Monday 21 December 2015

Christmassy Days Out

Isn't this warm weather weird? When I went to the Post Office to post the last of my Christmas orders I didn't even need to wear a coat! In late December!! Crazy.

Despite the lack of "proper" winter weather, I have been doing my best to enjoy the festive season with lots of Christmas-themed Nice Days Out...

The absolute highlight so far has been Christmas at Kew: a one mile illuminated trail through the gardens. I have to admit that (with an eye on my budget which, like most peoples, is a bit squeezed at this time of year) I ummed and aahed about buying a ticket to this as it looked a bit pricey and I wasn't sure if it would be worth the money but oh my goodness you guys it was so wonderful.

Look how amazing the Palm House looked all lit up!

There was so much loveliness to see along the trail...

... including a garden of fire...

... and fun installations like a choir of singing holly bushes (you can see a short video of them here, make sure you have your sound on!) and a fabulous colour-changing curtain of lights to walk through:

I had a huge grin on my face the whole way round, nearly cried with joy a couple of times and positively skipped home (where I proceeded to talk loudly about how awesome the evening was to anyone who would listen).

This year's Christmas at Kew trail runs until 2nd January, you'll find all the info here. In case you hadn't already guessed, I highly recommend it!

I've also visited a few of the big London Department stores Christmas departments, and took an after-dark walk down Oxford Street to enjoy all the bright and cheerful window displays.

Selfridges have a Zodiac theme this year:


I also rather enjoyed the woodland-themed windows at Accessorize (those owls!)...


... and the explosion of stars at Debenhams:


My fave windows so far this year though are probably those at Liberty (just off Regent Street) - they're absolutely jam-packed with beautifully arranged, lovely things.

Other festive outings have included a trip to the cinema to see Die Hard on the big screen (not exactly a traditional Christmas movie, but a very fun one all the same!) and a visit to the Geffrye Museum in East London.

The Geffrye is a fab (and free to visit) museum with 11 period rooms showing how the English have lived, from the 1600s to the present day. For their annual Christmas Past exhibition they decorate the rooms, showing how we've celebrated Christmas through the centuries. This was quite delightful! I also learned a lot about how our seasonal traditions have changed and evolved over time, which was rather fascinating. The Christmas displays at the Geffrye run to Jan 3rd, click here for all the info.

Finally, I'm planning a visit to Windsor Castle, which is currently decorated with a Regency-themed display to show "how the Prince Regent (the future George IV) celebrated Christmas at Windsor Castle in the early 19th century". Windsor is always worth a visit but it was especially wonderful to see it decorated for Christmas last year - I'm really looking forward to seeing this year's decorations!

You can enjoy a Regency Christmas at Windsor until Jan 5th, click here for all the info & a short video.

I'm taking a short break from blogging to spend time with family, etc, over Christmas but I'll be back soon! Best winter-y wishes to you all xxx


Elizabeth said...

lovely pictures. Have a good christmas. Groeten uit Nederland

Ariadne said...

One of my most vivid memories of England when I was 21 is Kew Gardens, by day of course!I can understand your enthusiasm!Have a great holiday!AriadnefromGreece!

bairozan said...

What an amazing "Christmas light" walk it must have been! I can't imagine how it feels but it looks gorgeous! And the shop windows are so, so festive!

Jen said...

Die hard is my favourite Christmas movie! Merry Christmas Laura :)

Mary Marcotte said...

One of my favorite things to do at Christmas is to enjoy the light shows. This one looks spectacular! Thanks for sharing your pictures!

I wanted to let you know that I've included your blog on Sunday Quilt Inspiration. You can find the post at I should have asked permission first, but I was overwhelmed with Christmas I didn't think ahead. Please let me know if you have a problem. I will certainly edit per your wishes.

Anonymous said...

I went to Kew too and LOVED it! It was so special! All the fire! The singing trees! And toasting marshmallows around a giant fire too.

Yes, pricey, but it really, really was very special and almost ritualistic. I will definitely be there next year. Happy New Year Lupin x Gill

Bugs and Fishes said...

Thanks for the comments everyone!

Mary - thanks for the feature :)

Gill - yes, "almost ritualistic" is spot on! Such a special evening.