Christmas lovers, this one's for you. Yesterday I visited Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park for the very first time and it was a Christmas dream come true. It can be a very busy place at a very busy time of year so I decided to compile my top ten tips and tricks to make the most of your visit. I hope this can be of use to anybody who is thinking of going - it is a wonderful place that I would recommend to anybody. Enjoy!♡
1. Pre-book your attractions
You can pre-book most attractions here and I would definitely recommend this. Not only will it save the queues, but it is a really good way to manage your money as you can clearly see what everything will add up to.
2. Set yourself a budget
In keeping with managing money, I would really recommend setting yourself a budget for the day. Although contactless payment is accepted in most places around the festive village, we withdrew cash beforehand so we knew exactly what we wanted to spend. Contrary to popular belief, Winter Wonderland is not actually *that* expensive - if you do it right. Entry is free. The markets are beautiful and there is a great variety of stalls - if you really wanted to save money, you could still have a lovely time walking around the markets with a hot chocolate spending only around £3. Food and drink might seem quite expensive, however it is exactly what you’d expect to spend at something like Winter Wonderland. For example, I had a really delicious waffle with chocolate, cream and banana which cost £6.50 - and it was WORTH it. Winter Wonderland is only really expensive if you visit multiple attractions and fairground rides - so setting a budget and deciding what you REALLY would like to be can make the day a lot cheaper and still really enjoyable.
3. Getting There
Winter Wonderland is held in Hyde Park, accessible by many different routes. The nearest tube stations are Hyde Park Corner, Green Park, Victoria, Marble Arch and Knightsbridge. We opted for Green Park as the walk through Green Park on a crisp winter day is beautiful. I would recommend avoiding Hyde Park Corner as it can be incredibly busy - the alternatives are all just a short walk away.
4. Magical Ice Kingdom
If you are struggling to decide which attractions you should book, I would recommend the Magical Ice Kingdom to anybody. This journey through the spectacular ice sculptures is like nothing I have ever seen before. We were in complete awe at the detail and precision, photographs do not do it justice. Narnia fans would especially love this! We booked our tickets in advance costing £23 for the two of us - and it was worth every single penny. You can select a time slot to ensure it is not too cosy to enjoy the art, which worked really well. There are photo opportunities all around which are really lovely, and quite reasonable prices. There is also an ice slide - I didn’t go on this as I believe it’s for little ones, but it looked SO much fun. This is a great option for all ages - just make sure you bring an extra layer for this attraction as it is icy cold...literally.
5. Festive Treats
One important piece of advice is don’t go to Winter Wonderland on a full stomach. The food stalls are incredible. German sausages, loaded fries and hog roasts for the savoury lovers; and waffles, crepes and churros for anyone with a sweet tooth, there is something for everyone to enjoy. There is also a veggie stall which did look delicious. I could have spent all day trying all of the festive treats so the food stalls are definitely something you do not want to miss.
6. Visit the Christmas Markets
Another thing you certainly won’t want to miss is the christmas market. It is a great size and there is something for everyone to enjoy. It is the perfect place for little gifts and souvenirs. If you’re not feeling festive enough yet, the christmas markets are the place to be.
7, These boots are made for walking...
Although there is a layer of flooring all around the festive village, you will almost certainly get muddy on this day out. As with any day in London, you will likely be walking a lot, so PLEASE listen to your Mumma and wear comfortable walking shoes!
8, School's out for Christmas
If this is an option for you, check the term dates for schools and visit Winter Wonderland before the Christmas holidays begin. We went the day before the schools broke up and it was just perfect. Enough people to feel the buzz of London, however no queues and no standing on each others toes. If it is possible to do so, this could make your experience just that little bit more magical.
9, Posing in a Winter Wonderland
Winter Wonderland is absolutely beautiful, so be sure to bring your camera. Every stall is festive and magical in its own way - I fell in love with the place and I am so glad I have photographs to look back on.
10. Explore London at Christmas
Whilst you have your camera out, make a day of it and go exploring around London. We went to Covent Garden, of course to see the iconic 55ft Christmas tree, and it looked beautiful. London is magical at Christmas time, so if you are visiting for the day I urge you to make the most of it.
Thank you so much for reading, and please do feel free to leave tips of your own in the comments below. I would love to hear your thoughts and whether you would recommend any other Christmas markets!
Have a very merry christmas,
21 year old Psychology student, running a blog to satisfy my love for writing and debating.