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London Christmas activities

Our most recommended London Christmas activities

London Christmas Lights Tour by Vintage Bus Open Top

1. London Christmas Lights Tour by Vintage Bus Open Top

Experience London at the most magical time of year aboard an original 1960s Routemaster bus. Listen to the funny commentary from the guides as they show you the best of the city's Christmas lights and decorations. Journey along a specially-designed route with your tour guide who will crack the façade of the British stiff upper lip and have you and your small group laughing all across the capital. Get in the spirit and see the finest of seasonal decorations. Spend up to 75 minutes soaking up the iconic, insurmountable landmarks of London in all their festive sparkle. See the shop windows of Oxford Street, pass the Harrods department store, and much more.

London: Tootbus Christmas Lights Tour

2. London: Tootbus Christmas Lights Tour

Hop aboard a bus for a holiday tour of London. See the famous lights that decorate the iconic streets of London on board a double-decker bus. Watch the city sparkle as you go past the capital's most famous Christmas light displays. Drive by Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square and more. See these places in their sparkling Christmas attire. Listen to your guide tell stories of Christmas past and present. Put on your complementary Santa hat to get into the spirit. Share this special moment with your loved ones while listening to a knowledgeable local guide tell you all about London's most famous landmarks. Get in the mood with access to the Tootbus Christmas playlist.

York: Bishopthorpe Palace Christmas Cruise

3. York: Bishopthorpe Palace Christmas Cruise

The Bishopthorpe Palace Christmas Cruise is an ideal way to escape the busy shopping streets and step into the Christmas spirit. Your ticket includes a choice of hot drink (tea, coffee or hot chocolate) and a mince or apple pie.The one-hour relaxing cruise features traditional Christmas songs, punctuated with live captain’s commentary. Leave from old port district at King’s Staith, pass underneath the Millennium Bridge before leaving the outskirts of the city and sail past the site of the Battle of Fulford, arguably one of the most significant in the history of the United Kingdom. Experience a fantastic chance to look out for wildlife including swans, cormorants and kingfishers, as you leave the city centre and sail downstream to the village of Bishopthorpe. The vessel turns at the glorious 13th century Bishopthorpe Palace, official residence of the Archbishop of York. Your vessel will be equipped with an enclosed heated saloon, at least two toilets and a fully stocked bar serving beers, wines, spirits, soft drinks, hot drinks and snacks.

London: Christmas Lights and Markets Tour

4. London: Christmas Lights and Markets Tour

Meeting in Covent Garden, we'll stroll through the market by street performers, craft stalls, and boutique shops. Over cobbled streets we then disappear into the secret garden (one of London's best kept secrets) illuminated with Victorian gas lamps. As Charles Dickens once did we'll explore hidden alley ways as your guide tells tales of Ebenezer Scrooge. Passing through more Christmas markets you'll discover how Queen Victoria shaped modern Christmas, and be amazed at the origins of Santa Claus, Christmas tress and other holiday traditions. Surrounded by the lights and sounds of Christmas you'll get to enjoy a glass of spiced mulled wine before making our way to Trafalgar Square as we round up Christmas past, present, and future surrounded by some of the city's most iconic buildings.

London: A Local’s Christmas Private Tour

5. London: A Local’s Christmas Private Tour

Experience the best of London on a private tour that can be customized to your interests and preferences, including the booking of tickets or attractions according to your requests. Simply make your booking and your hosts will contact you within 24 hours to ask questions about your interests and what you would like to see and do. They will match you with the right profile and assign a like-minded local to become your guide. Benefit from an itinerary tailored just for you. This will be outlined but flexible. Then, meet at a place convenient for you, and feel free to change direction, or follow suggestion from your guide if they think you'd enjoy a sight or different experience, with your permission. Get off the beaten track and see things not normally covered in guidebooks or on the internet. The entire tour will revolve around your wishes so that you can discover a London that you will really love!

From London: Bruges Christmas Markets

6. From London: Bruges Christmas Markets

After your departure from London, travel to Kent to make the crossing to Calais. On arrival in France, start your journey to Bruges in Belgium. Arrive in Bruges at 12:30 PM, where you have free time to enjoy a late lunch and explore this beautiful city. Depart at around 5:00 PM from Bruges for your return journey to Calais. Departure times from Bruges may vary depending on traffic conditions. Your tour manager will confirm the return time on arrival in Bruges. At 9:20 PM you will travel back to the UK via the Eurotunnel or ferry. You will arrive at the port in England at approximately 9:00 PM, before continuing the journey back to central London where you will arrive around 11:45 PM.

London: Christmas Lights Tour in a Black Cab

7. London: Christmas Lights Tour in a Black Cab

Experience breathtaking views of London at night plus all the fun and excitement of the Christmas atmosphere. See the city's decorations beautifully illuminated and fantastic light displays in parts of the city on this 2.5-hour tour in an iconic black cab. Make numerous stops for photographs along the way. See many of London's major buildings illuminated after dark as well. Stop off at Winter Wonderland, where you can sit down with a hot drink and some chestnuts, take the kids to visit Father Christmas, or even do some late-night shopping. Alternatively, your driver can drop you off at any of the markets or at your hotel.

From London: Kent Countryside Christmas Service & Lunch

8. From London: Kent Countryside Christmas Service & Lunch

Travel through the stunning countryside of Kent on a guided bus tour to Canterbury Cathedral to attend the Christmas “Sung Eucharist” service. Savor a traditional Christmas lunch, view the famous White Cliffs of Dover, and visit Greenwich. Arrive at the Canterbury Cathedral, where you will attend the Christmas “Sung Eucharist” service – often graced by the presence of the Archbishop of Canterbury. The line of succession from Augustine has seen 105 Archbishops uphold this prestigious title. After the church service, sit down and enjoy a festive traditional Christmas dinner. Soak up the festive atmosphere and enjoy a hearty three-course lunch with an alcoholic beverage or soft drink. Next, continue for a photo stop by the famous White Cliffs of Dover, the gateway to England You’ll also catch a glimpse of Dover Castle, a key filming location for The Other Boleyn Girl. On your way back to London, drive past the historic London borough of Greenwich, famous for its maritime past. Admire outstanding example of 17th-century Baroque architecture including the stunning Old Royal Naval College.

London: Christmas Eve City Tour with Dinner & Midnight Mass

9. London: Christmas Eve City Tour with Dinner & Midnight Mass

Get into the festive spirit in London with a sightseeing bus tour of the city's spectacular Christmas lights on Christmas Eve. Then, savor a delicious 3-course dinner and celebrate Christmas day as the clock strikes midnight with a Midnight Mass at St Martin-in-the-Fields in Trafalgar Square. Kick off Christmas Eve with a bus tour of the city's Christmas lights. Listen as your guide brings the history and traditions of the city to life. See Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, Downing Street, Trafalgar Square, St Paul's Cathedral, the Tower of London, and many more. Next, refuel with dinner at Brown’s restaurant in Victoria. Be ready to celebrate with Christmas cheer! Enjoy a sumptuous three-course dinner with a celebratory glass of Prosecco (juice options for children) in the relaxed surroundings of The Brasserie. Complete your evening with a stop at St Martin-in-the-Fields in Trafalgar Square to experience this special Midnight Mass. At the end of the night, you will be dropped off within walking distance of your hotel and given a special Christmas gift.

London: Private Walking Tour to Best Christmas Sites

10. London: Private Walking Tour to Best Christmas Sites

Enjoy an intimate introduction to England's capital on a private 3-hour sightseeing walking tour of Central London, and see some of the city's most iconic sights. Your private guide will collect you from the lobby of your hotel. Discuss the flexible itinerary before you set off. You will begin by visiting the famous Leicester Square Christmas Market, to take in the sparkling lights and explore the crafts and wares on sale for some Christmas present ideas.  Walk through the streets of Covent Garden's 'Seven Dials' an incredible network of beautiful shopping streets with incredible lights before stopping by the famous Covent Garden Market with it's a gorgeous misletoe chandeliers.  Crossing Waterloo Bridge, you can pause to take in one of the best views in London and then delve into Borough Market, a bustling hub of sights and smells of delicious foods. You will then head to Tower Bridge for a quick overview of the interesting history of this landmark. The final stop is Winter Wonderland, a large Christmas entertainment park with plenty of mulled wine, amusement rides, and festivity. The perfect tour to get you in the Christmas mood. 

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What people are saying about London

Overall rating

4.2 / 5

based on 148 reviews

Great ! We had a great evening walking through the streets of London and its magnificent illuminations. David our driver was extremely kind and caring and gave us lots of anecdotes and advice for our stay. A huge thank you to him for this beautiful evening which pleased both the youngest and the oldest ✨

Was really good, the driver made the evening even better with his knowledge, friendliness and was just all round a really nice guy. Would definitely recommend to anyone.

Food was OK better than I expected. Atmosphere was good, services was good. As a group, we all had a fabulous time. Thank you!

Awesome activity ....our guide was great and took a lot of pictures ......well worth it! Definitely recommend .

very pleasant cruise with singer and very pleasant Christmas carols