London Christmas Lights Tour
If you love Christmas and the festive cheer, a Christmas lights tour in London is essential. A London Christmas lights tour can be done in an organised group, but we're going to guide you so you can take it in at your own pace and enjoy the best pockets in the city.
Oxford Street at Christmas
Oxford Street at Christmas is everything you've imagined. It's not so much that each decoration itself is impressive, it's the way that the Christmas lights on Oxford street all come together to create a magical glow. Great care is put into the Christmas lights on Oxford street and it's an impressive site to stand on the edge of the footpath and look down the street to enjoy the display.
Retailers such as Marks and Spencers and Debenhams also partake with impressive displays that can include lighting displays, fairy light filled garlands and of course their meticulously decorated shop fronts. We suggest starting your walk at the top end of Oxford Street near Bond Street Station and walking towards Oxford Circus station. You'll get the best views of the Christmas Lights on Oxford Street this way.
Christmas Lights on Oxford Street
Christmas Lights on Oxford Street - a unique perspective
As soon as you exit the lift, you'll be transported into a Christmassy winter wonderland. The theming changes every year, but you can rely on there being luxe baubles, scandi style birch trees and of course the famed outdoor terrace. No detail is spared in the styling and we forgive you if you feel you've been transported away to a Scandinavian winter wonderland.
The terrace area features a mix of open air seating and cabana style huts that seat around 6. If you're lucky to snag yourself a cabana, you can cosy up with your friends under warm mohair blankets. The whole rooftop is heated, so you'll be cosy no matter where you sit. Being an open air roof top also gives you the unique perspective of viewing the Christmas Lights on Oxford Street from above.
Regent Street Christmas Lights
Once you reach Regent street, it's well worth taking a walk down. The current display is incredibly impressive. The Regent Street Christmas lights take a different approach to the Christmas lights on Oxford Street. There are no trimmed trees and the shop fronts are more subtle. Lush velvet bows adorn shop fronts, many are trimmed with traditional wreaths and the shop lights castle a subtle glow across the street. When you look up though, you will be greeted with the view of the most magnificent Christmas angels you've ever seen in your life.
Sprouting broad wings and impressively long trains the angels are best viewed looking down the street on an angle. Unlike Oxford Street, Regent Street has a small paved traffic island, so you can walk into the middle of the street and really enjoy the size and magnificence of these instalments as a collective.
Bond Street Christmas Lights
It's not just the main streets like Oxford and Regent street that are elegantly adorned. Smaller thoroughfares also featured scaled down versions of the main streets. It is well worth spending some time to wander these smaller lanes.
Stores such as Fenwick also don't disappoint with their beautifully adorned shop fronts. You'll need a bit of time to fully explore this area and you may very well have a sore neck from looking up and enjoying the lights.
Carnaby Street Christmas Lights
You can be forgiven for thinking that you've stepped out of the 'Christmas zone' when entering Carnaby Street, however once you're immersed in the change of scene, you'll appreciate how the creators use historical facts such as Jimmi Hendrix releasing a pair of parakeets on Carnaby Street in the 60's as inspiration for their theming.
If you're more of a traditionalist, Carnaby Street is still worth a visit for the sheer neon spectacle that it is. It is also right by Kingly Court, which is a 3 storey arcade with an inner courtyard. It does get busy, but that's part of being festive, right? There's over 20 restaurants in the court, so you can stop for a bite to eat or just for a drink. Kingly Court has elements of the Carnaby Street design, but features a more traditional Christmas tree and twinkling lights. In winter, the courtyard features a roof, so it's also a chance for a nice cosy break out of the cold.
Christmas Lights Tour London: Other Interesting Stops
Featuring whimsy such as flying picnic baskets (Harry Potteresque in my mind!) you'll need about 15 minutes to appreciate the detail and read all of the clever captions that accompany the varying scenes.
London Christmas Lights Tour: Overview
The Christmas lights on Oxford Street will easily draw you in. You're best to bring a DSLR if you have one as it'll capture the luminosity of the lights better than a smart phone. The Bond Street Christmas lights and Regent Street Christmas lights are both traditional and in contrast to the Carnaby Street Christmas lights, making them all well worth a visit.
If you've not stopped at one of our suggested stops, we recommend you finish up your London Christmas lights tour with a pint at the pub or a mulled wine to complete this real British experience.
What are your favourite lights - we'd love to know?
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