36 Fantastic Things To Do In London This Month: February 2022

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36 Fantastic Things To Do In London This Month: February 2022

Note: The details below are accurate at time of publication, but could change as the Covid situation evolves. Do check with the venue or organiser for up-to-date info.

The Orchids festival is back at Kew. Photo: Londonist

LGBT+ HISTORY MONTH: February is LGBT+ History Month, with a wealth of events going on all over the country to mark the occasion. From theatre shows to tours, here's our pick of 11 things to do in LGBT+ History Month in London.

LUNAR NEW YEAR: 1 February is Lunar New Year, a huge celebration, and the day when Chinese people welcome the Year of the Tiger. Though London's main parade has been significantly scaled back this year, there are still plenty of ways to celebrate, including special menus and virtual events that you can join in with from home. 1 February

CHOCOLATE AFTERNOON TEA: Farringdon's Chocolate Cocktail Club launches a chocolate afternoon tea this month. Tuck into sandwiches, cakes and sweet treats, washed down with tea, coffee or hot chocolate — or, if you're feeling swish — prosecco or a Chocotini. From 1 February

BOB MARLEY: Saatchi Gallery opens an exhibition about the life and work of Jamaican musician Bob Marley. Music, memorabilia, fan art and previously unseen photos feature, including some which highlight Marley's connections to London. 2 February-18 April

The Chocolate Cocktail Club launches a new afternoon tea

ENFIELD WINTER LIGHTS: Just when you thought light festival season was over, Enfield throws its hat into the ring. Enfield Winter Lights takes place at locations across the north London borough for five weeks, with installations to see and creative workshops to take part in. 3 February-9 March

CYRANO DE BERGERAC: For a limited five-week run, James McAvoy stars in Cyrano de Bergerac, reprising the role he first played in 2019. Head to Harold Pinter Theatre to watch the story of Cyrano, who almost has it all — if only he could win the heart of his true love. 3 February-12 March

VAN GOGH: The newly-refurbished Courtauld Gallery at Somerset House turns its attention to Dutch painter Van Gogh, with specific focus on his self portraits. From the Courtauld's own collection, Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear is the centre of the exhibition, with more than 15 other works also on show. 3 February-8 May

ARDAL O'HANLON: Whether you know him from Father Ted or Death In Paradise, there's no doubt that Ardal O'Hanlon is one highly amusing chap. Catch him at his witty best as he headlines a comedy night at Islington's Union Chapel. Sindhu Vee and Ivo Graham also appear, with John Robins hosting. 5 February

Catch Ardal O' Hanlon at Union Chapel

KEW ORCHIDS FESTIVAL: You know spring is on its way when the Orchid Festival returns to Kew Gardens. 2021 was supposed to be Costa Rica's turn in the spotlight but, well, y'know... so it was postponed until this year. With monkeys, sea turtles and other Costa Rican wildlife sculpted from the flowers — plus the usual floral arches and installation — it'll be worth the wait. Oh, and while you're at Kew, the International Garden Photographer of the Year exhibition runs on the same dates. 5 February-6 March

SIX NATIONS: England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, France and Italy go head-to-head once again in the Six Nations rugby tournament. Whoever you're cheering on, here's where you can watch Six Nations in London. 5 February-19 March

BRYONY GORDON: Her past talks have sold out, so be quick if you want tickets to see journalist and author Bryony Gordon speaking about her new book, No Such Thing As Normal. The event's at Ally Pally, and Gordon discusses mental health and offers practical advice for issues such as sleep, addiction and worry. 6 February

The Kew Gardens Orchid Festival is back. Photo: Londonist

GUN SALUTES: The anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's accession to the throne is usually marked with two different gun salutes, totalling 103 big bangs (or 'rounds', if you want to be proper about it). 41 rounds are fired in Green Park at noon (a standard 21 round salute, plus an extra 20 rounds because of the Royal Park location). That's usually followed by a whopping 62 round salute at the Tower of London at 1pm (that's the standard 20 rounds, plus 21 because the Tower is a Royal Palace, plus 21 more on behalf of the City of London... wait, are we sure they're not just making this up?). Oh, and these things never happen on a Sunday, so although Accession Day is 6 February, this year's salute is on 7 February

IMAGINE CHILDREN'S FESTIVAL: It's February half term, which means Southbank Centre's Imagine Children's Festival is back, celebrating all facets of children's literature. The programme is packed, catering to all ages and budgets, but stand-out events include appearances by authors Julia Donaldson, Michael Rosen, and Jacqueline Wilson. 9-20 February

LOUISE BOURGEOIS: One of our picks of exhibitions to look forward to in 2022, Hayward Gallery hosts a retrospective of Louise Bourgeois' work, using fabric and textiles. She used everyday domestic items like bed linen and napkins, to cover the themes of identity and sexuality, trauma and memory, guilt and reparation. 9 February-15 May

women in white uniforms being taught by a male chef in chef's hat
Legacies: London Transport's Caribbean Workforce is a new, must-see exhibition. © TfL

CARIBBEAN LEGACIES: The 6,000-odd Caribbean people directly recruited by London Transport in the 1950s-70s are the subject of Legacies: London Transport’s Caribbean Workforce. Stories — both positive and negative — are told through first-hand accounts, as you're invited to explore the legacies that live on across London's transport network, the city and Britain as a whole. 11 February-summer 2024

JENNY ECLAIR: Comedian Jenny Eclair's latest show tackles the latest milestone in her life — turning 60 (she's actually 61 now, but Covid delayed her tour). Dubbing herself 'the face of Vagisan' she debates whether the big 6-0 is reason for celebration or despair as she takes to the stage at Southbank Centre. 11 February

STRICTLY COME DANCING: If you were glued to the latest series of Strictly when it was on TV, catch the live show as the Strictly Come Dancing tour comes to The O2. Past contestants including Sara Davies, Max George, Maisie Smith, Tilly Ramsay, Rhys Stephenson, John Whaite and 2021 winner Rose Ayling-Ellis are all taking part. 11-13 February

LONDON MOTORCYCLE SHOW: Start your engine for the London Motorcycle Show, wheeling into town for three days. See the latest bikes, kit and accessories — and this year's there's a special tribute to Valentino Rossi too. 11-13 February

ZSL London Zoo features in our suggestions of things to do in half term. (c) ZSL London Zoo

HALF TERM: Need ways to keep the kids entertained while school's out? How does ice skating, pretending to be a vet, learning about cats and dogs, viewing wildlife photos, or taking a trip to the real Hundred Acre Wood sound? We've covered all that and more in our guide to things to do in London in half term. 12-20 February

BEATRIX POTTER: The V&A is apparently home to the largest collection of Beatrix Potter's letters and photos anywhere in the world, so it's about time it housed an exhibition about the beloved author and illustrator. Find out how her work as a conservationist and scientist inspired the animal characters we know and love. (And get warmed up with a tour of the London locations linked to Beatrix Potter.) From 12 February

LONDON WINTER RUN: Up for a physical challenge? Sign up for the London Winter Run, and power through a 10K, traffic-free route around London, raising money for Cancer Research UK. Not much of a runner? Line the route on the day and cheer the fundraisers on. 13 February

The V&A launches an exhibition dedicated to Beatrix Potter. Image courtesy of Frederick Warne & Co.

SUPER BOWL: 13 February is Super Bowl Sunday, when two of America's best NFL teams face off against each other (with a bangin' line-up for the half-time show, we might add). Assuming you're not jetting off to California to watch it in person, here's a guide to Super Bowl screenings and parties in London. It runs into the early hours, so consider booking Monday off work now. 13 February

VALENTINE'S DAY: Looking for ways to woo your significant other this Valentine's Day? Try one of London's romantic days out, or visit one of these romantic restaurants. London's full of romance and love-themed events, but they're not just for couples — there's plenty to get up to on and around 14 February, whether you're with a date, mates or flying solo. 14 February

ETERNALISING ART HISTORY: In what's bound to be something of a Marmite exhibition, six Italian masterpieces by the likes of Da Vinci and Caravaggio go on display in London — except they're digital reproductions, rather than the real thing. Is is the same as seeing the real work in the flesh? That's up to you to decide. 15 February-19 March

STONEHENGE: One of 2022's most anticipated exhibitions opens at the British Museum, focusing on Stonehenge. Get the lowdown on the world-famous Wiltshire stone circle, the folklore behind it, the people who created it, and why they did it. 17 February-17 July

The Vikings are coming to Fulham Palace

LONDON FASHION WEEK: At the time of writing, London Fashion Week events are hanging in the balance due to you-know-what. Keep an eye on the website closer to the time to see what's going ahead, and for details of events that are open to the general public, rather than just the Anna Wintours of this world. 18-22 February

VIKING DAY: Horned helmets* at the ready for Viking Day at Fulham Palace. The family-friendly event delves into the history of the area — were there ever Vikings on the site of the modern-day palace? (*Yes, we know they didn't really wear horned helmets.) 20 February

SURREALISM BEYOND BORDERS: In its latest exhibition, Tate shows us that Surrealism is a truly global phenomenon. The show spans 80 years and 50 countries, ranging from Prague to Cairo, Buenos Aires to Tokyo, highlighting the stories of artists inspiring one another across borders. 24 February-29 August

Time to dust that costume off (a tux maybe?) for London Comic Con

COMIC CON: It's been a while, but it's time to dust that costume off as London Comic Con returns. Doctor Who's Jodie Whittaker, Game of Thrones' Leigh Gill and Bob Elmore from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre are among the famous faces scheduled to appear. 26-27 February

JEWISH BOOK WEEK: More than 70 events are on the impressive Jewish Book Week programme, covering topics as diverse as ghosts, music, vaccines and Margaret Thatcher. The festival celebrates the work of Jewish authors, many of whom appear at events, and addresses issues which affect Jewish people. 26 February-6 March

SNOWDROPS: January and February are prime snowdrop time, so keep an eye out for the delicate white floor as you wander around London. If you're really keen to get a peep, consult our guide to the best places to see snowdrops in the capital.

Last chance to skate at Ice Rink Canary Wharf

LAST CHANCE: A few things are closing this month too. It's your last chance to see:

  • LATE CONSTABLE: The Royal Academy exhibits works which showcase the free and expressive brushwork which defined painter John Constable's late career. Until 13 February
  • ELIZABETH AND MARY: The British Library examines the relationship between royal cousins and rival queens, Elizabeth and Mary, displaying correspondence between the two throughout their turbulent relationship. Until 20 February
  • PERU: See thousands of years of Peruvian civilisation depicted at the British Museum. Over 120 objects are on display, showing there's more to this country's history than just the Inca people. Until 20 February
  • CANARY WHARF ICE RINK: The last of London's seasonal ice rinks stays open until the end of February, to make the most of the half term visitors.  Until 26 February
  • BATTERSEA LIGHTS: As Enfield Winter Lights (above) begins, Battersea Light Festival comes to a close. But you've still got most of February to see the six illuminated artworks dotted around the Battersea Power Station area. Until 27 February

Last Updated 28 February 2022