Shopping and London go hand-in-hand. There are traditional stores like Liberty, Harrods, and Harvey Nichols, as well as vintage markets tucked away in hidden corners – the sort of places we’ll find gems. It would be all too easy to get lost in London’s retailer experience, especially when it’s time to start the Christmas shop.
When it comes to Christmas shopping, London has something for everyone’s budget. It’s the perfect setting for a festive shopping trip, but retail therapy doesn’t need to break the bank. From high street names we all know and love, to luxury department stores stocking the biggest brands on the planet, we’ll find the perfect gift for someone special.
To make London shopping trips a little easier this winter, Park’s saving experts have looked into the best destinations across the capital. Considering the amount of locations, there’s a gift option for every price range. So, keep on reading to discover the festive magic that happens in London during the Christmas period.
Where to go for Christmas Shopping in London
Your friends at Park HQ have put together a list of the best Christmas shopping locations in London. Here are our favourite options, but please note, it’s best to check each choice’s website for opening times, as well as availability for booked activities.
Every year, Oxford Street’s shining display of festive lights capture the attention of shoppers – inviting us into the magic of London Christmas shopping. Originally a medieval track, Oxford Street has evolved into one of London’s staple shopping districts, consisting of over 300 hundred shops. Located near Soho, the area is surrounded by a whole host of public transport routes. Boux Avenue, Curry’s PC World, M&S, TK Maxx and John Lewis are just some of the stores lining Oxford Street – each available on our Love2shop products.
Considered one of the best places for Christmas shopping in London, Regent Street is well-known for its splendid Christmas lights – drawing visitors from far and wide every winter. The street was built in 1819, and now is a Grade II listed building due to its ornate facades. Boots, H&M, and Zara are some of the high street favourites where we can pick up some Christmas goodies. Prestigious designer names Burberry, Calvin Klein, and L.K. Bennett are some other shopping options.
We can sip on a glass of mulled wine as we take a stroll around Camden Market, situated along the riverbank. It’s made to look like a German Christmas market, a nod to Dresden Christmas market, said to be one of Europe’s oldest festivities – first held in 1434. The wooden chalets are filled to the brim with food and drink choices, gift ideas, and all manner of sweet treats. The best part about Camden’s Christmas market is how local businesses are supported.
Visiting Covent Garden around Christmas it like stepping into the pages of a history book. In 2023, Christmas at Convent Garden is set to be a big one. Spanning across nine streets, Covent Garden also boasts a historic piazza – bordered by a range of dining options. From November to January, festive magic will transform the iconic venue into the place to Christmas shop ‘til we drop. There’s a variety of different shops, including the Disney store in the middle of the square – we’re sure the kids will beg to visit. For techie gifts, look no further than the Apple store.
One of London’s more unique shopping experiences, Carnaby is where all the coolest shops are – a mixture of international, as well as British heritage, labels. Independent boutiques, unique concept stores, quirk beauty emporiums, and bespoke jewellers are just some of the stores to call Carnaby home. If we’re looking for a one-of-a-kind gift, Carnaby will undoubtedly have something for every taste. In 2022, the Christmas light installations at Carnaby were one of London’s most popular, striking a contrast with bold neon lettering, palm trees in place of traditional conifers, and even massive Rolling Stones’ tongues!
Every Christmas, the lights switch-on at Bond Street (often officiated by a big-name celeb) help signal the start of the festive shopping period. Known for its luxury fashion stores, Christmas shopping in the area is definitely a treat, but that doesn’t mean we can’t just drop-in to browse. Last year, Bond Street’s Christmas lights had a peacock theme, but 2023’s look is still under wraps – so let’s keep our eyes out for news on this season’s display.
If we’re fancying adding a touch of glamour to our Christmas shopping in London, Knightsbridge is the place to go. It’s home to many luxurious brands, plus there’s every chance we might spot a celebrity on their own shopping trip. At Christmas, Harrods department store sparkles thanks to 12,000 lightbulbs – making it an unmissable experience to deliver some festive cheer. Nearby, Harvey Nichols has a wide selection of fashion, beauty, and homeware gifting options. We all know how shopping can work up an appetite, so both department stories have food halls with options from all over the world.
During the run up to Christmas, the historic architecture of Leadenhall Market is lit-up by dazzling lights, and decorated by festive garlands – paying homage to the venue’s Victorian past. A shopper’s paradise, Barbour, Reiss, and Waterstones (where our Love2shop Gift Card can be spent) are just some of the stores to call From 23rd November to 21st December, Leadenhall Markets offer guided walks. We can learn about the marketplace’s Roman roots, how it helped inspire the tale of Dick Whittington, and why Charles Dickens counted it as one of his favourite venues. Please note, guided walks need to be booked well in advance to avoid disappointment. Wreath-making and wine-tasking are more activities available during the Christmas period.
Hyde Park Winter Wonderland
Running from 17th November 2023 to 1st January 2024, Hyde Park Winter Wonderland spans six weeks – offering a wide array of winter activities. Styled in the likeliness of a traditional German Christmas market (we sense a theme), the wooden cabins host a bevy of handmade gifts crafted by location artisans. Live entertainment, food stalls, and more than one hundred rides make up London’s most spectacular Christmas destination. It also boasts the UK’s biggest outdoor ice rink.
Greenwich Market is home to over 120 stalls selling a wide variety of unique gifts, from handmade jewellery and crafts to vintage clothing and antiques. Greenwich Market is located in a charming historic setting, just steps from the River Thames and the Cutty Sark. The market is open year-round, but it's especially festive during the Christmas season, when it's decorated with twinkling lights and Christmas trees.
Save for Christmas with Park
Park Christmas Savings offers a convenient and rewarding way to save for the festive season. With a variety of savings plans to choose from, you can tailor your savings to your individual needs and budget.