Things To Do This August Bank Holiday Weekend In London: 27-29 August 2022

Looks like this article is a bit old. Be aware that information may have changed since it was published.

All weekend

A costumed dancer at Notting Hill Carnival
It's Notting Hill Carnival weekend!

BANK HOLIDAY WEEKEND: It's a bank holiday weekend (hurrah!) — the last one before Christmas (boo!). If you're lucky enough to have three days off work, make the most of it with our guide to spending the bank holiday in London. Whether you're after cultural days out, new walking routes, something a bit active, or just a new spot to eat and drink, we've got you covered.

CARNIVAL WEEKENDER: Foodie haven Seven Dials Market hosts a Carnival Weekender, with music, dancing and costumes taking over the Covent Garden warehouse all weekend. Sound system Reggae Roast provides the soundtrack, with plenty of feathers, masks and glitter, plus special edition dishes and cocktails from the regular food and drink traders. 26-29 August

NOTTING HILL CARNIVAL: It's the August bank holiday weekend, and that means... Carnival! The first in-person Notting Hill Carnival since 2019 takes over west London's streets, with music, dancing, Caribbean food... and a new eco-friendly twist for 2022. Here's our Notting Hill Carnival guide. FREE, 27-29 August>

FOOD FESTIVAL: Feast your eyes on the surroundings of Hampton Court Palace, and your stomach on goodies from the Hampton Court Palace Food Festival, which is held in the palace gardens. Tuck into street food, browse and buy artisan products including wine, rum, cakes, pastries, coffee and cheese. There's also live music at the bandstand, plus face painting and shire horse rides for kids. 27-29 August

The Jurassic World exhibition is now open

JURASSIC WORLD: "The closest you'll ever come to living dinosaurs" claims the new Jurassic World exhibition, opening in time for the bank holiday weekend at ExCel London. Isla Nubar comes to east London, this experience recreating scenes from the dino-centric film franchise, offering visitors a chance to come face-to-face with life-sized dinosaurs. From 25 August

CAMDEN FRINGE: It's the final weekend of performing arts festival Camden Fringe. Thinking of catching a show or two? How about an improv comedy battle, children's theatre show The Grumble Cat, or heartwarming comedy Mediocre Gay? Browse the full programme. Until 28 August

OUTDOOR CINEMA: An outdoor cinema pops up at Barbican's Sculpture Court, tying in with the final days of Our Time On Earth. Watch Japanese animated fantasy Princess Mononoke on Saturday, or non-linear drama Daughters of the Dust on Sunday. Seating is first come, first served, headphones are provided, and it's recommended that you wrap up warm and bring your own blanket. 23-28 August

EXPLORE AND PLAY: The British Library opens its Family Station, a creative base to entertain the kids. It's normally open one Sunday a month, but is getting an extra airing during the summer holidays. Make the most of interactive activities, sensory materials and a range of children’s books including tactile and braille editions provided, or use the base as somewhere to feed little ones or enjoy a family packed lunch before heading off to explore the rest of the British Library. FREE, 23-28 August

Final weekend of This Bright Land. Photo by Chloe Hashemi. Courtesy of Somerset House.

ROOTED BEINGS: Time's running out to see Wellcome Collection's current exhibition Rooted Beings, which takes a look at our relationship with plants. Browse botanical archives from Wellcome Collection and Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, alongside artworks offering an insight into what we can learn from plant behaviour. FREE, until 29 August

THIS BRIGHT LAND: Had a ride on London's newest ferris wheel yet? This Bright Land at Somerset House is a festival of attractions, talks, performances, workshops and more, celebrating summer in the city — and this is the final weekend to catch it. Until 29 August

SUMMER BY THE RIVER: Live music and an afternoon of dancing are on the programme at Summer by the River this week. The free, open-air festival is open to all, and has food and drink stalls to keep everyone fed, watered and happy. FREE, until 2 September

Summer by the River is almost over for the year

BEYOND BOLLYWOOD: Take a tour of India through the medium of dance at Beyond Bollywood, coming to Sadler's Wells after last being seen in the West End in 2015. The show follows Shaily Shergill as she leaves her German home to venture to India, on a mission to fulfil her mother's dying wish of reviving her family's failing theatre. Kalbelia, Lezim, Bihu, Garba and Kathak are among the Indian dance styles which feature in the show. 24 August-3 September

GREENWICH AND DOCKLANDS INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL: Free outdoor performing arts festival Greenwich and Docklands International Festival is now underway, with two weeks of theatre, art, dance and circus in outdoor locations. Highlights this weekend include a digital artwork recreating many of the Ukrainian mosaics which have been destroyed in the invasion of the country. 26 August-11 September 2022

SUMMER HOLIDAYS: From theatre shows, to museum events, to where to find your nearest playground, boating lake or ice rink, our guide to London in the summer holidays has plenty of ideas for family-friendly days out.

Saturday 27 August

Junction 2 takes over Tobacco Dock. Photo: Kris Humphreys Photography

JUNCTION 2: Underground house and techno music festival Junction 2: Inner City takes over Tobacco Dock for nearly 40 hours of live music across multiple stages. Expect familiar faces and brand new artists — and it's an indoor festival, so no worrying about the weather! 27-28 August

HACKNEY FLEA MARKET: Have a rummage around for bargains at Hackney Flea Market, taking place at Abney Public Hall. 30 different traders are present, selling items ranging from records and homewares to 20th century furniture and lighting. Good luck getting that full-sized armoire home on the tube. 27-28 August

NUTELLA POP-UP: It's the final day of The Happy Portion Parlour, a pop-up restaurant by Nutella in Soho. The cafe's aim is to showcase all the different ways a single portion (15g) of the good stuff can be put to delicious use — pancakes, peach melba and breakfast bruschetta are on the menu, and it's all FREE. 9am-3pm

Last chance to visit the Happy Portion Parlour

VICTORIAN SURGERY: The Old Operating Theatre at London Bridge is the oldest surviving operating theatre in Europe. Today there's a chance toe learn about the surgical procedures which were once performed here nearly 200 years ago, without anaesthesia or antiseptic. Yikes! 10am-11am

HOUSE OF DREAMS: Dulwich's mesmerising House of Dreams occasionally opens its doors to the public — and today is one of those occasions. Step behind the walls of an average house on a regular residential street, and into the mind of artist Stephen Wright. Over many years, he's covered the interior and exterior of his home in, well, everything. Mosaics, dismembered dolls, bottle caps and old teacups are just some of the objects you'll see. Here's an idea of what to expect, from our visit last October. 10am-5pm

GOING SOUTH: As part of London Borough of Culture, Horniman Museum hosts Daytimers: Going South, a live music festival celebrating 21st century Asian music. Head to the bandstand for an afternoon of performances from King Monday, a sound exploration project by Croydon-born artist Sherwyn Appadu, and musicians Mera Bhai and Temujin performing their favourite vinyl tracks from the South Asian subcontinent, among others. Food stalls include Indian food specialist Atcha and Himalayan restaurant Rajiv's Kitchen. FREE, 12pm-6pm

There's an open day at the House of Dreams. Photo: Londonist

MASTER POTTER: The V&A Museum hosts a free screening of Richard Batterham: Master Potter, a documentary about the life and work of revered potter Richard Batterham, who died last year, and is the subject of the current display at the museum. FREE, 2pm-3pm

VICTORIAN VAUXHALL: A traditional Victorian summer fair takes over Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens, for one day only. Victorian Vauxhall features circus acts and performers, acrobats, live music, kids' workshops, a (grounded) hot air balloon, face painting, a carousel, food and drinks stalls... enough to keep the whole family entertained for a couple of hours at least. FREE, 2pm-7pm

QUEER ICONS: For the final weekend of This Bright Land (see above), Somerset House hosts Queer Icons: The Tribute Ball, an open-air vogue ball, honouring and paying tribute to Queer Icons past and present. Performers honour Black transgender activist and drag queen Marsha P. Johnson, musician Freddie Mercury, and French designer Thierry Mugler, among others. 5pm-10.30pm

It's a carnival special at London Cabaret Club

CARNIVAL CABARET:The London Cabaret Club in Bloomsbury Square hosts a Carnival special, featuring live performances from Brazilian Carnival dancers, with salsa, funk, soul and pop music. Tuck into a special Caribbean inspired menu, washed down with a limited-edition rum based cocktail. 6pm

ROSE JOHNSON:After shunning this year's Edinburgh Fringe for the London comedy scene, Rose Johnson performs her debut work-in-progress show at Soho Theatre. It’s about being in your thirties, negativity, Love Island and rats. 7.15pm

COMEDY CABARET: One of north London's most esteemed small comedy venues, Downstairs at the King's Head, is hosting its Comedy Cabaret evening tonight. On the bill are Rick Kiesewetter, Jon Levene, Susan Murray and Nick Wilty — with MC Windsor at the helm. 8.30pm

Sunday 28 August

There's a summer party on the Blackhorse Beer Mile

TROPICAL BRUNCH: As west London gets Caribbean for Carnival, exotic vibes come to Soho in the form 0f 100 Wardour Street's Tropical Brunch. Set against the venue's current Party in the Tropics themed decor, tuck into two or three courses, and optional bottomless Jungle Juice cocktails or prosecco, with a live DJ providing the soundtrack. 12pm-6pm

BLACKHORSE BEER MILE: A walking route through Walthamstow featuring six breweries and taprooms, the Blackhorse Beer Mile goes all out for its summer party today. All venues have live music throughout the day, and you can collect a stamp at each stop to claim your summer party pint glass at the end. There's no set order, with lashings of beer and food available at each location. 12pm-10pm

SILENT DISCO TOUR: Head to Wembley Park for an Icons of Wembley silent disco tour. Find out about the area's musical history, and sing and dance along to tunes by some of the performing legends who've taken to the stage at the stadium and arena over the years. 1pm

Head to The Folly to see West End drag queens in action

DRAG BRUNCH: For an alternative brunch experience, head to The Folly near Monument to experience one of London's beloved drag brunches. The West End Drag Brunch is a chance to see drag queens from the West End stage sashaying and lip-syncing in a more intimate venue, as you tuck into a brunch dish and bottomless cocktails. 1pm-4pm

PINK JUKEBOX: A Ballroom and Latin dance club for members of the LGBTQ+ community and their friends, The Pink Jukebox is back at Bishopsgate Institute. It's open to beginners and more experienced dancers, and starts with classes to get you up to scratch with the steps, followed by a social dancing session. 2pm-7pm

THE SECRET GARDEN: For one night only, The Secret Garden In Concert is at the London Palladium. The Tony award-winning musical, based on the 1911 novel of the same name, brings the story of orphan Mary Lennox and her quest to uncover her deceased aunt's garden to life. 6pm

ANORAK COMEDY: "I can’t remember the last time I laughed this much. A great way to spend your Sunday evening with some friends." So said an audience member of Anorak Comedy recently. And indeed, what better way to spend this long weekend, than by laughing yourself silly at this FREE central London alt-comedy night. (Reserve your seat in advance though). 7.30pm-9.30pm

Bank holiday Monday 29 August

Swingers City celebrates its birthday with free golf

FREE CRAZY GOLF: For one day only, crazy golf venue Swingers City (located near the Gherkin) offers free crazy golf all day to celebrate its 6th birthday. Free slots are allocated on a first come, first served basis, and there's also an exclusive birthday cocktail and half price Perrier Jouet Champagne. FREE, 11am-10pm

PUTNEY & FULHAM: Join Footprints of London guide Daniella King for a walking tour around Putney and Fulham in west London. Follow the path of the Thames as you pass old medieval churches and almshouses, and a palace built for the Bishops of London, as well as hearing about the history of the Boat Races, which come to the area each spring. 12pm-2pm

EARTH QUEST: As Barbican's Our Time On Earth exhibition comes to a close, the venue offers a free Earth Quest activity trail for one day only. It focuses on the role creativity can play in tackling climate issues with 10 interactive installations and activities dotted around the centre. All ages are welcome, but it's been designed with adults in mind. FREE, 1pm-4.30pm

POOCHES AND PINTS: Walthamstow's Truman's Social Club hosts its annual Pooches & Pints Dog Show, raising money for canine charity All Dogs Matter. Sign your dog up in advance to take part, or if you don't have a dog, just turn up and watch others strut their stuff while you enjoy a pint or two. 1.30pm-4pm

DAVE GORMAN: Last chance to catch comedian Dave Gorman's work-in-progress show at The Pleasance in Islington. The new material takes a mischievous look at modern life — and comes with a warning of strong language. 7.30pm

BACH'S MASS: It might be a bank holiday, but the BBC Proms season isn't taking a break. Finish off your weekend with a performance of Bach's Mass in B Minor by the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment — otherwise known as Prom 57 — at the Royal Albert Hall. 7.30pm