Category Archives: Tourist Attractions

Tourist attractions of London

Superbloom at the Tower of London | Moat is transformed into a floral tribute to the Queen

Serpentine Pavilion 2022 | A look inside Theaster Gates’ Black Chapel

Guide to what’s on in London in July 2022

Find out what events and exhibitions are on in the capital, including Pride, Cocktails in the City, London Zoo lates and more.

© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2017Summer is in full bloom with long warm nights and a gargantuan choice of events on in London. Schools are breaking up for the summer holidays towards the end of the month so expect plenty of local and out-of-town families diverging on the capital looking to be entertained. Fortunately, there’s a host of family-friendly events on around town.

This month sees the long-awaited return of some popular events after being scaled back or cancelled over the past two years due to Covid-19.

Look out for the 🐻 for family-friendly activities.

  • 1 – 3 July 2022 : Feria de Londres

Three-day festival inspired by the Andalusian celebration of Spanish food and culture. Featuring Spanish dance and music performances and workshops, food traders, and drink vendors. Open Fri 5pm-11pm, Sat 11am-3pm/3pm-6pm/6.30pm-11pm, Sun 12pm-4pm/4pm-9pm. Tickets: Adults £10, Under 16s free. Guildhall Yard, City of London, EC2 5AE. Nearest stations: St Paul’s or Bank. For more information, visit the Feria de Londres website. 🐻

  • 1 – 3 July 2022 : The Allergy & Free From Show

Show for people who suffer from allergies, intolerances, coeliac disease, hay fever or eczema. Featuring cooking classes, seminars, expert advice, skin consultations, live music and more. Open 10am-5pm. Tickets: Free (register online). ExCel, Royal Victoria Dock, Docklands, E16 1XL. Nearest stations: Prince Regent or Custom House (DLR). For more information, visit the show’s official website.

  • 1 – 3 July 2022 : Just V Show

Plant-based living for Vegans to Flexitarians. Featuring Vegan-friendly skincare, lifestyle products and food, seminars and both popular and new vegan brands. Tickets: Free (register online). ExCel, Royal Victoria Dock, Docklands, E16 1XL. Nearest stations: Prince Regent or Custom House (DLR). For more information, visit the show’s official website.

  • 2 July 2022 : Pride in London

Pride is back with a bang as it celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first Pride in the UK. Parade starts at Hyde Park Corner and ends at Trafalgar Square. Timings TBA. Free to spectate. For more information, visit the Pride in London website.

  • Now until 3 July 2022 : Hampstead Summer Festival

The festival takes place in and around Hampstead, including the Keats Grove Community Mural Festival, Family Garden Party, The Taming of the Shrew production, Art Fair and more. Many activities are free. For more information, visit the Hampstead Summer Festival website. 🐻

  • 3 July 2022 : Pride @ Wembley Park

Celebrate Pride at Wembley with live performances, DJs, dance workshops (Zumba, pop and voguing), art classes, face painting, fitness sessions (yoga and Pilates) and drag queens. 11am-10pm. Free. Wembley Park, Wembley, HA9 0FD. Nearest stations: Wembley Park or Wembley Stadium. For more information, visit the Wembley Park website. 🐻

  • 3 July 2022 : Red Bull Soapbox Race

Enjoy one of the country’s most quirky races, with participants competing with their handmade vehicles. 12pm-6pm. Tickets: Over 25 yrs £29.99, Under 25 yrs £19.99. Alexandra Palace Park, N22 7AY. Nearest stations: Alexandra Palace or Wood Green. For more information, visit the Red Bull website. 🐻

  • 4 – 9 July 2022 : RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival 2021

The world’s largest garden show returns to the grounds of the historical Hampton Court. Attractions include show gardens, Market Theatre, live music, DJs, RHS Flower School, Festival of Roses, Floral Marquee, talks and demos. RHS members only Mon and Tues. Open Mon-Fri 10am-6.30pm, Sat-Sun 10am-5.30pm. Tickets from £28.85 (cheaper for RHS members). Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey KT8 9AU. Nearest station: Hampton Court. For tickets, visit the RHS website. 🐻

  • Now until 6 July 2022 : Masterpiece London

An imaginative art and antiques fair for traditional and contemporary. Featuring a week of cultural, culinary and social experiences. Open Thu, Mon-Wed 11am-9pm, Fri-Sun 11am-7pm. Tickets from £45. The Royal Hospital, Chelsea, SW3 4SL. Nearest station: Sloane Square. For more information, visit the Masterpiece London website.

  • 7 July 2022 : City Beerfest

One day festival in the City of London raising money for the Lord Mayor’s Appeal. Featuring beers, street food, and live music. From 12.30pm-9pm. Tickets: £13.50. Guildhall Yard, Gresham Street, City of London, EC2V 5AE. Nearest stations: St Paul’s or Bank. For tickets, visit the City Beerfest website. Read the rest of this entry

Guide to what’s on in London in June 2022

Find out what festivals, events and exhibitions are on in London as summer kicks off.

© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2012Summer is here at last and what a bumper month of events are on in the capital. Of course, the big event is the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, which will see an extra long Bank Holiday weekend from 2-4 June, with a host of royal-themed celebrations on around town. There’s also half-term holidays from school the first week of June so parents will be searching for ways to keep their little ones occupied.

Aside from Platinum Jubilee fun, expect to see immersive experiences, the return of foodies’ paradise Taste of London and a host of arts festivals.

Read on to find out what’s on in London this June 2022, including exhibitions, festivals, and special events for both adults and children alike.

Look out for the 🐻 for family-friendly activities.

  • 30 May – 2 September 2022 : Summer by the River

A host of free entertainment returns to the riverside location, including family theatre, live music, DJs, film screenings, Platinum Jubilee events, dance classes and more. Times vary. Free. London Bridge City, between London Bridge and Tower Bridge (south of the river), SE1. Nearest stations: London Bridge or Tower Hill. For more information and listings, visit the London Bridge City website. 🐻

  • 1 – 5 June 2022 : Jubilee @ Southbank Centre

Five days of entertainment and parties to mark Her Majesty’s 70 years on the throne, including Step Hop House with Folk Dance (2 Jun), Danny Boyle in Conversation (5 Jun), and a Platinum Jubilee Celebration Concert (4 Jun). Tickets vary from free to paid. Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, South Bank, SE1 8XX. Nearest tube: Waterloo or Embankment. For more information, visit the Southbank Centre website. 🐻

  • 1 – 30 June 2022 : London Festival Of Architecture

A month-long celebration of architecture, with this year’s theme being ‘act’. Featuring talks, installations, tours, exhibitions, open studios, film screenings, debate, conferences and more. At various venues around town. For more information, visit the London Festival of Architecture website.

  • 1 June – 18 September 2022 : Superbloom @ Tower of London

The historic moat surrounding the Tower will be filled with flowers to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. As well as flower displays, there will also be a sound installation and sculptural elements. Various tickets available with or without the main Tower of London visit. Tickets (Superbloom only): Adults from £12, Children from £6.60. Tower of London, Tower Hill, EC3N 4AB. Nearest station: Tower Hill or Tower Gateway. For more information, visit the Tower of London website. 🐻

  • 2 June 2022 : Trooping The Colour

Military parade to mark the Queen’s official birthday with soldiers, horses, musicians and a flypast. Parade from 10am and flypast at 1pm. Free. Buckingham Palace to Horse Guards Parade via the Mall, Whitehall, SW1. Nearest stations: Green Park, Westminster or St James’s Park. For more information, visit the Household Division website. 🐻

  • 2 – 3 June 2022 : Queen’s Platinum Jubilee @ Battersea Power Station

Celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee with live music, dance performances, roaming acts, family games, the Queen’s Baton Relay (2 June) and lighting of the Jubilee Beacon. Times vary. Free. Battersea Power Station, Battersea, SW8 5BN. Nearest station: Battersea Power Station. For more information, visit the Battersea Power Station website🐻

  • 3 – 5 June 2022 : Foodies Festival @ Syon Park

Food festival including Chefs Theatre (Atul Kochhar, Daniel Lee, Aaron Middleton, Tony Rodd, Ryan Baker, Shelina Permalloo and more); Cake & Bake Theatre; Drinks Theatre; live music from Scouting For Girls, East 17, Lee & Simon from Blue and Liberty X; street food stalls, competitions and food challenges; Kids Cookery Theatre and more. Fri-Sat 11am-9pm, Sun 11am-8pm. Tickets start from £23. Syon Park, Brent Lea, Brentford, TW8 8JF. Nearest station: Syon Lane. For tickets, visit the Foodies Festival website. 🐻

  • 3 – 5 June 2022 : Jubilee Weekend Colouring Workshop

Artist and illustrator Samme Snow hosts a weekend of colourful art workshops for children and adults alike. Workshops held from 10am-6pm. Register online for a free ticket. Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross, N1C. Nearest station: King’s Cross St Pancras. For more information, visit the King’s Cross website. 🐻

  • Now until 4 June 2022 : Brockley Max

Nine-day community arts festival returns in-person to south-east London, featuring live music, dance, craft markets, poetry, art installations, film screenings, workshops, talks, interactive games and more. At venues across Brockley, Ladywell, Crofton Park and Honor Oak. For more information, visit the Brockley Max website. 🐻

  • 4 June 2022 : Jubilee Dance Party

One day festival to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, including five stages, dance lessons, family entertainment, live music, DJs, and street food. 12pm-7pm. Free. Wembley Park, Wembley, HA9 0FD. Nearest stations: Wembley Park or Wembley Stadium. For more information, visit the Wembley Park website. Check out Metro Girl’s blog post on the event. 🐻

  • 4 June 2022 : Queen’s Baton Relay

Watch the Queen’s Baton Relay arrive in the City following its journey through 72 Commonwealth nations. Enjoy sporting and cultural activities, pose with the baton, and feast on street food. From 12pm-3pm. Free. Paternoster Square, City of London, EC4M 7DX. Nearest station: St Paul’s or City Thameslink. For more information, visit the City of London website. 🐻

  • 4 – 12 June 2022Camberwell Arts Festival

Nine day festival celebrating the arts and creative talent of Camberwell. Featuring exhibitions, open studios, interactive evensong, comedy, blues party, summer fair, guided walks and much more. At venues in Camberwell, Peckham, Loughborough Junction, Denmark Hill, Brixton and East Dulwich. For more information, visit the Camberwell Arts Festival website. 🐻

  • Now until 5 June 2022 : Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Witness the beauty and diversity of the natural world in this annual photography exhibition. Open Mon-Sun 11am-5.50pm. Tickets: Adults £15.50, Children £9.25. Natural History Museum, South Kensington, SW7 5BD. Nearest station: South Kensington. For more information and booking, visit the NHM museum website. 🐻

  • Now until 5 June 2022 : Mexican Geniuses – A Frida and Diego Immersive Experience

An immersive, digital art show brings visitors into the paintings of Mexican artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Open Tues-Thur 10am-7pm, Fri & Sun 10am–8pm, Sat 10am-8.30pm. Tickets: Adults from £19.90. Retail Park, Unit 1 Canada Water, Surrey Quays Road, SE16 2XU. Nearest station: Surrey Quays. For more information and tickets, visit the Mexican Geniuses website. 🐻

  • 5 June 2022 : Platinum Jubilee Pageant

Reflect on 70 years of the Queen’s reign with a pageant of military and entertainment, culminating at the Queen Victoria memorial opposite Buckingham Palace for a grand finale. From 2.30pm-5pm. Starting at Whitehall, then up The Mall and ending outside Buckingham Palace. Nearest stations: Piccadilly Circus, Green Park, St James’s Park, Victoria and Westminster. For more information, visit the Platinum Pageant website. 🐻

  • 8 – 20 June 2022 : Fitzrovia Arts Festival

Music and culture festival, celebrating the best of Fitzrovia. Featuring concerts, drama pieces, talks, walks and social and fitness events. Events are free. At venues across Fitzrovia including Rebecca Hossack Gallery, Sainsbury Wellcome Centre, Royal Society of Musicians and the Fitzrovia Chapel. Nearest stations: Tottenham Court Road, Warren Street and Goodge Street. For more information, visit the Fitzrovia Arts website. 🐻 Read the rest of this entry

Exploring the stories behind the art | Inspired! exhibition launches at Guildhall Art Gallery

Exhibition explores the theatre, literature and music which has inspired the visual arts.

The ‘Old Drury Lane Theatre on Fire’ by Abraham Pether (1809) is one of the artworks in the Inspired! exhibition

Artists find inspiration in many places, often in real-life subjects, such as people or landscapes. However, there’s a wealth of artworks which have grown from the fictional – be it theatre, literature and music. Launching this spring at the Guildhall Art Gallery is a new exhibition which explores the way artists have turned to poetry, plays, novels and music to inspire their work.

A large section of Inspired! will focus on Victorian story-telling. Much of the period’s artwork was nostalgic in reaction to the Industrial Revolution with artists looking back to simpler times, thanks to William Shakespeare‘s works, Medieval folktales and Greek myths. For example, Thomas Lawrence’s portrait of actor John Philip Kemble (1757-1823) as Coriolanus in the Bard’s tragedy. Meanwhile, the burning of Drury Lane Theatre in 1808 was depicted by Abraham Pether’s painting the following year.

For those who enjoy Pre-Raphaelite art, pieces by William Holman Hunt (1827-1910), John Everett Millais (1829-1896) and George Frederic Watts (1817-1904) found inspiration in the Romantic poets and the work of John Ruskin and Thomas Carlyle. Also at the exhibition include works inspired by the likes of Sir Walter Scott, Chopin, Joseph Addison, among many others.

  • Inspired! Art inspired by theatre, literature and music runs from 8 April – 11 September 2022. Opening times TBC. Tickets: £8. Guildhall Art Gallery, Guildhall Yard, City of London, EC2V 5AE. Nearest stations: St Paul’s, Bank or Moorgate. For more information, visit the City of London.gov website.

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Guide to what’s on in London in March 2022

Find out what’s on in the capital, including art fairs, Secret Cinema’s Bridgerton experience and the Ideal Home Show.

Kew Gardens Palm House daffodils © Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2019

Spring is in the air… well at least it’s supposed to be! With March having notoriously erratic weather, fortunately London has plenty of indoor festivals, exhibitions and events on this month. 

Look out for the 🐻 for family-friendly activities.

  • 3 – 6 March 2022 : The Stitch Festival

Haberdashery festival featuring hundreds of workshops, demonstrations, interactive features and 200 exhibitors selling specialist craft supplies. Open 9.30am-5.30pm. Tickets: Adults £15.50, Children £7.50. Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, Islington, N1 0QH. Nearest station: Angel. For more information, visit the Stitch Festival website.

  • Now until 6 March 2022 : Orchid Festival @ Kew Gardens

An orchid display is coming to the Princess of Wales Conservatory for four weeks, with this year being inspired by Costa Rica. General entrance tickets to Kew Gardens includes orchid exhibition: Adults £15, Children (4-15yr) £5. Kew Gardens, Brentford Gate, Kew, TW9 3AB. Nearest station: Kew Gardens. For more information, visit the Kew Gardens website.

  • Now until 6 March 2022 : Beano – The Art of Breaking the Rules

Exhibition of Britain’s naughtiest kid and the comic’s history. Explore original artwork and artefacts. Open Sat, Sun & Tue 10am-6pm, Wed-Fri 11am-8pm. Tickets: Adults £16, concs £12.50, Under 6s free. Embankment Galleries (South Wing), Somerset House, Strand, Westminster, WC2R 1LA. Nearest station: Temple. For more information and booking, visit the Somerset House website. 🐻

  • Now until 9 March 2022 : The Green Planet AR Experience

Enjoy an immersive, augmented reality experience with Sir David Attenborough as you explore the green planet. Open Mon-Wed 10am-6pm, Thu-Sun 10am-8pm. Free entry, but book a time slot in advance. 55 Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus, W1 5RF. Nearest station: Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Green Planet Experience website. 🐻

  • 10 – 13 March 2022 : Affordable Art Fair – Battersea Spring

A chance for people to buy a unique piece of art or photography for their homes at an affordable price. There are over 100 galleries, with pieces for sale ranging from £50 to £7,500. Tickets: £10-£27. Battersea Evolution, Battersea Park, SW11 4NJ. Nearest station: Battersea Park or short bus ride from Sloane Square tube. For more information, visit the Affordable Art Fair website.

  • 11 – 13 March 2022 : WOW – Women of the World

A festival of talks, debates, music, film and comedy celebrating women. Marian Keyes, Lisa Taddeo, Pandora Sykes, Patrisse Calours, Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan, Warsan Shire, Deborah Frances-White and Elizabeth White among the featured names. Events range from free to £38. Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, South Bank, SE1 8XX. Nearest station: Waterloo. For more information and booking, visit the Southbank Centre website.

  • 11 – 13 March 2022 : Move It

The world’s biggest dance event featuring performances, classes, workshops, shopping, and talks by experts from all genres, including Layton Williams, Dane Bates, Dannielle ‘Rhimes’ Lecointe, Dark Angels, Flawless, Jess Baddie, Josh Denyer, Josh Wharmby, Kloe Dean and more. Day tickets: Adults from £21, Children from £16.50 (show and class tickets also available). ExCel, Royal Victoria Dock, 1 Western Gateway, Docklands, E16 1XL. Nearest station: Custom House or Prince Regent. For more information, visit the Move It website. 🐻 © Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2018

  • 11 – 27 March 2022 : Ideal Home Show

A place of inspiration for homeowners including interiors, fittings and gardens. Includes plenty of opportunities to buy things both big and small for the house and food. Celebrity guests and experts include Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, Phil Spencer, Martin Lewis, David Domoney, Rosemary Shrager, Lisa Faulkner, Melissa Helmsley, and many more. Open Mon-Fri 10am-5pm, Sat-Sun 10am-6pm. Advance tickets (more on the door): Weekday £14 or Weekend £16, Children 15 yrs and younger free (Tickets also include free access to the Eat & Drink Festival). Olympia, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For more tickets, visit the Ideal Home Show website. Read the rest of this entry

Guide to what’s on in London in February 2022

Find out what events, festivals and exhibitions are on in London.

© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2014Last February was a bit of a wash-out thanks to lockdown, so no doubt many Londoners will be looking forward to getting out and about. This month sees plenty of festivals and exhibitions, including the launch of the Beatrix Potter at the V&A and the return of the Orchid Festival to Kew Gardens.

Of course, halfway through the month is Valentine’s Day so plenty of spaces will be offering romantic events, while others will be giving singles the opportunities to have some fun. During February, expect to see some family-friendly activites and events during half-term.

Look out for the 🐻 for family-friendly activities.

  • 2 February – 18 April 2022 : Bob Marley – One Love Experience

An immersive experience celebrating the late, great singer, along with previously unseen photographs and memorabilia. Open Mon-Sun 10am-6pm. Tickets: Standard £18/£24, Children 9-14 yrs £10, Under 8s free when accompanying an adult. Saatchi Gallery, King’s Road, Chelsea, SW3 4RY. Nearest station: Sloane Square. For tickets, visit the Saatchi Gallery website. 🐻

  • 3 February – 8 May 2022 : Van Gogh Self-Portraits

Vincent Van Gogh’s self-portraiture is explorer in a new exhibition. Entry times from 10am-5.15pm. Tickets: Adults £16-£20, Under 18s free. The Courtauld Gallery, Somerset House, Strand, WC2R 0RN. Nearest station: Charing Cross, Embankment or Temple. For tickets, visit the Courtauld Gallery website.

  • 5 February – 6 March 2022 : Orchid Festival @ Kew Gardens

An orchid display is coming to the Princess of Wales Conservatory for four weeks, with this year being inspired by Costa Rica. General entrance tickets to Kew Gardens includes orchid exhibition: Adults £15, Children (4-15yr) £5. Kew Gardens, Brentford Gate, Kew, TW9 3AB. Nearest station: Kew Gardens. For more information, visit the Kew Gardens website.

  • Now until 6 February 2022 : London International Mime Festival

Festival at various events across London including performances of physical theatre, dance, circus, puppetry and live art. Workshops also available. Tickets range from £13-£45. Venues include the Barbican, Jacksons Lane, Sadler’s Wells, Puppet Theatre Barge, Shoreditch Town Hall, The Peacock and The Place. For more information, visit the Mime London website. 🐻

  • 9 – 22 February 2022 : Imagine Children’s Festival

Two week children’s festival at the Southbank Centre, including art, theatre, books, music, performances and workshops. Including Julia Donaldson, Francesca Simon, Steve May, Michelle Harrison, YolanDa and more. 10.30am-4pm daily. Many activities and events are free, but some go up to £20. Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, South Bank, SE1 8XX. Nearest station: Waterloo. For more information and booking visit the Southbank Centre website. 🐻

  • 10 – 13 February 2022 : Classical Vauxhall

Series of classical music concerts returns to Vauxhall, featuring the music of Brahms, Schubert, Shostakovich, and more. From 8pm. Tickets: £20. St Peter’s Church, 310 Kennington Lane, Vauxhall, SE11 5HY. Nearest station: Vauxhall. For more information, visit the BeInVauxhall website.

  • 10 – 12 February 2022 : Ealing Music and Film Festival 2022

Scaled down version of the annual festival in Ealing. Events take place at The Old Library or St Barnabas Church. Tickets range from free to £20. Nearest stations: Ealing Broadway or South Ealing. For booking, visit the Ealing Music & Film website.

  • 11 – 13 February 2022 : Carole Nash MCN London Motorcycle Show

Bike festival, featuring the latest bikes and launches, a Rossi tribute, bike kit deals, fire-ups and racing. Open Fri 11 10am-5pm, Sat 12 9am-6pm, Sun 13 9am-5pm. ExCel London, Royal Victoria Dock, 1 Western Gateway, Docklands, E16 1XL. Nearest station: Prince Regent or Custom House (DLR). For more information and tickets, visit the MCN Motorcycle Show website.

  • 11 – 20 February 2022 : City Lights

Light and sound installations come to the Square Mile. From 5.30pm-10pm. Free. At various locations across the City of London. Nearest stations: St Paul’s, Mansion House or Cannon Street. For more information, visit the City of London website.

  • 11 February – 9 March 2022 : The Green Planet AR Experience

Enjoy an immersive, augmented reality experience with Sir David Attenborough as you explore the green planet. Open Mon-Wed 10am-6pm, Thur-Sun 10am-8pm. Free entry, but book a time slot in advance. 55 Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus, W1 5RF. Nearest station: Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Green Planet Experience website.

  • 11 February – 12 March 2022 : Spaces of Light and Colour

Never before seen paintings by Ulrich Erben, from his early work until more recent creations. Open: Tues-Sat 10am-6pm. BASTIAN, 8 Davies Street, Mayfair, W1K 3DW. Nearest stations: Green Park or Bond Street. For more information, visit the Bastian Gallery website. Read the rest of this entry

Guide to what’s on in London in January 2022

Find out what events, festivals and exhibitions are on in the capital as the new year kicks off.

Happy New Year! Let’s hope 2022 is way better than 2021 and 2020 (although, let’s face it, that won’t be hard, will it?!). Although January is one of London’s quieter months for special events and festivals, there’s still plenty on to keep you occupied during your free time.

As well as the last few days and weeks of festive events like Winter Wonderland and Winterfest at Wembley, there is also plenty of arts events. The Vault fringe festival is making its long-awaited return, along with the London International Mime Festival and the London Short Film Festival. In the early part of January, there’s still opportunities to catch some of the festive entertainment, including pantomimes, ballets and other theatre productions.

Find out what special events, exhibitions and festivals are on around the capital this January 2022. However, it’s recommended to check the events’ social media or websites before heading out as some may be impact by Covid-19 rules or cancellations.

Look out for the 🐻 for family-friendly activities.

  • 1 January 2022 : New Year’s Day Parade

Hundreds of thousands of spectators are expected to gather to watch 10,000 performers from around the world. Starts from Piccadilly’s Berkeley Street at 12pm, ending at Parliament Square at 3.30pm. Free. Nearest station: Piccadilly Circus, Westminster or Charing Cross. For more information, visit the Parade website🐻

  • Now until 2 January 2022 : Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel: The Exhibition

Explore the Vatican’s majestic chapel in an immersive experience, featuring the iconic ceiling paintings, which have been reproduced with HD photography. Open Wed-Sun 10am-6pm. Tickets: Adults from £11, Children from £8. Cannon Factory. Ashley Road, Tottenham, N17 9LH. Nearest station: Tottenham Hale. For tickets, visit the exhibition website. 🐻

  • Now until 2 January 2022 : Summer Exhibition 2021 @ Royal Academy of Arts

The delayed summer 2021 exhibition features over 1,300 works from new and established artists. Open Tues–Sun: 10am-6pm. Tickets: £20–£22. Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House, Piccadilly, W1J 0BD. Nearest station: Green Park or Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the RA website. Check out Metro Girl’s blog post on the exhibition.

Last Orders by Leigh Banks is one the many pieces on display at the Summer Exhibition 2021
  • Now until 3 January 2022 : Winter Wonderland

The south east corner of Hyde Park is transformed into a festive fair with rides, food and drink stalls, ice rink, the Magical Ice Kingdom, Cirque Berserk, Zippos Christmas Circus, Bar Ice, Ice Sculpting Workshops, Santa Land, Real Ice Slide, and more. Open 10am-10pm daily. Tickets (must be pre-booked): Peak £5-£7.50, Off-peak free. Entrance fee waived if you spend over £20 on attractions, rides or games in advance. Nearest station: Hyde Park Corner, Victoria, Knightsbridge or Marble Arch. For more information, visit the Winter Wonderland website. 🐻

  • Now until 3 January 2022 : Winter Night Garden @ Backyard Cinema

Backyard Cinema’s permanent home has been transformed into a magical festive garden for one of its two winter cinematic experiences (the other being the Snow Kingdom). Walk through a magical wardrobe and travel through an enchanted forest to reach the big screen, which will be showing festive favourites and new releases. Tickets range from £10.50-£29.99. Backyard Cinema’s Capital Studios, Ram Quarter, 13 Wandsworth Plain, Wandsworth, SW18 1ET. Nearest station: Wandsworth Town or East Putney. For more information and booking, visit Backyard Cinema’s website. 🐻

  • Now until 3 January 2022 : Palace of Stardust @ Hampton Court Palace

A spectacular new light trail illuminates the historic Hampton Court Palace, as it winds around the gardens. Expect illuminations, projects and festive food and drink. Open daily 4pm-8pm (closed 11, 24-26 Dec). Tickets: Adults £12.50, Children £8, under 5s free. Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, KT8 9AU. Nearest station: Hampton Court (36 minutes from Waterloo). To book, visit the Hampton Court Palace website. 🐻

Read the rest of this entry

Guide to what’s on in London in December 2021

Find out what festive events and exhibitions are on in London over the Christmas 2021 period.

Christmas tree in Hay's Galleria, LondonDecember is finally here! We’re sure many of us can’t wait for this difficult year to be over after another long struggle through pandemic and Brexit impacts. As usual, many festive events already started in November, but they really ramp up in the run-up to Christmas.

Among the events on in the capital this December include festive cinematic experiences, illumination and light trails, and many events celebrating food and drink on the most gluttonous time of the year.

As you would expect, there’s plenty of family-friendly activities as many relatives are reunited after spending last Christmas apart. Theatreland is well and truly back in action with a host of pantomimes, ballets and other Christmas shows to keep the whole family entertained. There’s also opportunities for alfresco ice skating or shopping at one of London’s many Christmas markets.

Look out for the 🐻 for family-friendly activities.

  • 1 – 5 December 2021 : Sparkle in the Park

Follow a festive light trail around the park alongside fire art installations, before enjoying live music, children’s shows, a Christmas disco, market stalls and hot food and drink. From 4pm-9pm. Free entry. Maryon Park, Maryon Road, Charlton, SE7 8EN. Nearest stations: Charlton or Woolwich Dockyard. For more information, visit the Royal Greenwich website. 🐻

  • 1 – 19 December 2021 : Cinema in the Snow

Pop Up Screens are bringing their festive, cinematic experience to south London. Step through a magical wardrobe into a winter wonderland, where you can watch classic Christmas films and newer festive releases on the big screen (indoors!). Licensed bar and snacks available. Tickets: Under 12s £12, Adults £22. Brockwell Park (Lido gate), Dulwich Road, Herne Hill, SE24 0PA. Nearest station: Herne Hill. For booking, visit the Pop Up Screens website. 🐻

  • 1 – 30 December 2021 : Backyard Cinema’s Christmas Movie Spectacular

Cinematic experience experts Backyard Cinema are launching a third festive spectacular away from their permanent home in Wandsworth. Watch one of the three classic Christmas films (Love Actually, Home Alone or Elf) along with a live choir and performances by George The Poet in a stunning Art Deco setting. Times vary. Tickets start from £15.  Troxy, 490 Commercial Road, Limehouse, E1 0HX. Nearest station: Limehouse. For tickets, visit the Backyard Cinema website. 🐻

  • 2 December 2021 : Christmas Lights Walk @ Marylebone

Explore the light installations of the Baker Street Quarter, telling the story of famous people and places from the district. Starts at 6pm. Free. Starts at Punch Tavern, 55 Baker Street, Marylebone, W1U 7DA. Nearest station: Baker Street or Marylebone. For more information, visit the Baker Street Quarter website. 🐻

  • 3 – 5 December 2021 : Hampton Court Palace Festive Fayre

A celebration of festive food in the grounds of historic Hampton Court Palace. Featuring street food, pop-up bars, artisanal producers, live music, and more. 10am-5pm. Tickets (inc entry to courtyard and gardens): Adults £25.30, Children 5-15yr £12.60, Under 5s free. Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, KT8 9AU. Nearest station: Hampton Court (36 minutes from Waterloo). For more information and tickets, visit the HRP Food Festivals website. 🐻

  • 4 December 2021 : Rumblin’ Cocktails Rum Education @ Museum of London Docklands

Rum cocktail experts Rumblin’ host a history and mixology workshop in the old Rum Store. Explore the heritage of the tipple, before mixing your own and take a bottle of rum punch home. Over 18s only. From 5.30pm. Tickets: £55. Museum of London Docklands, No.1 Warehouse, West India Quay, E14 4AL. Nearest stations: West India Quay or Canary Wharf. For booking, visit the Museum of London website.

  • Now until 4 December 2021 : Pigs Ear Festival 2021

Annual beer festival in conjunction with CAMRA, featuring over 230 real ales plus ciders, perries and bottled beers, food stalls and unique festival brews. Open 12pm-10.30pm. Tickets: £3 (CAMRA members), £5 (general). Round Chapel, Glenarm Road, Hackney, E5 0LY. Nearest station: Hackney Downs or Hackney Central. For more information, visit the Pig’s Ear website.

  • 4 December 2021 – 9 January 2022 : The Gingerbread City 2021

The Museum of Architecture returns with another Gingerbread City. Over 100 architects, artists and engineers create a mini city made entirely of gingerbread and icing. In addition to the exhibition of the final creation, there is also the opportunity to take part in gingerbread house-making workshops. Open daily 9am-9pm. Tickets (45 min sessions): Adults and over 12 yrs: £14, Children 3-12yrs £8.50. 6-7 Motcomb Street, Belgravia, SW1X 8JU. Nearest station: Knightsbridge or Hyde Park Corner. For more information, visit the Gingerbread City website. 🐻

  • Now until 5 December 2021 : Christmas Floating Film Festival

Cosy up on a sofa or deckchair on a floating pontoon to watch your favourite festive films against the backdrop of St Katharine Docks. Screenings at 7pm (weekday and weekends), 2pm (weekends). Tickets: £16.76-£32.93. St Katharine Docks, 50 St Katharine’s Way, E1W 1LA. Nearest station: Tower Hill or Tower Gateway. For more information, visit the St Kats website. 🐻

  • 7 – 9 December 2021 : Borough Market’s Festive Kitchen

Get inspired for your festive food with live demonstrations, tastings, masterclasses, tips and tricks at Borough Market. Events from 11am-4pm. Free entry. Borough Market, 8 Southwark Street, SE1 1TL. Nearest station: London Bridge. For more information, visit the Borough Market website.

  • 8 December 2021 : Festive evening @ Leadenhall Market

Enjoy Christmas workshops, live music and late-night shopping at historic Leadenhall Market. Open 6pm-10pm. Free to attend, but register for a place on one of the workshops via Eventbrite. Leadenhall Market (access from Gracechurch Street, Lime Street and Whittington Avenue), City of London, EC3V 1LT. Nearest stations: Monument or Fenchurch Street. For more information, visit the Leadenhall Market website.

  • 8 December 2021 – 3 January 2022 : Palace of Stardust @ Hampton Court Palace

A spectacular new light trail illuminates the historic Hampton Court Palace, as it winds around the gardens. Expect illuminations, projects and festive food and drink. Open daily 4pm-8pm (closed 11, 24-26 Dec). Tickets: Adults £12.50, Children £8, under 5s free. Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, KT8 9AU. Nearest station: Hampton Court (36 minutes from Waterloo). To book, visit the Hampton Court Palace website. 🐻

  • 9 December 2021 : Miracle on Leake Street 2021

A one-off Christmas event comes to the colourful, graffiti-decorated tunnels of Leake Street. Featuring market stalls, free wreath-making workshops, face paint, activations, food and drink, comedy and cabaret teasers of the Vault Festival 2022 and a free screening of Home Alone. From 6pm-9pm. Free entry. Leake Street tunnels, Lambeth, SE1 7NN. Nearest station: Lambeth North or Waterloo. For more information, visit the We Are Waterloo website.

  • 9 December 2021 – 16 January 2022 : The Beatles exhibition @ Shapero Modern

Exhibition of newly-discovered photographs of The Beatles filming A Hard Day’s Night in 1964. Open Mon-Fri: 10am-6pm. Free entry. Shapero Modern, 41-43 Maddox Street, Mayfair, W1S 2PD. Nearest station: Oxford Circus. For more information, visit the Shapero Modern website. Check out Metro Girl’s post for details.

  • Now until 9 January 2022 : Wave @ Greenwich Peninsula

Squidsoup presents an interactive sculptural light installation, offering an audio-visual experience. Open 7pm-10pm. Free entry, but queues expected at busy times. Peninsula Square, Greenwich Peninsula, SE10 0SQ. Nearest station: North Greenwich. For more information, visit the Greenwich Peninsula website. 🐻

Enchanted Eltham lights up the grounds of Eltham Palace

  • 9 – 30 December 2021 : Enchanted Eltham

Late-night opening of Eltham Palace sees the Tudor and Art Deco buildings and gardens dazzle in a show of light, colour and sound. Follow the trail around the gardens. Also including fairground rides and hot food and drink on offer, including a roasting marshmallow pit. Open Thu-Sun 4.30pm-9pm (staggered entry times). Tickets: Adults £14/£16, Children 5-15 yrs £9.50/£11.50. Eltham Palace, Court Yard, Eltham, SE9 5QE. Nearest stations: Eltham or Mottingham. For more information, visit the English Heritage website. 🐻

  • 10 December 2021 : Paper Craft Masterclass – Christmas Card Making

Using images from the British Library’s collections, design and make your own Christmas cards under the guidance of expert Shelagh McCarthy. From 10:30am-4.30pm. Tickets: £65, seniors, students or young people (18-25yrs) £55. Harry M Weinrebe Learning Centre, The British Library, 96 Euston Road, NW1 2DB. Nearest stations: King’s Cross St Pancras or Euston. For booking, visit the British Library website. Read the rest of this entry

National Archives launches 20sPeople events and exhibitions to celebrate release of the 1921 census

The National Archives are hosting special events and activities to mark the publication of the 1921 Census for England and Wales

A century later, the decade of the 1920s continues to fascinate many of us. In between two World Wars, it was a time of great change, with many discovering new freedoms and exploring their creativity following the restrictive constraints of Victorian and Edwardian society. The fashion and architecture of the period remains popular today, with events and parties often opting for 1920s themes.

If you’ve ever wondered what life was like in the 1920s, particularly for your ancestors, the publication of the 1921 Census for England and Wales will answer some of those questions. To celebrate the release of the Census in January 2022, The National Archives are hosting a programme of events and activities, entitled 20sPeople.

The main part of the programme will be The 1920s: Beyond the Roar exhibition. Visitors can explore the decade’s politics, social changes, design and more as they happen upon a series of encounters walking down a typical 1920s street. Using the Archives’ vast collection of records and artefacts, you can find out the truth behind the era’s stereotypes and the turbulence, as women fought for the right to vote and people recovered from the ‘Spanish Flu’ pandemic. The exhibition will take visitors to a newspaper stand, polling station, draper’s shop, and typical 1920s home, before ending in a nightclub. A reimagining of popular Soho nightspot, The 43 club, tells the story of the venue, which was owned by Kate Meyrick and entertained film stars and gangsters of the day.

Along with the exhibition, there will be a series of events (both online and in-person), along with digital activities and access of learning resources. 20sPeople events, such as online talks, audio dramas and webinars on how to research your family history are already taking place from November 2021.

  • The 1920s: Beyond the Roar exhibition runs from 21 January 2022 until TBA. 20sPeople events are on from November 2021 onwards. The National Archives, Kew, TW9 4DU. Nearest station: Kew. For more information, visit the National Archives website.

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