14 Ways To Totally Rock Your Bank Holiday Weekend

Guy Parsons Guy Parsons


It’s the last three-day weekend this side of Christmas!

The weather gods are promising a warm-ish, rain-free weekend, which we quite frankly deserve as we near the end of August and Official Summer. (Though fingers crossed for a late September heatwave, eh?) Anyway, here are a few ideas to get you started…

Heading to South West Four? Get yourself to an after party!

South West Four Festival

London’s biggest dance and electronica festival, South West Four is making south London bounce with two days of bracing beats across five stages on Clapham Common. Pendulum, Tinie Tempah and Sigma headline Saturday, while DeadMau5, Sub Focus and Knife Party top the bill on Sunday. Buuuut, if you have any oomph left in you once the sun goes down, head to one of the sweet after-parties. Electric Brixton are hosting two nights of fun until 6am with big acts from the festival playing DJ sets (e.g. Pendulum, Sigma and Wilkinson). We’ve got tickets here.

Shake your thing at Notting Hill Carnival

Notting Hill Carnival

The biggest, most colourful street party in Europe, Carnival promises two days of parades, dancing, sound systems, beer and barbecue on the roads of west London. The parade on Sunday aims to be fully family-friendly, while the vibe on the bank holiday Monday kicks things up a notch.

Caribbean fever usually spreads to every corner of the city with bars and clubs celebrating the best of Carnival spirit. There’s an official Carnival after party at Ministry of Sound on Monday night with a host of big DJs, while Island Records are hosting an all-day tropical party at Queen’s Ice Rink near Queensway. Cool Runnings indeed.

Indulge in some day-time drinking at these al fresco parties

Sankeys Garden Party

On Saturday, Dalston Roof Park is throwing an all-day House Classics party guaranteed to get you moving. But on Sunday, you’re absolutly spoiled for choice (I guess people are making the most of the rare guilt-free Sunday funday). Sankeys are throwing a garden party at Studio 338; Amor are hosting a jubilant boat trip down the Thames (followed by an after-party in Shoreditch), aaaand Trevor Nelson is hosting a massive Soul Nation party at Ministry of Sound.

Or, if you fancy a trip a little further afield, there’s even a foam party in Wimbledon. There’ll be bargain drinks offers all night (we’re talking 2 bottles of Prosecco for £26 or 5 beers for £21) and bangin’ tunes to keep you going. It’s set to be a top night… albeit a little soggy. Get your tickets here.

Number 90 Hackney Wick
Photo: @joshedson

Meanwhile, Hackney Wick’s canalside Number 90 is promising four days of music, art, brunch, and general good vibes at their four-day Bank Holiday Weekender.

Play with these big white balls

Roundhouse Human

The Roundhouse in Chalk Farm has currently been taken over by some spooky, autonomous white balloons. By night they’re interacting with dancers in specially choreographed performances (sadly these shows are all sold out!) but by day you can interact with them in all their silent creepiness. We have nothing to fear but spheres themselves – get tickets here.

Work up at a sweat on a massive inflatable obstacle course

Backflip Beast Obsctacle London

Known only as ‘The Beast’, a 272-metre long bouncy castle with 32 different obstacles is literally popping up at Alexandra Palace. Running the full weekend from Friday through Monday, there’ll be DJs, a street food market and prosecco on tap while you get your breath back, and kid-friendly sessions for smaller adventurers. Find out more and reserve a slot here.

Watch Roman Gladiators go into battle


You can watch Roman gladiators do battle with swords, shields and spears in the City this weekend. There are eight different showdowns from Friday night to Monday afternoon, and you can award your thumbs up and thumbs down to reward your favourites! More information here.

Take to the water in a GoBoat

This’ll be running long past the bank holiday, but we just gave it a try and it’s rather good fun (we’d suggest hiring one for at least two hours, though, to give you more opportunity to explore). You can cruise from Paddington to Little Venice and then on to Camden, Kensal Rise, or both! Find out more here.

Go totally Mexican for crazy golf

Swingers in central London just added DF Mexico to their street food line-up, which seems like as good a reason as any to go play eighteen holes of infuriatingly tricky mini golf.

For more family-friendly and outdoorsy courses, find see our guide to crazy golf in London.

Go culture crazy at Shuffle Festival

Photo: @thatjoeclark
Photo: @thatjoeclark

Two days of film screenings, musical performances, talks and eating, Shuffle Festival is the most fun you can legally have in a cemetery. Check out their website for more details or learn more about their treehouse restaurant where eating with your hands is mandatory.

Also published on Medium.

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