Southbank Centre Christmas Market

Things to do, Markets and fairs Free
  • 4 out of 5 stars
(47user reviews)
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 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

Dozens of festive stalls line the south bank.

 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

Traditional drinks and foods are being served to keep you warm while you wander.

 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

Stallholders are on hand to help you choose a treat.

 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

The Winter Festival also features concerts, performances and workshops.

 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

The Real Food Christmas Market brings even more for foodies from Dec 19-22.

 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

The riverside terrace becomes even more enticing.

 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

Pretty traditional rides keep kids feeling festive, too.

 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

Heaps of edible goodies are on sale.

 (© Belinda Lawley)
© Belinda Lawley

Christmas is the best time of year to treat yourself.

You’ll find plenty more than baubles and gingerbread to tempt you in the wooden chalets that will make up the Southbank Centre Christmas Market this year. Stock up on festive food and tipples, unique gifts, stocking fillers and treats.The market is just one part of the Southbank Centre Winter Festival.

Find more Christmas markets and fairs in London



Event phone: 020 8310 2542
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Average User Rating

4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:29
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:7
  • 2 star:2
  • 1 star:6
3 people listening
Kirsty E

A very picturesque little market on the South Bank. Although fairly small, it looks very charming and full of character. However, unfortunately the goods on offer do not really live up to its appearance. A lot of stalls selling strange decorations and clothing, a few drinks stalls and not much else really. The prices are steep too, especially for some mulled cider which tasted like some awful medicine!

There are much better Christmas markets across London.. wouldn’t bother with this one again.


Good variety of food available, from Swedish meatballs, to burgers, and Indian. We finally decided on the paella, which looked and smelt better than it tasted unfortunately. The prices are fair for the quality, generally between £5 to £10.

This does not seem very family friendly, other than food and drinks, there's very little to keep you entertained. The absence of any Christmas music seemed odd, but may be genius. Surprised it wasn't over crowded on a Friday night.

Liz G

Fun but not fancy. Same stalls as every year but just too busy during peak times...

Nicholas S

Went with my son a couple of weeks ago and I have to say it was a bit of a shocker. Unsurprisingly the best and brightest stall was a German one selling Christmas lantern decorations. Otherwise it boils down to rather sad looking vendors (it was raining) selling pricy punch etc  The difference between this and a normal market? Not much apart from the price. Somebody really needs to pop over to Germany and Austria to see how it's done. Vet the stallholders and the produce/products on sale and charge the sort of rent and prices that will encourage everybody to come. A wooden hut does not make everything in and around it automatically Christmassy.

Scott B

We went to this Christmas Market last year, it was very good.  This year, major decline in quality of food, vendors, atmosphere.  This one ranks way behind Bath and other UK Christmas markets.  

Southbank management people--whatever you did this year for this event--DON"T EVER DO IT AGAIN!  You really lost the plot.

Kohan R

Absolutely terrible - worst winter market I've been to ever.  It's been great in the past however, this year seems underfunded and under supported.  Closed early and hardly anyone there.  No Bratwurst - wtf?!  Don't honestly bother and go to Winter Wonderland....

John F

Nice place for the whole family.  Can get a bit crowded, but well worth it.

Caroline j

We went there last night on the 10th of December as all over the interent it said it would be open.  Please do not expect anything it was very bleak  there were only a couple of stalls and last year there were loads of stalls. We walked all the way to London Bridge and all the stalls outside Tate Modern were shut up as well.  Very Very dissapointed thank goodness for the Festval Halls which was light up nicely, we were so depressed that we got a RV1 bus from London Bridge to Covent Garden to get some Christmas feeling - Covent Garden is full of festive decorations a giant Reindeer and lovely sugar canes in the archways and a lovely scattering of giant baubles in the main square and  a lovely Christmas tree.  I was very dissapointed with the market this year it really wasn't up to much and they lied on the internet saying there would be stalls outside Tate Britain and that the German Christmas Market would be open from the 9th December. 

Jola S

Where are all the stalls? Was I there too early? Are they still planning to bring more? Surely what I've seen cannot be all of it? After a great time spent there last year, strolling along the river and going from one stall to the next, I decided to take some visitors there this year. Most of the very few stalls are crammed into a very small area and it is so crowded, that it seems like you are in a gigantic slow moving queue all the way around the stalls. Last year there was a great variety of everything: drinks and food, gift ideas, local produce but there is barely anything there this time round. Very disappointing...

Kimberly M

We went last night. Very disappointing. Thankfully there was a great street performer. There seemed to be far less stalls than last year. 

Jen H

Really disappointed with the market this year - previously this used to stretch along most of the South Bank, it took a good couple of hours to do the whole thing and there was lots of shopping. At one point a few years ago this market went all the way to Bankside... This year it's squashed down the end beyond the Festival Hall and centered around a couple of sponsored bars and things they can sell tickets for (a Christmas tree maze? Really?). And it's mostly street food stalls in the chalets with a few non-food stalls dotted around. It's nice food, certainly, but there's already a food market on the other side of the Festival Hall and Borough Market isn't that far away... there's hardly a lack of eating options around there already.  Don't bother if you're looking for non-food presents. Was business that bad last year?! Hardly any of the stalls that have been there the last few years are around this time.

Also beware half of it is now set on decking with lots of stairs, and it gets pretty slippery in wet weather.  We wandered around on Sunday for half an hour, had some godawful mulled wine and wandered off again to find something more interesting.


The markets were fantastic. Often these markets are filled with food and drinks stalls and although they look pretty there is very little to do other than drink mulled wine. However this market had plenty of little market stalls selling unique and quaint items, perfect for Christmas shopping.


Great selection of stalls and good variety of food on sale. Sorry about the report from Aden, but we had Bratwurst, and it was great. Bought some unusual presents too! Will go again next year!!

Tamsin Kavanagh

Easy to use layout, with all the info of the magazine and more. I often check the website to see what's going on, and it's the best way to find free events!


Large variety of stalls but avoid the german bratvurst stall. Had one last night which wasn't cooked properly (threw half-away) and suffering today! You have been warned!!

Benjamin McScrooge

I know its the time of happiness and caring, but I also understand that there is 150 Great British Pounds worth of Theater tokens to be won by rating an event.. Surely this does not mean that people should be able to enter by purely reading about the event and writing ''I wud love go this.. look 'mazing'', or posting a dubious link that no doubt leads along a tainted path to a gentleman's garden growth hormone; as I have seen witnessed an escalated number of times on this site as a result.. I would much rather spend my Friday afternoon pretending to work, by reading people views and opinions of their actual experiences wandering through densely populated forests of tourists that emerge at such overly publicised events, and how they nonchalantly meander along carrying oversized rucksacks with no apparent awareness of the rest of humanity or reason than to stop every 24 seconds to point at another wooden laser-cut baby Jesus effirgy and collectively say 'ah!'. So yes, I would much rather be informed at just the extent of fun they had paying over 5 Great British Pounds for some tepid cheap supermarket wine that tastes like an incontinent nomadic teetotal elf has been bathing in it since last snow hit the streets of London. How merriment was falsified throughout the entire family at the risk of getting no presents this year, so that Grandma, who was probably experiencing her last on this planet in her current form, would be able to remember the last 23 seconds with some comprehension that its Christmas again. For that I rate this event ***** Ps, If I win I would like to donate the theater tokens to the Make a Wish Foundation.. not because I'm altruistic, I would like those kids off the street for a few hours at least.. Its hard enough commuting around London this time of year, without trying to dodge past their overweight carers blocking the pavements. Merry Christmas!


I have never been to and have never seen anything like this and I cant wait to spend hours in the Market and buy all the food (perhaps I should take a few days of a diet before so that I could then fit into my Cristmas dress )!! It is the best thing I 've ever heard about :) Thank you for all information and detailes!

Sally Lakin

What a glorious hit on the senses in every word! The delicious aromas of sweet baked goodies and steaming hot chocolate hit you before your eyes light up with the wonder of Christmas right here on the South Bank. Log cabins brightly decorated with Santa and reindeer, selling bright baubles, gingerbread houses, bags and scarves, and all manner of Christmas gifts and charms. Music plays out from the charming carousel as children and adults all enjoy the ride of the day surrounded by Christmas and views across the icy Thames. Quite, quite magical!

michelle brice

we went to this last year and it was the icing on the cake for our trip to london for christmas, there was so much christmas spirit and cheer around it was amazing, beautiful stalls,looked enchanting.and we met the REAL father christmas, who i must say was the best ive ever ever seen. a truly amazing christmasy day out


Provides great information on what I can expect to find upon my visit a long the south bank. I love to see the visual experience and scenes of what this chrusdtmas market has to offer and experience.


First time last year I have been in Southbank Christmas Market.I really loved it, it made me so excited. And it made me remind my childhood and my eyes got wet. Today i went to Southbank and i got so happy again. Absolutely i will go soon. Mery Christmas to everyone!

Erick Z

I went to the weekend markets held at the South Bank during summer 2013 with my girlfriend and they had amazing food from different parts of the World, good drinks (including Alcohol) and some great people. The smell of the food from the markets was just so underscribable, it was like Waterloo and the South Bank got sprayed with perfume. The Christmas markets will be an even better event, as it will be very colourful (cos of the xmas lights) and cheerful. Never mind the cold weather. This event will make you happy that you'll forget about the usual London freezing temperatures... Merry Christmas Time Out readers! ^_^

Christine Hawwkins

My grandson and I are at the Southbank most week-ends, it is a fabulous place for fun, laughter and entertainment. You can spend as much or as little money as you like and still have a wonderful time. Everyone appears to be happy and have smiles on their faces. A truly fun-filled jolly time is had for either an hour or a full day. Well done to all the organisers, stall holders and entertainers. WE LOVE THE SOUTHBANK!


Jingle bells. Jingle bells. Jingle all the way to the christmas capital of England. The heart and soul of the city. The most cosmopolitan capital city of the world and enjoy this spectacular array of yummy foods and bright gifts to make your xmas gift special to those who you love. Merry xmas everyone...


Love it! I can't wait to visit the Christmas market. Yummy food and drink, lovely gifts, and most of all a wonderful bunch of people - that's what Christmas is all about. :)

emily jones

Visited last year and loved it!, we have decided to revisit again this year and can not wait!!! Made us feel very christmassy And free!!!!! :-) :-) :-)

Tricia Jenkins1

A perfect place to visit in the days leading up to Christmas and in such a picturesque setting. I hope to visit in the next few days. Look forward to buying some unusual pressies and eating some yummy food.


wonderful start to our Christmas brilliant atmosphere totally magical experience wonderful food and mulled wine, fantastic stalls with some brilliant ideas for Christmas presents. Cant wait to go again with the kids


Really great place to go great Christmas spirit and would highly recommend

Donna Toms

This is the perfect start to Christmas. The mulled wine, Christmas lights, minced pies and all the lovely little craft stalls just give me a really warm feeling. It is magical!


Just don't go on a weekend, large crowds spoil the enjoyment...can't get close to the stalls etc.


Cannot wait to take the kids again ... they were under the spell last year ;-) Great location, good food and plenty of ideas for the Christmas shopping.


While the Eye watches you, stroll among Christmas trees, taste gingerbread , gluewhein and much more in a fairy-tale atmosphere

Mohammad Anam

This is absolutely a great place to be during the festive times. It feels warm and Christmasy in this cold weather. You can expect mulled wine, minced pies as well as everyday burgers while enjoying the great atmosphere.


With a wonderful location and an atmosphere that really brings home the feeling that Christmas is just around the corner ... a great place to shop, eat .'be' and enjoy!