Post # 1
Fiance is British (citizen) and he has family there still. We are considering going over for xmas next year as a family (other option is Hawaii as a couple just before christmas)
I have never been to England, and Fiance says it’s not very attractive in winter. Is there anything to do or see during the winter months, Fiance says all the major attractions are closed? We will likely have 10 days or so including travel.
Post # 3
When I lived in Scotland I took several trips to London during the holidays and it was amazing. I don’t remember ever having an issue with closures and in fact I visited the EYE (they have ice skating right nearby, tons of fun) and the National Gallery both during one of my trips.
Do a search online for sites like this to see what special events are happening during the holidays, they are sevearl ones to not miss.
Post # 4
@Treejewel19: Awesome, thanks!
Please pardon my ignorance, but doesn’t London have some greast theatres also?
Post # 5
Oh yes!! I used to live in London. The city’s beautiful during the holidays. I have three major recommendations –
The first is the Christmas markets! We went to the one in Bath but I think there are others. Stalls and stalls of lovely holiday crafts, delicious baked goods, mulled wine…mmm. It gets dark really early over there during the winter (like, 3:30 early) but the market’s especially beautiful with all the Christmas lights, etc.
Second – Lessons and Carols! Not sure if you have any religious affiliation or not but unless you feel very strongly against it, it’s a really beautiful thing. It’s mainly a short “service” called the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols and that’s exactly what it is – 9 Christmas related readings from the Bible with carols and songs between each one. That’s it! Some the choir sings, some you sing. It’s Christmas Eve at big cathedrals – we went to Westminster. They fill the church – we sat on the ground – and you just listen in the dim light to the beautiful, beautiful music. The choirs of these cathedrals are just amazing, and of course the acoustics are incredible!. So if you like music I would wholeheartedly recommend it – I want to go back for Christmas just to hear it in person again! It’s done on Christmas Eve.
Ice skating! Depends on where you are, but Hampton Court palace (outside of London) and Somerset House (in London, on the Strand) both get set up with ice rinks in the winter, it’s a beautiful setting. Even if you can’t ice skate (and I can’t!) it’s a lot of fun.
And all the major attractions (at least in London) are definitely not closed. Actually I can’t really think of anything that’s closed then, except for things like outdoor plays at the Globe or Regents’ Open Air Theatre. Plenty to do! Let me know if you have any questions… Fiance and I are going back to London in March and I’m so excited to show him around. 🙂
Post # 6
I haven’t been to London at Christmastime, but I have lived in England, and spent a Christmas in Newcastle Upon Tyne. If anything, I think everything is that much more busy there than here in North America. One of my friends did go to London over Christmas, and she loved it. She said it was magical, and one of her favourite Christmas experiences – she took in the Nutcracker at one of the theatres, went up on the London Eye, etc. She did pretty much all of the touristy experiences that she could in a three day visit! London is one of my favourite cities, and it’s worth a visit!
Post # 7
This is what’s on this year!: http://www.timeout.com/london/christmas/ It will be similar next year.
Post # 8
I am dying to go to London. It sounds amazing. Expensive but amazing!
@Take The Reins: I say go for it!
Post # 9
@farmergirl: You make me want to go so much! I love the sound of the Lessons and chiors. I used to attend a christmas eve service with my grandmother as a younger girl, and I adored those, I looked forward to it every holiday (still do). It sounds magical.
I am excited now about it, I think Hawaii is going to wait a few more years, this is so much more up my alley!
Thanks for all the info, the web is a great place, but sometimes hard to figure out what’s what if you don’t know where to start.
Post # 10
He lies he lies ;-P!! I live in London and there’s so much going on! Christmas lights on Oxford street. New years fireworks on the Thames. Ice skating,. Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park. All the usual attractions (museums/gallerys/theatre shows)
Post # 11
I’m going home (to London) for Christmas and I can’t wait! I haven’t been back in years, although a Vancouver Christmas is pretty special aswell. I’m looking forward to midnight mass in a Cathedral, singing hymns (I’m not a practicing Catholic anymore, but it’s still a beautiful thing to be part of), and checking out all the markets! *eek* I can’t wait, I leave in 11 days!!
Post # 12
@michkarose: Sounds like a blast, I;d love to see some pics when you return if you’d be willing to share them!
Hopefully we get some monetary gifts from teh wedding, and don’t blow our slush budget last minute, then we can for sure afford to go, and Fiance is warming up to it slowly; I have a year to work on him, so I am sure I can change his mind by then!