Spending Christmas Day in London

There are not many times when you can marvel at the peace and quiet when you are in the centre of one of the most popular cities in the world, yet on Christmas Day the city can feel almost deserted. The streets are quiet and you can move around with ease. Despite the city looking deserted and seemingly closed for business, nothing could be farther from the truth. There are actually many things that you can do and the best bit is you are not going to be fighting your way through the usual crowds to do it. On Christmas day you will get to experience a totally different side to the city, one that very few people take the time to see.

Photo by Loco Steve
Photo by Loco Steve

Transport Options

Of course Christmas day is a public holiday so there will be no public transport running in the city. The underground lines will be eerily quiet and the distinctive red busses will be nowhere to be seen. There are also less taxi cabs on the road too so your best option is to hop on a Boris Bike. This is probably the one day of the year when you will be able to cycle around the city with ease, road traffic will be significantly lighter and the ride all the more enjoyable for it. If the cycle doesn’t appeal walking is probably your next best option. For one all of the architecture that makes the city so recognisable will be visible to view, and it will seem as though the twinkling Christmas lights are putting on a show just for you as there are no crowds of sightseers, no busy shoppers and no street traders there to appreciate them.

Christmas Day Tours

There are still a number of tours that operate in the city in Christmas Day which will take you around the city, offering you a great opportunity to get the most from the city being so empty. Both the Charles Dickens’ London and Samuel Pepys London Tours depart from the magnificent Christmas tree in the centre of Trafalgar Square, and last for around two hours. If you are really feeling extravagant you could enjoy your Christmas lunch as you sail down the Thames taking in all of the iconic sights along the riverbanks, making it a really unique way to enjoy Christmas in the city.


As you will appreciate most of the major tourist attractions are closed on Christmas Day, it is one of the few days that they do close their doors. However there is an attraction that is open every single day of the year; the amazing world of Ripley’s Believe It Or Not is open from 10 o’ clock on Christmas Day, and makes a great way to spend a couple of hours. There will be no queues and no jostling for position too, leaving plenty of time to enjoy all of the items on display. Or, if you want to stay outdoors, head over to Hyde Park where you will find the hardy souls of the Serpentine Swimming Club taking to the chilly waters of the Serpentine for the annual swimming race, the Peter Pan Cup.

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