Why a perfect winter visit to London isn’t just limited to Christmas (P)
Expert London Tour Guide Nicola Watts considers the best of winter (beyond Christmas) for visiting and experiencing London.
Christmas is a popular time to visit London and a large number of people head to the city at this time of year to enjoy a little seasonal spirit. However, there is also plenty to see and do in London in the months of January and February and one of the big advantages of choosing to explore at this time of year is that the city is much less crowded, while there are also some great bargains to be had, as well as things to see and do. In this article we will explore how January and February are great times for visiting the English capital.
People who have an eye for a bargain will want to make sure that they take the time to check out the January Sales, which typically start just after Christmas and run until the middle of January.
Most of the outlets located along popular shopping streets such as Regent Street, Oxford Street and the trendy boutiques of Kings Road offer huge discounts to entice shoppers. Those in the know will try and time their shopping spree for the end of the first week in January, as bargain fever has died down quite a bit by this time and there are fewer frantic shoppers to fight, while some shops offer discounts of as much as 80% in a final attempt to clear out their winter stock! Will you get what you want at a great price?
Source: Amiq / Flickr.com
Taking a Stroll in the Park
January and February are great months to explore the large and lovely parks of London and one green zone that should not be missed is Hampstead Heath, which is a huge hilly expanse of parkland that is an ideal to relax. Taking a boat out on the large lake at Regent’s Park is also a great way to unwind while exploring the winter wonderland in a whole new way.
London Duck Tours
Taking one of the vibrant London Duck Tours offers visitors the chance to experience the city in a new way as they are launched into the River Thames as part of this 75 minute tour. During the tour the bright yellow duck vehicles make their way past many of London’s most prominent landmarks including the London Eye, the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, Waterloo Station and Trafalgar Square, while commentary is provided by an extremely knowledgeable and entertaining guide. The water will be cold and deep however, so don’t get any swimming ideas!
This evening is held to honour the Scottish poet Robert burns and takes place each year on January 25th. Many of the restaurants and bars in London take part in burn’s night by offering traditional Scottish treats such as haggis and tatties that can be enjoyed along with a class of Scotch whisky, while other festivities include poetry reading, bagpipe music and traditional dancing.
Chinese New Year
This vibrant event typically takes place towards the end of January or start of February and is a great time to learn a little about the Chinese culture. The festival really gets off to a bang with firecrackers that are lit outside shops to bring good luck and colourful Chinese dragon dancing performances can be enjoyed in Leicester Square, while the restaurants and shops of Chinatown are decorated to commemorate this special time of year.
Source: Paul Hudson / Flickr.com
Don’t think the perfect winter visit to London is limited to December and Christmas. As this posting shows, it really isn’t!
Piece written by Nicola Watts – Expert London Tour Guide.
Check out the her website