Christmas comes early in London
Halloween is not as big here in London compared to the states. Maybe some trick-or-treating on the streets (this could be a scam so watch out if little kids come up to you asking for money) and occasional sightings of people dressed up in costumes to go to Halloween parties, but that’s about it. Thanksgiving is definitely not a thing here since it’s an American holiday. So, what does that mean? Christmas comes super early in London! And.. I love it!
Starting in late October, we saw Christmas decorations pop up everywhere in central London. The city takes it very seriously as the lights are up on all the streets too! Not only the storefronts are getting dazzled up for Christmas, but also the restaurants, cafes, tourist attractions, streets, markets, and etc.
For someone who loves Christmas (aka, ME!!), this is great news! I’ve already been listening to Christmas music and feeling festive.
Some spots with great christmas lights in central London include: Covent Garden, Regent Street, Oxford Street, Leicester Square, Carnaby Street etc. You will see the lights everywhere including random little side streets!
Restaurants and cafes here in London actually invest in decorations year-round. A lot of them often change their facade and interior using fresh flowers. For someone who has developed a new interest in flowers, this is amazing! For the Christmas season, a lot of them are switching out their decor to be more christmas friendly. A few weeks ago, I went to Balthazar for brunch and they already had christmas wreaths up!
Left: Carnaby Street featured Bohemian Rhapsody for its Christmas lights this year! A little unusual with a lot of popping colors, it definitely stood out to me amongst all the other more common-looking Christmas lights. For those who haven’t watched the movie yet, go watch it as we highly recommend it!
Right: Liberty department store also does a great job in decorating for Christmas. It’s fun to see all the different angles and views of the decor from different floors!
Leicester Square Christmas Market
Christmas markets are not a thing in the states, but it’s definitely a thing in Europe! Originally wanted to check out the christmas markets in Strasbourg, France which is known to have one of the best in the world! But, we were definitely too late to the game, everything was booked out. So, we decided to explore the different markets around London this year!
First things first, we got a pint of beer and some mulled wine! This market is not that big so you can easily walk around and see everything within 30 minutes. We first did a lap to see what’s here and then decided what to get!
We first got a bratwurst hotdog from the German hotdog stand. YUM! We had zero expectations (thought in our heads, how good a hotdog can be from a hotdog stand?) but surprisingly, it was very tasty!
Also, don’t mind Ryan’s “beard”. He’s doing another year of Movember to raise awareness of men’s health issues. I’m not a huge fan of the look, but hey, he’s doing it for a good cause so I can’t say much!
There are various stalls to explore selling food, dessert, drinks, ornaments, candles, winter gear, and etc.
Next on our list to try was the Raclette!! Always wanted to try this so when we saw it, we had to give it a go. Raclette is a type of cheese which typically comes in a big wheel. It gets heated up and the melted cheese gets scraped off onto some potatoes and sausages. DELICIOUS!!
There will be more Christmas themed posts to come on the blog as we will be visiting a few other Christmas markets in London! So excited to spend the festive season here! Is it too early to say Merry Christmas?!?!?
P.S. Yes, it’s definitely winter weather in London now with more rain and temperatures down to the 30s! For us Californians, this is a shock so we are making sure we are all bundled up when we go outside!