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YOUR SHORT LET LONDON home IS BOOKED, NOW PLAN YOUR DAYS OUT

Some practical tips about staying in one of our short let London homes during the holiday season.  Visit London in the festive season and you will find that there are things you should look out for and be aware of. This is especially true for those of you who are staying with us between Christmas and New Year’s, when the holidays fall.

A REDUCED TRANSPORT SERVICE
London transport offers a reduced service, or no service at all, on the holiday days during the festive season.  It helps to know exactly what to expect if you are travelling or moving around town this time of year, in order to avoid spoiled plans. The sensible thing to do is to check with Transport for London to make sure you know how and if the buses, tubes and trains are running on each holiday day. TfL will also advise and inform if the weather is affecting the roads and railway lines in any way.  Be prepared and you won’t be disappointed.

WHICH DAYS ARE HOLIDAYS BETWEEN CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR 2016?
May we remind visitors staying in one of our short let London homes that shops, museums, galleries and attractions are closed on the holidays days between Christmas and New Year. The traditional holiday days are: Christmas Day – 25 December, Boxing Day – 26 December and New Year’s Day – 1 January.  This year, there are some additional holiday days to look out for: Tuesday 27 December is a holiday to compensate for the fact that Christmas Day falls on a Saturday and Monday 2 January is a holiday because New Years Day falls on a Sunday.

LONDON’S WINTER WEATHER.
The winter weather in London usually behaves well and getting around town is pretty straight forward, as usual.  We do not get severely icy conditions here like New York City, for example.  Sustained snowfall in central London is unusual so when it does snow, everyone loves it and marvels at how beautiful the hushed capital looks in it’s new white coat. Bring sensible, warm clothes when you visit London now, like a comfortable winter coat, some practical shoes or boots ideal for walking, plus a wooly winter hat, scarf and gloves, (which you may or may not need) and you’re all set!

LIGHTS AND DELIGHTS IN THE PARKS
There’s plenty to do and see when you leave the comfort and warmth of your short let London, even when the shops are closed! Enjoy the magical, transformed parks in central London. You will be amazed at the quiet and more gentle pace out there and there will be lovely lights and festive decorations to dazzle and cheer and compensate for the dark winter afternoons.  Should there be some snowfall, head off to Primrose Hill to watch the young and not so young on their sleds and toboggans. Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park is as fun and popular as ever, for the whole family.

A LESS CROWDED MUSEUM OR GALLERY
On the days the museums are open, you will soon discover that this is the perfect time to go! Take refuge in a gallery or museum out of the cold wind, and enjoy the fact that it may not be as crowded as usual! Many Londoners are away this time of year or huddled at home watching Home Alone on telly! Here is our handy guide to the free museums and galleries of the capital.  Don’t even try to resist the tempting traditional English fare on offer in the museum and gallery cafes and restaurants such as mulled wine, hot cider, mince pies, sticky buns, candied fruits and spicy hot chocolate.

 

Visit London in the jolliest season of all!

London in the winter has a special charm and you will be delighted by the lights, the decorations and the good cheer all over town.  Visit London now and you will find no shortage of special winter time treats and entertainment that only happen this magical time of year. Don your coats and scarves and head on out into the winter wonderland that is London Town.

PANTOMIMES AND OTHER PLAYS

The famous pantomime shows that you see all over London leading up to Christmas are a very special winter tradition that families look forward to every year.  These traditional plays, based on folk legends and fairy-tales are lively, entertaining and lots of fun for the whole family, not just the little ones. Popular choices are Aladdin, Cinderella and Jack and the Beanstalk. Should you prefer something seasonally sad, Hans Christian Andersen’s famous The Little Match Girl is on at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre this winter. There is a panto or play on in London to suit every mood.

BEAUTIFUL STREET LIGHTS AND WINDOWS DISPLAYS

Wander around all the main shopping streets in the centre when you visit London in winter and enjoy the different sets of seasonal lights of each. Regent’s Street and Oxford Street may be streets that you will think of first, but often it is the smaller, more intimate shopping streets in the centre that have the loveliest and most original lights, such as Bond Street and Carnaby Street. Don’t forget to stop and marvel at the various department store’s Christmas window displays – many of them are very beautiful and innovative.  It’s impressive how they manage to think up new and original ideas each and every year.  Take the whole family along and choose your favourite shop window.

HYDE PARK IN WINTER

London’s parks are wonderful in the winter-time.  Wrap up warm and enjoy a brisk walk through Kensington Gardens, perhaps taking some nuts along for the squirrels (they will be grateful!) and stop to enjoy a nice cup of hot chocolate. Hyde Park hosts A Winter Wonderland every winter which usually starts in mid November and offers ice-skating, a winter circus, a magic ice kingdom and Christmas puppet shows for the smallest visitors. Each year this popular attraction offers new and festive entertainment as well as all the old favourites.

CHRISTMAS AT THE CHARLES DICKENS MUSEUM

Visit London at Christmas time and Charles Dickens comes into his own. Nostalgic reminders about Scrooge and the well loved A Christmas Carol are everywhere. This is a lovely time of year to visit The Charles Dickens Museum in Bloomsbury.  No other location in central London will be hosting a more authentic Dickensian Christmas than right here, where the great Victorian writer lived and worked. Prepare to be dazzled and charmed with real London winter cheer and tradition of old, as you wander round the various rooms of this delightful and popular museum.

ICE SKATE PAST THE LONDON EYE!

Outdoor ice-rinks seem to spring up all over the capital this time of year and there is bound to be one close to where you are staying when you visit London now. This is great fun for the whole family!  Whether you are an expert or a beginner, you will be enchanted as you glide or wobble along amongst the glittering lights, by some of London’s most famous locations and buildings, such as The London Eye or Alexandra Palace. Even for those who don’t plan to skate – the views of London, the carols and Christmas songs and the delighted laughter of the skaters will be memorable enough.

We send you all the very best season’s wishes – we are pleased you will be joining us in London at this festive time of year!