Christmas countdown: the best festive fun happening in London today

Posted at 10:15 am, December 21, 2014 in Arts & Entertainment
ISV-1

Start by losing yourself in Christmas, literally, at the Vauxhall Christmas Tree Maze (Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens, £4.50), also featuring an ice rink, street-food stalls and a craft market next to a labyrinth of decorated nordmann firs. Read the full post…

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Five ways to have fun with frozen water this winter

Posted at 3:30 pm, December 20, 2014 in Arts & Entertainment

ice bar london

Drink at the coolest bar in town
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to get pissed in an igloo – and let’s face it, we all have – the Ice Bar is probably the closest you’ll get. Located just off Regent Street, it’s exactly what the name suggests: a bar where the walls, tables and even glasses are made from imported Swedish ice. And, of course, it’s the perfect place for a drunken rendition of ‘Let It Go’. 31-33 Heddon St, W1B 4BN. Oxford Circus. Read the full post…

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Printstant gratification: London’s best quick fix Christmas presents

Posted at 12:30 pm, December 20, 2014 in Shopping & Style

Christmas survival © Ed Marshall© Ed Marshall

Up gift creek without a paddle? Print out an instant gift voucher from one of these amazing London places. Flo Wales Bonner gets picking and clicking. Read the full post…

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Tree-hugging, neon lights and Turkish wedding parties: it’s the best bits of Harringay

Posted at 10:15 am, December 20, 2014 in Arts & Entertainment, Food & Drink, Shopping & Style

bar and bun

Harringay will put a spring in your step, and an inch on your waist. Read the full post…

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Message of the bottles: book this wine tasting course now

Posted at 5:30 pm, December 19, 2014 in Food & Drink
London's best wine tasting courses

Still stuck for a Christmas present for your special person? If he or she is mad keen on wine and eager to learn more, the best present you can give is a six-week beginner’s course run by Michael Schuster, one of the country’s leading wine educators. At £299, it is not like buying a jumper. But these six evenings, which take place in Hatton Garden, are going to change their life forever. Alternatively, if you have a New Year’s resolution to learn more about vino, this could be your present to yourself. But also note: the courses are popular, so early booking is a good idea.

For other recommended wine courses in London, take a look here.

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The best pubs with real fires in London

Posted at 5:15 pm, December 19, 2014 in Food & Drink

Holly Bush pub

It’s getting colder and darker. Time to find a nice cosy spot for a drink… Read the full post…

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Ten Instagram pictures you probably took this year

Posted at 4:15 pm, December 19, 2014 in Fun London
balloons

Photos: @manaalkhatri, @sharontakhar, @weareallinthegutters, @ashleyscarborough, @oliviababe, @09aimeeaimee

1. The Martin Creed selfie

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Three great grottos where you can meet Father Christmas in London

Posted at 3:15 pm, December 19, 2014 in Fun London

Meet Santa at ZSL London Zoo (c)ZSL (2)

Have you been naughty or nice?

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‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘The Hobbit’ in stats

Posted at 2:30 pm, December 19, 2014 in Arts & Entertainment
the hobbit

Hearken, fans of ancient data, for here is the saga of ‘The Hobbit’ and ‘The Lord of the Rings’ in statistical form. Andy Hill is full of Middle-earthly facts and figures. Read the full post…

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Waiting game: are restaurants hyping up their queuing times?

Posted at 1:30 pm, December 19, 2014 in Food & Drink
Queue

Some restaurants love to warn about the inevitability of a long wait. At Bang Bang Canteen, we got the clear message that there was no point in waiting as they were so, so busy – and then were seated within two minutes. The queue-factor is more real at the new ramen superstars in St Giles, Ippudo and Kanada-Ya. On one of our visits, we were warned of two-and-a-half-hour wait. We didn’t stick around to find out, of course – what idiot would? But on other occasions we waited for a just a few minutes. And one time – shock horror! – we didn’t have to wait at all. The message is clear: take note of dire queuing forecasts, but don’t always believe them. 

Read our reviews of Ippudo and Kanada-Ya.

By Richard Ehrlich

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Could London be getting a 500m waterslide in 2015?!

Posted at 1:15 pm, December 19, 2014 in Fun London, News
Slip and Slide X

[A giant slide at ‘Slide The City’, Salt Lake City. Dakota Welbeck / YouTube]

Back in the hot, arid days of July, as we cowered in the dust from the withering sun, Time Out issued a simple plea on behalf of all Londoners: someone please create us a giant slip’n'slide, because that would be off the proverbial hook. Were we right or were we right? Read the full post…

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43 festive things to do in London this weekend

Paul Shears[Photo: Paul Shears]

Avoid thinking about all the Christmas shopping you haven’t done and do something fun instead! It shouldn’t be too hard as it seems joy levels are sky-rocketing in London this weekend. Catch some classic Christmas cinema at a pop-up film screening, sample tasty festive morsels at a market on the South Bank or ho-ho-ho it up at one of the brilliant comedy shows happening in the capital. There are even some places to pick up presents if the guilt sets in…

Read the full post…

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