Awesome in August: London highlights this August Bank Holiday

Carnival Participants
Carnival Participants

For many visitors to the UK capital at this time of year, should their visit coincide with the August Bank Holiday (25th-27th August), by far the attraction that proves the biggest pull is the Notting Hill Carnival, which winds its way down the streets of West London. Yet, let’s be honest, that’s a little obvious really, isn’t it? What about the lesser known, more (ahem) choice things to do this upcoming bank holiday weekend…?

Pergola Paddington

(5 Kingdom Street W2 6PY)

A hidden-away venue in the Paddington area of the capital (and so within considerably easy reach of centrally-located accommodation like the San Domenico House hotel London United Kingdom) that’s brimming with fabulous foliage and paradisal greenery, this outdoor but covered, highly fashionable food court that can seat up to 850 people is back for another summer. Offering up four separate food outlets and boasting seven comfortable day-beds, its top-deck terrace is perfect for soaking in the city’s summer vibes and catching the sun’s rays – should the weather be fine for the August Bank Holiday weekend, that is (a big *but* when it comes a bank holiday weekend in Britain!). Overall, though, it’s a two-floor space that pairs burger specialists Patty & Bun and Mexican street food servers DF Mexico with shredded duck eatery Canard and MAM, the masters of Vietnamese barbecue cuisine. For a lazy day of repose spent in the sun, what could be better?

Underbelly Festival

(Jubilee Gardens, Belvedere Road SE1 8XX/ 6th April-30th September)

This family-friendly, vibrant and wonderfully quirky multi-arts festival has been running for several summers on the South Bank and, don’t doubt it, 2018’s incarnation most definitely doesn’t let the side down. Located roughly between the London Eye beside Westminster Bridge and the Southbank Centre near Waterloo Bridge, Underbelly’s actually celebrating its first decade this year and, as such, is over-spilling with goodies – a programme of awesome yet affordable comedy acts, circus shows, cabaret spots and children’s events and showcases.

To be specific, there’s the residency of Circus Abyssinia, presenting the London premiere of its brand new show Ethiopian Dreams; high-wire acts courtesy of Circolombia and funnies from Austentatious: An Improvised Jane Austen Novel, in addition to famous names like ventriloquist-cum-comedian Nina Conti and stand-up James Acaster and the very different too, such as the exhibit ‘The Thinking Drinkers: History of Alcohol’ or ‘Festival and the Spoken Nerd: You Can’t Polish A Nerd’.

Zip Now London

(Archbishop’s Park, Lambeth Palace Road SE1 7JY/ 22nd May-4th September)

Finally, if relying on yourself for entertainment rather than others is your kind of heaven this Bank Holiday, then what better than trying out something that’s all about high-energy and, perhaps, facing down a fear or two? Yes, ideal for adrenaline junkies, Zip Now London (located just across the Thames from many of the best boutique hotels in London) enables peeps to ride the fastest zip wire they’ll find anywhere in the capital at 50kmh and 100 feet above tera firma – and enabling a trio of them doing it side-by-side to boot! Additionally, there’s the ‘Mega Drop’ option; what’s this? Well, it enables you to freefall your way to Earth, of course (entirely safely, though; don’t worry!). Note: the minimum age for entry to and participation in this attraction is eight-years-old and those 15 and under must be accompanied by an adult.