Things To Do This Weekend In London: 23-24 December 2023

All weekend

A couple holding hands while ice skating

Glide at Battersea is only one of many ice skating choices. Picture: Joshua Atkins

CHRISTMAS IN LONDON: You’ll have observed a little bit factor known as ‘Christmas’ quick approaching. Whether or not you are a seasoned native, an everyday customer, or a first-timer within the capital, have a browse of our information to spending Christmas 2023 in London. It covers all the pieces from procuring and days out to consuming and consuming, in addition to sensible features akin to public transport. We have picked out a few of our favourites under, if you happen to’ve bought a while to fill this weekend.

ICE SKATING: The world and his snowman appear to open ice rinks presently of 12 months, that means you’ve got bought the selection of skating in public squares, palace gardens, Royal Parks, or in entrance of an influence station, amongst different areas. Get your skates on and get reserving for London’s winter ice rinks 2023.

CHRISTMAS MARKETS: Reducing it wonderful to your Christmas procuring? There are some Christmas markets and festivals nonetheless operating all through this weekend, promoting crafts, artworks, jewelry, decorations and food and drinks presents. After all, they’re going to be relatively busy (and should shut early on Sunday), however we have all the time discovered that procuring with a mulled wine or sizzling chocolate in hand eases the ache a little bit bit.

CHRISTMAS AFTERNOON TEA: Nothing says ‘big day’ like a flowery afternoon tea, and London is filled with festive/Christmas variations proper now. You may have to guide forward for a slot this weekend — select from our choose of fantastically festive afternoon teas in London this 12 months, together with a Disney one, and one other themed on The Snowman.

PANTOMIME: London’s panto scene is wanting camper than ever this 12 months, with renditions of Aladdin, Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk, Dick Whittington, and a number of other different classics. Loads of selection if you happen to’re taking the entire household for a festive deal with, but in addition some stable choices for strictly adults-only jaunts. Swot up on the historical past of panto earlier than you go and impress your companions with some nuggets of knowledge on the interval.

FESTIVE THEATRE: In the event you’re fortunate, you may handle to discover a last-minute ticket to one among these festive theatre and dance exhibits in London, spanning Elf The Musical, The Nutcracker, and Hansel and Gretel, amongst others. Acquired kids in tow? Our information to family-friendly festive theatre exhibits might be extra your pace, with Santa, The Snowman, Disney characters and Peppa Pig among the many acquainted faces. No time this week? A lot of them proceed subsequent week and into the brand new 12 months too.

WINTER WONDERLAND: Big funfair/Christmas market/ice rink/bar Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is open every single day this week, together with Christmas Eve, although in fact, it is more likely to be very busy. This is our information to this 12 months’s occasion, together with the information you want on prebooking your entry tickets this 12 months. Till 1 January

GINGERBREAD CITY: Pay a go to to a complete (mini) metropolis manufactured from gingerbread, and embellished with icing, sweets and different edible goodies. The Gingerbread Metropolis has baked up at Westfield White Metropolis this Christmas, with 70+ buildings created by groups of architects and civil engineers. Till 7 January

CHRISTMAS TRANSPORT: Whereas most public transport runs as common this weekend, there are a few belongings you want to concentrate on, together with many practice providers closing down early on Christmas Eve — and two main rail stations in London closing fully all day on Christmas Eve. Our information to public transport in London over Christmas has the main points.

Saturday 23 December

The big wheel at Winter Wonderland glowing white against the night sky

Winter Wonderland is open all weekend, together with Christmas Eve. Picture: Joshua Atkins

MEAT AUCTION: After a hiatus of some years because of the pandemic, the Christmas Eve meat public sale at Smithfield Market returns — besides it is taking place the day earlier than Christmas Eve, as a result of the market does not open on Sundays. Historically, it allowed the realm’s butchers to dump their extra inventory earlier than they closed for Christmas, and it nonetheless occurs immediately, with meat joints offered off to the crowds at low costs. 10am

FAMILY NATIVITY CONCERT: Take the youngsters alongside to St Paul’s Church — AKA the Actor’s Church — in Covent Backyard for a household nativity live performance. See the Nativity story enjoying out in entrance of you, accompanied by carols and songs. Age 3+.  11am

R&B BRUNCH: Want a little bit break from Christmas music? Superb Grace alongside London Bridge station hosts an R&B Brunch, the place DJs play all the pieces nice in R&B from the previous few a long time to the current day. Assume TLC, Beyonce, P Diddy and present membership anthems. Meals is out there all through the occasion, with one hour of bottomless rum punch supplied. 12pm-5pm

CANDLELIT CAROLS: The Mozart Pageant Orchestra, Coro Spezzato choir, and soprano Harriet Eyley staff up for a candlelit carols live performance at Cadogan Corridor, performed by Steven Devine. Actor Kevin Whately gives readings between the music. Select between a matinee or night efficiency. 2.30pm/7pm

ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS: Festive pop hits meet conventional Christmas songs in All I Need For Christmas… Reside. The present, at Barbican, is a brand new addition to the Raymond Gubbay Christmas Pageant, starring the London Live performance Orchestra and Capital Voices. 2.30pm

CHARLIE BROWN: Upstairs At The Gatehouse in Highgate levels two showings of You are A Good Man, Charlie Brown, the traditional play based mostly on the Peanuts comedian strips written by Charles M. Schulz. Full of gags, music and pathos, it is appropriate for all of the household, and an excellent shout if you happen to’re already panto-ed out. 3pm and seven.30pm

HO-HO-HOMOPARODY: A seasonal particular of Queer Collective’s Homoparody goes down this afternoon at Two Brewers in Clapham. There’s Christmassy cabaret, holigay parodies and ding-dong drag… appears like a festive riot. 4pm-6pm

CHRISTMAS ICE DISCOS: Most nights this week, there is a Christmas ice disco at Ally Pally. Have a skate on the indoor rink, whereas Christmas songs play within the background, lights twinkle overhead, and a Christmas tree towers over all of it. Age 14+. 7pm-9pm (and different dates Till 3 January)

GUILTY PLEASURES: There is a Christmas particular of standard social gathering night time Responsible Pleasures at Between The Bridges on South Financial institution, with a playlist of R&B and pop songs all night time, and fancy gown very a lot inspired. 7pm

GERIATRIC MUMS: Character comedians Shirley & Shirley deliver their present present, Geriatric Mums, to Soho Theatre for a Christmas particular. They offer their true ideas on the world of parenting, with sparkle, spice and spandex thrown in. 9.15pm

Sunday 24 December: Christmas Eve

Cinema exterior with 'Merry Xmas ya filthy animal' written on the lightbox

The Prince Charles Cinema screens The Muppet Christmas Carol twice. Picture: Londonist

CHRISTMAS EVE: And so we come to Christmas Eve, an odd day when it is form of Christmas however not fairly, and no one’s actually certain how early is just too early to hit the mulled wine/crack open the High quality Road. We have written a information to Christmas Eve 2023 in London that can assist you preserve out of mischief till the massive day. Listed here are a few highlights:

DICKENS MUSEUM: The Charles Dickens Museum is a improbable place all 12 months spherical, but it surely appears to be like its greatest at Christmas, when the home is embellished as it could have been in Dickens’ day. It gives a particular Christmas Eve opening, providing you with an opportunity to see the decorations, view the standard displays and shows, and catch varied performances of A Christmas Carol. 10am-6pm

CAROLS: It is the ultimate day of Carols on the Corridor, a programme of conventional and fashionable festive carols carried out on the Royal Albert Corridor, with viewers members invited to affix in. 11am/3pm

MUPPETS: “It is within the singing of the road nook choir. It is going dwelling and getting heat by the hearth…” The Prince Charles Cinema in Leicester Sq. fires up The Muppet Christmas Carol twice immediately, for a few full-throated singalongs. Little doubt individuals might be giving the “no cheese for us meeces” line an additional little bit of welly as common. 12pm and a pair of.45pm

BAD PENNY: Rock supergroup Dangerous Penny have members who’ve performed with the likes of Judas Priest, Twisted Sister, Journey and Queen. Tonight they’re enjoying punters on the Cavern in Raynes Park into Christmas, with a particular bash that does not value a penny to get into. 8pm

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