30 Cultural Things To Do In London This Month: November 2019

Laura Reynolds
By Laura Reynolds Last edited 6 months ago

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30 Cultural Things To Do In London This Month: November 2019
King Tut's in town

HARRY POTTER: Calling all Potterheads! Watch Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire — the fourth film in the wizarding series — on the large screen at the Royal Albert Hall, accompanied by a live soundtrack performed by the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra. 1-3 November

MOTOR SHOW: Regent Street shuts to traffic for the day to make way for... more cars. The Royal Automobile Club's Regent Street Motor Show showcases vehicles dating back 125 years, including vintage, veteran and classic motors, as well as some rather swish modern-day motors. Ogle the cars, chat to their owners, and enjoy other free entertainment on the world-famous shopping street. 2 November

Watch Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire in concert

MIRRORS: Hackney favourite Mirrors festival relocates to Camden's Roundhouse this year, with various musicians performing across five different stages in the local area. The festival describes itself as "a live music event dedicated to forward-thinking sounds and placing a strong focus on audience experience". Headliners this year include Phoebe Bridgers, American Football, Turnover and Sheer Mag. 2 November

TUTANKHAMUN: The largest collection of King Tutankhamun's treasures ever to travel out of Egypt, comes to Chelsea for a whopping exhibition. Over 150 original artefacts from the Golden Pharaoh's dazzling tomb go on display, including an ornate gilded shrine. When the exhibition tour is over, the treasures will return to Egypt for good, so see them while you can — book ahead, this exhibition will be popular. From 2 November

See all manner of classic cars at the Regent Street Motor Show

DIWALI IN LONDON: Diwali falls on 27 October this year, with a range of special events and menus celebrating the festival of light. London's biggest event is Diwali in London, a huge free festival in Trafalgar Square, with live music, dance performances, workshops and food stalls. It's family-friendly, and everyone's welcome. 3 November

BONFIRE AND FIREWORKS NIGHT: Remember, remember, 5 November... although this year, London's firework displays begin as early as 1 November, and continue until 10 November. Find your nearest display, book a ticket, and get ready to watch the whizzbangs fly. until 5 November

Alexandra Palace hosts one of London's best fireworks nights

ART & ANTIQUES: Dealers from across the UK descend on Olympia for the Winter Art & Antiques Fair, a six-day event showcasing (and selling) rare and one-off pieces, with a focus on British craftsmanship. Speakers from leading museums and institutions headline a programme of talks, and experienced dealers are on hand to offer expertise to guide your purchase. 5-10 November

UK JEWISH FILM FEST: The 23rd edition of UK Jewish Film Festival takes place at venues across London, with 96 films, plus Q&As and discussions, making it the largest Jewish film festival programme in the world. 6-21 November

LUXURY TRAVEL FAIR: If the chilly mornings and dark nights have got you dreaming of warmer climes, head to The Luxury Travel Fair to plan your next holiday. Curated by Condé Nast Traveller, the event brings together experts and brands from the luxury travel industry. Hear free talks from celebrity guests and travel industry insiders, and chat to representatives from hotels and resorts from all over the world. 7-10 November

Get some holiday inspo at the Luxury Travel Fair

STYLIST LIVE LUXE: Lifestyle publication Stylist hosts a 'festival of inspiration' at new Greenwich event space Magazine London. Stylist Live Luxe consists of talks by a range of guests, celebrity interviews, catwalk shows, a shopping market and other entertainment. 8-10 November

LORD MAYOR'S SHOW: A three-mile long parade procession is just part of the pomp and pageantry of the Lord Mayor's Show, an event which dates back to 1215, celebrating the election of a new Lord Mayor for the City of London. Full details on this year's Lord Mayor's Show are in our guide, including where to watch it, and where to find the special festival zones set up around the City. 9 November

Watch the pomp and pageantry of the Lord Mayor's Show. Image: Shutterstock

WILL SELF: See Will Self live on stage as he launches his new memoir, Will. The well-respected writer opens up about his drug addiction in the 1980s, and his attempts to get to grips with life as a young adult. 9 November

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS: Let there be light! London's Christmas lights are switched on from mid-November, at a series of ceremonies and special events. It's Covent Garden on 12 November, and Regent Street on 14 November. Keep an eye on our Christmas lights guide for further details when they're announced. From mid-November

Keep an eye on our guide to when London's Christmas lights are switched on

LONDON CALLING: Museum of London marks 40 years since the release of London Calling with an exhibition dedicated to punk band The Clash. Paul Simonon's bass guitar — smashed on stage in 1979, in a moment caught on camera and later used as the album cover — and one of Joe Strummer's lyric notebooks feature. From 15 November

An exhibition dedicated to The Clash opens at Museum of London

LONDON JAZZ FESTIVAL: Bring on the trumpets for the EFG London Jazz Festival. Across nine days, a seriously impressive line-up of gigs and talks take place at venues around the capital, aimed at both serious jazz fans and those new to the genre. Several shows are free, too. 15-24 November

ENCHANTED WOODLAND: An incandescent light trail through a woodland in west London — sounds festive, right? Syon Park's Enchanted Woodland is back again for selected evenings in November and December, offering a mile-long trail through 400 different species of tree, illuminated with floodlights, lasers and other special effects. 15 November-1 December

Take a stroll through London's Enchanted Woodland

THE BOSS ON ICE: Whether you were born to run skate, or can't manage a lap or a rink, all Bruce Springsteen fans are invited to The Boss on Ice, an afternoon of skating to a soundtrack of Springsteen songs. Take to the ice at Alexandra Palace's rink to tunes such as Glory Days and Born in the USA, with a bar open throughout. 17 November

CHRISTMAS FOOD: If you can't wait to get stuck into mulled wine and minces pies, Eat & Drink Christmas Festival is the place for you. It runs parallel to the Ideal Home Show at Olympia London — tickets for the latter include access to the former. Browse stalls from all manner of food producers and stock up for Christmas gifts, or for your own festive treats. 20-24 November

For us, Christmas officially begins when Christmas at Kew opens

SNOW PATROL: 10 years almost to the day after they first took to the stage at the Royal Albert Hall, Snow Patrol are back for two special gigs, playing reimagined versions of tracks from their back catalogue (we have a very strong suspicion you'll hear Chasing Cars at some point in the evening). Songs from their forthcoming album Reworked also feature. 20 November (and 5 December)

CHRISTMAS AT KEW: We've said it before, we'll say it again — Christmas At Kew is one of our absolute favourite events of the year in London, every single year. The festive light trail winds through the botanical gardens after dark, showing it in a whole new light. Specifics vary every year, but past years have involved a light tunnel, fire garden, floating flotilla and grand holographic finale. If you haven't got tickets yet, book soon — it's a sell-out every year. 20 November-5 January

Get stuck into the festive edition of Taste of London

LITTLE MIX: Following on from sold-out dates earlier in the month, all-female band Little Mix return to The O2 for two more tour dates. The superstar quartet perform songs from their brand new album LM5, alongside their greatest hits. 21-22 November

TASTE OF LONDON: Tobacco Dock gets a festive makeover when Taste of London cooks up a seasonal storm. The winter food festival brings together 20+ of the capital's restaurants, serving up their signature dishes, and special new recipes available exclusively at Taste. Centrepiece is a huge firepit, where chefs whip up dishes live in front of you. Activities on offer include cocktail workshops, cheese making and wine tasting. 21-24 November

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland returns

WINTER WONDERLAND: Yep, it's that time of year again. A whole corner of Hyde Park is given away to free entry Christmas festival Winter Wonderland. The huge event packs in funfair rides, Christmas markets, bars, food and drink stalls, an ice rink, theatre shows and much more — so although it's free entry, it's easy to part with a pretty penny once you're inside. It gets very busy at weekends and close to Christmas, so visit on a weekday or early in the season if you can. From 21 November

CARS: The V&A'S latest blockbuster looks back over the 130-year history of cars, exploring how the vehicles themselves have changed in that time, and how they in turn have changed the world we live in. Highlights include historic and futuristic vehicles, and car advertising posters. From 23 November

HANS ZIMMER: The O2 Arena hosts a tribute to the work of Hans Zimmer, presenting  the composer’s works arranged for a live symphony orchestra for the very first time. Listen out for tunes from The Lion King, Gladiator, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Da Vinci Code, The Dark Knight, Inception and Interstellar. 26 November

See SquidSoup's new installation in Eccleston Yards

THANKSGIVING: Traditional American holiday Thanksgiving is becoming increasingly popular here in the UK. Whether you're a homesick American ex-pat, or a Brit looking to find out what all the fuss is about, take a look at our guide to special Thanksgiving menus and events. 28 November

CHAMPIONS TENNIS: The thwacking of a tennis ball isn't solely for the courts of Wimbledon in summer. Champions Tennis brings together Grand Slam champions, former world number 1s and other prominent tennis players for an entertaining showcase of top-notch tennis. Martina Hingis, David Ferrer Tim Henman, Goran Ivanišević, Tommy Haas and Mansour Bahrami are among the players appearing this year. 28 November-1 December

SQUIDSOUP: You may know Squidsoup from their trippy installation at Canary Wharf Winter Lights 2019. Now the artist group returns to London with a similar installation, Wave. 500 individual light orbs, based on the principles of chromotherapy, hang in Eccleston Yards in Belgravia over Christmas, and are completely free to visit. 28 November-11 January

It's time to take to the ice

ICE SKATING: Get your skates on! London's first winter ice rink — located at Natural History Museum — opens in October, with plenty of others following suit throughout November. Somerset House even offers some special 24-hour openings this year. Here's our full winter ice skating guide.

CHRISTMAS MARKETS: London's Christmas markets and fairs begin throughout he month, giving keen beans a chance to get their Christmas shopping sorted nice and early. Take a look at our guide to the most festive markets in London this year.

Last Updated 15 October 2019