Guide to what’s on in London in November 2017
Yes, autumn is here. The clocks have gone back, the temperatures are dropping and it feels like we’re on the countdown to the festive season. However, there’s plenty of non-Christmas events on around town to keep you living in the moment. With cosying up with a good book particularly inviting prospect at the moment, there are several literary festivals taking place around the capital. Here’s Metro Girl’s guide to the best festivals and special events in the capital this November.
For a guide to London’s open-air ice rinks, click here.
For a guide to the capital’s Christmas markets and fairs, click here.
- Now until 1 November : London Literature Festival
The London Literature Festival returns to the Southbank, with renowned writers, futurologists and transhumanists discussing the future in these uncertain times. Among the highlights include Hillary Rodham Clinton, Tom Hanks, Philip Pullman, Annie Leibovitz and a live reading of Nelson Mandela’s memoirs. Many events are free, but tickets go up to £70. Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, South Bank, SE1 8XX. Nearest station: Waterloo or Embankment. For more information, visit the Southbank Centre website.
- 2 November : Cantina Laredo’s Dia De Los Muertos
London’s new tequila and guacamole bar Cantina Laredo host a Day Of The Dead celebration with a one-off ofrenda four-course menu, cocktails, face-painting, DJs and more. 5pm-late. Tickets: £55pp. Cantina Laredo, 10 Upper St Martin’s Lane, Covent Garden, WC2H 9FB. Nearest station: Leicester Square. For booking, visit BookATable.
- 2 – 4 November : Wahaca’s Day Of The Dead @ The Vaults
Three day festival to celebrate Mexico’s Dia de los Muertos featuring Mexican food, drink, live music, DJs and culture in the tunnels underneath Waterloo station. Fancy dress encouraged. 7pm-2am (family day from 1pm on 4 Nov). Tickets: £15-£25. The Vaults (entrance via Leake Street tunnel), Launcelot Street, Waterloo, SE1 7AD. Nearest station: Waterloo. For more information, visit the Wahaca website.
- 3 – 20 November : World Press Photo Exhibition
The shortlisted entries for the annual World Press Photo completion go on display in the Royal Festival Hall. Open 10am-11pm. Free. Royal Festival Hall, Upper Ground, South Bank, SE1 9PX. Nearest station: Embankment or Waterloo. For more information, visit the World Press Photo website.
- 3 – 29 November : Richmond Upon Thames Literature Festival
A festivals of books and words at various locations across the borough. Featuring workshops, talks and Q&As from authors, including David Starkey, John Grindrod, Andy Friend, Henry Hemming, Peter Snow, Ann MacMillan, Hilary Spurling and more. Venues include The Bingham, Marble Hill House, Old Town Hall, Strawberry Hill House, Teddington Library and more. For booking, visit the Richmond Literature Festival website.
- Now until 4 November : London Horror Festival
Festival of live horror performance including cabaret, film screenings, Zombie weekends, midnight performances and a short horror play competition. Ticket prices vary. Most events take place at the Old Red Lion Theatre, 418 St John Street, Islington, EC1V 4NJ. Nearest station: Angel. For more information, visit the London Horror Festival website.
- Now until 4 November : Kilburn Literary Festival
The North West London suburb of Kilburn hosts their third literary festival, featuring talks, workshops, readings and competitions. Events range from free to £10. At various venues across NW6 including the North London Tavern, Tricycle Theatre, Kilburn Library and the Sheriff Centre. For more information, visit the Kilburn Literary Festival website.
- 4 November : Regent Street Motor Show
Three hundred cars from 125 years of motoring will be on display for the Regent Street Motorshow ahead of the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run the following day. Featuring entertainment and interactive displays. The road will be closed to vehicle traffic. 10.30am-4pm. Free. Regent Street, W1B 5TD. Nearest station: Oxford Circus or Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Regent Street Motor Show website.
- 4 November : Winter Wine Festival
One day wine festival featuring a choice of 600 wines to taste. As well as tastings, there is also a free wine walk, masterclasses and discounts on wine shopping. 12pm-6pm. Tickets: £20-£25. The Grand Connaught Rooms, 61-65 Great Queen Street, WC2B 5DA. Nearest station: Holborn. For more information, visit the Wine Gang website.
- 4 November : Spice World Screening with Live Orchestra
Spice Girls fans will love this immersive screening of their 1997 movie, accompanied by a live orchestra, with Spice Girls masks and photobooth on site. 7pm-10pm (guests can stay for the club night afterwards until 3am). Tickets from £10. Clapham Grand, 21-25 St John’s Hill, Clapham Junction, SW11 1TT. Nearest station: Clapham Junction. For booking, visit the Clapham Grand website.
- Now until 5 November : Spirit Of Christmas Fair
For the super organised, get ready for Christmas early with this fair, where you can stock up on gifts, design and food all ready for the festive season from over 750 independent boutiques. There will also be a winter restaurant and a champagne bar. Opening times vary. Tickets: £20 (advance), £24 (on the door). Olympia Grand, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For more information, visit the Spirit Of Christmas Fair website.
- Now until 5 November : Winter Art & Antique Fair
Arts and antiques event, featuring over 120 dealers showcasing their unusual objects and art and talks. Opening times vary. Tickets: £15-£20 (cheaper in advance). Olympia National, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For more information, visit the Olympian Antiques website.
- 5 November : London to Brighton Veteran Car Run
Watch the beginning of 64 mile route from the capital to Brighton. Get up early to watch 500 classic cars setting off from Hyde Park Corner between 7.04-8/8.45am. Expect many drivers and passengers to be suitably dressed in costume and vintage clothing for the spectacle. Route goes from Hyde Park Corner, past Buckingham Palace, over Westminster Bridge and south via Kennington, Brixton and Streatham. Free to spectate. Hyde Park Corner, Westminster, W2 2UH. Nearest station: Hyde Park Corner. For more information, visit the Veteran Car Run website.
- 6 November : RSC Live – Coriolanus
Watch Shakespeare’s Coriolanus broadcast live from the RSC in Stratford-upon-Avon. From 7pm. Tickets: £10. East Wintergarden, 43 Bank Street, Canary Wharf, E14 5NX. Nearest station: Canary Wharf. For more information, visit the Canary Wharf website.
- 9 November : Carnaby Christmas Party
Shopping party including the countdown to the famous Carnaby Christmas lights switch on at 6pm. An exciting and immersive light switch on will take place at 6pm to launch the brand-new Christmas lights, with legendary DJ Norman Jay MBE on the decks. Enjoy a 20% discount at over 100 brands in Carnaby. 5pm-9pm. Carnaby London, Soho, W1F. Nearest station: Oxford Circus or Piccadilly Circus. For more information and to register for your discount, visit the Carnaby London website.
- 9 – 11 November : Greenwich International Early Music Festival
The world’s largest early music festival, jointly promoted by The Early Music Shop, the Greenwich Foundation and Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. Concerts include Fontanella Recorder Quintet, 21st Century Baroque, Guillaume Beaulieu, Silvia Berchtold, Mirjam-Luise Münzel, Blondel, Terpsichore and more. Tickets start from £10. Blackheath Halls, 23 Lee Road, Blackheath, SE3 9RQ. Nearest station: Blackheath. For more information, visit the Early Shop website.
- 9 November – 17 December : Flavour Gallery
Smith & Sinclair’s multisensorial experience The Flavour Gallery invites the public to consume art in a completely different way, before heading to the cocktail bar for innovative concotions. Open daily 5pm-11pm. Tickets from £15. The Hoxton Basement, 12-18 Hoxton Street, Hoxton, N1 6NG. Nearest stations: Hoxton or Old Street. For more information, visit the Smith & Sinclair website.
- 9 November – 22 December : Winterland
A pop-up winter experience by the Thames, featuring winter lodges, igloos, curling, mini golf, ping pong, Prosecco pong, hot toddies, fondue, two bars, heated pergola and more. Adults only. BYOB on Thur, Fri and Sun. Open Thur-Fri: 6pm-11pm, Sat: 12pm-11pm and Sun: 12pm-8pm. Entry: £5pp. Winterland, 364 Wandsworth Bridge Road, Fulham, SW6 2TY. Nearest station: Wandsworth Town. For booking, visit Design My Night.
- 10 – 12 November : Dulwich Literary Festival
Talks, readings, discussions and storytelling, with authors and speakers including Andrew Michael Hurley, Laura Purcell, Peter Fiennes, Lucy Reynolds, Jenna Herman, Susan Wightman and more. Events at Dulwich College, Dulwich Common, Dulwich, SE21 7LD and Dulwich Books, 6 Croxted Road, West Dulwich, SE21 8SQ. Nearest station: West Dulwich or North Dulwich. For more information, visit the Dulwich Literary Festival website.
- 10 – 12 November : Stylist Live
An urban festival featuring the best of Stylist magazine, featuring fashion shows, learning labs, pop-up boutiques, farmers’ market, culture lounge, comedy, debates, street food, cocktails and talks and interviews from the likes of Russell Brand, Emma Willis, Fearne Cotton, Nigella Lawson, Katherine Ryan, Sarah Millican, Clara Amfo, My Dad Wrote A Porno, Robert Webb, Joel Dommett and more. Opening times vary. Tickets start from £15. Olympia National, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For more information, visit the Stylist Live website.
- 10 – 19 November : London Jazz Festival
This 10 day festival sees international jazz stars coming together at venues all over the capital, including Southbank Centre, British Library, Live At Zedel, Pizza Express Jazz Club, Ronnie Scotts, Two Temple Place and Wigmore Hall. Gigs range from free to ticketed. For booking, visit the EFG London Jazz Festival website.
- 10 – 26 November : Enchanted Woodland
Syon Park in South West London is open after hours, with an illuminated trail through the gardens and arboretum. Exciting lighting effects will transform the trees, plants and lake into a magical place. Hot food and drinks also available. Open Fri-Sun, entry sessions at 5pm-6.30pm and 6.30pm-8pm. Tickets: Adults £10, Children £5. Syon Park, London Road, Brentford, TW8 8JF. Nearest station: Syon Lane. For more information, visit the Enchanted Woodland website.
- 10 November – 7 January 2018 : Christmas in Leicester Square
The West End’s famous square will feature a Christmas market and Santa’s Grotto. A Spiegeltent will play host shows including A Christmas Carol, Al Murray: The Pub Landlord, Austentatious, Black Cat Cabaret, Fascinating Aida, House of Burlesque 2.0 and more. Free entry to Leicester Square, but tickets required for Santa’s Grotto and the Spiegeltent. Leicester Square, WC2H. Nearest station: Piccadilly Circus or Leicester Square. For more information, visit the Christmas In Leicester Square website.
- 10 November – 8 January 2018 : Winter Forest
New winter installation comes to Exchange Square, featuring food and drink stalls, Tipi cinema, market and art exhibitions. Free entry. Exchange Square, Broadgate, EC2. Nearest station: Liverpool Street. For more information, visit The Winter Forest website.
- 11 November : The Lord Mayor’s Show
The spectacle is known as the oldest and largest civic procession in the world and marks the new Lord Mayor of London. The three-mile procession includes river pageant, floats, music and animals and fireworks show. Flotilla starts at Westminster at 8.30am and arrives at Tower Bridge at 9.25am. The street procession sets off from Mansion House at 11.05am, pauses at the Royal Courts, then returns to Mansion House via the Victoria Embankment. Finally, a fireworks show takes place at 5.15pm between Blackfriars and Waterloo. Free to spectate. For more information visit the Lord Mayor’s Show website.
- 11 November : Put That Light Out! @ Crystal Palace Subway
An afternoon of remembrance and a rare opportunity to visit the Victorian subway underneath Crystal Palace Parade. Poems, stories, songs and jollification from the Home Front of World War II. 2pm-4pm. Tickets: Adults £8, Children £6. Crystal Palace Subway, Crystal Palace Parade, Crystal Palace, SE19 1LG. Nearest station: Crystal Palace. For tickets, visit Eventbrite. To find out about the history of the Crystal Palace Subway, click here.
- 15 November – 17 December : Christmess
Slap Ya Papa and Marbles & Ware have created a festive pop-up at Borough Market. St Nicky’s Imaginarium will features lavish supper clubs, absinthe bars, live music, Nicky’s little grotto, and artisanal markets. Tickets: £55 (includes dinner and entertainment). The Imaginarium, Hunter Penrose, 32 Southwark Street, London Bridge, SE1 1TU. Nearest station: London Bridge. For tickets, visit the Christmess website. For more information, read Metro Girl’s blog post.
- 16 – 19 November : Taste Of London Winter
Four day festival at Tobacco Dock in Wapping offers tastings, demonstrations, masterclasses and food theatre with Ollie Dabbous, Sandia Chang, Rosie Birkett, Jose Pizarro, Ben Tish, Angel Zapata Martin among those giving their tips. Open Thur 16 6-10.30pm, Fri 17 & Sat 18 11am-10.30pm, Sun 19 12pm-5pm. Tickets start from £15. Tobacco Dock, 50 Porters Walk, Wapping, E1W 2SF. Nearest station: Wapping or Shadwell. For more information, visit the Taste of London Winter website.
- 17 November : Painted Ladies – Friday Late at the Painted Hall
Late night opening of the Painted Hall, with a focus on the women of the Baroque masterpiece. Explore the art of perfume-making, life drawing, Baroque print-making, live music and DJs. Over 18s only. 7pm-10pm. Tickets: £12. Old Royal Naval College, King William Walk, Greenwich, SE10 9NN. Nearest station: Greenwich, Maze Hill or Cutty Sark (DLR). For tickets, visit the ORNC website.
- 17 – 19 November : The WriteIdea Festival
East London’s free reading festival returns featuring readings, Q&As, workshops, history and more. Including Stella Duffy, Alan Dein, The Gentle Author and Irenosen Okojie and more. All events are free, but reserve your places on the website. Idea Store, 321 Whitechapel Road, Whitechapel, E1 1BU. Nearest station: Whitechapel. For more information, visit the Write Idea Festival website.
- 17 November – 9 December : Half A World Passed Me By exhibition
A new art exhibition from Berlin-based street artist David Walker, featuring 20 new works. Mon-Sat 11am-7pm. Lawrence Alkin Gallery, 42 New Compton Street, Soho, WC2H 8DA. Nearest station: Tottenham Court Road. For more information, visit the Lawrence Alkin Gallery website.
- 17 November – 1 January 2018 : Winter Wonderland
The south east corner of Hyde Park is transformed into a Christmas fair with rides, food and drink stalls, ice rink, Zippos Christmas Circus, Cirque Berserk, The Sooty Christmas Show, The Magical Ice Kingdom and more. Open 10am-10pm daily. Free to enter. Nearest station: Hyde Park Corner, Victoria, Knightsbridge or Marble Arch. For more information, visit the Winter Wonderland website.
- Now until 18 November : Crystal Palace International Film Festival
Screenings, premieres and Q&As during this three week long festival in South East London. Venues include Anerley Town Hall, St. John’s Church, Stanley Halls and the Phoenix Centre. Nearest stations: Crystal Palace and Norwood Junction. For full listings and tickets, check the CPIFF website.
- 18 November – 16 December : Curses! By Bompas & Parr
An installation exploring curses from Bompas & Parr and the Petrie Museum. Guests will explore the museum with a headset and map and see cursed objects, stories and mysteries. Tickets: £6. Petrie Museum of Egyptology, Malet Place, Bloomsbury, WC1E 6BT. Nearest station: Euston Square or Warren Street. For more information, visit the UCL website.
- 18 November – 28 January 2018 : Hogwarts In The Snow
A must for all Harry Potter fans. The Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter has been given a festive makeover. Featuring Christmas-themed gifts and costumes from the film franchise. Tickets: Adults £37/£39, Children £39/£31. Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, Studio Tour Drive, Leavesden, Hertfordshire, WD25 7LR. Nearest station: Watford (then a shuttle bus to studios). For more information, visit the Warner Bros Studio Tour website.
- 20 November – 4 February 2018 : Take A View exhibition
Exhibition of the winning and shortlisted images from this year’s Landscape Photographer Of The Year are on display on the balcony at Waterloo station. Open during station hours. Free. Mezzanine level, Waterloo Station, SE1 8SW. Nearest station: Waterloo. For more information, visit the Take A View website.
- 22 November : Thanksgiving at The Imaginarium
Enjoy a Thanksgiving feast at a festive immersive pop-up in Borough Market. Expect lots of food, music and storytelling. 6.45pm-10.45pm. Tickets: £45 (includes 12 dishes). The Imaginarium, Hunter Penrose, 32 Southwark Street, London Bridge, SE1 1TU. Nearest station: London Bridge. For booking, visit DesignMyNight. For more information about The Imaginarium, read Metro Girl’s blog post.
- 22 – 26 November : Ideal Home Show @ Christmas
A Christmas edition of the popular homewares and interiors show. Featuring appearances from experts Candice Brown, Rosemary Shrager, Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, Olly Smith, Fred Sirieix, Theo Randall, Gino D’Acampo, Gregg Wallace, Vanessa Feltz and Nadia Essex and more. Tickets: Adults £13/£15, Children free. Olympia, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For more information and tickets, visit the Ideal Home Show website.
- 22 – 26 November : Eat & Drink Festival
The best of the UK’s food and drink under one roof, featuring talks, masterclasses, demonstrations, artisan producers’ market, and plenty of opportunities to try and buy food and drink. Tickets start from £13/£15. Olympia, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For tickets, visit the Eat & Drink Festival website.
- 22 November – 1 January 2018 : Christmas at Kew
A one mile glittering trail which weaves its way through Kew Gardens with stunning sights lit up upon the way. There will also be Santa at the North Pole Village, a Tunnel of Light, vintage rides, festive food and drinks. 5-10pm. Tickets (advance): Adults £16, Children £10. Kew Gardens (Royal Botanic Gardens), Kew, Richmond, TW9 3AB. Nearest station: Kew Gardens. For more information, visit the Kew Gardens website.
- 23 November : Connaught Village Christmas Evening
Start getting prepared for Christmas with a festive shopping evening, featuring Christmas lights, face-painting, floral headpiece making, complimentary Prosecco, mulled wine, carol singing, in-store discounts, offers and activities throughout the village’s boutiques and restaurants. From 3-8pm. Free entry. Connaught Village, W2 2AA. Nearest station: Marble Arch. For more information, visit the Connaught Village website.
- 23 November – 1 January 2018 : Winterville
An alternative festive wonderland in south London, featuring Christmas markets, ice rink, roller disco, cinema, plonk golf, fairground, spiegeltent and more. Free entry (except Fri and Sat nights). Clapham Common, SW4 9DE. Nearest station: Clapham Common. For more information, visit the Winterville website.
- 24 – 26 November : Hyper Japan Christmas
A Christmas edition of the popular summer celebration of Japanese culture and products. Includes cuisine, shopping, mix of pop and traditional culture. Open Fri 24 12-8pm, Sat 25 9am-9pm, Sun 26 9am-6pm. Tickets: £15-£17. Tobacco Dock, 50 Porters Walk, Wapping, E1W 2SF. Nearest station: Shadwell or Wapping. For more information and advance tickets, visit the Hyper Japan website.
- 25 November : Festive Feasting Treasure Hunt
THATMuse bring a new festive themed hunt to the V&A. Participants search for foodie treasures throughout history around the museum. Up to 4 people per team. 2pm-4.30pm. Tickets: £10. Victoria & Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, South Kensington, SW7 2RL. Nearest station: South Kensington. For more information, visit Eventbrite.
- Now until 4 January 2018 : Beauty And The Feast
Go on an underground dining immersive theatrical experience, featuring pantomime, performers, cocktails, food and fabulous fun. For 16+. Show starts at 7.30pm. Tickets from £35 (includes dinner, dessert and DJs). The Vaults (entrance via Leake Street tunnel), Launcelot Street, Waterloo, SE1 7AD. Nearest station: Waterloo. For booking, visit The Vaults website. For Metro Girl’s review, click here.
- Now until early 2018 : Snow Kingdom – Backyard Cinema
Backyard Cinema have created a wintry immersive cinematic experience in the foodie surrounds of Mercato Metropolitano. Travel through an ice cave and across a frozen lake to watch new and classic films in the atmospheric Snow Kingdom. Tickets from £17. Backyard Cinema, 42 Newington Causeway, Elephant & Castle, SE1 6DR. Nearest station: Elephant & Castle. For booking, visit the Backyard Cinema website. For Metro Girl’s review, click here.
- Now until 25 February 2018 : No Turning Back: Seven Migration Moments that Changed Britain
Exhibition at the Migration Museum focusing on seven turning points in Britain’s history which have changed its people and communities. Open Wed-Sun 11am-5pm (late opening on last Thursday of the month until 9pm. Free admission. Migration Museum @ The Workshop, 26 Lambeth High Street, Lambeth, SE1 7AG. Nearest station: Vauxhall, Westminster or Lambeth North. For more information, visit the Migration Museum website. Read Metro Girl’s blog on the exhibition here.
- Now until 31 March 2018 : Painted Hall Ceiling Tours
The Painted Hall at the Old Royal Naval College is undergoing a huge restoration. For a limited time only, visitors will be able to ascend 60ft to see the painted ceiling up close. Times vary. Tickets: Adults £10, Children £5. Old Royal Naval College, King William Walk, Greenwich, SE10 9NN. Nearest station: Greenwich, Maze Hill or Cutty Sark (DLR). To book, visit the Old Royal Naval College website. Read Metro Girl’s review of the tour here.
- Now until June 2018 : Sculpture In The City 2017/2018
Free public art exhibition, bringing contemporary pieces to the streets and spaces of the City of London. At various sites around the Square Mile. Nearest stations: Fenchurch Street, Monument or Liverpool Street. For more information and a map of the artworks, visit the City Of London’s official website.
Pantomimes and Ballets
- 17 November – 7 January 2018 : Cinderella (Greenwich)
Greenwich Theatre, Croom’s Hill, Greenwich, SE10 8ES. Nearest station: Greenwich or Cutty Sark (DLR) . For tickets, visit the Greenwich Theatre website.
- 18 November – 31 December : Cinderella (Hackney)
Hackney Empire, 291 Mare Street, Hackney, E8 1EJ. Nearest station: Hackney Central. For tickets, visit the Hackney Empire website.
- 18 November – 6 January 2018 : Jack And The Beanstalk (Hammersmith)
Lyric Hammersmith, Lyric Square, King Street, Hammersmith, W6 0QL. Nearest station: Hammersmith. For tickets, visit the Lyric website.
- 23 November – 31 December : The Snowman
- 27 November – 13 January 2018 : Rapunzel (Stratford)
Stratford East, Gerry Raffles Square, Stratford, E15 1BN. Nearest station: Stratford. For tickets, visit the Stratford East website.
- 30 November – 4 January 2018 : Goosed (Vauxhall)
A saucy panto for adults-only. Royal Vauxhall Tavern, 372 Kennington Lane, Vauxhall, SE11 5HY. Nearest station: Vauxhall. For more information, visit the Tavern’s website.
Posted on 31 October 2017, in Art, Festivals, film, London, Tourist Attractions and tagged festivals, November 2017, pantomime, Things to do in London, Travel, What's On Guide. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.