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7 Festive Activities Happening Just 2 Hours From Toronto This Holiday Season

This cute Ontario city is the place to be for festive vibes.

7 Festive Activities Happening Just 2 Hours From Toronto This Holiday Season

This time of year can be busy — there's shopping to do, gatherings to arrange and recipes to test out. But that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the season. If you're looking to get into the holiday spirit, head to London for a quaint atmosphere, local vendors and themed parties.

Downtown London is a scenic destination any time of the year, but with the addition of sparkling lights, carol singers and vibrant decor, you'll feel like you're in a Hallmark movie. The "forest city" is the ultimate destination for holiday cheer, and this year they have a brand new Festival of Markets.

Plan a date with your people and head to London for all the festivities. Wander shipping containers to find the perfect gift, take in the work of local makers, see a live show — there are enough activities to fill up your December calendar, and these seven events are a great place to start.

Get Your Holiday Gifts At The Festival Of Markets

Price: Free to visit

When: Friday through Sunday from November 26-December 19, and December 23. Fridays 5-10 p.m., Saturdays 11-9 p.m., and Sundays 12-4 p.m.

Address: Dundas Place between Ridout St. & Talbot St.

Why You Need To Go: You're going to want to plan multiple visits to this Instagrammable shipping-container market with rotating vendors, fire pits, live music, art installations and holiday decor.

Each week is themed: week one is IndigenART — all about Indigenous vendors — week two is a Very Vintage Xmas, week three is PopART, and week four is Afrik — highlighting African food, music and goods.

The final day of the market is called Last Minute London — a chance for you to snag some handmade items from local artisans just in time for your gift exchange.


Get Into The Holiday Spirit At The Theatre

Price: $59.89

When: November 30-December 24

Address: 471 Richmond St., London, ON

Why You Need To Go: Gifting experiences is a great way to spend time with loved ones — plus, you'll know your gift won't be returned!

Grab your favourite person and spend some quality time at this live performance by the Grand Theatre.


Take In The Twinkling Lights At Victoria Park

Amyinlondon | Dreamstime

Price: Free

When: Opening Ceremony Friday, November 26, 6:15 p.m.; nightly until Jan 1 from 5-11 p.m.

Address: Victoria Park, 580 Clarence St., London, ON

Why You Need To Go: Listen to live music, wander the beautiful park and watch as the greenery becomes illuminated before your eyes with 75,000 bulbs at the Lighting of the Lights in Victoria Park.

If you miss the opening ceremony, don't worry: the lights will be around every night until New Years Day. This will make for the perfect holiday date with your partner or an IG-worthy outing with your besties.


Dance On Ice To Local DJs

Price: Free

When: December 3 from 6-9 p.m., December 12 from 12-3 p.m., December 17 from 6-9 p.m., and December 19 from 12-3 p.m.

Address: Covent Garden at 130 King St., London, ON & Victoria Park at 580 Clarence St., London, ON

Why You Need To Go: Strap on your ice skates and get ready to join this unique dance party on ice. Bring your friends, your partner or your family for a fun night of music and holiday-movie vibes.


Get In The Christmas Spirit With Holiday Carollers

Price: Free

When: November 27 from 3-5 p.m., December 3 from 6-8 p.m., December 10 from 6-8 p.m., December 17 from 6-8 p.m., December 31 from 2-4 p.m.

Address: Richmond St., King St., and Talbot St., London, ON

Why You Need To Go: Cheery voices and familiar holiday tunes will be your soundtrack as you shop through downtown London.

No matter what you're doing, your spirits will be lifted with the sounds of the season and quaint ambiance.


Give The Gift Of Music With A Concert

Price: Varies depending on the concert

When: Varies depending on the concert

Address: 185 Queens Ave., London, ON

Why You Need To Go: This holiday season, the London Music Hall has a ton of shows you can check out. Treat the music connoisseur in your life to a night of tunes.

Plus, it's the perfect excuse to throw on that go-to concert 'fit that's been collecting dust.


Get In Touch With The Traditions Of Christmases Past

Price: $15.00

When: December 10-12 & December 17-19. Time slots are 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m., 12:30-2:30 p.m. and 3-5 p.m.

Address: 481 Ridout St. N., London, ON

Why You Need To Go: Costumed interpreters will guide you through the traditions of yesteryear and share festive holiday facts — like the origins of Christmas cards — during a one-hour tour of London's premier heritage home.

Your fee includes the tour and light refreshments in the interpretive centre, plus you'll find out why ghost tales were popular fare around the Christmas tree.

This historical venue has a bunch of events coming up, so if the Victorian tour doesn't sound like your cup of tea, check out their calendar for more inspiration.


Downtown London is the destination of choice this season for its scenic markets, holiday-themed parties and cozy traditions.

Grab your bestie, draft up your holiday shopping list and load up the car for a festive weekend getaway.

For more information about London's holiday activities, visit the Downtown London website and Tourism London website. You can also check them out on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

In Ontario, a vaccine passport is required to access some events, services and businesses, including restaurants and bars.

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