Christmas in London with a budget - 14 things you shouldn't miss

18 de maio de 2019



Hello everyone! For a while I've been showing you things you can do while in London during Christmas time. I've been posting them separately but I've realized it's easier to put everything on a single post. With that said, I'm going to show you everything I did in London (though I won't be talking too much about the things I've already posted), some of those a bit more expensive, but that you can cross out as you please.

------ The Green Corners ------



Do you want something cheaper than a garden? It's one of the best places to visit during the day and stop by if you want to sit somewhere to eat. Besides the amazing greenery, you'll be able to spot curious squirrel and ducks that'll gladly eat something out of your hand. But beware! Some of them might not be as nice or friendly as you might assume and you might end up with a bite where you'll need to try the health care system. It's an amazing experience to have a squirrel eat out of your hand, though it comes with those risks... be prepared! 


Here I show you some picture of Hyde Park and Regent Park - these two were both on the center and close to other places we wanted to see. I advise you not to go to them during the nigh time - there aren't enough lights which can lead to dangerous situations.

------ Tower Bridge ------



This place always makes a good post-card and it's one of the many London classics. Walk inside the bridge, enjoy the view, and even grab a coffee by the riverside! There's always people going around, including security, so I can tell you it's one of the places where I felt the safest - though safety was never a problem. Since it's always full of tourist you'll eventually find someone willing to take a picture of you and your friends together without having to use a selfie-stick. 

------ Leicester Square ------



Here you can find two amazing things:
  1. The M&M and Lego Store;
  2. Street Artists.

The stores themselves are a must to visit. Like I said, you don't need to buy anything, just see the size and the offers they have. On the M&M store you can find all kind's of merchandising regarding the brand, from the famous chocolates to mugs, pens, shirts... all you can imagine. On the Lego store you can discover amazing constructions, including one of the Big Ben (which was under construction when we went there).

If you're not into these kind of things, I got you. On the square there are always street artists performing - music, painting, acrobats - so much talent! You can spend the entire day there just watching and you wouldn't get bored!

------ Notting Hill ------



It might not seem like it because of the rainy sky, but this is one of the most colorful places I've even been. A stop you definitely can't miss during your London visit. The building are in all different and vibrant colors which in a way contrast with the grey background. It's just a metro ride away from the center!

------ Buckingham Palace ------




Another free thing you can always do while walking around the streets of London is visit the Buckingham palace. To visit the inside and the palace itself you'll need to pay for a ticket. Since we were on a budget we decided to just stay on the outside. 

On certain hours during the day (which you can check here) you can see the exchange of the Queen's Guards. There are usually a lot of people watching but if you get an hour early you'll be able to see it all. Not only do the guards exchange places and you see them riding horses, sometimes there's a small concert by a classical band (the time I went they were playing Abba classics).

------ Christmas Markets & Lights ------




This was the primary motive why I decided to go to London during Christmas - the markets and the lights. I can't tell you the amount of markets I went to and all the amazing things I saw without starting to ramble for hours, so instead I'll just leave a couple of pictures. My favorite market was definitely the one near Camden Town, though none of them disappointed.



I'll leave you some photos of the lights as well, though if you want to feel a little more of the magic you should check the post I did solely dedicated to that topic.


------ Chinatown ------



Chinatown is always a good place to visit during the nigh time. The lights, the culture, the smells... every corner full of life and new things to try. Since it's right next to Leicester Square you can plan a day including the two places so you can save a bit of time and money during your trip.

------ London Eye ------



A classic. You get a good view from the city, though you can get a better view for the same price (or even cheaper) in other places, like on the Sky Garden. If you're on a budget I think this is something you can easily skip. You can take a couple of pictures outside, it's fully accessible, and you can get the feel of it without spending money. 

If you want to visit more places, like the Madam Tussauds' museum (which is already expensive for itself), I'd advise you to buy combo tickets (that may include the London Eye) so you can save a bit.


------ Camden Town ------



A world for itself. Like I said on my previous post, you should at least spend a full day here. So many stores and hidden corners that it's impossible to name them all. You don't have to buy anything if you don't feel like it but it's the best place to find souvenirs to bring back home!

------ Greenwich ------



Greenwich wasn't on our initial plans, but since we had some free time we decided to give it a try. It's quick metro ride from the center to this town, and I might say it was completely worth it. A more coastal city, it's known for being one of the places where the meridian line runs through. If you want to save money you don't need to get inside the museum. You can see the line from outside, though you can't take these kind of pictures. It was a bit too expensive for what you actually see and do, but we were super curious. 


If you have more time than an afternoon, I highly recommend you visiting the town itself and enjoy the landscape.

------ Sky Garden ------



This is the place I've talked about as an alternative to the London Eye or the Shard while on a budget. You can have a full 360º view of London, with almost no line to get in and inside a beautiful building where you can stay and grab a drink if you wish. Like every place with a view, it will be hard to see everything on a foggy night, though I highly recommend this stop.

------ Winter Wonderland ------



And if you want to have a lot of fun for almost no cost... go to this amazing theme park. It's only available during the winter time, and you'll see why. Besides the traditional rides, scary houses and take a picture with Santa, you can enjoy other activities for a little more money, which is completely worth it. 


We decided to go to the ice bar where we enjoyed an alcoholic beverage served on a cup made of ice (use gloves!!) and to the ice sculptures museum. On the last one they give you gloves and proper apparel so you don't freeze while you walk around. It was really hard taking pictures there since my hands were shaking from the cold, but enjoy the ones that I was able to capture.

------ Madame Tussauds ------



This is the museum I was talking about. If you're on a tight budget I wouldn't recommend stopping here since the ticket price is a bit high, but you have a little something to spend and you're a bit of a nerd like me... Then you're going to love it. 


From English celebrities, to movie characters, singers, and every celebrity you can probably think about. They're all here, made of wax, for you to take pictures with and make your subconscious believe you were actually in the same room as these stars. My favorite part was the Star Wars dedicated room, but if that's not your thing you have a lot more to explore!

------ Harry Potter Station ------



Last but not less important, if you're a Harry Potter fan you should stop by the famous King's Cross station. Before entering the departing zone there's a little area simulating the 9 3/4 entrance and a Harry Potter merchandising store. You can take a photo for free with the scarf from your house, this if you're using your own camera. If you don't have one you can always pay on the store for the photo they took of you. The store itself is any Potterhead's dream - candies, statues, wands... all you can imagine and ever dreamed of having from the Harry Potter franchise. 



Hope you liked this post! If you have any questions about any of the places I showed you feel free to leave a comment or send me a message.



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