If you’re an American tourist or expat living in London, you may be wondering how to celebrate Thanksgiving away from home. The good news is that London has plenty of options for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, whether you’re looking for a fancy restaurant or a cozy pub. Here are some tips to help you plan your perfect Thanksgiving in London:
Thanksgiving break is a great time to visit London for many Americans as it’s a time when most of the family is either off work and out of school. London’s November weather is usually warm and cozy during the final weeks of autumn. Plus, London starts getting ready for London in early November, so you have a chance to see all the Christmas lights and windows while you’re in town.
Here are some tips for planning a Thanksgiving in London.
- Plan ahead: Many restaurants and pubs offer Thanksgiving menus, but they can fill up quickly, so it’s best to make a reservation in advance.
- Find a restaurant or pub with a Thanksgiving menu: London has a variety of restaurants and pubs that serve Thanksgiving dinner. Do your research and find one that fits your preferences and budget. Some popular options include The Fat Bear, Christopher’s, Balthazar, The Cadogen Arms, The Pen, Sette, The Clifton, Joe Allen, Colony Grill, and Darby’s. Check their websites for booking details, you will likely need to book in advance.
- Consider cooking at home: If you’re feeling homesick, consider cooking a Thanksgiving dinner at home. Many grocery stores in London sell American-style turkeys and other Thanksgiving staples. You can also order a turkey from a local farm or online. Check ahead, though, you may want to pack some staples that you simply can’t get in Britain. See if there is a butcher local to where you’re staying and order the turkey in advance.
- Self-cater: If you plan to cook your own Thanksgiving dinner, then you’ll want to make sure you rent a flat or AirBNB for your trip that has a full kitchen. You’ll also need a handy guide to translate the different settings on the cooking equipment (and Brits measure by weight, not volume).
- Invite friends over: If you’re an expat missing home, invite some friends over for a potluck Thanksgiving dinner. It’s a great way to share the experience with others who may be feeling homesick as well. As it’s a normal Thursday, and most will be at work during the day, you’ll have to plan it for the evening.
- Attend an expat Thanksgiving event: There are many expat groups in London that host Thanksgiving events, including dinners and parties. Check out Meetup.com or Facebook to find an event near you.
- Don’t forget the pumpkin pie: No Thanksgiving dinner is complete without pumpkin pie. You can find canned pumpkin at many grocery stores in London, or make your own pie from scratch.
Overall, celebrating Thanksgiving in London may be different from what you’re used to, but it can still be a special and memorable experience. With a little planning and research, you can enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, even if you’re miles away from home.