Ahh Christmas… where cities throughout England turn into Winter Wonderlands, adorned with fairy lights and tinsel on every corner!
In aid of spreading a little Christmas cheer (and getting us that much more into the Christmas mood), here’s my round-up of the best Christmas displays in London and throughout the rest of the UK that you absolutely must see (if not this year, then definitely next!)
1. Knightsbridge, London
Home to many famous London stores including Harrods and Harvey Nichols, Knightsbridge is always a great place to come to if you want to marvel at Christmas displays.
In fact, Harrods itself is not only festively decorated inside every year (complete with the most amazing Christmas shop), but on its exterior, you’ll see over 12,000 lights adorning the store! And stores like Harvey Nichols often come with fantastic window displays (usually moving)…!
2. Oxford Street & Regent Street, London
Two of the most famous shopping districts in London, and probably all of England, Oxford Street and Regent Street look simply magical at Christmas-time.
Plus, one of my favourite stores, Hamleys, can be found here. A huge multi-storey toy shop, you don’t have to be a kid to appreciate the magic of this place!
3. Covent Garden, London
I adore Covent Garden’s Christmas decorations every time I see them. From giant mistletoe, to giant baubles, Covent Garden always takes their decorations into the oversized category!
4. Kew Gardens, London
Over one million twinkling lights, illuminating old trees and buildings is what you’ll find at Kew Gardens during the festive period, making this a fabulous Winter Wonderland and a historic one!
5. Hyde Park, London
Hyde Park truly turns into a Winter Wonderland during the festive period, complete with ice skating rink, giant Christmas tree and twinkly fairy lights galore!
And now let’s take a sneak peek at what the rest of England has to offer…
6. Longleat Safari Park, Wiltshire
Each year, Longleat Safari Park hosts the “Festival of Light”, which involves giant light displays shown throughout the park. So not only will you spot wild animals here, but incredible lights too! A few years ago, the theme was ‘Chinese New Year’, which was INCREDIBLE (but the theme changes each year so you’ll never get bored!)
7. Mousehole, Cornwall
The small seaside town in Cornwall, Mousehole, is a wonder at Christmas-time as the harbour comes to life with floating Christmas scenes and light displays!
8. Clearwell Caves, Gloucestershire
Near to intriguing Puzzlewood in the Forest of Dean, Clearwell Caves are an understated English attraction. The caves themselves are pretty cool and well worth a look, but during the festive period, the caves house amazing Christmas displays and even a Christmas market inside that must take hours to set up!
9. Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire
Home of Shakespeare, Stratford-upon-Avon is a historic place, as well as a very festive place! There is of course an awesome Christmas market here every year, but their Christmas lights are also considered to be some of the finest in the UK (according to many publications)!
10. Plymouth City Centre, Devon
Plymouth was my home from home for over 3 years whilst I was at University, and I used to love the Christmas lights there. The Santa’s Grotto is one of the prettiest I’ve seen and there are lights galore throughout the shopping district!
11. Runton Road, Poole
Ever wondered where the most festive street in the UK is? Look no further than Runton Road in Poole, which is has been dubbed this accolade every year for the past 25 years! A word of caution though – if you don’t appreciate houses that are COVERED in lights, this one may not be for you. But I’d recommend seeing this street come to life at least once!
12. Cribbs Causeway, Bristol
Cribbs Causeway is a large mall on the outskirts of Bristol and is home to a fantastic Winter Wonderland experience every year. A fantastic ice rink is created outside, a magical Santa’s Grotto appears and the lights inside the mall are pretty awesome too!
13. City Centre, Bristol
Bristol has always offered fantastic Christmas displays but one of the best things about it is the German Christmas Market that springs up every year in the City Centre. Packed full of stalls selling gifts, food and mulled wine, it’s ALMOST as good as going to the real German Christmas Markets… almost…
14. Bath Abbey, Bath
Every year, Bath hosts one of the largest Christmas markets found in the UK. There are literally hundreds of stalls spread all around the Bath Abbey. Whether you’re after some locally sourced cheese (Cheddar anyone?), delicious wine or handmade gifts, this is a great Christmas market to come to year after year. Last year, we found the most incredible stall selling handmade fudge. We tried Chocolate Orange with real milk chocolate and Raspberry White Chocolate with great big chunks of creamy white chocolate… yes please!
15. Westonbirt Arboretum, Gloucestershire
I wasn’t sure whether to include this one or not. Whenever I read newspaper articles or online blogs about the best Christmas displays in the UK, Westonbirt Arboretum is always included. Each year, the staff place lights in the trees, which is done to make it a magical Christmas wonderland. But I’ve been, and because the trees are without leaves at this time of year, it’s actually more like a Halloween treat than a Christmas treat. But it’s still pretty cool to see, which is why I wanted to include it… but do so at your own risk of not quite getting into the Christmas spirit!!
Well, you’ve heard what I have to say. Now over to you – where are some of the best Christmas displays found? Share your memories from around the world in the comments section below…
Did you like this? Spread some festive cheer now by sharing it!