The bank holiday is nearly here, and in the spirit of culture and community, here’s what to see and do in London this weekend.
Dance at Notting Hill Carnival: A celebration of all things Caribbean culture, the Notting Hill Carnival is packed with fun, vibrancy and music. Established in 1966, it has drawn crowds ever since and has become Europe’s largest carnival. There will be reggae, ska, R&B and steel bands playing from Saturday 27 to Monday 29 August.
Celebrate community and culture some more: Somerset has transformed its famous courtyard into a wonderland: This Bright Land, and catch it this weekend before it finishes. A range of performances, dance, music, talks and workshops will take place that spotlight both emerging and known creatives. Established by Somerset House Studios artists Gareth Pugh and Carson McColl, the month-long festival is all about togetherness, connections and collaborations. As such, there are bold attractions, including a 35m observation wheel and open-air Vogue Balls (in partnership with Vogue Rites) and parties galore.
Address: Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 1LA
Visit a botanical pop-up: Stop by 72 Rivington Street, Shoreditch and support the UK-based charity Freedom From Torture. Expect a range of interactive talks and workshops focusing on plants and their therapeutic benefits, including terrarium making, an introduction to forest bathing in London, and tips on making the most of your balcony. There’s also a whole host of plants available, from tropical to succulent species, as well as botanical artwork.
Address: 72 Rivington Street, Shoreditch, London, EC2A 3AY
Sip on a margarita at a music festival: Cointreau has teamed up with All Points East to present the Cointreau Margarita Bar. Located next to the festival’s West Stage, Cointreau’s Margarita Bar offers a bespoke menu of Cointreau cocktails, from frozen and fruity margaritas to Cosmopolitans, low-ABV options, and of course, the original margarita.
Running from Thursday 25th August – Sunday 28th August.
Address: Victoria Park, Grove Road, Bow, London, E3 5TB
Enjoy some classical music: Calling all classical music fans, the BBC Proms is back with a crescendo bang! An eight-week celebration offers a plethora of concerts, 84 in total, with the return of international orchestras, such as the newly-formed Ukrainian Freedom Orchestra. Highlights this weekend include the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra with Pekka Kuusisto, Earth Prom, an Organ Recital with Nathan Laube, and the South African Jazz Songbook.
Address: Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, South Kensington, London, SW7 2AP
Eat an ice cream (or 40): The Ice Cream Festival returns to Covent Garden, and yes, there are over 40 varieties to tuck into, from plant-based to classic dairy options. Expect pop-ups in the piazza from Paletartuk, Virtu, Copper Penny Box and Daisy’s Ice Cream, along with tenants Ave Mario, NaNa Café, Sushisamba serving up frozen treats too.
Address: Covent Garden, London, WC2