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Top 10 things to do with the kids this bank holiday

Stuck for things to do with the kids this August bank holiday? We've got plenty to keep them entertained

Beach East at the Olympic Park

This year's August bank holiday takes place on Mon Aug 31 2015 and, as always, we've got some fail-safe family-friendly ideas to keep the kids happy over the long weekend.

August bank holiday events for kids


Notting Hill Carnival

The more family-friendly Sunday is the best day to take children to the Carnival. Since Notting Hill Carnival debuted in 1964, the event has undoubtedly grown and morphed, attracting ever more revellers with its spectacle of floats featuring calypso, mas and pan bands as well as a series of soundsystems for alfresco dancing. You can be sure of dense crowds and a vibrant celebration of music, movement and masquerade together with Caribbean food stalls serving up jerk chicken and fried plantain. 

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Notting Hill Sunday August 30 2015 - Monday August 31 2015 Free

Bedbugs Sleepovers

Want to sleep with the fishes? Not a threat – just London Zoo’s invitation to a slumber party at the BUGS exhibit! Held on just a few weekend nights over the summer hols, these sleepovers are for kids accompanied by adults prepared to doss down on the floor with black widows and jewel wasps for neighbours.

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London Zoo Sunday August 2 2015 - Sunday August 30 2015

Captain Showoff!

Free theatre down at the Scoop theatre for the More London Free Festival. 'Captain Showoff!' is a family adaptation of the Roman comedies of Plautus. If it's anything like last year's shows, it should be epic, well adapted and very atmospheric. Don't forget to bring layers, and picnics are very much encouraged.

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The Scoop Wednesday August 5 2015 - Sunday August 30 2015 Free

Tiger, Mog and Pink Rabbit: A Judith Kerr Retrospective

'The Tiger Who Came to Tea' has been delighting families since it was published in 1968 and many young readers will be fond of her 'Mog' series. Visitors can have tea with a life-size tiger or curl up with a book in Mog's basket. Storytelling will take place daily at 10.30am.

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Jewish Museum Until Wednesday October 14 2015

Against Captain’s Orders: A Journey into the Uncharted

Punchdrunk's production for kids is gently subversive, but defined by its unironic and wholehearted love of the idea of Going On An Adventure. It’d be rather spoilery to say what type of adventure. It's two parts ‘Crystal Maze’ to one part ‘adult’ Punchdrunk, with a delicious sprinkling of ‘Doctor Who’-ish brio. 

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National Maritime Museum Until Monday August 31 2015

Monski Mouse's Baby Disco Dance Hall

DJ Monski Mouse gets the under-fives crowd jumping at her family disco. Parents are welcome to rave along with the kids to her mega mix of nursery rhymes, pop classics and retro dance numbers.

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London Wonderground Sunday August 2 2015 - Sunday September 27 2015

Festival of Love

The Southbank Centre's having quite the love-in this summer with the return of their Festival of Love – two months' worth of installations, activities, pop-ups and performances. Look out for the play fountain installation Appearing Rooms. An urban beach has been built beside the river for anybody inspired to build a sandcastle.

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Southbank Centre Until Monday August 31 2015 Free

Beach East

Life's a beach at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park this summer, with over 2,200 square metres of sand deposited at the site for endless sandcastle competitions and balmy evening walks. A gigantic paddling pool and funfair rides will entertain the kids.

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Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park Until Monday August 31 2015 Free

Gorilla Circus Flying Trapeze Classes

Gorilla Circus take kids and adults through the basics of aerial circus skills. The open-air trapeze contraption consists of two swings 25ft up. Adults and children alike gather for the two hour session – which sees you progress from hooking your legs over your head and hanging upside down to getting caught by an acrobat.

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Regents Park Until Sunday September 6 2015

Looking for more bank holiday ideas?

Bank holiday in London

If laying in bed with a boxset was your initial bank holiday plan, scrap it – there's too much going on to stay indoors.

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By: Time Out London editors



Basement of the science museum is best for under fives.


Not much for under fives