For special gifts, visit one of London’s many Christmas markets taking place in landmark locations such as the South Bank, Leicester Square and Hyde Park.
For one-off gifts which you will not find anywhere else, visit one of the capital’s many Christmas markets, says Kohinoor Sahota
Christmas in London has been increasingly inspired by German traditions, and once you’ve wandered through the capital’s mini-villages of pretty fairy-lit chalets, you wouldn’t have it any other way.
Hyde Park Winter Wonderland (to 2 Jan; p. 36), home to rides for all the family, also hosts one of London’s largest Christmas markets. Get there early, so you can navigate through the wooden huts filled with handmade gifts and confectionery.
One of the most beautiful markets you can visit is the Southbank Centre Winter Market (to 8 Jan; p. 36), as nothing beats the backdrop of London’s skyline and being beside the River Thames. Here you’ll find chalets filled with clothes, food and handcrafted goods.
Christmas in Leicester Square (to 8 Jan; p. 12) sees the red carpet swapped for Christmas decorations – visit Santa’s grotto, see a show and warm up with a hot drink and global food. Art lovers will enjoy the Tate Modern
Christmas Market (to 24 Dec; p. 45), which sells picture frames, artwork and jewellery, while the Urban Makers East Christmas
Market (10-11 Dec; www.urbanmakerseast. co.uk) has ceramics, artwork and origami workshops. If all that shopping makes you hungry, you can tuck into comfort food, from pork sliders to quiche.
More adventurous types should venture south to Brixton for its Crafty Fox Market (3-4 Dec; www.craftyfoxmarket.co.uk) at the Dogstar. The event supports independent designers who sell wonderful arts and crafts. From bags and birdcages to cushions and mugs, you’ll find inventive designs that make unique gifts. Happy shopping!
Main image: Southbank Centre Winter Market Below: Hyde Park Winter Wonderland