We held off as long as we could, now’s the time of year to start thinking about embarking on the Christmas shopping! Here is Spotless’ selection of the best festive markets London has to offer.
Festivities are already in full swing on the South Bank’s Queens Walk. It’s now lined with festive chalets selling gifts, from toys to bags to clothes to realistic fake snow! Mulled wine and alcoholic hot chocolate is flowing, and you can sink your teeth into Yuletide delectables at the Chocolate Festival (Dec 13-15) and Real Food Christmas Market (Dec 19-22). The Christmas market runs from now until Christmas Eve.
The Chelsea Physic Garden is magical at any time of the year, but during this season, it becomes utterly enchanting. From now until December 1, the botanical garden is peppered with heated marquess, under which you’ll find quality clothing, artisan foods, and of course, plenty of plants. There’s also an opportunity to make your own cards, gifts and decorations at the Christmas Creations family workshop.
Once again this year, South East London will host the wonderful Crafty Fox Market. Stalls will be packed with produce created by local designers; expect soft toys, furnishings, art, jewellery, cards and more. This is probably the best Christmas market in London to find that extra unique present for that extra unique person. The Dogstar in Brixton hosts a market on December 7 and 8. Peckham’s Bussey Building will host a one-off market on December 14.
If you like your Xmas market experience full-on, Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is the one for you. As well as 200 chalets hawking quality goods, you can have a go on the UK’s biggest ice rink, try the giant observation wheel (although doesn’t London have one of those already?!) and visit the Magical Ice Kingdom, where the frozen sculptures are guaranteed to be breathtaking. Although some attractions are charged, it’s free to wander around. Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is open now and runs until January 5 (excluding Christmas Day).
Vintage aficionados – look no further no than Snowy Fingers Vintage Market. For one day only (December 10), you can enjoy the likes of a vintage kilo-sale (buy Christmas gifts by weight), tacky Christmas jumper stalls, cake decorating, and a live Beatles tribute act. It’ll be like Christmas 1965 all over again!