As a holiday, Christmas just about makes everything better - just smelling pine all over the winter air is enough to make you feel all excited for the upcoming festivities as well as seeing all the Christmas lights hanging from the streets and giving it that extra glow that looks exactly like magic.

While London is a great city nonetheless, it definitely gets better come Christmas time because the city is just abuzz with life, filled with buzzing people and tons of sights to feast your eyes in.

This is exactly why Love Actually is one of my absolute favorite holiday movies because it combines two of my favorite things in the entire world: Christmas and London. (Oh, and Colin Firth too - so make that three things instead.)

Find yourself spending your holidays in London? Here are five highly recommended ways to make the most of your Christmas celebrations in one of the best cities in the world.

1. Do snow-related activities

When it comes to snow-related activities, London certainly has its fair share to offer travelers. You can go ice skating (from Somerset House which is an annual classic according to Red, to other options like the Canary Wharf Ice Rink and the Natural History Museum.)

It will cost you for as low as £7.50 to £46.50, depending on which rink you choose and what type of ticket you are going to avail, since it varies.

Or if you are the type of person who prefers to ski, there are ski lodges located near and around London which will suit you just fine.

An example of this would be Montague by the Gardens in Bloomsbury. As reported in Express, availing a £20 'lift pass' "grants you entry, an authentic alpine supper of cheese fondue and festive vodka, or chocolate fondant with cream liqueur."

If you are the type to do neither, then opt for places which don't require you to do either, but still has plenty of snow for you to see and experience.

Such places include Winter Wonderland, which is found in Hyde Park or its counterpart in East London, Winterville. You can also never go wrong with seeing Hogwarts In the Snow studio tour at Warner Bros. Studios and getting your geek on.

2. Indulge on a food trip   

As far as food places go, there are loads of options available for you all over London.

Whether you decide to go for something classy and immensely British like going for afternoon tea at Claridge's located at Mayfair or sampling a large variety of artisanal foods in Taste of London found at the Tobacco Dock, your stomach will be greatly satisfied savoring all those scrumptious delights.

3. Watch live shows

Aside from being a vibrant city filled with people and activity, London is also known for another thing; a city that celebrates culture and the arts. Take advantage of this opportunity and watch live shows that will help get you in on the spirit of Christmas.

The Royal Opera House is showcasing The Nutcracker, one of the most well-loved ballet productions this Christmas. On the other hand, the Royal Albert Hall will be having its annual Carols by Candlelight, one of the finest carol shows ever to be seen in London.

4. Go sightseeing

Christmastime is as good a time to go places and see all sorts of sights in the London area. You can start by checking out museums like the one dedicated to Charles Dickens, who authored the classic A Christmas Carol, which can be found in Bloomsbury and the Geffrye Museum's "Christmas Past" exhibit in Shoreditch.

Festivals and fairs are also in abundance all over London. You can check out Hampstead Village as its streets light up for its annual Christmas festival which is located at the Hampstead High Street or the South Bank Centre Winter festival where you can get some delectable dishes like mulled wine and cinnamon treats that are perfect for winter.

5. Go shopping

No vacation is complete without going shopping, period. London has an ample amount of stores and boutiques where you can get souvenirs from and things you can give as gifts for your family members this upcoming holiday season.

From big department stores like Harrods, Selfridges, Harvey Nichols and Debenhams to a traditional Christmas market like the Hyper Japan Christmas market in Wapping, you surely will not run out of places to shop from. (Just make sure you are ready to squeeze in between a crazy amount of people and have enough money for impulsive Christmas buys and you're all set.)

With all these exciting things to do, see, eat, discover and experience in London, you surely won't have a hard time finding something to do during your holidays in this delightful city.


from Love and London: 10 Things to Do in London in the Winter