Right in the heart of London lies Leicester Square. Filled with cinemas, casinos, and restaurants this square is constantly bustling with activity. The center of these pedestrian lined streets houses a park, which typically offers a break from London’s buzzing West End. But the November wind brought more than a chill in the air to Leicester Square. Yes, this year it brought something a little more…magical.
Almost as if the park was transformed by Santa’s elves, it is barely recognizable. It feels warm, cozy, and allows you to escape the city to pretend you’re in the North Pole instead. That’s because it is now home to London’s newest Christmas Market: Christmas in Leicester Square.
Leicester Square’s size allows for a market where less truly is more. The compact size of the park makes you to feel as if you entered a Christmas-land where there’s something new and special around every turn.
Being perfectly located in London’s West End makes Christmas in Leicester Square the most convenient market to add to your itinerary, since you’ll undoubtedly explore that area anyhow. Plan about an hour or two into your schedule to fully enjoy your time at the market.
So what should you do when you get there? We’re glad you asked….
- Enjoy the decorations as you stroll through the market browsing for a new ornament to add to your tree
- Test out the wooden and hand made toys to add to the kids’ wish lists
- Watch snowflakes magically grow in your hand at the snow stall
- Act like ‘kids in a candy store’ by mixing and matching personalized bags of gummies
- Visit Santa in his Grotto. You can purchase tickets ahead of time to make sure you secure your spot
- Warm your spirit with some, well, spirits. It just wouldn’t be a Christmas Market without Spiced Cider and Mulled Wine
- Snap a shot in the sleigh ride themed photo booth….watch out for that snow!
- Take in the dazzling spectacle of La Soirée. No need to leave to catch this show -the theatre is right in the heart of the market! Make sure to secure your seat by buying tickets ahead of time
- Enjoy traditional style Brats and sausages
- Feast on hearty burgers – maybe even try a Venison Burger to get your wintery fill
- Indulge in a Croque Monsieur
- Keep the French theme going with a freshly made Crepe
- Play with topping combinations on your Mini Pancakes
- Dip strawberries (and all sorts of goodies) into chocolate fountains
As you can see, there’s a lot of festive fun to be had in the heart of London…but why stop there? There are tons of great Christmas events going on in London.
Why not combine a trip to the market with a showing of your favorite Christmas movie at The Prince Charles Cinema. The cinema is about a stone’s throw away from the Christmas Market and they have something for everyone including The Muppet’s Christmas Carol Sing Along and an Elf Quote Along! (“Santa!!! I know him!”)
Their other holiday specials include showings of Home Alone, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Love Actually, It’s A Wonderful Life, and A Christmas Story (to name a few.) Speaking of A Christmas Story, Chinatown is just a couple streets away incase the movie’s final scene has you craving a post-movie snack!
So which movie would you choose to see after visiting the Christmas Market? Personally, we’d have a hard time deciding between Love Actually, It’s A Wonderful Life, and the Elf Quote Along!