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summer-events-header - Essential Living

Summer Events in London for Your Radar

Blog London Lifestyle
16.06.27

London: a capital of culture and a city alive with festivals and events. This summer the metropolis is overflowing with things to do, so your calendar should always be busy.

Enjoy the hot days ahead by dancing through the night at one of the many music festivals, strolling through the city’s beloved heritage sites, cheering in the crowd at a sporting event, or immersing yourself in theatre and art performances.

From North London to South London, and everywhere in between, here are just a few of London’s best summer events.

Greenwich & Docklands International Festival

(Friday 24th June to Saturday 2nd July)

Greenwich and its surrounding areas light up in June and July for the Greenwich & Docklands International Festival, with a marvellous collection of outdoor theatre, dance and digital art performances.

Opening the festival on Friday 24th June, a specially commissioned digital projection spectacle will take place outside the National Maritime Museum, hailing the 400th anniversary of the Queen’s House. The festival will close on Saturday 2nd July, with the tremendous sound of drums and an eclectic firework display led by Les Commandos Percu and Deabru Beltzak.

For more information visit www.festival.org

Art Night 2016

(Saturday 2nd July 2016)

London’s newest summer festival comes in the form of Art Night, a contemporary feature that stretches into the early hours. The one-night event is set to take place across ten separate venues in central London, including Somerset House and the disused Jubilee Line platform of Charing Cross.

Bathed in mystery, each individual location will have its own installation, artwork display or performance. Many talented artists are joining together to collate unusual works that challenge the norm, including a cycle of performance sculptures that takes a deeper look at anti-aging, and a masquerade performance that plays with gender boundaries.

For more information visit www.ica.org.uk

400th Anniversary of the Queen’s House

(Ongoing from Monday 4th July)

2016 is a year full of royal celebrations, with the Queen celebrating her 90th birthday in June and the Queen’s House reopening its doors to the public for its 400th anniversary, on Monday 4th July. Having been closed for refurbishment since the previous July, you will now be able to visit the historic 17th-century royal villa.

Wander the marble floors and magnificent rooms, designed by architect Inigo Jones, and view the impressive art collection, which includes portraits of famous maritime figures, exotic depictions from Captain Cook’s explorations, and acclaimed pieces by Hogarth and Gainsborough.

For more information visit www.rmg.co.uk

Bastille Festival

(Sunday 10th July)

Get into the French spirit on Sunday, 10th July with Bastille Festival, London’s largest Bastille Day celebrations in Bankside.

With such a great French community of traders in Borough Market, Bastille Day is quite a cause for celebration in the area. The Market will be full of joie de vivre as, for the ninth year running, the venue is hosting a free festival to celebrate the fabulous Fête Nationale, along with Better Bankside and Français Du Monde.

Why the 10th? The French national day falls on a Thursday, so to ensure the whole day is dedicated to celebrating all things Français, there will be festivities in and around the historic food market in Bankside from 12pm – 8pm.

For more information visit www.visitbankside.com

RHS Hampton Court Flower Show

(Tuesday 5th to Sunday 10th July)

In true British tradition, the RHS Hampton Court Flower Show bursts into bloom this summer, from Tuesday 5th to Sunday 10th July. Enjoy the best of British gardening with imaginative floral displays and features, and choose from a wide selection of fine dining and picnic menus, all prepared with local produce.

Last year’s show was an ode to the favourite British pastime, afternoon tea, whilst this year is taking on a more tropical theme. Visitors can meander through a specially created Butterfly Dome, filled with exotic butterflies from South America and Indonesia. A wild garden has also been announced to encourage British butterflies, bumblebees and other insects to thrive – many of which have been declining in numbers over the past few years.

For more information visit www.rhs.org.uk

Summer Series at Somerset House

(Thursday 7th to Sunday 17th July)

You know it’s summer when Somerset House opens its grounds for a special compilation of open-air gigs. The beautiful eighteenth-century courtyard venue oozes the kind of lively yet sophisticated atmosphere that you’re unlikely to find at a traditional music festival or live music night.

This year James Morrison, St Germain and Laura Mvula, among others, will take to the stage, providing all of the best music to let you party under the London stars. The series runs from Thursday 7th to Sunday 17th July, with performances taking place on the majority of days.

For more information visit www.somersethouse.org.uk

London Anniversary Games

(Friday 22nd to Saturday 23rd July)

It seems like London was alive with sporting success at the Olympics only yesterday, but the excitement isn’t all over. To kick-start the Rio Olympics later this year, Olympic Park is filling up with world-class athletes once more, for two days of the London Anniversary Games on Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd July.

With all the same track-and-field events, audiences can cheer on their favourite Olympians and Paralympic stars, including world-record holder Usain Bolt, as well as David Weir and Hannah Cockroft. The IPS Grand Prix Final will also be incorporated into the Saturday programme.

For more information visit www.britishathletics.org.uk

South West Four

(Saturday 27th to Sunday 28th August)

Bringing you your soundtrack to the summer, you can expect to see all of the best DJs and dance acts at dance festival SW4 (Saturday 27th to Sunday 28th August). London’s equivalent of long Ibiza club nights, SW4 has pushed the limits this year, with a phenomenal line-up – securing Rudimental, The Chemical Brothers, Dizzee Rascal, and Four Tet, all of whom are titans of dance and house.

All the stages at Clapham Common cover the best in the industry, from electro and EDM to techno and house. Dance well into the night and welcome in the summer.

For more information visit www.southwestfour.com

Notting Hill Carnival

(Sunday 28th to Monday 29th August)

It’s an enormous credit to London that Notting Hill Carnival has now grown to become Europe’s largest and most impressive street festival. Dating back to the mid-’60s, the carnival has been enriched throughout history to boast a selection of fantastical and vibrant floats and costumes.

The parade is a kaleidoscope of colour and sound, with mas and pan bands, calypso musicians, Afro-Caribbean dancing and masquerade. It’s the perfect opportunity to experience the tropical culture and lifestyle, as well as sample some traditional Caribbean dishes, including jerk chicken, fried plantain and goat curry (or “curry goat”, as it’s referred to colloquially).

For more information visit www.thenottinghillcarnival.com

Totally Thames 2016

(Thursday 1st to Friday 30th September)

There’s much more to the Thames than most rivers. The iconic London waterway was the spot for a floating Airbnb house in 2015, and the location of key scenes in major blockbusters such as Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and a few James Bond films.

For the whole of September though, the river is having its own celebration. Totally Thames will include a whole host of river-related events, from art and live music to themed walking tours and boating races.

For more information visit www.totallythames.org

What event will you be getting tickets for this summer? Let us know @EssLiving.

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