For Christmas, Ke and I snagged cheap tickets to London! We both wanted to travel for the holidays since we had seen all of our family at our wedding. While Vietnam was at the top of my list, we couldn’t turn down a good deal to London. We flew in on Christmas day and flew out on New Year’s Eve spending a total of 7 days in London.
What to See
All of the famous London sights were of course on my must see list. Most of these attractions are located conveniently near each other so we spent one morning seeing Big Ben, The London Eye, Westminster Abbey, and Buckingham Palace and then visited London Tower, Tower Bridge, and St. Paul’s Cathedral on another morning.
London Tower and Tower Bridge
St. Paul’s Cathedral
What to Do
Christmas was such an awesome time to visit London. We landed on Christmas Day and while there were tons of people everywhere, a lot of the restaurants and bars were closed. We spent the first night exploring Picadelly Square and the surrounding area before returning to our hotel for drinks and a Christmas dinner. Despite many places being closed during Christmas and the day after, there are still many things to do during the holiday in London.
The day after Christmas is Boxing Day, a day similar to Black Friday, where all of the shops have massive sales. There is also a large Christmas festival called Winter Wonderland at Hyde park. It was huge! We also spent time visiting the British Museum, the Sherlock Holmes museum and touring the rebuilt Shakespeare Globe Theater.
We also spent one day leaving London to tour Leeds Castle and Canterbury Cathedral. I highly recommend this day trip and even spending more time in Canterbury if you have the time.
The British Museum
Shakespeare’s Globe Theater
Sherlock Holmes Museum
Day Trip to Leeds Castle and Canterbury Cathedral
What to Eat
I must admit, I had a naive American opinion about English food. I should have known that London would be a great destination for food, especially if you’re obsessed with fish and chips as much as I am. Below are just some of the amazing foods we ate while in London:
- Fish and Chips – Golden Union
- Indian Food – Tayyabs (Dishoom is a good second)
- Beef Wellington – Bob Bob Ricard
- Afternoon Tea – The Lanesborough
- Mash and Pies – Mothermash
Where to Stay
I’m a big fan of hotels and hospitality, especially boutique hotels. While in London we spent 4 nights at The Cavendish London which was very central, perhaps a little too central. It’s very close to the touristy areas but also a walk away from Soho.
For the last two nights we stayed at an adorable and luxurious boutique hotel called The Bentley Hotel London. This hotel was a little less central from the tourist spots but just as easy to navigate from because it was very close to a tube station.
Christmas in London
This trip was my first time to London and I am so happy we decided to go last minute. The weather was favorable even if we were a little shocked at the daily 3:50pm sunset. The food was beyond my expectations. I even got a chance to hang out with an old friend and go bar hopping! I can’t wait to visit the UK again and explore more of London and the rest of the country 😀