This article – the Best Things To Do In London in July 2021 was updated in January 2020
There is no more magical time than July in London. Gardens, parks and squares burst into life, carnivals and parades bring colour to the city’s streets, and a plethora of top quality sporting events bring the world’s best sports people to the capital.
There’s fun in the sun at London’s rooftop bars, outdoor cinema in a variety of locations, and world class live music in the royal parks. The Pride in London Parade fills the streets with music and dancing in early July, the return of Wimbledon sees the world’s greatest tennis players battling for supremacy, while British Summer Time, Lovebox and ONBlackheath ensure that Londoners have a sizzling soundtrack to party along to.
If you’re stuck for ideas over what to do or overwhelmed by the diversity of what’s on offer, here’s City Countdown’s definitive guide to the best things to do in London in July 2021.
Wimbledon is much more than just another sporting event. It’s an institution, with a remarkable history, wonderful traditions and an incredible atmosphere to savour.
Tickets can be hard to find, with the majority allocated by public lottery before the tournament begins, but if you are prepared to queue, or even camp overnight (it’s more fun than it sounds) then there’s still a chance to join the fun. One word of advice if you decide to go: shorts and sunglasses are optional, but strawberries and Pimm’s are certainly not. Enjoy!
2. Pride in London
This colourful parade is the centrepiece of the Pride in London Festival – a week long celebration of the LGBT+ community. The parade has grown in recent years to become one of the capital’s biggest summer events, with hundreds of performers, dancers, singers, entertainers and floats. Expect loud music, exuberant dancing and spectacular, if occasionally quite risqué, costumes.
3. Open Air Cinema
There are few better ways to spend a cool summer evening in London than by watching your favourite movies while lying under the stars.
Open air cinema has been gaining in popularity in recent years which means that there are countless opportunities to catch a flick. If you want something truly special however, treat yourself to tickets for the Film4 Summer Season at the always gorgeous Somerset House.
4. Secret Cinema Presents Dirty Dancing
This latest Secret Cinema extravaganza sees the immersive film company sprinkle their considerable magic dust over one of the 1980s most successful movies – Dirty Dancing.
The story of dance instructor Johnny and would be dancer baby is famous the world over, however, this new immersive version of the tale promises to bring the world of the movie to life for audiences to explore.
Expect massive sets, themed bars and restaurants, dance lessons and tutorials, and characters that weave in and amongst the audience. And that’s just before the film itself begins!
So, if you’ve ever dreamt of sashaying with Patrick Swayze or performing a quick two step with Jennifer Grey – this is the event for you.
Secret Cinema’s Dirty Dancing opens on the 22nd of July 2020 for a limited two week run. More information about the production can be found here.
For information on other great films in London, please click here.
5. The Buckingham Palace State Rooms
No list of the best things to do in London would be complete without including the annual opening of Buck House.
You don’t get many opportunities to see a working palace at close quarters – so go while you still can. Buckingham Palace has been opening to the public every year since 1993 and while the whole palace might not be on view, the fabulous State Rooms are, and they are an absolute delight. Highlights include architect John Nash’s magnificent Grand Staircase and an impressive collection of old masters including work by Canaletto, Rubens, Vermeer, Poussin and Van Dyck.
London is not exactly short of music festivals, but even so, Lovebox is just a bit special. There is something truly magical about this two-day music festival which has been delighting ravers since the inaugural event in 2003.
The festival has now taken up permanent residence at West London’s Gunnersbury Park after moving from Lambeth’s Victoria Park. It’s just as good, however. Judging by this year’s line up – it looks like it’s going to be another vintage year, with Solange, Chance the Rapper and Giggs all on the bill.
More information about Lovebox can be found here.
This family friendly music festival makes a welcome return to South London in mid July, with funksters Jamiroquai and Grace Jones set to headline the event. ONBlackheath has a unique atmosphere and a brilliant range of acts and activities.
8. RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show
Londoners are truly spoilt for choice when it comes to flower shows, with two of the best in the world right on our doorstep. However, as similar as the Chelsea Flower Show might appear, there are several major differences between the two. For starters, you can actually buy plants at the Hampton Court show – something you cannot do at Chelsea. Also, while the Chelsea Flower Show is arguably more prestigious, the Hampton Court Palace is bigger and has more exhibits.
9. Lambeth Country Show
London’s biggest & best free family festival is back in 2020 with a line up that’s guaranteed to please the whole family. This annual outdoor show aims to bring a taste of the countryside to city dwellers with craft and food stalls, flower displays and a working farm.
10. London in the Air
The dining experience to beat them all has come to London and the capital’s restaurant scene will never be the same again. London in the Sky are the company behind the event, with the team setting up shop outside the O2 on Greenwich Peninsula.
July might represent the tail end of the festival but honestly, if you can find tickets, then this is one event that you will not want to miss. This is not only one of the best things to do in London in July 2020 but one of the best events of the year period.
There’s much to do and see in London during the summer months, however, the very volume of parades, concerts and festivals can make deciding where to go and what to do difficult.
Well, we hope you’ve enjoyed our guide to the best things to do in London in July 2021. This is just a tiny selection of the events on offer during the month. So, if you’d like to find more great events during July 2021, then just check out our website.