Christmas by the River

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 (Nic Serpell-Rand)
Nic Serpell-Rand
 (Nic Serpell-Rand)
Nic Serpell-Rand
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Nic Serpell-Rand
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Holly Wren

The banks of the River Thames are home to the annual Christmas by the River market once again in 2017. It's a festive winner, with views of Tower of London and Tower Bridge and an ace combination of homemade gifts and delicious food, sold from German-style chalets. Get your mitts on handmade crafts from 68 independent traders and peruse pop-up food stalls and bars serving Christmas cocktails, mulled wine, hot cider and craft beers. There will also be a programme of festive workshops in a cosy, chalet-style event space. 

Find more Christmas markets and fairs in London

Find more festive fun with our guide to Christmas in London


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Coming from South Africa for Christmas this sounds like an ideal place to do some Christmas shopping while viewing two of the main attractions ... Tower Bridge and The Tower of London.


Unfortunately we managed to choose one of the wettest days of December so far to go, so the atmosphere wasn't exactly festive. The sralls that were open were quite cute but do not go if the weather is rubbish and a weekday - a bit of a let down really.


I popped along to the launch of this last night and have to say I was a smidge disappointed. It stretches over from London Bridge up to the Mayor's offices approaching Tower Bridge, which is nice but it makes it all a little sparse. The offering within the Hays Gallery is a bit generic, with the same kind of stalls you'd find all year round - nothing particularly interesting but good for those absolutely desperate to get a gift. Food-wise, there are maybe 10 or so stalls offering a collection of meals, all around the standard street food price of £5-10 including burgers and burritos, curries and hog roasts. My date and I shared a roast dinner in a giant yorkshire pudding which was lovely (though went cold quickly) and there is no seating or tables provided to eat it, so that was a struggle. The little pub is really cute and it's a decent sized mulled wine for a fiver, and there is also an ice bar but we were so cold already we didn't fancy venturing in there.

We ate at the melt stand at the jetty pier at London Bridge and it was amazing!! Best grilled cheese I've ever had! Staff are super friendly too. The markets are not too overcrowded Aswell, it's defo worth a visit!