This year will be my second Winter in London. I have to say that I am not dreading it as much as I thought I would. Although, speak to me in January and we will see if I still feel the same way. Winter is always a tough time for me. It is over the festive season so I am away from my family. I am a sun baby so when it disappears I get sad. I have permanent bed head from November to February because of rain, beanies and general hair tugging through frustration. This year I have given myself a list of “Winter warmers” to do that I know will cheer me up. Some instant mood lifters for the faint hearted having a London Winter and perhaps a slightly lonely festive season.
Oxford street and Regent Street
This is the time of year where all of the stores start putting up their Christmas decor. It is the perfect time to go and see the beautiful decorations lighting up the street. If you go far enough before Christmas then you are also not hassled by the slightly angry crowds doing last minute shopping for gifts. I don’t think you could ever catch either street when it is quiet as such, but having a crowd of people definitely adds to the ambiance and the lights are always beautiful lit up at dusk. Should you go to Oxford street to see store decorations, you HAVE to go to Selfridges and marvel at their storefront. (I will be doing just this in the weeks to come so watch this space).
This time of year, all of the Christmas markets start popping up. There is nothing like getting all wrapped up and trekking out into the cold. First stop mulled wine, second stop bratwurst, and third stop roasted chestnuts. Once the food is done, it is really amazing to see all of the little gift shops and decoration stalls in these markets all over London. Some of my favourites are the London Bridge City Christmas Market and the Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park has the most delicious food! For amazing gift ideas, you can go to the Chelsea Christmas Gift Fair and the Brixton Christmas Market. There are so many amazing markets all over London that also start at different times. I even found this nifty map, it shows you where the markets are and gives you more info.
Make hay while the sun shines
Every now and then, you get a perfectly sunny day. It is still FREEZING, but the sun is out. I have realised how important it is to get out of the house or office on these days. I am determined to go for walks in parks and get as much fresh air as I can. Even though it is cold, you are still getting that much-needed vitamin D from the sunshine and that is the most important thing you could do for yourself in Winter. I think it is everyone’s first reaction to stay indoors, but it is so important to stick to your routine and still do outdoor activities but just add on the clothing layers!
Travel is one of the best Winter Warmers
Some places are better in the cold. Embrace these places. Go as far North as your budget allows and maybe even experience a “White Christmas”. Nordic countries are especially beautiful in the colder months. This is why I have booked a trip to Iceland next year for some Winter fun. Round up some good friends, take a trip together and maybe even have a snow fight. Nothing puts fun back into being cold like snow can 🙂
Although I have no coordination and will probably spend most of the time on my bum. This is another one of those things that you have to do in Winter. Ice rinks pop up all over London. Why not get some exercise thrown in with your fun and maybe slight embarrassment? The joy comes in the small things, and this is probably the best way to see the lighter side of life in the dark months. A few of my favourites are, Broadgate Circle Ice Rink, Somerset House, Canary Wharf and Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park has a beautiful ice rink too!
These are my Winter Warmers that I am treating myself with this year. I hope this gives you some inspiration to start your own list and make your own Winter one to remember!