London in the Summer: The Plum Guide Top 30 Suggestions

Inspiration and ideas for how to spend the perfect summer's day in London

Hot. Humid. Horrendous. These words perfectly describe London in the height of summer. Well actually, on second thoughts, they sum up the miserable tube ride home, where like an absurd scene from Dante’s Inferno, the Central Line becomes a sweltering hotbox, filled to the brim with the grimaces of red-faced commuters. It is an intense and unhappy sight to say the least, causing you to wistfully dream of coconut trees and a sandy white beach…

Do not despair fellow Londoners. As above the claustrophobic underground, a thriving metropolis awaits with plenty of places for you to cool down during the scorching summer months. So, dear reader, to keep you from running off to the Caribbean, we’ve pulled a list of al fresco ideas together. Thank us later.

1. Walk the tube map

Replace flustered commuters with Magnolia trees and bustling streets. The alternative map calculates the walking distances between tube stations.

2. Jump on a Santander Cycle

Contactless and affordable - simply touch and cycle.

3. Drift along the Thames

Arrive windswept and relaxed with the Thames River bus service.

4. Picnic at Primrose

With panoramic views and luscious green space, Primrose Hill is the perfect spot for a Sunday picnic.

With panoramic views and luscious green space, Primrose Hill is the perfect spot for a summer picnic in London.

Primrose Hill by Charles D P Miller

5. Swim in Hampstead Heath’s Ponds

Join happy topless Londoners frolicking about in the Heath’s ‘women-only’ pond. ‘Male-only’ and gender neutral pools are also waiting to be bathed in, however these ask for your swimming costumes to remain firmly on.

Head to the Hampstead heath ponds to cool off during british summer

Hampstead Heath Ponds by albanhac                              Image by _jasmine

6. Stroll among the dahlias at Holland Park

Spend a day wandering around the Japanese style Kyoto gardens.

7. Head to Frank’s Bar in Peckham

Securing a majestic spot upon a multi-storey car park, Frank’s overlooks London’s iconic skyline and has a shocking pink staircase.

Frank's Bar in London is the perfect spot to have a cocktail while enjoying one of the best view that you can find in London

Frank's Bar by monicahache                                              Image by apdunnphotography

8. Dine at Pergola on the Roof

If you fancy something more upmarket, Pergola’s bespoke restaurants promise a ‘Hampton Hideaway’.

9. Try London in the Sky

Eat gastronomic delights on a table that is suspended 100 feet above London.

Summer in London means bue skies and fresh food, what better place to have them both than the London in the sky restaurant?

London in the Sky by goodthings_uk                                Image by averagejanes

10. Board the Tamesis Dock

Check out a pimped out 1930s Dutch barge, decked with kitsch decor and quirky furniture.

11. Wander to the heart of Hackney

Broadway market champions quirky culinary favourites such as catfish fillet and Whoopie pies.

12. Join The Globe

Witness a mad, naked man run wild on a heath. As well as King Lear, Romeo and Juliet is part of this summer’s line-up.

enojoy a play from shakespeare at the globe and take advantage from the great summer weather to take a stroll down the Thames

The Globe by theatrehd                                                    Image by the_globe

13. Catch the Edinburgh Fringe

Londoners exclusively sneak a preview of the comics at Battersea Arts Centre.

14. Watch a movie en plein air

Wireless headphones, and a director’s chair, what better way to enjoy an old classic? Head to Shoreditch's Queen Hoxton.

15. Unwind with the Secret Yoga Club

Perfect your upward facing cat every Sunday at Dalston Rooftop Park.

16. Catch Wimbledon on the small screen

Bread Street Kitchen gives Murray Mount a run for its money, with its grassy turf and gin-based cocktails served in giant tennis balls.

17. Experience Notting Hill Carnival

Jerk chicken, Reggae dub and kaleidoscopic colours, Notting Hill’s annual event returns in celebration of Caribbean culture.

18. Attend British Summer Time Hyde Park

The Killers, Phil Collins and the King of the Beliebers - Justin Beiber. Expect screaming girls at Hyde Park’s annual event.

Summer means festival, this year British Summer Time's Line up looks incredible

BST Hyde Park by bsthydepark                                        BST 2017 Line up by natasha.murray2014

19. Get involved at Pride Parade

Trafalgar Square is host to many iconic events, including Pride Parade.  

Trafalgar Square turns into a rainbow for the annual pride parade

Pride Parade by GoToVan

20. Compete in a Bubble Football Match

Head down to Whitechapel for a football game where - to make things easier - each player must wear a giant inflatable ball.

21. Play outdoor chess

Take on others at St John’s Gardens’ life-sized chess table.

22. Indulge at Bee Urban

Get up close and personal to bees and their hives, while sipping on some sweet sweet nectar.

23. Take part in a scavenger hunt

The Big Smoke sends you on a race through the sprawling city. You may find yourself driving a London bus or fitting into a dustbin.

24. Visit the Indytute 

Fancy hula hooping or mastering the harmonica? Indyute offers quirky workshops around the city.

25. Be the next Banksy

After touring East London’s graffiti hotspots, create your own street art at London Street Art Workshop.

use you free time during the summer holidays to brush up on your graffiti skills

Bansky's Baloon Girl by sycylka                                       Street Art Workshop by blenderstudios

26. Play at Plonk Hackney

The 9-hole golf course is situated in a Beer-garden, surrounded by tiki huts and colourful flowers.

27. See the city through a lens

Absorb the urban landscape through a camera, Foto Ruta will take you off-the-beaten track.

28. Relax at Camden Beach

Perfect for summer beach bums, Camden has live music, VIP huts and BBQ themed events.

summers equals beach, Camden town has its own just for making summer in London more bereable

Camden Beach by roundhouseldn                                    Image by guidopetronico

29. Wakeboard at WakeupDocklands

Wakeboard on Royal Victoria Dock’s sheltered waves.

30. Experience Sunset Safari

At dusk, watch the animals at ZSL London Zoo be put to bed.   

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