Autumn in London is one of the best times of the year to be in the city. The summer shine still lingers but the winter chill starts creeping in, meaning wooly jumper and cosy pub season has officially arrived. Crunch through the orange leaves that cover the parks, indulge in hearty, British Sunday roasts and experience bonfire night in London. Autumn activities like these are what make the season our favourite, so when in London this October and November, here are the things you simply have to do…
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1. Cosy up in pubs across the city
Nothing beats a traditional, British pub, except when you visit in autumn and winter. As we begin to say goodbye to summer and the sunny rooftop bars that come with it, London’s pubs become the venue of choice to spend autumn nights with a glass of wine or a good beer. There’s something about the wooden furniture and old school setting that gives English pubs the cosy feel that goes with autumn so well. There are hundreds of pubs across London, some much busier than others, but they’re all tied together by the same homely English atmosphere.
Check out our very own St Christopher's Pub on Borough High Street, serving up traditional British pub food and a huge range of international beers with a charming old-English atmosphere.
2. Sunday Roast season is back
It’s not sweltering in the city anymore, which means Sunday roast season is back! Juicy roast chicken, stuffing, crispy roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings and lashings of delicious gravy - we’re drooling just thinking about it. Don’t just go to any old pub for your Sunday dinner, as some places serve the dish better than others, plus it can be very easy to fall for an overpriced (and average tasting) roast, especially in London. For roast dinners in London that won’t break the bank and will leave you beyond satisfied, we’ve put together the best of the best.
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3. Go to a killer Halloween Party at Belushi’s
Aside from orange trees, red wine and wooly jumpers, Halloween is another big thing that springs to mind when it comes to the month of October. If you’re in London this Halloween, you’re in for a treat as the city throws some of the freakiest October 31st parties in Europe. Our very own Belushi's bars across London throw incredible parties for any season, but this year they're going all out for Halloween. If you feel like going 'out out' this Halloween night, dig out your best fancy dress and book ahead to guarantee you entry.
4. Explore London’s Museums
London is home to some of the world’s best museums and autumn days are perfect for making a day of them. Escape the particularly rainy or chilly days and learn a little about the history of London or explore some of the most amazing artwork that the city holds. The Natural History Museum, the Tate Modern, Museum of London, the Imperial War Museum, the National Gallery… the list of incredible museums across the city goes on and on.
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5. See Kew Gardens in its autumnal glory
Don’t miss seeing London dressed in its autumnal coat of orange and reds and head to Kew Gardens to see the best of it all. The best botanical garden in the UK becomes full of beautiful fiery colour while showing off all its amazing flora and fauna. You could easily spend a full day exploring the botanics of Kew as the grounds are huge! If it’s a mild, dry day, pack a picnic and setup camp on the grass for lunch.
Heading to the gardens towards Christmas? Be sure to check out Christmas at Kew , a real highlight of the year. Be quick as tickets to this more wintry event sell out in advance.
6. Take a walk in the park
Make the most of the long, mild days of autumn and head out on a walk through London’s stunning parks. Hyde Park, Richmond Park, Regents Park (and Primrose Hill), Battersea Park… These are just a handful of our top choices for a peaceful and pretty walk through the colourful autumn trees. Bring a takeaway coffee and a book and find a quiet bench to relax on for an hour or so - one of the best ways to spend an October day in London.
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7. Experience Bonfire Night in London
Guy Fawkes is one of the most infamous people in British history. The man was part of the group who planned the Gunpowder Plot - a failed attempt at blowing up King James I in 1605. Now, oddly, the entire country remembers by putting on spectacular fireworks shows each year on 5th November, known as Bonfire Night. You’re spoiled for choice when it comes to Bonfire Night in London, with parks across the city putting on the eye-popping light shows. Some are free, but the very best ones are worth the small cost.
8. See a West End show
Theatre lovers - spend an autumn night or two making the most of London’s West End. There are plenty of heartwarming, hilarious, emotional and simply unbelievable theatre shows on at the moment so you’re definitely not short of options. A few newer shows we highly recommend: Come From Away, the Play That Goes Wrong, School of Rock, Matilda and way more. Take in a glass of red wine then sit back and enjoy a couple of hours of some of the best acting in London.
West End shows really don’t have to break the bank. Have a look at what tickets are going last minute, or opt for the cheap seats and find that they’re actually perfect!
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9. Go pumpkin picking
The American tradition has made its way over to the UK in recent years, so if you want something autumnal that you won’t get at any other time of year, head to a pumpkin patch. There are a number of them dotted around the outskirts of London - huge fields filled with pumpkins of all shapes, sizes and colours, for you to take home and carve for Halloween or make into a tasty dish. Garsons is a 25 minute drive from Wimbledon and Putney, or Foxes Farm Produce is a 40 minute drive from Stratford.
10. Go on a coffee crawl
Not recommended to do all in a day, but London’s best cups of coffee are definitely worth going a little out of the way for. Grind is a chain that serves up a perfectly brewed cuppa all over London in Covent Garden, Greenwich, Liverpool Street and more. Monmouth Coffee by Borough Market in London Bridge is another top choice for the coffee connoisseurs amongst you, as well as Kaffeine in Fitzrovia and Everbean in Mayfair. All these spots are ideal if you want somewhere to sit with a book and watch the world go by outside the front window.
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