The Best Things to Do in London in July

Looking for things to do in London in July? Check this out

You’re in plenty of time to book tickets to the best events in London, from theatre shows to art exhibitions, and there are always pop-ups opening across the city, but our handy guide features the best of what’s on in London in July so you won’t miss a thing. 

Summer, summer, summertime… it’s Will Smith and Jazzy Jeff’s fave time of year and it’s another busy month in the capital. There are still some Pride events, like Classical Drag and London Trans Pride, and there are fests galore with the return of Kaleidoscope, South Facing and Junction 2. And it’s a busy one for sports fans as we have the conclusion of Euro 2024 (come on England!), the return of Wimbledon (fingers crossed for a rain-free tournament) and the start of the 2024 Olympics just across the Channel in Paris.

Jeremy O. Harris, writer of 'Slave Play'

1. See Jeremy O. Harris’ Controversial Slave Play

Slave Play is making its UK premiere at the Noël Coward Theatre this summer with Robert O’Hara on directing duties. The production is a controversial examination of identity, race and sexuality in 21st-century America and has been criticised as well as lauded. The story follows three interracial couples who try to revive their relationships by attending an ‘antebellum sexual performance therapy’ workshop, which involves role-playing being on a plantation. Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington is starring in the London transfer, alongside Fisayo Akinade, Olivia Washington, and Aaron Heffernan, with James Cusati-Moyer, Chalia La Tour, Annie McNamara and Irene Sofia Lucio reprising their roles from the original Broadway production.

Mon 1st – Wed 31st July 2024 (excluding Mondays)
85-88 St Martin’s Lane, London WC2N 4AU

Barbie exhibition at the Design Museum in London

2. Visit This Major Barbie Exhibition

After the cultural phenomenon that was the Barbie movie – a release that had the whole world talking – the Design Museum has revealed that they’ve got a major retrospective coming up, and it’s all about everyone’s favourite doll. Three years in the making, the exhibition will retrace nearly seven decades of history to tell the story of the iconic brand, with a particular focus on its design, in celebration of its 65th birthday.

Fri 5th – Wed 31st July 2024
224 – 238 Kensington High Street, London W8 6AG

Thorgy Thor holding a violin

3. See the Worlds of Drag and Classical Music Collide at This Concert

After debuting with a show at the Barbican last July, Classical Pride is back with an expanded, five-day programme of events that highlight and celebrate the huge contribution made by the LGBTQ+ community to classical music. And, for the first time ever, organisers are hosting a Classical Drag concert where Drag Queens and Kings will be singing opera, performing concerto solos and hitting the runway. International Drag superstars Monét X Change (winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars season 4) and Thorgy Thor (violinist and fan favourite from RuPaul’s Drag Race season 4 and All Stars season 3) will headline, following sets by some of the UK’s hottest Drag and classical talent (including Vinegar Strokes, Beau Jangles, Barbs, Freddie Love, Snow White Trash, Jonny Woo and Nicky Spence).

Wed 3rd July 2024
HERE at Outernet, Charing Cross Road, London WC2H 8LH

Michael Bibi

4. Catch This Massive Michael Bibi Show

We’ve already got some huge gigs lined up for this summer from the likes of Skepta and Bloc Party and now Michael Bibi is getting in on the action too. The producer, DJ and Solid Grooves label head has announced he’s hitting the road for his One Life tour, which includes a mega 45,000-capacity homecoming show at Finsbury Park this July. The gig comes off the back of a significant year for Bibi, who after battling CNS Lymphoma (a form of brain and spinal cancer), announced he was cancer-free in December 2023.

Sat 6th July 2024
Finsbury Park, London N4 1EE

5. Catch Some Live Performances at This FREE Festival

The River Stage, the free outdoor arts festival by the National Theatre, is returning to the Southbank this summer, filling the area with live music, theatre, dance and more for four weekends. The Glory will kick off the festival for the eighth year with the Glory’s Grande-Dames of drag and performance. Hosted by Jonny Woo and John Sizzle, top drag queens, kings, cabaret artists, DJs, and theatre makers will make up an exciting weekend full of free queer music and performance. Greenwich+Docklands International Festival will take over the next weekend, followed by The Rambert, one of the most diverse dance companies in the world. The festival will wrap up with the National Theatre putting on family theatre, dance, workshops, music, an NT Live screening and tours of the building. Throughout the fest, you can enjoy London’s top street food served by KERB.

Fri 5th – Sun 28th July 2024
Upper Ground, London SE1 9PX

man and woman shopping at a flea market

6. Hunt for Treasure at London’s Giant Flea Market

The Big London Flea is back in town for its second edition of 2024 and this time it’s not just big, but giant. The supersized market, taking over a multi-storey car park in the Olympic Park this April, is the largest indoor flea market in the city. Over 100 vintage traders will be there, selling everything from furniture, records, homeware, and lighting to prints, maps, clothing, artworks and one-of-a-kind finds. It’s just £2 entry, with on-site cafes and a sound system to keep you going in between all that bargain hunting.

Sun 28th April 2024, 10am – 5pm
Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park Multi-Storey Car Park, London E15 2GZ.

crowd at Kaleidoscope festival

7. Dance to a Major Line-Up at Kaleidoscope Festival

Kaleidoscope Festival, Ally Pally’s legendary all-dayer, has announced the full line-up for this year’s edition and it looks like they’ll be cramming a lot in with a stacked programme of music, comedy, and street food. In 2024, Soul II Soul, Ministry of Sound Classical, The Go! Team, Huey Morgan, Antony Szmierek, Mr. Scruff, Erol Alkan and more are set to take to the music stages. As for comedy, expect sets from the likes of Simon Amstell, Brian Blessed, Sophie Duker, Amir Shah and Chloe Petts.

Sat 13th July 2024
Alexandra Palace Way, London N22 7AY

hot air balloons in the sky

8. Wake Up to the Lord Mayor’s Balloon Regatta

Waking up to a sky full of hot air balloons is quite a magical thing and that’s exactly what the plan is with the Lord Mayor’s Balloon Regatta – providing the weather plays ball. The regatta is in aid of the Lord Mayor’s Appeal, which focuses on initiatives like promoting inclusive workplaces, empowering young women, reducing the stigma around mental health, and supporting philanthropy amongst City businesses. But the regatta hasn’t had the easiest time of it; poor conditions put paid to the show for the last two years, with the pandemic forcing the balloons to stay grounded in 2020 and 2021, so the last time it actually went ahead was in June 2019, with 46 balloons launching from Battersea Park at 5.30am.

Sun 7th, Sun 21st and Sun 28th July 2024

LIFT 2024

9. Watch the Premieres of Up to 7 Theatre Shows at LIFT

The London International Festival of Theatre (LIFT) will land back in town this summer for nearly two months celebrating the arts. Every two years, LIFT fills the city with thought-provoking theatre and unforgettable performances from around the world and this year will be no different. Artistic Director Kris Nelson has curated a programme of progressive, innovative and eclectic acts for 2024 which will feature work from Canada, Taiwan, Ivory Coast, France, Italy, Cape Verde, Portugal, Brazil, Iran and Palestine. Some highlights will include The Land Acknowledgement or As You Like It, a reimagining of Shakespeare’s classic; L’Homme Rare, an exploration of masculinity through dance; Bat Night Market, an examination of global food shortages and cultural approaches to cuisine; and The Trials and Passions of Unfamous Women which brings the Halls of Justice to Brixton House.

Mon 1st – Sat 27th July 2024
Various venues across London

South Facing festival lineup 2024

10. Party With Your Favourite Artists at South Facing Festival

After another excellent edition in 2023, South Facing is returning to Crystal Palace for 2024 and they’ve announced the artists playing dates across various dates in July and August. First up, Future Islands will be headlining on Sat 27th July with Baxter Dury and Julie Byrne also set to perform.

Fri 26th & Sat 27th July 2024
Crystal Palace Park, London