25 Fun Things To Do In London On The Last Weekend Of The Year

It’s the last weekend of 2018 – let’s have it!

You might have lost track of what day it is altogether, but luckily we haven’t. We can confirm IT IS WEEKEND TIME, kids, and time for a bit of year-end fun before you obliterate yourself on New Year’s Eve. [Photo: Julia Tsilman]

1-5. Check out some art

London’s galleries are all open for visitors this weekend, so how about…

Space Shifters at the Hayward Gallery (closes Jan 9)
I object at the British Museum (closes Jan 20)
We Live In An Ocean Of Air at the Saatchi Gallery (closes Jan 20)
Modern Couples at the Barbican (closes Jan 27)
Good Grief, Charlie Brown! at Somerset House (closes March 2019)

See our full list of art exhibitions in London.

6-11. Catch a movie

If you still need more sugar to help the medicine go down, Mary Poppins Returns is currently delighting multiplexes across London. Otherwise, try the helter-skelter social commentary of Sorry to Bother You or the kick-ass ladies-on-a-mission of Widows, while even the superhero-sceptical should check out Into The Spider-Verse, hailed as a gorgeously trippy re-invention of the comic-book blockbuster. (You’d be wise to avoid Holmes & Watson, branded ‘abysmal’, ‘forgettable’ and ‘lame’ by critics.) Staying in? Roma, much-fancied for an Oscar, is now on Netflix, as is Bandersnatch: a feature-length, interactive episode of Black Mirror. (See also: how to get cheaper Odeon tickets and London’s best luxury cinemas.)

12-16. Take one last festive hit…

Winter Wonderland London, Hyde Park
Photo: @amoola93

Do you just need one more rush of festive goodwill? There’s still hope for you, child. Hyde Park Winter Wonderland runs until January 6, as does Leicester Square Christmas Market, while Bankside’s Christmas by the River is open until January 2. All of London’s outdoor ice rinks, except Winterville, are still open also. And in the West End, the Christmas lights should still be glowing above shoppers tracking down bargains in the Boxing Day sales. (It’s also up to 50% off in Hamleys at the moment if you, y’know, forgot to buy your child any toys over Christmas.)

17. Get your shit together

Stationery-Shops-London-East

Is 2019 the year you finally become not-a-garbage-person? The first step, my friend, is organisation, and by ‘organisation’, I mean ‘spending absolutely GOBS of cash on the most pristine and delicious stationery known to mankind.’ Wall planners, diaries, journals, fancy pens, colourful post-its, oh god: put it in my veins, honestly. New year, new Moleskine, new you: here’s our guide to London’s sexiest stationery shops.

18-22. Warm up for New Year’s Eve…

Stranger Things party

Sure, there are stacks of NYE parties in London to look forward to, but whether you’re feeling sluggish after the sofa-bound boozing of Christmas, or damned by circumstance to miss Monday night’s madness, why not stretch your legs a bit at a low-key (LOL) weekend party? There are quite a few choice nights to tempt you out the house this weekend…

Is this It: The Anti-NYE Party at The Victoria, Dalston
2 Many DJs at XOYO, Old Street
• Joe Goddard (All Night Long) at Phonox, Brixton
Buttoned Down Disco’s F*CK NYE at KOKO, Camden
• Secretsundaze 2018 Last Dance at Studio 9294, Hackney Wick

23. Eating whatever the opposite of pigs-in-blankets is

Peruvian

Turkey. Gravy. Mulled wine. Cheese. Cold cuts. Chocolate. I don’t know about you, but by this point, I’m developing quite the aversion to festive fare. Why not pop out for a Peruvian brunch on Saturday for some avocado pancakes, artichoke ceviche and some cheeky bottomless prosecco? Alternatively, our round-ups of vegan restaurants or Japanese restaurants might inspire a meal that actually has, y’know, colour. And spices! Your innards will quite possibly thank you.

24. Fall down the rabbit hole

Alice In Winterland 1

There’s a garden of Alice in Wonderland lanterns in south London all weekend, although we’re assuming sans the Santa’s Grotto, unless he’s taking some advance wishes for next year! Find out more here.

25. Demand a rematch

Puttshack Lifestyle 3

Still angry over Articulate? Still mad about Monopoly? Enter the fray with your loved-ones once more at one of London’s many venues for ‘friendly’ competition. Whether you fancy crazy golf, bowling or something more unusual, see our guide to where to play games in London.

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