Winter Wonderland is one of the most popular attractions in London during the festive season. Its the ideal place for visitors of all ages to experience the city at its seasonal best, with everything from funfair rides to delicious food awaiting you on your arrival.
Here’s our guide to everything you need to know when planning your own trip!
What (and when) is Winter Wonderland?
Winter Wonderland is hosted in London’s Hyde Park, and this year’s event opened on 21st November 2019 and will run until 5th January 2020. The event will be opened every day of the festive season except for Christmas Day, opening at roughly 10am each day and closing at 10pm.
There’s plenty to keep you occupied, whether you plan on visiting for just a few hours or spending an entire day here. Here are a few of the big highlights to look forward to:
There’s nothing quite like a Christmas market, and London’s Winter Wonderland has plenty of them to enjoy! Here you’ll find more than 100 wooden chalets, selling a wide variety of items ranging from seasonal food to stocking fillers, items for your Christmas tree, and unique gifts – ideal for guests at the Montcalm who’ve left their Christmas shopping a little late.
Browsing the markets is an experience unlike any other in London – as while the city has plenty of great festive markets, few can compare to the sheer scale on offer here.
Games and Rides
As well as the leisurely pace offered at the Winter Wonderland markets, there’s also a more high-speed way to enjoy the event – taking advantage of over 100 games and rides throughout Hyde Park. This year, you can even opt for a Season Ride Pass and try everything on offer during your visit.
We recommend the Munich Looping, a regular feature at Oktoberfest and one of the biggest roller-coasters anywhere in the world. Ice Mountain is another favourite, taking visitors on a trip to see the northern lights without ever leaving London. For true festive fans, the Christmas Coaster offers twists and turns sure to impress even the most discerning roller-coaster fan enjoying London hotel offers.
If you aren’t afraid of heights, then try The Hangover, an 85-metre ride which will hurtle you to the ground at high speed. The Star Flyer is another great way to see Hyde Park from above.
Food and Drink
Foodies love Winter Wonderland, and you’ll soon discover why on your own trip. Within this event you can give almost any seasonal culinary tradition a trip, from sampling flame-grilled salmon to enjoying a glass of mulled wine or a mug of Bavarian beer.
While these delicious treats are available throughout the day, this part of Winter Wonderland really comes alive in the evening, when visitors are treats to additional treats like live music, DJs and more fun festive entertainment.
The Bavarian Hall has become a popular fixture for foodies, with a huge selection of different booking options and packages perfect for different tastes and budgets. In addition, the Almhutte gives visitors a true Oktoberfest experience in the city, ideal for grabbing a festive bite to eat while enjoying the latest luxury London hotel deals.
Some of the biggest attractions at Winter Wonderland draw in thousands of visitors each year, and so the event has implemented a special fast-track booking system for anyone especially eager to enjoy some of these events.
There are lots of brand-new attractions for 2019, so Winter Wonderland is experiencing particularly high volumes of interest. Alongside these new additions, there’s also a return for major Winter Wonderland activities and events.
These include the open air rice rink, which is the ideal space for all skill abilities to test out their skills. Other key attractions include the Winter Wonderland comedy club, where you can enjoy some festive laughs.
In 2019, Winter Wonderland has also introduced a bar made from ice – giving visitors a unique way to grab a few drinks in London. In addition, there’s fantastic entertainment from the likes of Zippo’s Christmas Circus and Cirque Berserk. These attractions use their winter backdrop to keep visitors all ages entertained throughout the event.
For younger visitors, there’s the Mr Men & Little Miss Show and Paddington on Ice, ideal for guests at the Montcalm hotel spa hoping to keep the kids entertained.
One of the biggest additions for 2019 is the new Giant Observation Wheel. Standing at 70m, its a wonderful way to see Hyde Park from the air, and also moves at a much slower pace than some of the other rides taking place at Winter Wonderland. This is a particularly great activity to enjoy early in the morning and in the evening, with warm pods providing stunning London views over the trees.
This part of Winter Wonderland is designed specifically with families in mind, and every effort has been taken to make it extra-magical for younger children. Here, kids will have the opportunity to meet Santa and visit a Christmas grotto. They’ll also be able to take part in a variety of fun activities including child-friendly rides.
There’s plenty of delicious food for kids and families available in this area, as well as a parade where children can get involved. Santa Claus is here between around 10am and 6pm each day, and its entirely free to visit. As an added bonus, there are gifts for the kids available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Tips for visiting Winter Wonderland
While the event itself is free, booking is necessary for some of the rides and attractions – so be sure to check the official Winter Wonderland website for more details. We recommend wrapping up warm as much of the event takes place outside!
Further information on how to book shows, specialised visitor information and how to access the new ticket options for Winter Wonderland 2019 are all also available at the official website.