Summer,  Seasonal,  Things to Do

The 11 Best Things to Do in London in August (2024)

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You might have heard: August is the heart of summer in the UK and Europe. Thanks to their generous PTO policies across the pond, many people take time off to enjoy the amazing weather, long days, and fun activities offered all month long. Whether you also have a generous PTO policy or not, August is a great time to visit London and locals will be there to enjoy it with you.

I’ve been to London in August several times, including the summer I lived there; it can be hot and sticky some days and then tends to cool off as the month wears on and autumn approaches. It’s a great time to visit because you get to enjoy both seasons depending on when you visit – the great weather and abundant sunshine of summer, and the brisk mornings and occasional early-falling leaf that heralds the cooler weather to come.

London in August Hero

If that all sounds great, it’s time to start planning your August trip to London. Below, you’ll find some of the top events and best things to do in London in August; if you’re looking for packing tips for August, I have those too – click here to find them.

This post was originally published in May 2022, and was updated most recently in May 2024.

Camden Fringe (July 29 – August 25)

London in August - Camden Fringe

If you’re the kind of person who loves a good joke, you’ll have a blast at Camden Fringe. Established in 2006, Camden Fringe is a performing arts festival that brings the best comedians to its stages. It hosts numerous shows throughout the day that range from stand-up to sketch comedy to cabaret. Performances last one hour, and the lineup changes every year, welcoming experienced performers, companies, and talented newcomers.

Abbey Road Stories in Sound (August 2-4)

Music lovers know very well that London has an enviable music scene. They also know that the iconic Abbey Road studio is usually closed to the public.

At the beginning of August each year, the studio opens up to the public and hosts an event; in 2024, it’s called Stories in Sound and runs from the 2nd to 4th. This year’s event focuses on the stories of artists who’ve worked in and the art created in the studio, plus features different artist performances to bring the studio to life similar to as it is during the rest of the year.

London Craft Beer Festival (August 9-10)  

London in August - Craft Beer

In case the Great British Beer Festival doesn’t happen this year – or they change the dates out of August, as they haven’t been announced yet – the London Craft Beer Festival is a great chance to sample excellent beer too.

The festival takes place in Tobacco Dock and reunites over 100 breweries from all over the world showcasing their finest craft beers – this year there’ll be around 800 beers to sample! 

Field Day (August 24)

Bring your best dance moves to Field Day, an annual outdoor music festival in London that welcomes the world’s finest DJs. Those who attend 2022’s edition will enjoy listening to The Chemical Brothers, Carl Craig, Otik, and many more! The festival has a capacity of 25,000 attendees, and tickets sell fast. So make sure you purchase them in advance!

FrightFest (August 22-26)

London in August - Frightfest

FrightFest is a five-day film festival held in London and Glasgow. It started in 2000 and is the UK’s premier fantasy, thriller, and horror film festival. 

Famous actors and directors also attend the festival, and visitors can see them before the screening of their movies. The festival hasn’t unveiled its lineup yet, so check out its website to know what movies will be on screen. 

Greenwich+Docklands International Festival (TBA)

London’s largest outdoor arts festival, Greenwich+Docklands International Festival, is an annual event across Royal Greenwich, Docklands, and Tower Hamlets. The festival invites British and international artists who present an extensive program of art installations, street theater, circus, dance acts, and music events.

The 2024 schedule and lineup aren’t announced yet, but here’s what they did in previous years to give you an idea of what to expect: there are theater companies presenting street art performances, like the i-Puppets parade – giant eye robot puppets that stomp down the street. Visitors can also see immersive installations like Borealis inspired by the Northern Lights. Black Victorians, a dance company, delighted the audience with choreographies inspired by often-overlooked Black figures in pre-Windrush Britain.

You’ll find plenty of diversity, making the art installations appeal to children and adults alike. Best of all, the festival is free! 

Eastern Electrics Festival (August 24)  

There’s no better time to explore London’s rave scene than August when the Eastern Electrics Festival takes place. The festival started in the early 00s when East London was dotted with endless disused buildings and bare bones arts venues that eventually gave birth to the authentic underground warehouse party movement that defines the city’s music landscape.

The festival is hosted in Lea Valley Showground and tickets for the 2024 edition are already available!  

Hampton Court Palace Food Festival (August 24-26) 

What better way to enjoy London’s summer weather than with a picnic in Hampton Court Palace? The stunning building hosts the Hampton Court Palace Food Festival, where its grounds become a land filled with the best food in town. There’ll be street food vendors pop-bp bars, and boutique drinks. Those who want to upgrade their culinary skills can attend the drinks masterclasses or the famous Pop-up ProCook Cookery School.

Tickets aren’t available yet, but you can sign up on the website to receive an email once they’re available.

Notting Hill Carnival (August 25-26)

London in August - Notting Hill Carnival

Put on your flashiest clothes and join locals dancing and singing at Notting Hill Carnival. A celebration of Caribbean culture, Notting Hill Carnival takes place in the last days of August in London. 

It’s one of the most colorful events, with steel drum bands and dance troupes invading the city streets with elaborately decorated floats. It started in the mid-1960s and has evolved to become a symbol of London’s diversity and multiculturalism. 

BBC Proms (All Month)

London in the Summer - BBC Proms

The BBC Proms, the world’s biggest and longest-running classical music festival, the BBC Proms is one of the top things to do in August in London. 

Since 1895, the BBC Proms has been a series of concerts lasting eight weeks. The event has held a special place in classical music and British culture. Many people are familiar with the festival’s last day called The Last Night of the Proms, where an orchestra plays popular classics and then British patriotic pieces. 

There’s an enormous demand for the last night tickets, but you can always attend any other concert throughout the month. Most concerts take place in Royal Albert Hall, but the BBC also broadcasts them across the UK on big screens as part of Proms in the Park events.

Kids Week (All Month)

For families traveling to London, I have the best summer deal for you! Kids Week is an initiative by Official London Theatre that allows any child aged 16 or under to attend a show for free at any participating London theater. 

It’s a wonderful opportunity for kids to experience the magic of theater. As a heads up, the initiative allows only one child to go free, but you can buy up to two extra children’s tickets at half price. In 2024, tickets go on sale at 10 am on June 11th, and participating shows will be announced closer to the time.

Other Great Things to Do in London in August

If you still have time to include more activities in your itinerary, here are other lovely things worth doing during August in London. 

  • Book tickets for an open-air hop-on, hop-off bus tour. There’s nothing like sightseeing in sunny and breezy London. 
  • Enjoy soothing paddleboarding sessions in London’s waterways.
  • Explore a different side of the city with a Thames River cruise. There are tons of alternatives: dining, speedboats, afternoon teas, you name it!
  • Grab a delicious cocktail with mouthwatering views in one of London’s rooftop bars.
  • Catch a play at Regent’s Park Open Air Theater. They’ll be putting on Fiddler on the Roof throughout the entire month of August.
  • Have a taste of Royal London by witnessing the Changing of the Guard in Buckingham Palace.
  • Relax over the Bank Holiday weekend (August 29).
  • Spend a sunny day at a London beach sunbathing and watching cruises go by along the Thames. 
  • Have a picnic in one of London’s parks. 
  • Take a stroll along one of London’s beautiful canal walks. It’s also a fantastic way to explore less popular areas of the city. 
  • Refresh yourself with an ice-cold pint of ale in one of London’s historic pubs
  • Enjoy Kew Gardens’ iconic Royal Botanic Garden. The grounds are a feast of color with all the flowers in full bloom!

And there you have it – all the good stuff to do in London in August, and so much more! Have any questions about planning your trip to London in August? Let me know in the comments below!

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Valerie fell in love with London on her first trip to the city way back in 2011. Since then, she spent a year living in London and visits as often as she can (you can find her recent trip recaps here!). She launched LOMM in 2021 to help other travelers fall in love with her favorite city on earth.

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