Things to do in London this Weekend

If you're stuck for things to do in London this weekend, we're here to help.

Whether you're a visitor in town for a couple of days or a local in need of some inspiration, this is where you'll find our pick of weird and wonderful London events every Friday, just in time for the weekend. We'll cover events where you can eat, drink, do something different or get a culture fix all over the city.

Last Updated: August 26, 2015

Things to do in London this weekend: Aug 28 – Aug 31

With the extra long weekend ahead, we’ve got plenty of suggestions for getting the most out of the last summer bank holiday of 2015.

We’ve already put together a list of some of the best August Bank Holiday events – with the Notting Hill Carnival the star of the show.

We’ve also chosen some seaside options, like Brighton and Margate should you want to head out of the city to the coast.

And of course we’ve got some contingency plans should the weather let us down – things to do in London when it rains.

Now read on for more wonderful events over this three-day weekend.

Best for: Drinking in London

BrewFest and Friends

BrewFest

The vibe:

Bank Holiday beers

Need to know:

With more than 180 craft beers on offer, this is the chance for some summer sampling (hopefully in the sun).

This is a real community event, with Greenwich-based Meantime Brewery teaming up with Greenwich Market and local foodies, like The Cheese Truck and MyPie, to bring you a fuller experience in this tranquil park setting.

There will also be live music, a virtual reality brewery and giant board games, to see how your hand-eye coordination copes with a few ales.

Website and Twitter

BrewFest (c) Meantime Brewery

BrewFest (c) Meantime Brewery

When: Saturday, August 29 to Monday, August 31
Opening times: Sat-Sun: 11am to 10pm
Getting there: Greenwich Peninsula, Peninsula Gardens, London SE10 OPE
Nearest Tube: North Greenwich
Price:  £20 – book online in advance. Tickets include a branded glass, wristband, programme and five beer tokens

August Bank Holiday Cider Festival & Hog Roast

August Bank Holiday Cider Festival & Hog Roast (c) The Water Poet

August Bank Holiday Cider Festival & Hog Roast (c) The Water Poet

The vibe:

Cider, cider and more cider

Need to know:

The Water Poet Cider Festival, held in the rustic atmosphere of The Barn, has brought together cider producers from across the country – including Herefordshire’s Abrahalls cider, Hallets from Wales, fruity Annings from the West Country and Thistly Cross from Scotland.

Full on fruit ciders will sit alongside the traditional scrumpy offerings, as well as some carefully, concocted cider cocktails.

Food wise you have the spit roasted hog as well as some Drunken Dairy ice cream pairings (mango and cider anyone?), which can be enjoyed in one of the best beer gardens in London.

Stick around for the sounds of a live steel band from 6pm, bringing a Notting Hill-feel to Shoreditch.

Website and Twitter

August Bank Holiday Cider Festival & Hog Roast (c) The Water Poet

August Bank Holiday Cider Festival & Hog Roast (c) The Water Poet

When: Saturday, August 29 to Monday, August 31
Opening times: 12pm until closing
Getting there: 9-11 Folgate Street, Spitalfields, London, E1 6BX
Nearest Tube: Liverpool Street Station or Shoreditch High Street
Price:  Free entry: Festival pints: £4.50, get £10 hog and pint (with a flyer)

Best for: Art in London

Agatha Christie, Unfinished Portrait

Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie, Unfinished Portrait, a life in photographs at Bankside Gallery (c) The Christie Archive

The vibe:

Investigate for yourself the Queen of Crime

Need to know:

Bank Holiday’s television schedules usually show at least one of Agatha Christies’ most famous detective creations, Hercule Poirot or Miss Marple, but if you want to delve a little deeper into her devious and mischievous mind – check out this new, intimate exhibition at Bankside Gallery.

See the best-selling crime novelist of all time in more relaxed scenes with friends, family and even her beloved dogs, in this photographic showcase

Alongside each image is a first edition of one of her most popular books and there is even a unique Oskar Kokoschka portrait of Christie to view.

If this inspires you, then maybe go try the Agatha Christie Afternoon Tea at Brown’s Hotel. They’re laying on a special spread to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the author’s birth.

Website and Twitter

Agatha Christie, Unfinished Portrait, a life in photographs at Bankside Gallery (c) The Christie Archive

Agatha Christie, Unfinished Portrait, a life in photographs at Bankside Gallery (c) The Christie Archive

When: Wednesday, August 26 to Sunday, September 6
Opening times: 11am to 6pm
Getting there: Bankside Gallery, 48 Hopton Street, London, SE1 9JH
Nearest Tube: Blackfriars
Price:  Free

Heartbeat at Covent Garden

balloon installation

Heartbeat by Charles Petillon at Covent Garden

The vibe:

“Pop” up art

Need to know:

Be one of the first to see French artist, Charles Pétillon’s, incredible art installation featuring 100,000 giant white balloons in the iconic Covent Garden Market space.

Look up in the Grade II listed South Hall of the market to experience the 54m long and 12m wide “Heartbeat” work.

To see more of the artist’s work, visit the temporary gallery on the Piazza (Unit 5, Royal Opera House Arcade), where he has images of other sculptures, in places as diverse as cars, basketball courts and derelict houses.

“The balloon invasions I create are metaphors. Their goal is to change the way in which we see the things we live alongside each day without really noticing them.

With Heartbeat I wanted to represent the Market Building as the beating heart of this area – connecting its past with the present day to allow visitors to re-examine its role at the heart of London’s life” – Charles Pétillon – the artist

Website and Twitter

When: Thursday, August 27 to Sunday, September 27
Opening times: 24-hours-a-day
Getting there: Covent Garden Market, London, WC2E
Nearest Tube: Covent Garden or Leicester Square
Price:  Free

Best for: Learning in London

Curious?

Curious? (c) Kings Cross

Curious? (c) Kings Cross

The vibe:

London’s first festival of knowledge

Need to know:

Want to understand more about the cultural history and science of fear via a 50-meter high base jump? Or maybe learning about the spoken word on a gentle poetry trail might be more your thing.

Either way join the Knowledge Quarter members, including Google, The Guardian, The Francis Crick Institute and the British Library, for two days of live experiments, workshops, pop-up performances and music at this family-friendly event in Kings Cross.

If you need a break from the cerebral activities, visit the Craft Beer Bus or try your own experiments with cocktails.

“Curious? will bring together visitors from the local community and across London to experience the resources, expertise and knowledge of these great institutions over one weekend and we are delighted to work alongside King’s Cross to deliver London’s first festival of knowledge,” – Roly Keating, Chairman of the Knowledge Quarter Board.

Website and Twitter

When: Saturday, August 29 to Sunday, August 30
Opening times: 11am to 5pm
Getting there: Kings Cross, 11 Stable Street, London, N1C 4AB
Nearest Tube: Kings Cross
Price:  Free

Best for: Free festivals in London

Kenya in the Park 2015

Family fun at Kenya in the Park

Family fun at Kenya in the Park

The vibe:

Kenyan culture in the capital

Need to know:

This is the first festival to be held in London, by Kenyans and for Kenyans, and the organisers aim to raise awareness, while having fun, of their culture.

Head down there to see live music & DJs, dancing and a talent and fashion show on the main stage.

There will be plenty of food and drink available, as well as stalls selling African clothing and arts and crafts.

Website and Twitter

Kenya in the Park

When: Saturday, August 29
Opening times: 11am to 8pm
Getting there: .East London Rugby Club, 71 Holland Road, London, E15 3BP
Nearest Tube: West Ham
Price: Free

Essential weekend links

Find more inspiration for things to do in London here and a round up of August Bank Holiday in London.

For all the latest news and travel information, visit the Transport for London website.

If you’re planning on spending more than a day in London, then we have plenty of places to stay.

And finally, remember to check out the weather forecast.