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Alexandra Palace

Things to do, Cultural centres Alexandra Palace
5 out of 5 stars
(51user reviews)
The ceiling of Ally Pally's newly restored theatre space
Photo: Keith Armstrong The ceiling of Ally Pally's newly restored theatre space

Time Out says

This palatial venue is back in action, with a newly renovated theatre serving up a mix of gigs and plays

Commonly known as the 'People's Palace' or Ally Pally, Alexandra Palace looks out over north London from a height. Its altitude rewards casual walkers with spectacular views, and its commanding location and 190-odd acres of leafy parkland mean it's often mistaken for a magnificent palace of regal importance.

In reality, it's an offbeat arts/entertainment centre that's making a renewed bid to pull in Londoners for nights out, after decades in the doldrums. In 2018, it re-opened the massive theatre space that had been out-of-action for decades, giving it a makeover that left its most picturesquely crumbling bits intact. So far, it's offered a mix of touring large-scale plays, seated gigs, and kids shows. The adjoining East Court is back in action too, offering an airy conservatory-like space where theatregoers can drink, mingle and take tea. These additions join the venue's existing indoor ice-skating rink, expo hall and a vast gig space where you can catch big names and the odd clubbing event. 

Hopefully, this renovation will mark a new chapter in Ally Pally's troubled history. Built in 1873 as a palace for the people, it has experienced bad luck including two devastating fires (the first just two weeks after it opened; the second in 1980 after it was rebuilt), years of poor funding and periods of bad management.

Despite this, Ally Pally continues to hold a spot in the heart of Londoners, and a proud place in history as the birthplace of the world's first regular public television broadcast by the BBC in 1936. There's a bonfire night every year, a boating lake, pitch and putt course, and deer enclosure.



Address: Alexandra Palace Way
N22 7AY
Transport: Rail: Alexandra Palace; Tube: Wood Green
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  • Sunday July 26 2020
  • Children's Thursday July 30 2020 - Sunday August 23 2020
  • Drama Friday November 27 2020 - Sunday January 10 2021

Users say (51)

5 out of 5 stars

Average User Rating

4.7 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:39
  • 4 star:11
  • 3 star:1
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
2 people listening

I'm local, and getting known as a singer - so when I turned up at the place and was instantly roped into the Workshop Choir for the opening, I got to see it was running at top speed to get there - men singers are in very short supply. Part of the result was that things touched where they fitted, so to claim a Christmas Village was excessive - it turned out to be a solitary four stalls who did very little trade. What's wrong at heart is that the Admin have got into the practice of standing back and letting exhibition organisers do the work, and lack experience in doing it themselves, I think. I was a Stage Manager from Uni days from way on back (I hosted Queen the weekend Bohemian Rhapsody hit, for instance) and know it's far more complicated than they're set up for - they'll need some taking in hand.


It can be a bit of a treck to get up to Alexandra Palace for most Londoners, but it's worth it for another glimpse of that fabulous view back over London alone. The vast size of the interior makes for an interesting gig experience thought it is always a bit of a paint get home late! I have yet to go to the fireworks though I'd like to and the folks I've spoken to who have been said it's a gooden!

I have been to the ice rink too but I actually went there to witness a comedy show on ice by the wonderful Weirdos comedy group with Tony Law, though there was skating after the show. 

Overall Ally Pally is an interesting place and well worth the commute to check it out, and that view!


Alexandra Palace also famously known by ‘Ally Pally’ is one of the greatest music venues in London.

I haven’t really been to their firework display or their ice rink. I feel like the palace is known for these events, but my review is purely about Alexandra Palace itself.

There is so much to mention like the architecture and the gardens which are also quite special. The ice rink and the firework displays are completely separate reviews, so mine will be just about the palace and my experiences in the palace.

I visited Ally Pally quite recently for a big event. I went to see Lorde and it was bloody phenomenal I must say.

It was her Melodrama World Tour and I could definitely feel the love that everyone had towards Lorde’s performances.

It’s definitely a great venue for a tour and it’s extremely big and quite artistic in a way.

It is a little while to get there if you are coming from central London.

My only criticism on the day is the amount of people that squash you and that try to push around to get to the front which is always a pain.

Realistically it does happen if you are going to stand up at a music event, but I wouldn’t ever go again.

I solely went to see Lorde, I’ve wanted to see her perform live for quite a while.

Overall the night was incredible, she gave it her all. It was strong and emotional at times.

I wouldn’t spend another 3 hours squashed and being touched by so many crowds of people again.

I very much appreciated both the exterior and interior design of the palace.

The entrance is quite beautiful, the glass windows on the ceiling and the walls added a very unique aesthetic to the architecture.

It almost felt like a humungous greenhouse with such well looked after palm trees.

The architecture gave me an Art Deco feel, very straight lines with prominent shapes.

It’s definitely a palace full of story and history. It’s historic, tall structure stands proudly in Muswell Hill.

The bars and the food halls inside before you enter the main hall are a great bonus for anyone that needs to grab something to eat before the performance.

The ambience is warm and has a very unique setting that matches the bold, stylish interior of Ally Pally.

You’ll have a great evening for sure whatever the event. It’s a place for the people is what I keep hearing and I do believe that.

It’s a place where people can come to rejoice and enjoy what Alexandra Palace has to offer.


Love MD.


I love this place!

Located in the middle of a park atop a hill, it has great scenery and a sublime views of the London skyline. It’s a great place to hang out, have a picnic or simply walk around on a sunny afternoon. A pub at one corner of the building is also a good pit stop for food and drinks.

As for the events, there’re all great. Between sports championships and exhibitions, there’s a lot you can go to. And obviously the gigs! Come early and you’ll be able to enjoy the festival-like space with food trucks and bars before the show.

The building itself is beautiful, with statues and carved entrances. Is your Instagram ready?


Ah Alexandra Palace makes me feel all warm and fuzzy. These snaps were taken at their legendary 5th November Bonfire Night which every year reminds me how much I love the fireworks displays in London. It isn't the easiest to get to, but it is surprisingly easy to get in and out of the venue (considering it is usually with a large crowd). I've also been inside for an exhibition - a gardening show and it was well kitted out for events. I recommend getting on their mailing list so you're the first in the know for all their events! 


I went to Alexandra palace's Fireworks festival and I absolutely loved it! (I usually go there for walks or food markets)

It was a family event but I went with a couple of friends and we all enjoyed it a lot!

In my opinion the highlight of the night was to see/hear people singing along to Adele's Hello while the sky was sparkling with lights. Absolutely beautiful!!

Only down side during this festival was the price of drinks and food (£5 for a can of Magners or a mulled wine)

Ally Pally remains a great place for different types of events, for a little bit of culture and History, and definitely one of my favorite spots when I'm looking for a breathtaking view over London!

Fabulous historical venue, great food and drinks served there too. Let's get that theatre opened (I've seen it, it's huge).


Alexandra Palace is not somewhere I go very often but,as a North Londoner born and bred, I have popped in for various aoccasions and outings. It's a hub of activity from an ice rink,massive music venue and park with some of the best views of London the city has to offer. They also do a yearly firework display on 5th Nov-which gets blooming crowded but worth the slog! It's also a hot spot for Squirtles,if you want to Pokemon Go there too : P 

BEST PLACE IN LONDON! Best views, lovely park, lovely building & great events!


Alexandra Palace is one of those iconic sights with its large (now defunct) broadcasting tower and has a lot of history.  The Great Hall is ornate, albeit perhaps a little gaudy.  It’s a great venue for events and the facilities are good.  It’s worth going to just to see the view of London - beware of the long walk uphill though!

Went to see Parov Stelar here recently and the venue is excellent. Plenty of room, well ventilated, excellent sound quality and some impressive visual set-up on the stage as well.

Alexandra Palace is the best concert venue I have ever been.

The stage is really big, and there is room enough for a looooot of people. The quality of the sound is impressive, in other venues it may happen that sound is not great.

Apart from the stage is the place is very cool, it also includes a big space for a food market, bars, cloakroom etc.


Recently visited the Ally Pally for the first time to attend a Tame Impala gig. Having never been all the way (from South London) before I didn't know what to expect but had an overall fantastic experience. Despite it being dark, the views from the top of the palace over North London are fabulous, reminding you what a big city we live in!

We purposely went early as had heard of the food and drink 'village' inside which did not disappoint. An excellent selection of street food from Bodeans to Topdogs and plenty of bars so the wait for a drink was never long. There was also live music in the centre which was had plenty of picnic benches surrounding it.

The gig venue itself was huge, but not overwhelmingly so. It was easy to access the front if you wanted to or dance with lots of space at the back. The acoustics were good too despite hearing mixed reports.

The only downfall was the toilet situation, they were a bit grim and long lines but I never waited longer than 15minutes so not too bad for a big gig.

Also be warned of the uphill walk to the Palace when you get off the train. Luckily we got a bus straight after that took us all the way to Finsbury Park station which I think is a better route.

And as for Tame Impala? Well it probably wouldn't have mattered what venue they were in to be an overall amazing experience!!

One of my favorite parts of London, its gorgeous, with stunning views and an a beautiful palace.

Went there this weekend to see the Fireworks and it's probably one of the best spots to be on bonfire night.


Alexandra Palace (or Ally Pally :) ) is one of the best places to visit in North London. You can enjoy amazing views of London from here. Just grab a beer and sit in the grass outside... A beautiful building that hosts exhibitions & concerts and a small ice rink during the winter.

Love the architecture, love some of the exhibitions (Art Deco and antiques, crystals) and really cool to have some concerts on now too.

 Great venue with great acts and atmosphere.  Also great that you can move between the gig and the Market Green. 

Great Atmosphere, Great Venue.. Just been down to the Vans Warped Tour.. Brilliant....

i came here last oct for the 1975 and it was sensational, i came here a week ago for major lazer and it was the best night of my life, i will be here for disclosure in december and i cannot wait. this is my concert home.

Nice venue not to big and not to small grate night when we see the Prodigy their

Attended the Axwell and Sebastian Ingrosso concert at Ally Pally this year and I loved it as a concert venue. Beautiful venue with loads of space. Attending 2 more concerts in December. The start of many to come.

Great venue fantastic atmosphere wonderful views a good mixture of shows etc. If you have not visited do so.

The Palace, with its wonderful 200 acre park, is a fabulous landmark and resource for Londoners and visitors to London alike.

Love this venue! Seen lots of gigs here and it's great for big, loud gigs. The setting and building are awesome.

Best venue ever! Not too big not too small. No queues for food drinks or the loo. Free parking and the most amazing views over the city I love this place!

Fantastic venue for a whole range of events to suit everyone's tastes. And a free large Park to pic nic in or walk the dog or just have a wander. The views on a clear day are fabulous, over the years the sky line across London has changed. Whether it's the knitting and stitching show, a local schools internee concert, pop group, antique fair, food fayres, fireworks, DIY or classic car shows and more. We are so lucky to have such a great venue on our doorstep.

Stunning architecture, a local palace to be enjoyed by all... Amazing views!

It's my home. It's been my hiding place away from the buzz for 30 years. Long live Ally Pally

Incredible place - on such a scale, Palm Court to Ice Rink, with a fascinating history. The park is also wonderful to visit at any time of year.

It's a pity you have to enable 3rd party cookies on this site in order to post comments. I shall disable them again after this.

A park, music venue, antiques fairs, garden centre, history tours, ice rink and cafe - what more could you want!

Great for gigs, lots of events - even when nothing on you can picnic in the park or visit the pub which has the best beer garden in London!

From the South Terrace of Ally Pally you have the best view across London of anywhere. On a clear day you can see as far as Crystal Palace.

In the last year, I have been to Alexandra Palace. I wish I had known about how varied the venue can be before as having 14 grNdchikdren of varying ages it is difficult to entertain them.
I started visiting Ally Pally when there was an 'edible Gardening p' exhibition. The hall was spacious with traders for every taste or interest from seeds for the garden to bbq/smoker unit.
My second visit was taking a large number of grandchildren to alexNdra Palaces ice ring. Lots of staff are constantly present, observing the skaters. Ensuring they are safe, adhering to the rules and occasionally giving them brief instructions on their limited skating skills. They were very polite and helpful. So much so that I returned several days later with the remaining children, bring a picnic to be enjoyed in the extensive beautiful grounds and also bringing skate boards/scooters and playing on the swings, slides and in the sand pool before feeding the ducks and looking for the two turtles that live in the lake.
Ally Pally has something for the whole family. My last visit was yesterday 12/09/2015 to the antiques Fair. What a wonderful, interesting day. Something for Nyone. Loved it,loved it, loved it. n interesting day for many many people, but plenty of room to be able to move freely and items to suit Nyones choice. Not only was the enterence fee to all the events very reasonable, bit items being sold at events were equally so. Fear not. It won't be long before I return.

A great centre for local people and the whole community. Vibrant, and now expanding to embrace still more activities with the refurbishment taking place.

Beautiful views and great use of the space with gigs, shows and events. There are deer in the park and a duck pond with boats to hire. There is a farmers market here on Sundays and cricket played in the summer most weekends. More needs to be done to preserve the building and put it to use as much as possible.

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