The Best Places to Visit in London for the 2023 Christmas Holidays

22 Nov 2023, 34 mins ago

Christmas is right around the corner, and in London (as elsewhere), it is the best time of the year. Here are some tips on how to spend this festive season in the capital.

Christmas Atmosphere

Simply walking around London can put you in the Christmas spirit. Oxford Street and Regent Street have spectacular light displays, which make visits after dark especially pleasant. Every year since 1947, Norway has donated a gigantic Christmas tree to the people of London as a token of appreciation of their help during the Second World War. The tree is displayed in Trafalgar Square. Its annual lighting – this year on 7 December – is attended by hundreds of people. Over a dozen of Christmas markets have been set up in various central London locations, including Leicester Square, Covent Garden, and the South Bank. Another attraction worth visiting is Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park, which began as a Christmas market but then grew to include rides, ice skating, performances, live music, and an opportunity to meet Father Christmas.


There are many fun activities to take part in around the city. Ice skating is very popular among Londoners, with Somerset House possibly being the most famous location for it. There are numerous other ice-skating rinks in the West End and all the way down to Greenwich, and the cold weather makes this activity particularly special. There are certain theatre shows that can only be watched around the end of the year; this includes the ever-iconic Nutcracker running at the Royal Opera House, the London Coliseum, and elsewhere. In addition, London theatres will be welcoming visitors for a variety of Christmas carol performances. The Royal Albert Hall will bring back its annual schedule of concerts, and Westminster Abbey will host several shows. Less high-profile recitals include a cappella songs from various groups in Trafalgar Square and several small concerts in nearby St. Martin-in-the-Fields.

How long can I stay in the UK on a tourist visa?

If you are entering the UK as a visitor, you will be able to stay in the country for up to six months. You may spend this entire period in the UK, or you may come and go multiple times. However, it is important to note that you must adhere to the Visit visa rules and avoid living in the UK for extended periods through frequent or successive visits, or making the UK your main home.

Nationals of certain countries do not need a visit visa to come to the UK for up to six months. It is therefore recommended that you check whether you need a visa, and if so, what type of visa is required for you to spend the holiday season in the UK.

There is no better period to enjoy visiting London than Christmas time!

How Gherson can assist

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The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please do not hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.

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