Sunday, December 12, 2010

hip European christmas wonders for the 'hips'

Its at this time of the year, just days away from christmas, when I start to feel rather homesick. Yes, I've lived in Australia for 10 years now, and I like it, but a hot christmas...I just can't get used to it, and probably never will. Look, a white christmas is (or perhaps was) a bit of a myth in the UK. It was always grey and drizzly (seems thats all changed since I left), so yes, it wasn't as dreamlike as you can imagine, however, just getting accustomed to christmas on the beach, is another thing.

So, I thought I would embrace the wonders of a white (grey?!?) christmas, and for those lucky to be in the UK and Europe, suggest a few magical things to go and do with the 'hips'...

Something that seems to have become hugely popular in London is outdoor iceskating. There are some beautiful ice rinks up and down the country, however there two stunning and atmospheric rinks that have caught my eye. 


We all love The National History Museum. After checking out the fabulous dinosaurs, head out to the mini rink, located next door to the main rink, and practice those moves, before sharing a yummy hot chocolate! 

London's spectacular and glamourous 18th Century Somerset House also has an ice rink which is sponsored by Tiffany's & co. so definitely a must to go and have a cool glide by. The little hips can learn some hip moves at the Penguin Club whilst the parents have a quick glance at the jewellery and designer cup cakes in the Tiffany Tuck Shop! Both these ice rinks are open during the day and well into the night, so perfect for both kids and adults alike. 


If you are in Europe, you must visit one of the beautiful Christmas markets. Having lived in Munich, Germany for 18 months, and spent much of my life is Basel, Switzerland, I am rather biased towards these two markets, however there are many wonderful markets to visit, in Germany, Switzerland, Belgium and France to name but a few. Indulge in a glass of Gluhwein, whilst the 'hips' eat sticky delights and marvel at the wonderful wooden toys. The best time to visit is as nightfall, as the lights are glistening, and the atmosphere is magical, and perhaps you may even have a see a few flakes of snow.

And finally, a rather traditional event in the UK is the Christmas Pantomime. A fun filled family event with lots of thigh slapping jokes, a little bit of cross dressing, and mild innuendo and lots of people shouting "he's behind you"! Sounds interesting? It also seems a lot of ex Aussie soap stars end up on the Panto stage at some time in their career! Lots of family fun.....and definitely worth heading to a performance, even if its a matinee.


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