A Winter Wonderland in London this Christmas!

Christmas time in London is great fun with loads of thing to do and see. One of our favourites is Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park so we took some friends who had not been before to enjoy an evening of Christmas cheer.  They couldn’t work out what Winter Wonderland was from our description – is it a theme park, is it a Christmas market, it is a food market, is for kids or adults?  Well, it’s all of these and it takes up a huge space right in the middle of Hyde Park!

You enter through a massive arch through which you can just see the beginings of the fun fair in the distance.  The first section is made up of several alleyways of Christmas market chalets but the best thing here is the talking and singing moose!  I’ve attached a video but in case that doesn’t work for you, there’s a photo as well.  I hope the video runs for you as he is wonderful and one of my highlights.  (If it doesn’t download right away, come back to it)


You can linger for ages checking out all the gifts in the chalets of the market section as it is  extensive and tempting. Once through with shopping you are surrounded by food stalls and into the fun fair. There’s everything from the old fashioned but beautiful helter skelter and big wheel, to incredibly fast whirling things, all looking very festive, to dreadfully scary rides that were too fast to take a photo of and I have know idea how people were not sick on them but it seemed fun was being had!  The roller coaster was popular, looking a little slower than the super fast rides but still resulted in a good few screams.



There are some traditions about Christmas ghost stories so there was the obligatory haunted house with a huge violin playing skeleton outside. On the cuter side, I loved the snowman, the sweets and the massive balloon




We managed to eat and drink our way round the whole experience, tasting the warming mulled wine and by the time we got to the burgers one friend was so hungry he ordered two, making the stall holder so excited that he shouted for all to hear ‘he’s going for 2’!  There were stalls full of churros and chocolate, candy floss, any type of grilled sausage and colourful sweets.
We almost went for the ice skating but after a wonderful dry evening, the rain started to come down so we escaped to a nearby pub to keep dry and warm. 

We’re all going again next year and perhaps someone will be brave enough to try the scary rides but I don’t think it will be me!
Bye for now,

Winter Wonderland and festive lights

Winter Wonderland is the annual huge outdoor festival which has a funfair, ice rink and German market all rolled into one with a mini railway, hundreds of food stalls and a giant snowman thrown in. It’s great and was absolutely full of families having a wonderful time. We couldn’t face the fast, swirly and vertically dropping fair rides but were deafened by the screams to know just what a lucky escape we’d had! London looks beautiful at this time of year will all the Christmas lights in the streets and shop windows. I’ve posted in a few photos which show you the classic approach of Fortnum and Mason’s where they have recreated some of the old masters. Carnaby Street is up to its usual high standard and the capture a great sense of fun which some other areas miss and this year they have a space man and planet theme – no idea why but it looks great! So here’s a whole bunch of photos so you can feel you are here…..








A good week for lovely lunches with a long session at Bar Boulud (from Daniel Boulud) in the Mandarin Oriental, Knightsbridge where the star was the pot of freshly cooked mini Madeleines, ah, simple pleasures…. Another recommendation is Seven Park Place by William Drabble, part of the St James Hotel where the star was the lobster tortellini.
We have more snow on the way but I hope to have plenty to report next week.


Bye for now,

New Year here we come….

I hope you all had a happy Christmas. I was with family in Kent but managed to squeeze in a few London things around the festivities to tell you about and have a few more Christmassy photos of course.

Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park was lovely and worth a good few photos. It is a big funfair full of rides and loads of Germanic stalls selling all kinds of stuff – food and gifts. Unfortunately I’ve not yet mastered posting videos on here so you’ll just have the photo of the moose and will miss his lovely singing of Silent Night which was hilarious!


One hotel worth a mention for their Christmas decorations is the Mandarin
Oriental in Knightsbridge – just an iPhone photo so not as clear as others but you’ll get the idea of how lovely it looked.
I went to see Avatar in 3D on a huge screen at the Odeon Leicester Square. It was an amazing visual treat and tho’ very long, it sped past. I’m not a great fan of 3D as it gives me a headache but for the flying scenes in particular, the high speed vertical drops it made the experience completley breathtaking. Treat yourself to a big screen if you are going to see it.
Also managed to squeeze in a restaurant trip which saw us at Kitchen W8 in Kensington. It was really good – the room, the service , the food and the extra little extra bits in the form of amuse bouche and great truffles with coffee, all came together for a lovely evening. We took the Time Out special offer which was amazing value at about £20 for 3 courses and the kind waiter hurried us along politely as I’d not noticed the offer ended at 7pm and we just managed to order at 6.59!
I wish you all a fun New Year’s eve and all the best for 2010.
Bye for now.