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The best festivals & fairs in London

The best festivals & fairs in London

As one of many world’s nice capitals of leisure, it’s little shock that London performs host to an enormous and numerous variety of festivals and festivals all year long. A vibrant cultural panorama mixed with a cosmopolitan outlook attracts lots of and hundreds of tourists, whereas a inhabitants of over Eight.5 million, together with numerous college students and kids, means there are many artistic minds to assist conceive of such occasions.

A scene from Vault, London’s first annual pageant devoted to comedy and immersive theatre (Photograph: Vault Pageant)

Artists, scientists, musicians, filmmakers and lots of extra will showcase their work and concepts this yr in London; a metropolis that’s famend for internet hosting festivals and festivals that rival anyplace else on the planet. We’ve put collectively our choice of the easiest set to happen from January to June 2018. Hopefully you get an opportunity to attend a minimum of a few of them.


London is understood for its hectic way of life and lengthy working hours, so this well being and wellness pageant is a a lot wanted escape for the group. The goal is to relaxation and rejuvenate for the yr forward, emphasising the relief course of and refocusing on the thoughts and physique. Re:Options has such quite a lot of courses that there’s one thing to attraction to most individuals, whether or not you chill out extra with yoga or by channeling your power into dance courses. Audio system and wellness coaches are a part of the programme, alongside workshops and evenings full of stay music. 

LOCATION Juju’s at The Previous Truman Brewery, 15 Hanbury Road DATES 2-31 January 2019 

London Brief Movie Pageant 

Now in its 16th yr, the London Brief Movie Pageant has established itself as among the best UK and Worldwide movie festivals. From documentaries and fiction to experimental shifting picture artwork, the artistic, cross disciplinary programming runs alongside business occasions to make LSFF prime of each filmmakers’ and movie lovers’ schedules.

LOCATION Numerous Venues DATES 11-20 January 2019

A nonetheless from a London Brief Movie Pageant screening (Photograph: London Brief Movie Pageant)

London Artwork Truthful

The 31st Anniversary of the London Artwork Truthful brings collectively over 100 galleries exhibiting trendy and modern artwork from throughout the globe. The primary truthful will probably be accompanied by two further exhibitions: Photograph50 dedicating its partitions to modern images practices, and Artwork Tasks, which focuses on variety by offering a platform for worldwide galleries.

LOCATION Enterprise Design Centre, 52 Higher Road DATES 16-20 January 2019 

A customer gazes at an exhibit at London Artwork Truthful (Photograph: London Artwork Truthful)

Chinese language New Yr 2019

The London Chinatown Chinese language Affiliation brings within the yr of the pig with this annual occasion, providing London a style of Chinese language tradition. That is the most important parade outdoors of Asia with over 30 groups designing floats for the day’s celebrations. Trafalgar sq. hosts the primary stage with performances from noon and different actions embrace calligraphy, Chinese language music, martial arts performances and dressing up in conventional outfits.

LOCATION Trafalgar Sq. & Chinatown DATES 5 February 2019

Think about Youngsters’s Pageant

An ideal half time period occasion for these with youthful youngsters, Think about Youngsters’s Pageant has over 12 days of fun-filed, action-packed actions, theatre exhibits and authors to entertain and encourage the subsequent era of creatives. The multi-arts programme is created for youngsters from zero – 12 with each free and ticketed occasions masking efficiency, illustration and talks.

LOCATION Southbank Centre DATES 13-24 February 2019

Knitted gadgets at Think about Youngsters’s Pageant (Photograph: Southbank Centre)

Flamenco Pageant

With a season devoted to celebrating flamenco dance and music, this two-week pageant injects the eagerness of the tradition into London. The programme consists of quite a few distinctive exhibits exhibiting movie, dance and music by a few of the world’s greatest flamenco expertise. A real celebration of the historical past and way forward for flamenco, the gala explores its gitano roots and showcases rising expertise who will proceed the traditions of the tradition. Tickets are bought for particular person performances with totally different costs depending on seating decisions.

LOCATION Sadler’s Wells Theatre DATES 14-25 February 2018 

Gin Pageant

The Gin Pageant brings gin from the world over to London, together with chosen uncommon or restricted version bottles. Masterclasses are unfold throughout 4 days, with distillers in attendance, so benefit from the nice environment and reside music by heading to the cocktail bar on your favorite gin based mostly drink. Any gin fanatic wouldn’t need to miss this and tickets are very restricted so ebook prematurely! The occasion has each night and day periods.

LOCATION Tobacco Dock, Wapping Lane, St Katharine’s & Wapping DATES 16-18 February 2019 

Gin Pageant is the unique, largest and greatest UK pageant devoted to the well-known liquor (Photograph: Gin Pageant)

Craft Beer Rising

Final yr, the UK’s largest craft beer pageant bought over 25,000 pints and this yr it seems just like the occasion shall be even higher than earlier than. The 175 breweries attending supply a number of craft beers, ales and ciders, and quite a lot of meals stalls and BBQs hold craft beer fanatics fuelled all day. The unimaginable beers, complimenting worldwide tastes and reside music mix to make this occasion unmissable. Tickets may be purchased prematurely. 

LOCATION The Previous Truman Brewery, 91 Brick Lane DATES 21-23 February 2019

Orchid Pageant

One of many nation’s most-loved crops celebrates its Thai origins and tradition at Kew Gardens’ Orchid Pageant. Escape from the busy streets of London into what looks like one other world with its serenity and exoticness. Floral shows, embellished arches and genuine Thai ephemera embellish the gardens; pleasing extra than simply the attention with excursions, talks and actions that share insights into the endangered flower and its use throughout Thai delicacies, drugs and tradition.

LOCATION Kew Gardens DATES 10 February-11 March 2019

Delicate shows and genuine Thai ephemera function on the Orchid Pageant in Kew Gardens (Photograph: Jeff Eden, RBG Kew)

Ladies of the World Pageant

Celebrating the facility of girls and women the world over, the WOW- Ladies of the World Pageant goals to spotlight equal rights and talk about a posh query: why is gender equality taking so lengthy to realize? Off the again of a yr the place the #metoo marketing campaign reached virtually each business, the WOW pageant is properly positioned to debate modern issues and have fun ladies’s successes. Audio system embrace feminine artists, writers, politicians and activists who’ve been chosen for a programme of talks, live shows, artwork installations, performances, workshops and rather more.

LOCATION Southbank Centre DATES 7-11 March 2019

A panel dialogue at a earlier version of Ladies of the World Pageant (Photograph: Southbank Centre)

Vault Pageant

All for comedy? Or dance? Perhaps theatre or movie are extra your factor? No matter you take pleasure in, Vault Pageant has curated a programme that presents artists throughout disciplines showcasing new concepts. Over eight weeks shows, numerous in each style and themes, seem in bars and venues throughout Waterloo, making this London’s largest arts and comedy pageant. The comedy exhibits will function some this yr’s most highly-anticipated acts with Edinburgh Comedy Award Winners, stand-up heavyweights and TV panel present stars all showcasing new materials.

LOCATION Numerous Venues, Waterloo DATES 24 January-18 March 2019

Chivaree Circus presents Turning into Shades at Vault Pageant (Photograph: Vault Pageant)

St Patrick’s Day Pageant

London’s annual St Patrick’s Day Pageant runs for 3 days, bringing the perfect of Irish meals, music, dance, artwork and tradition to the capital. A one-day parade is on the coronary heart of the pageant, with actions for all ages together with household treasure trails and associate group festivals. Expertise each previous and new movie, poetry and music, the place the environment all the time guarantees to be implausible. Better of all, no tickets are required to take pleasure in any of the weekend’s occasions, so everyone seems to be free to hitch in. 

LOCATION Trafalgar Sq. DATES 16-18 March 2019

Head of the River Race

Be a part of spectators on the banks of the Thames to cheer on over 400 nationwide and worldwide rowing crews over two separate weekends in March. The Thames Championship Course is a Four.25 mile part of the river from Mortlake to Putney, however you don’t have to be rowing to benefit from the race. That is often a well-liked occasion, so arrive in loads of time to select your spot or head to one of many many riverside pubs to see who will win 2019’s fiercely aggressive boat races. 

LOCATION Thames between Mortlake and Putney DATES 16-17 & 30-31 March 2019

Head to the banks of the Thames and hope for sunshine to take pleasure in this yr’s boat race (Photograph: The Head of the River Race)

London Espresso Pageant

Masters of the espresso business host a pageant that mixes espresso and creativity for a weekend, inviting attendees to pattern sufficient espresso to energy them by means of to subsequent yr’s exhibition. Open to everybody from business professionals to people who merely love espresso: reside music, DJs, exhibitions and occasional based mostly cocktails function all through the weekend. Highlights embrace the bottomless tastings of recent espresso, world class baristas and specialists, reside latte artwork and labs demonstrating every part you’ll ever have to know concerning the caffeinated pick-me-up.

LOCATION The Previous Truman Brewery, 15 Hanbury Road DATES 28-31 March 2019

Barbour & Parlour are one in every of many specialists exhibiting on the London Espresso Pageant (Photograph: Hope & Glory PR)


It’s troublesome to sum up what you’ll expertise at Sonica; exhibitions showcase numerous and boundary pushing concepts experimenting with sound based mostly artwork. Sonica launched in Glasgow in 2012 and since then has toured the world over turning into a everlasting biennial occasion in each its native metropolis and London. Put together for all of your senses to be stimulated, as rising and established worldwide artists produce multimedia performances combing music, sonic and visible artwork.

LOCATION Kings Place, 90 York Means, Kings Cross DATES 20-21 April 2019

Cyril Leclerc and Elizabeth Saint-Jalmes’ Sluggish Pixel at Cryptic’s Sonica (Photograph: Courtesy of the Artists)

London Worldwide Ska Pageant

Ska’s origins date again to Jamaican Independence within the early 1960s and since that point the style’s affect has spanned each nook of the world. This Four-day pageant celebrates all issues ska – to not point out its progenies reminiscent of rocksteady, reggae, dub, 2Tone and skapunk – with a few of the world’s most acclaimed performers drawn right here by Londoners’ enduring ardour for ska music. Among the many line-up for 2019 embrace rhythm & blues legend Georgie Fame, Misty In Roots, 2 Tone Data 40th anniversary Thames cruise and rocksteady stars Keith & Tex and Rudy Mills.

LOCATION O2 Academy Islington & Dixie Queen paddle steamer DATES 18-21 April 2019

Crowds collect spherical the person with the mic at London Worldwide Ska Pageant (Photograph: Peggy Golec)

London Marathon

Whether or not collaborating within the race or cheering from the sidelines, the London Marathon attracts hundreds of individuals to the streets of London yearly. Earlier years have seen over 1 / 4 of one million individuals from the UK apply to race, with many elevating cash for charity or attaining private health objectives. For these not operating, the town transforms right into a 26.2 mile road get together. Head to the pub, take pleasure in a drink and perhaps a chew to eat- the social gathering or run, relying which standards you match, will go on all day.

LOCATION Greenwich – Buckingham Palace DATES 28 April 2019 

London Burlesque Pageant

The burlesque, cabaret and selection present returns for an additional yr. Daring and memorable performances make up a programme that’s recognised as some of the prestigious of its sort internationally. Since its debut in 2007, the pageant has constructed on its fame yearly persevering with to draw worldwide audiences of burlesque followers and intrigued newcomers to the style. No matter your information, the pageant is choreographed to astound, entice and entrance; pushing the boundaries of burlesque and the expectations of the viewers.

LOCATION Shaw Theatre, 100-110 Euston Street, Kings Cross DATES April-June 2019


Now in its 10th yr, Alchemy returns to the Southbank Centre celebrating South Asia and its cultural connections to the UK. Over 11 days, the most important pageant of South Asian tradition outdoors of the subcontinent will function the thought scary work and concepts of each British and worldwide artists. Themes of artwork, politics and society are explored by means of its multidisciplinary programme comprised of dance, music, theatre, visible artwork, comedy and literature.

LOCATION Southbank Centre DATES Might 2019  

London Craft Week

A comparatively younger arts pageant, Craft Week creeps into hidden studios and even the Home of Lords to showcase the craft and artistry of tons of of unbiased makers worldwide. Marvel at demonstrations and attend workshops, talks and excursions to find each new practices and revolutionary concepts on conventional craft. London Craft Week is a not-for-profit occasion so anybody can attend to entry new methods and study practices themselves. 

LOCATION Venues throughout London DATES Eight-12 Might 2019

Eleanor Lakelin at Cockpit Arts throughout London Craft Week (Photograph: Alun Callender Images)


With world famend photograph festivals happening throughout Europe, London determined to host its personal to cement its cultural capital standing. Now in its third yr, the truthful provides alternatives to each established artists and galleries and rising photographers, by means of the Discovery part and talks programme. Somerset Home welcomes an viewers of photographers, curators, artwork sellers and exhibitors, in addition to the general public to take pleasure in and have fun the modern photographic medium and its previous.

LOCATION Somerset Home DATES 16-19 Might 2019

MCM Comedian Con

For 3 action-filled days, popular culture fanatics from around the globe collect on the MCM Comedian Con, attending fascinating panel periods, assembly particular visitors and many extra. This extravaganza will see a few of the most artistic costumes and devoted followers immerse themselves in every thing to do with comics, films, gaming, anime, tv and devices.

LOCATION ExCeL London DATES Might 2019

Crowds at MCM Comedian Con (Photograph: MCM Expo Group)

All Factors East

All Factors East is a ten day celebration of music and leisure, encompassing a 3 day music pageant, a group targeted programme and three further headline exhibits. Opening the pageant can be The Chemical Brothers, who will prime a lineup that additionally consists of Scorching Chip, Primal Scream, Spiritualized, Little Dragon and Danny Brown. In the meantime on closing duties can be Bon Iver.

LOCATION Victoria Park DATES 24 Might 25 – 2 June 2019 

Subject Day

This yr Subject Day Pageant will debut at a brand new location; shifting away from its house of 11 years in East London. Referred to as certainly one of London’s greatest music occasions, the pageant additionally hosts road meals stalls and native brewers inside its fields so pageant goers are spoilt for selection when it comes to drink, meals, music and actions. The road up has but to be introduced, however with its reputation constructing and headliners solely getting higher year-on-year, spend money on a ticket now to make certain you don’t miss out.

LOCATION To be introduced DATES June 1-Three, 2018

Aphex Twin performed The Barn on the 2017 version of Area Day (Photograph: Max Miechowski by way of Fanatic Stay)

Mighty Hoopla

Returning to a but to be introduced location in London, this in the future pageant has a popularity for staging extravagant exhibits with the most effective pop and responsible pleasure acts from the world over. Every stage is curated by totally different golf equipment and lots of are returning off the again of an excellent pageant final yr. Promising to be a show-stopping day trip, the power of the viewers is nearly as unmissable because the music; the environment an unfettered celebration of freedom and variety.

LOCATION To be confirmed DATES Eight June 2019

Someday pageant Mighty Hoopla returns (Photograph: Luke Dyson)

Open Backyard Squares Weekend

Rooftop conservatories and metropolis centre plantations open their gates for one weekend this June. Throughout the complete metropolis discover little rural paradises and hidden pure gems, flowering in London’s summer time climate. Bigger public gardens that take part within the occasion additionally host guided walks, household actions, leisure and meals and drinks stalls for friends to take pleasure in, making this the right day trip within the metropolis.

LOCATION Venues throughout London DATES Eight-9 June 2019

Roof Backyard Canary Wharf © Nunzio Prenna (Photograph: Open Backyard Squares)

Stone Free Pageant

Stone Free Pageant is an all day celebration of basic rock, which has beforehand devoted its stage to legends Alice Cooper, Rick Wakeman and the Darkness, to not point out German rockers Scorpions. Happening over two 12-hour days, a lot of the lineup for this comparatively new pageant continues to be to be introduced however, with excessive profile musicians often becoming a member of the invoice, rock followers are suggested to not wait too lengthy to purchase their tickets.

LOCATION 02 Area DATES 16-17 June 2019

Style of London

A lineup of London’s most enjoyable eating places and world class cooks unite for the summer time version of Style. For 5 days, a foodie paradise will evolve in Regent’s Park the place attendees will get the chance to craft their very own cocktails, comply with reside cooking demonstrations and store at over 200 meals and drinks stalls. So, whether or not you determine to attend a lunch or dinner session, your picnic within the park may simply attain new ranges of sophistication and flavour.

LOCATION Regent’s Park DATES November

(Photograph: Style of London)

Nice Exhibition Street Pageant

Imperial School brings its annual Pageant out onto Exhibition Street for a weekend of artwork and science. Collaborations with 20 neighbours throughout the so-called ‘Albertopolis’, together with a few of the world’s most iconic museum’s and establishments, will create a singular pageant fusing artwork, science, know-how and curiosity, invoking the spirit of the primary Nice Exhibition in 1851.

LONDON Exhibition Street, South Kensington DATES 29-30 June 2019

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