a well-stocked bar that will stay open through the night (yes, that’s right, there’s an afterparty). Get your tickets here.

6. Watch some of the world’s greatest tennis players at the Royal Albert Hall

Watch Grand Slam Champions, former World No.1s and national icons play in the stunning Royal Albert Hall over the festive period! Catch tennis legends Tim Henman, Goran Ivanisevic, Carlos Moya, as well as former world number one, John McEnroe, who will be making his final Champions Tennis at the Hall appearance. It’s going to be ace! Get your tickets here.

7. Wine and dine in an igloo

Winter Domes

You can barely move for igloos in London over the Christmas period, but these installations in South Kensington must rank as some of the prettiest out there. They can accommodate up to twelve people, making them perfect for get-togethers with friends, family reunions or festive team events. Some are set up for dinner, while others offer cosy sofas for drinks and chats. Book a dome here.

Terms and conditions apply. (That was fun to write.) 

8. Or perhaps you’d prefer a cosy night in with a Baileys?

Baileys-choco-lux-dec-ru

December is here so if you’re not humming Jingle Bells under your breath yet then there might just be something wrong. But there’s still time and, with the help of Baileys, we’ve put together a fabulously festive guide to getting all joyful and Christmassy at home. Why not enjoy our full list with a deliciously festive Baileys Chocolate Luxe? ⭐️Sponsored⭐️

9. Admire one of London’s beautiful Christmas trees

Photo: @j.rachmansf
Photo: @j.rachmansf

St Pancras International have teamed up with Tiffany’s to create their 43 foot silver and blue tree, while Claridge’s have spoiled us yet again with another magnificently stylish design. Trafalgar Square’s tree—a gift from Norway, as per—will be revealed on December 6.

10. Bite the bullet and finally get your Christmas shopping done

Photo: @polkadotroom
Photo: @polkadotroom

We recommend these sparkly shops but, be brave, a few of them require a trip to Oxford Street…

11. Or check out one of London’s magical Christmas markets

Christmas Canopy Market, King's Cross

Riverside markets, markets in abandoned warehouses… London really does have it all. Here’s a list of where and when they’re all occurring.

12. Watch your favourite Christmas movies at a festive pop-up cinema

elf-christmas-movie

Now is the time to fill your screens with Will Ferrell and Macaulay Culkin. And where better to watch them than in a wintery, pop-up cinema? We recommend Everyman’s 🎅 Christmas movie marathon🎄 for peak festive spirit.

13-16. You can watch other, less Christmassy films, too.

aquaman

December, as always, is a great month for film releases. December 7 sees the arrival of Tulip Fever, which the story of an artist who falls for a young married woman while he’s commissioned to paint her portrait. The film has a cracking cast, featuring the likes of Alicia Vikander, Christoph Waltz, Dane DeHaan and Judi Dench. On December 12, we’ll see GoT’s Jason Momoa as Aquaman, stepping up as the hero of Atlantis and starring alongside Amber Heard and Willem Dafoe. December 21 marks the arrival of everyone’s favourite nanny in Mary Poppins Returns, starring Emily Blunt and Dick Van Dyke, who originally played Bert the Chimney Sweep in 1964. And finally, Holmes and Watson, the ridiculous comedy starring Step Brothers duo, Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly, will attempt a humorous take on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic mysteries. That’ll be released on Boxing Day (December 26).

17. Get cosy and make your way through the new things coming to Netflix

Netflix

The Holiday, About A Boy and the fourth season of Peaky Blinders are just a few of the bangers hitting Netflix in December. Check them all out here.

18. Grab some food at one of these festive London restaurants

Photo: @bei.bei.wei
Photo: @bei.bei.wei

Igloos, gingerbread houses and wooden chalets: these London restaurants will fulfil your festive dreams.

19. Or get boozy at this naughty Christmas brunch 🎅

All you could ever want for Christmas is bottomless cocktails and food, right? Scoff on avo’ on toast, lobster mac ‘n’ cheese, and other brilliant brunch dishes, and enjoy 90 minutes of free-flowing Champagne and cocktails. On this occasion, Santa doesn’t care if you’ve been naughty or nice – he’ll serve you unlimited Espresso Martinis anyway. Taking place at M Restaurant in Victoria, you can expect liquor-laced lollies straight from Lapland and candy cane shots, as well as a DJ and prizes for festive dress. The Naughty Santa Brunch will take place on Saturdays throughout December. Get your tickets here.

20. And then burn off all the calories with a bit of ice skating

Photo: @mutinyonthebounty
Photo: @mutinyonthebounty

Why not make a visit to London’s highest and mightiest ice rink? Atop Tobacco Dock in Wapping sits Skylight, the awesome winter rooftop. If you’re looking for the perfect date night, why not head along for an evening of skating, wine and raclette?

Other ice rinks are available, including the beautiful one at the Natural History Museum. Check them all out here. ⛸

21. Or have a go at gin yoga

Gin Yin

Gin Yin is the just the tonic for stressed-out Londoners. Mixing yin—a slow-paced style of yoga—and focussing on the health benefits of gin (yes there are some, and you keep telling yourself that), this might just be the best workout there is. Read all about it here.

22. Don a handmade and excellently tacky Christmas jumper.

make your own christmas jumper

Make your own sexy sweater at Fever’s elves’ workshop in the heart of Camden Market – and book in a slot before Friday December 14 so you have one in time for National Christmas Jumper Day. (The event is BYOB and cups will be provided.) Book here.

23. And see in 2019 in style at one of these NYE parties!

Photo: @londonfromtherooftops
Photo: @londonfromtherooftops

New Year’s Eve can be stressful to plan, but there are so many great events happening across the city. Raise a glass to 2018 at this Prosecco-fuelled boat party, where you’ll get unrivalled views of the famous fireworks. Or, why not party somewhere a little different? Market Halls are throwing a musical extravaganza with everything from Musical Bingo to Gospeloke (because anyone sounds good backed by London’s best gospel singers), and finishing things off with the ultimate throwback disco dance party. Get your tickets here.

This post is supported by Fever and our brand partners. 

Georgie Hoole

Georgie Hoole

Georgie is Deputy Editor at Secret London. She loves a trendy café and is all too familiar with the extortionate price of a coffee in the capital. She enjoys the finer things in life (like red wine on a school night and eating Ben and Jerry's straight from the tub) and hasn't quite grasped the concept of adulthood yet.