Autumn’s arrived in London and, for visitors to the capital, that appears to mean one thing – heading indoors. But is it necessary to pop into a cosy pub for a pint and hearty roast, an excellent restaurant for fine dining or a museum or gallery? Well, you should certainly try all of those activities, sure; yet there’s so much going in the capital this season, why not give the following a go – irrespective of whether it means you’ll be indoors or outdoors or whether you’ve booked at accommodation in Chelsea London or anywhere else…?
Regent Street Motor Show
(Regent Street/ 3rd November)
The biggest entirely-free motor show in Britain, this event’ll showcase 125 years of motoring history, with hundreds of vehicles on display in the West End’s legendary shopping street. So why not have a gander at the very latest sports cars and motorbikes, in addition to classic motors dating al; the way back to the early 20th Century; plus, enjoy live music, motorbike stunt performances and discover all about today’s low-emission technologies. Perfect for popping along to in the afternoon if you’re staying nearby, such as at the San Domenico House Chelsea London hotel.
London Jazz Festival
(various venues/ 16th-25th November)
Mixing bills of eciting new talent and globally-renowned names from the world of jazz, the 17th iteration of this festival features varied performances; from much-heralded concerts to intimate recitals. Since it began in 1992, this event’s seen everyone from Jools Holland’ Rhythm and Blues Orchestra to the Gipsy Kings and Wayne Shorter to Robert Glasper fill out venues, while composers including George Russell, Carla Bley, Gerald Wilson and Randy Weston have come up with compositions specially for its many diverse gigs.
The Lord Mayor’s Show
(route runs from the Bank of England to Aldwych/ 10th November)
Dating all the way back to the year 1215, the London Lord Mayor’s Procession (now referred to as his/ her annual ‘Show’) has seen the elected dignitary travel from ‘The City’ to Westminster – officially to pledge allegiance to the Crown. These days, the thing’s a great excuse for a firmly family-friendly shindig, the entirely free celebrations mixing modern festivities with traditional pageantry, as the colourful parade travel across the centre of the capital. Indeed, the three-mile-long procession will feature 140 floats, 7,000 performers, the extraordinarily gilded Lord Mayor’s Coach and two giant wicker figures. And that’s not all – because in the late afternoon fireworks’ll light up the sky above the Thames.
(Hyde Park/ 22nd November 2018-6th January 2019)
Back for yet another run up to the yuletide, Hyde Park’s multi-event attraction’ll be home a host of festive fun and activities, including…
- the UK’s largest outdoor ice rink
- the Magical Ice Kingdom’s ‘The Enchanted Forest’, featuring ice-and-snow-made mythical creatures
- ‘Peter Pan on Ice’, performed by world and national championship-level skaters
- A giant observation (Ferris), which towers 60m (200ft) above Hyde Park for a view of London’s perfect panorama
- Backyard Cinema’s ‘The Snowman Experience’, an immersive cinematic show for all the family
- a traditional German Christmas Market, comprising in excess of 200 glorious yuletide goods-toting chalets
- Angels Christmas Market, whose 150 chalets are ideal for arts and crafts souvenirs, as well as trinkets, jewellery and decorations
- A traditional fairground including a carousel, helter-skelter and run-around funhouses, as well as rollercoaster rides for older kids and adults
- Daytime shows like Zippo’s Christmas Circus and the Teletubbies Christmas Show
- Santa Land, where little ones can meet Father Christmas himself ensconced in his grotto (open every day; except Christmas Day).