Get us in your inbox


37 excellent things to do in London this weekend

By Stephanie Hartman

Make your way to Clapham for the return of Colourscape on the Common, watch cute pooches strut their stuff at a dog show in Victoria Park or gorge on tacos, gorditas and torta pocket sandwiches at a Mexican-themed festival. Have a wonderful weekend with our suggestions below!

Things to do

London Transport Museum Friday Lates, London Transport Museum, TONIGHT, £12. A colourful evening to celebrate the iconic palette used on London's transport network. Guests can sip on traffic light cocktails while listening to a talk on the psychology of colour, getting their nails painted or taking part in scavenger hunt.

The Beautiful Octopus Club, Royal Festival Hall, TONIGHT, free. A club night for people with learning disabilities, organised by Heart n Soul. Expect live music, DJs and performers from the UK's learning-disabled scene.

Brazil Day, Trafalgar Square, Sat, free. A family-friendly celebration dedicated to the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic athletes and the host country, Brazil.

Chatsfest, Chatsworth Road Market, Sat, free. This community-run street party returns for a fourth year with live music, DJ stages, bars, a bouncy castle, street food, a dog show and much, much more.

Mews Fest, Avenue Mews, Sat, free. Muswell Hill is set to come alive in a last-bit-of-summer burst of fun, as the street is adorned with fairy lights and bunting for their annual shopping party – there promises to be some late night vintage shopping.

Colourscape Music Festival, Clapham Common, Sat-Sun, £10. Colourscape returns to Clapham Common to celebrate its 27th birthday in 2016. Visitors to its colourful tunnels will experience something similar to being swallowed by a scene from 'Yellow Submarine'.

Vintage Summer Steam Trips and Pop-up Tea Room, multiple venues, Sat-Sun, from £20. Travel back in time on a restored steam train and enjoy tea and cake in a vintage tea room recreated by lovers of the 1940s at Amersham station.

Hackney One Carnival, various Hackney venues, Sun, free. Hackney One carnival might not match Notting Hill for scale but east London definitely pulls out all the stops with feathery, glittery and winged costumes all dancing to the beat of steel pan bands on floats and wandering musicians.

Klezmer in the Park, Regent's Park Bandstand, Sun, free. This annual festival of klezmer and Sephardi music is a lot of fun, with live acts performing on the Regent's Park Bandstand as well as exhibitions and displays of Jewish culture, kosher food and crafts and gifts for sale. 

Victoria Park Dog Show, Victoria Park, Sun, £3 per category for Dog Show, free for spectators. A pooch parade in aid of rescue and rehoming centre, All Dogs Matter. As well as the show there will be a tombola, raffle and the chance to meet four-legged friends in need of new homes. 

London Design Biennale, Somerset House, all weekend, free. The inaugural edition of this month-long festival of contemporary design will fill Somerset House with works from over 30 countries.

A New Childhood: Picture Books from Soviet Russia, House of Illustration, all weekend, £7.70. Early twentieth century Russian picture book illustration was period of unprecedented innovation, and influenced artists such as Eric Ravilous and Peggy Angus who collected these books - as well as Puffin, whose Picture Books series in 1940 was inspired by it.

…or check out more events happening in London this weekend.


Eating and drinking

MexiFest, Bishops Square, Sat, free by signing up to Yelp. Gorge on tacos, gorditas, torta pocket sandwiches, cheese and tequila, then feast your eyes on giant piñatas and a replica luchador ring with traditional Mexican wrestlers.

The Slider Decider, Broadgate Circle, Sat, £15. This annual battle of the buns sees 16 London chefs and restaurants cook up their best shot in the hope of winning the title of Slider Decider Champion 2016.

Beer by the River, Tooting Bec Common, Sat, £8 adv, £10 on the door. Sambrook’s Brewery once again host this beer-fuelled festival, championing a range of brewers, musical acts, and ace food trucks. 

Camberwell Market, Camberwell Green, Sun, free. Not feeling Sunday lunch? Have a wander round this new food and drink market on Camberwell Green instead.

…or check out the latest restaurant reviews.


Photo: Kim Hiorthøy





Live music

Neneh Cherry, Old Queen's Head, TONIGHT, £6. Late-’80s superstar Neneh Cherry is back in the game, creatively revitalised by a recent collaboration with Scandinavian avant-jazz band The Thing. 

KRS-One, Jazz Cafe, Sat, £25. A headline set from Lawrence Krisna Parker, the conscious, anti-gangster hip hop pioneer (and occasional university lecturer) behind Boogie Down Productions.

OnBlackheath, Blackheath, Sat-Sun, £52.50-£99. SE3 hosts its very own music festival, with family-friendly live music plus food and fun.

…or take a look at all the live music events in London this weekend.


Kate Boss






Mister Saturday Night, St John at Hackney, Sat, £15. Mister Saturday Night DJs Justin Carter and Eamon Harkin cross the pond for a massive party in a Hackney church.

Kate Boss, Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen, Sat, £7. Golden house and dusty disco-loving party crew Kate Boss are always a safe bet for a full-on fun party.

Secretsundaze, The Pickle Factory, Sat, adv £9.50-£14.50. Over the past 15 years James Priestley and Giles Smith have created one of the most enduring and engaging London parties with Secretsundaze.

…or see all the parties planned this weekend.







‘Stir Crazy’, Prince Charles Cinema, TONIGHT, £7.50. Celebrate the life and work of the mighty Gene Wilder, who passed away last week, with this screening of one of his finest movies.

Scalarama: Video Nightmare All-Dayer, Genesis Cinema, TONIGHT, free. The mighty Scalarama festival celebrates the legacy of the late, great Scala fleapit cinema in King’s Cross with a month of bizarre film happenings and DIY movie nights.

Rockumentaries: ‘Anvil! The Story of Anvil’, House of Vans, Sat, free. Not only has ‘Anvil!’ got all the laughs of ‘This Is Spinal Tap’, but its portrait of frayed fiftysomethings putting sanity on the line to live the rock ’n’ roll dream proves a touching, even inspirational fable for our times.

Kirk Douglas season: ‘Lust for Life’, BFI Southbank, Sun, £8.35-£11.75. Another in the BFI’s month-long tribute to the man with the golden chin.

Or at the cinema...

Captain Fantastic ★★★☆☆ Living off the grid has its pros and cons in a domestic drama touched by a wayward spirit.

…or see all of the latest releases.


© Alex Brenner






Burning Doors, Soho Theatre, Fri-Sat,  £15-£24. Visceral new show from Belarus Free Theatre and Pussy Riot's Maria Alyokhina.

Labyrinth, Hampstead Theatre, Fri-Sat, £10-£35. Bankers run wild in Beth Steel's enjoyably overwrought political thriller.

If We Got Some More Cocaine I Could Show You How I Love You, Old Red Lion, Sun £15, £13 concs. Two gay robbers snort a lot of coke in this arresting debut play.

…or see our theatre critics’ choices.


Dorothea Tanning, Zephirium apochripholiae (Windwort), 1997 Copyright The Destina Foundation, New York





This week's best new art

Dorothea Tanning, Alison Jacques, Fri-Sat, free. A show of surrealist Dorothea Tanning’s late-career paintings. Although she’s arguably still best known as the wife of modern art giant Max Ernst, Tanning outlived him by nearly 40 years, and in many ways deserves as much recognition as her hubby. 

Abdoulaye Konaté: Symphonie En Couleur, Blain Southern, Fri-Sat, free. Ever wanted to pull a painting off a wall and wrap yourself in it? Just yank it down, drape it over your head and have a nap, right there in the warmth of the gallery? No? Just me? Well, you might feel differently when you see this show of new textile-based works by Malian artist Abdoulaye Konaté.

The Infinite Mix180 the Strand, all weekend, free. This show is a collaboration between the Vinyl Factory and the Hayward Gallery. It takes place in an immense, labyrinthine, leaky, graffitied, disused office block on the Strand, which has been filled with ten films that will make you totally forget all the shitty video art you might have had to sit through in the past.

Bjork Digital, Somerset House, all weekend, £15, concs £12.50. If you’re looking for an immersive experience that makes you feel like you’ve done all the wrong drugs, at the same time, in a swamp, with the flu, in war-torn Vietnam, after a bad kebab, then, boy-oh-boy, is ‘Björk Digital’ going to make your dreams come true.

…or see all London art reviews.

And finally

Win... a fabulous forest getaway with South West Trains

Grab... 30% off tickets to FutureFest 

Book… these gigs while you still can

Best of the blog

There's going to be a march and silent vigil to protest club closures next Saturday

Sadiq Khan's one-hour 'hopper' bus ticket launches on Monday

Fabric will appeal Islington Council's decision to revoke its licence

There's going to be an UberPool party in Shoreditch (with an actual pool)

Popular on Time Out

    Latest news

      Read next