21 things to do in London this summer

Sky Garden

If you’re looking to go somewhere for great views of London this summer, the Sky Garden is the perfect option. Tickets are free and slots can be booked on their website. As you can imagine, it gets booked up pretty quickly, so it’s best to get on the website as soon as tickets come out to get the best slots (usually a Monday for the following week). 

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Open Air Theatre

Located right in the centre of the park, Regent Park’s Open Air Theatre runs all the way until September this year. They will be showing all of the classics from Hansel and Gretel to A Midsummer Night’s Dream to Evita, and so much more. Find out what’s on and how to book tickets here.

Rooftop Film Club

The Rooftop Film Club is the perfect way to spend one (or many) of your summer evenings. It shows a range of classics which you won’t want to miss such as Dirty Dancing, Ghostbusters, Grease and so many more. Head to their website here to book your ticket.

Climb the o2

Climbing the O2 is something which sounds pretty daunting but it’s also something everyone should experience if they can. The feeling when you get to the top is completely worth it and so is the view. Perhaps not for those afraid of heights though…

West End Live

West End Live is an annual event for theatre lovers which takes place in Trafalgar Square. The cast of West End shows come along and each perform a song – and the best part is that it’s completely free! This year, West End Live will be taking place 22-23 June so don’t forget to keep your diary free.

Underbelly Festival Southbank

The Underbelly Festival is full of comedy acts and takes place on London’s Southbank. It is celebrating its 11th year and will be open until the end of September. The vast majority of tickets are under £20, making it a fun and affordable activity for you to take part in this summer.

Pride in London

Pride in London is one of the biggest events in the LGBTQ+ community and this year, it will be celebrating 50 years since the birth of the modern LGBT+ rights movement. The parade sets off from Portland Place at 12pm (midday), moving down Oxford Circus, along Regent Street to Piccadilly Circus, Lower Regent Street, Pall Mall and then passing Trafalgar Square before finishing on Whitehall. Pride in London will be on Saturday 6 July, however Pride Month is taking place throughout the whole of June.

Vinegar Yard

Vinegar Yard is located just by London Bridge and is a great summer hangout spot. It’s pretty much a large seating area surrounded by stalls of food and drink – what’s not to love about that?!

Kew Gardens

Kew Gardens is one of my favourite summer hangouts and it’s so close to campus. It’s home to the largest living plant and fungus collection in the world with almost 30,000 different kinds of plants so there’s plenty for you nature lovers to explore.

Notting Hill Carnival

Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event taking place in, you guessed it, Notting Hill. It is a celebration of London’s Caribbean communities, their culture and traditions and it has been taking place since 1966. This year, it takes place 24-26 August and the main parade begins on Great Western Road.

A day in a park

There are so many parks within London and on a sunny day, one of the best things you can do is just spend it relaxing in a park. All you need is some great company, a picnic and lots of sun cream! A few of my favourites are Richmond Park (just a 10-minute walk from campus), Hyde Park, Battersea Park and Regent’s Park, although there are plenty more to choose from all around London.

Cruise down the Thames

A different way of exploring London is to go on a boat tour down the Thames. There are so many different types of cruises and boat rides down the river so there’s something for everyone. I’d recommend booking a slot at a time where you can watch the sunset over the city for views as beautiful as the one below.

Take a bicycle tour

The Tube can get pretty busy sometimes, so another great way to travel around London is to hire a bike, and this way you get to see even more. There are so many options when it comes to bicycle hire around London, so find what’s best for you and spend a day cycling around London in the sun – sightseeing and exercise all in one!

Summer by the River

Summer by the River is a festival which overlooks the Thames by Tower Bridge and lays on a whole programme of food and entertainment. It’s taking place this year from now, all the way until 1 September, so you have plenty of time to head down there before it comes to an end.

Visit the markets

One great thing about London is that there are so many different markets to visit. A few of the biggest ones are Camden Market, Portobello Road Market, Borough Market and Spitalfields Market. Markets are great for just having a look around lots of fun and unique stalls, but it’s even better when you can bag yourself some bargains.

See a musical

We’re so lucky to have campus located just 30 minutes from London’s West End, where you can see so many of the incredible shows that London has to offer. A few of my personal favourites are Hamilton, Six, Waitress and Come From Away but there are so many different types of shows and definitely something for everyone.

Go to a gig

London is a great city for music and if you’re looking to go to a gig or discover new music, there’s always something on. There are so many music venues around London, both big and small, so check out their websites and see what’s coming up.

Watch a sport

Summer is the season of sport and there are so many sporting events going on around London. Although you can just watch sport on the TV, nothing beats the atmosphere of going to watch a game live, surrounded by others who share the same interest. Tickets aren’t always the easiest to get a hold of but there are also many places which show live sports matches so you can still enjoy the atmosphere of being surrounded by lots of sports fans without actually being there – a win-win.

London’s zip line

Here’s one for the thrill seekers amongst you… London’s longest zip wire is making a return and is around for the summer only, so get in there while you can. The zip line is in London’s Archbishop Park and you have to climb 35 metres high before getting to enjoy the view of London and the 225 metre-long zip line.

Visit a museum

London is home to many museums many of which are free to enter. Just a few of the museums you can visit this summer are the Tate Modern, British Museum, Science Museum, Tate Britain, the British Transport Museum and the Imperial War Museum – although there are also many more.

Lavender Farm

Mayfair’s Lavender Farm is a beautiful place to go this summer. Not only is it extremely instagrammable, it’s perfect for lavender lovers everywhere to stock up on the scent as there is a nearby shop which sells all of the lavender products you would ever need. I really recommend this one as there’s no better way to feel at peace that to be in a field full of lavender.

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