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Published: November 7th 2019
With Christmas almost upon us, it’s time to get into the festive spirit, and what better way, this coming month or so, than by going to see the Christmas lights that are being switched on all over the country?
In the capital, there are plenty of opportunities to see the celebratory switch-on, and London is a wonderful festival option if you live somewhere smaller outside of it. Even those who live hundreds of miles away can easily get into the city, particularly with high-speed trains, and enjoy a day in the city before the big event itself. I really can suggest this place. I visited it last year and absolutely loved it.
Beautiful Covent Garden (photo: Simeon87
There are also hotel day rooms from DayBreakHotels
being one of the main providers, meaning that you can spend some time resting and showering after your day of sightseeing and before you go out to see the Christmas lights. A really useful option for anyone, including families who have children who may need to nap. We did that and were more than happy about it. It can get quite cold after some time.
In London, there are several festive switch-on sites you can choose to go to. You could even enjoy more than one of these if you wanted. Here are the biggest and best:
- 12 November
Head to the shopping piazza for thousands of beautiful glistening lights and a monumental tree. The lights will be turned on by a celebrity who is yet to be revealed.
- 14 November
These lights aim to look like ‘suspended spirits’ and add a lot of magic to proceedings. The street will be traffic-free from 4 pm, with the switch-on and associated show taking place between 5.30 pm and 6.30 pm. Been there once, amazing.
The spirits of Regent Street (photo: Oast House Archive
ROYAL EXCHANGE - 20 November
A 25-foot tree that is dressed by Fortnum and Mason takes centre stage at this particular Christmas event. The company also provides mince pies and wine, with accompanying carols sung beautifully by the East London Chorus
- 21 November
This famous street has now done away with the twinkly bulbs and instead utilises LED screens the length of the shopping area. It’s still impressive, and the most popular place to see the festive lights being switched on.
CHELSEA - 23 November
Set along King’s Road and Sloane Square, with new gateway displays which are inspired by the grandiose crown of King Charles II. There will also be free festive events, plus an appearance from Father Christmas himself. For me that was the most Christmas I ever had.
The Norweigian tree at Trafalgar Square (photo: MrT HK
- 5 December
The tree placed at the centre of the square is traditionally a gift from Norway, and the lights are switched on by the Norwegian Ambassador, the Mayor of Oslo, and the Mayor of Westminster together. Since that's almost on my Birthday, I've been there several times.
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