It’s official: Christmas 2016 is here. Despite it being November still, the Christmas lights has already gone up, Christmas tunes are blaring from department stores, it’s freezing cold, I have my heaters back on and the annual Winter Wonderland playground in Hyde Park is back up and running.
A quick stroll on opening night tells me that not much is different from previous years. Bar a few further additions, it is still the same layout,the same rides, the same Bavarian village, the same enticing smell of barbequed German bratwursts, the same festive vibe of Christmas. But that doesn’t detract from the magic of this pop-up wonderland.
It’s easy to travel to. Either take the tube and get off at either Marble Arch station or Hyde Park corner. It’s about a five-minute walk from either station.
It’s free to enter too, but you’ll have to purchase tickets if you fancy a spin on the rides and attractions. You don’t need to. You’ll have a pretty good time just wandering around at your leisure.
The food is an absolute must-try. Copious amounts of beers to sink, bratwurst to chow down and plenty of crepes and other sweet delights to satisfy the sugar cravings. There’s plenty of room to sit in the many warm pop-up inns and stalls to purchase winter souvenirs too. You might just find the perfect Christmas gift here.
It’s an absolutely massive place. An entire morning or afternoon can very quickly pass you by. I wandered around for a good 1 hour and 30 minutes and still didn’t manage to cover every part.
Winter Wonderland is a great place to capture some stunning pictures with its bright lights. Bring gloves with you to prevent frozen fingers. For some reason, I find Hyde Park one of the coldest places in London.
If you’re in London over the festive season, make this is a must-visit – it’s firmly a part of what makes London so good over the festive season. But don’t go over the weekend (Sat-Sun). I’m begging you! It will be packed and you’ll most likely end up queuing a lot of the time just to get in. Go after work on a weekday as a treat. It will make a huge difference.
Winter Wonderland is open every day (except Christmas day) until 2 January. Enjoy!
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