Bah, humbug! You’ll almost definitely have seen your Christmas plans scrapped at the very last minute with the announcement that London was moving into Tier 4 on Saturday December 19, closing shops and banning socialising across the capital. Added to the closure of hospitality and leisure venues under Tier 3 measures, it means to festive period is going to look a bit different this year. But don’t let the measures put a dampener on time spent within your bubble. Here’s how to have a safe yet Christmassy time over the next fortnight in London.
See the Christmas lights sparkle
They’re free to see, they’re festive as hell, and they’re all over the city – chances are you won’t need to board public transport to add some sparkle to your daily exercise. Or get on your bike and see central London at its weirdest ever, with lights suspended above… absolutely nobody. Check out our list of the best lights across the city.
Grab a takeaway mulled wine…
While Londoners have been necking mulled wine from exceptionally early on in the Christmas period this year (we don’t blame you there!), there’s never too much of a good thing. Especially when that good thing can be snuck along on your wholesome walks through the woods – or just down the high street – with friends. And you’re doing your bit to help London’s pubs and bars keep going. This list is a good place to start when seeking out the clove-filled warm stuff.
…and a Christmas sandwich to go
London’s restaurants need your help. Fuel your winter walks with a takeaway sarnie from your local, or from one of our favourites on this list – it includes two festive offerings from Bodega Rita’s loaded with the Christmas grub staples plus alllll the trimmings.
Gawp at these gorgeous trees
Sick of the sight of that increasingly browning tree in the background of your Zoom calls? Catch the feels from one of these mindblowingly beautiful Christmas trees erected in the city. There are trad firs in places like Trafalgar Square, plus quirky spruce imitators, like the terrarium-filled epic at Coal Drops Yard. Free to see and a safe stop-off point on any socially distanced walk with one other person outside your bubble. Here’s a list of the best of the bunch.
Book in a Christmas theatre show… on your doorstep
Out-of-work actors need your backing yet again with West End shows ordered to close. Luckily, you can still get your Christmas theatre dose while showing your support. Doorstep Productions will send a cast member to your front door and put on a mini show. A splurge, for sure – but club together with your housemates or neighbours and bring some drama to staying at home.
Drive to a festive film screening
Yes, you can have any winter movie dross in your living room on demand these days. But save the Christmas classics for a family outing. While cinemas are closed, one of London’s near-pandemic-proof generation of drive-in cinemas is still open, so if you’ve got wheels, you’re in luck. ‘Elf’, ‘Die Hard’, ‘Home Alone’ and more are on at The Drive-In in Edmonton.
Or bring the festivities to yours. We trialled a virtual Christmas.