Travelling with kids (and babies)
December in London can be quite hectic and the festive season ia approaching slowly but surely – judging by the number of parties, glamorous invites, street lights and Xmas related characters, very indulgent lunches and bubbles fuelled evenings. London spoils us all culturally, visually and ultimately holistically.
And what better way to commence festive celebrations than with Kew Gardens? Their Christmas trail is pure magic and joy, a festival of lights and colours so gracefully projected and integrated into the gorgeous vast royal gardens.
Over 60,000 lights, artworks, choral trees, swaying flowers flickering and changing colour, scented fire garden, glittering crystal trees, illuminated crystal flowers and lawn. My telephone pictures don’t do justice to Kew Gardens Xmas beauty – but hey I am holding my mulled wine with one hand and occasionally guiding my 3 years old. Our pentax would have been so much more appropriate, note to myself for next year!
My son absolutely loved the Bloom, the Hive, the singing tunnel of lights and of course the rides on the Victorian carousel, little train and cars, slides as well as the North pole village with Santa and his elves.
The trail ends superbly – the iconic Palm House pond brought to life with laser beams, dancing fountains and flickering orbs by Christmas classics. Silent night is the last song and I am hugging my 3 years old: he is overjoyed and open mouth whilst I travel back mentally to the white Xmas nights of early childhood. Pure magic.
What else do we have planned for December in London ? There’s Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park with its endless entertainment options, from Nutcracker on Ice to Circus, to its many rides and cute and lively Bavarian villages.
Theatre wise this December will see Father Christmas at Lyric theatre in Hammersmith, Father Christmas at the Hall (Royal Albert Hall) and maybe the Snowman at the Peacock theatre. And then there’s the Enchanted house, which allures us with magic, interactive theatre, workshops, gingerbread kitchen and so on!
Ice-skating is definitely on the cards as well, our favourites are National History Museum and Somerset House. For the first you can grab yourself a deal on weekdays before 3pm, more precisely adult, toddler and each complimentary drinks for £10 – up to December 9th.
First timers skaters at NHM can grab double blades & penguin – very easy to skate on, either being pushed around or once they get more confident/ start having fun – pushing themselves. We were very lucky to have my Canadian friend and her expert 3 years old guiding us ! My 3 years old started quite reluctant with his different blades, thereafter not sure about skating at all but eventually started enjoying and not willing to leave at the end of the session 😉 Grab your picture, hot chocolate and mulled wine thereafter !
And of course cute Christmas markets and fairs, including Kensington and St Mary Abbots where I have been proudly volunteering.
Happy festive season to you all!
Disclosure: Many thanks to Kew Gardens for the Press evening; impressions and pictures above my own.