Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park

By Ruth Hazard

This Christmas Hyde Park has transformed in to a Winter Wonderland that even Santa would be proud of. If you’re not sure why not ask him? You can visit him in his grotto there too.

Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park
Photo used courtesy of creative commons by givingnot

Admission is free to browse the stalls of trinkets and treasures of the Christmas market and smells of chimney cake and mulled wine will force you to give in to the necessary overindulgences of the season.

If you fancy riding on Santa’s sleigh or racing your companions down the helter skelter slide you’ll need to invest in some tokens as you enter the fairground area to the back of the wonderland. There’s all the usual thrills and spills of the fair as you can choose between rides such as a ghost train, ferris wheel or rollercoaster- all jazzed up with festive twists.

Winter Wonderland 2010 - 39
Photo used under creative commons courtesy of garryknight

The Samsung Galaxy ice rink is popular so it’s best to buy tickets online first if you want to skate (or stumble) your way around the Victorian style arena. For non skaters there’s an observatory cafe overlooking the rink so you can warm up with a hot chocolate while you laugh at loved ones attempting to rival Torvill and Dean with ill advised gymnastic displays.

Visiting Santa’s grotto is free but on a strictly first come first serve basis. Children of both the naughty and nice variety should get there early and be prepared to queue, with the well behaved even receiving a special gift from the father of Christmas himself.

Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park
Photo used courtesy of creative commons by givingnot

Zippo’s extreme circus has also found a place in the park too with contortionists, aerialists and acrobats competing for your gasps. It is once again suggested you purchase tickets online before you visit.

While its family fun throughout the day the pubs on site start to liven up after 7pm as the little ones retire to the land of nod. German style Beer Kellers boast an array of tipples both festive and traditional for you to enjoy before hitting the fish and chips or burger stands for a post pub splurge as you head for the tube.

Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park
Photo used courtesy of creative commons by givingnot

Winter Wonder is available to all from 10am-10pm until the 3rd January 2012. Different attractions have specific opening times so for these, and more information on special discounts and directions to the park, check the website


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