Winter Markets (And Their Indoor Alternatives)

One of the highlights of the festive season in London are the many winter markets and fairs that pop up around the city, adding a twinkly, jingly charm to the capital. Here’s a rundown of some of the best Christmas markets gracing London this season, along with the indoor and non-Christmassy alternative. You know, for the good old 99% chances of the weather turning horrible in the last minute we Londoners are so used to, or all of you that don’t really feel like celebrating (fair enough!)

Winter Wonderland

Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland is now in it’s tenth year and has become a Christmas staple of London. In fact, it doesn’t feel like Christmas anymore until the giant observation wheel is peeping out of the trees in Hyde Park. This spectacular festive event includes a host of delights such ice skating around the UK’s largest open-air ice rink. This year Winter Wonderland will also feature a magical ice kingdom and over 100 rides and attractions. Favourite part: the Bavarian Village, which is London’s largest and includes festive food and mulled wine galore!

Indoor alternative: Less mince pies and more hula at Trader Vic‘s, along with a stunning pan-asian menu and the best crafted cocktails this side of the Diana Memorial. Located at the Hilton Hotel in Park Lane, make sure you’re wearing a tiki shirt under your reindeer jumper!

London Bridge Market

The London Bridge Market is ideal for stocking up on gorgeous home-made gifts. The market sells a combination of hand-crafted artisan gifts, delectable food and warming drinks including mulled wine, cider and craft beers. There are over 100 independent traders set up on German-style chalets which means there’s no shortage of choice! As well as the stalls London Bridge Market will also feature live music and film screenings!

Indoor alternative: since these are days of over-feasting and under-exercising, why don’t you swap yet another bratwurst  for the healthiest yet most delicious stir fry you’ve ever had? Wokit, in Borough Market, offers vegan, vegetarian, gluten free and paleo alternatives! Grab a chair or take your noodles with you, so you can still enjoy the lights and the atmos of London Bridge Market without being put on the naughty list for pigging out!

Southbank Market

Located along the Thames riverbank, the Southbank Centre Winter Market is full of wonderful wooden chalets selling food, drink and Christmas gifts. There is always a good array of handmade crafts on sale which make lovely presents. In fact, there is no better place to enjoy the festive season right under some of London’s best landmarks.

Indoor alternative: Auberge Wateloo has dressed up for the season, so you can enjoy their Belgian classics (advice: don’t miss les Moules Frites) with a flare of mistletoe and holly! Great beer selection as well, so good spiced cider won’t even cross your mind!

Christmas Market at Tate Modern

The Christmas Market at Tate Modern is themed on an authentic German Christmas Market. Selling a large variety of gifts as well as boasting a fantastic range of street food as part of their food court. There will be a series of street food vendors located at the Christmas Market at Tate Modern and I recommend HOP (Horn Ok Please) for some warming Indian Street food ideal for keeping you warm. This Christmas Market is perfect for the young, old and arty.

Indoor alternative: cross over to Blackfriars and tuck in some heavenly dim sum, courtesy of Chinese Cricket Club! Their Crispy Duck is also a must-have! Well, their whole menu is a must-have, honestly, and since you get a complimentary Main Course using the ENTERTAINER, you really have no excuse…

Christmas in Leicester Square Market

Christmas in Leicester Square Market is a new destination worth checking out this year. The square will house a grotto, a Christmas market serving food and drink and even and live shows and performances. In fact, with theatrical sensation La Soirée lined up to perform, this new Christmas market is already making a mark.

Indoor alternative: all my respect to mulled wine, but admittedly, it pales in comparison to most of the selection at Pall Mall Fine Wines. On top of that, it is probably one of the most romantic venues within the ENTERTAINER, and their cheese and charcuterie platters will really make an impression!

The holiday season is one of the most beautiful times of the year to enjoy London, all dressed up in fairy lights and evergreens! Let us make it even more enjoyable with our hundreds of buy one, get one free offers!

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