Answers from Our Experts (2)
London's summer festival season is upon us. Every month from June through August, the city boasts a wide array of world-class music, film, theater, literature and other cultural festivals. Here's a quick rundown.
This June, the British capital plays host to countless fantastic festivals. Our five top picks are the inaugural London Festival of Architecture (1 through 31), Spitalfields Summer Music Festival (7 through 22), Clapham Common Foodies Festival (7 through 9), Open Court Theatre Festival (10 through 20) and, of course, the City of London Festival (23 through 26).
Things only get more eclectic in July, with some incredibly varied ways to spend your weekends. If we had to narrow it down to three, we would recommend the iTunes Music Festival (1 through 31), the Festival of British Archaeology (13 through 28), and the London Indian Film Festival (18 through 25).
Coming at the tail end of summer? That's no problem. You can still enjoy the Camden Fringe Festival (1 through 31), the Great British Beer Festival (13 through 17) and the world-famous Notting Hill Carnival (25 and 26) – Europe's biggest street party. Unless England win the Ashes, of course...
Music: For a range of musical genres in one of London’s oldest parks, head to Lovebox Festival. Taking place in Victoria Park from July 19th – 21st, the line-up boasts rock, pop and soul in the form of Plan B, Lana Del Rey, Grace Jones, Friendly Fires and Goldfrapp; dance from Groove Armada and Rudimental; and many more live acts, alongside food stalls, art installations and that all important great atmosphere. What’s more, the no camping policy means you can choose a comfortable hotel bed to rest your head each night.
Film: The 57th BFI Film Festival takes place in London from October 9th to 20th, showcasing the best new films, documentaries, shorts, animations, feature films and talks across a packed 12-day schedule. Last year’s festival attracted the highest attendance in the event’s history, with over 149,000 people flocking to various venues hosting screenings across the city, including 12 world premieres, 11 international premieres, 37 European premieres, and an impressive whose who of A-listers. Full details are revealed in September, but every year promises to keep film buffs entertained; visit the official website for more.
Food: The annual Taste of London takes over a small section of Regent’s Park from June 20th to 23rd, offering visitors the opportunity to sample small plates from 40 of the city’s very best restaurants. Marking its 10th anniversary in 2013, this year’s event is boasting its ‘best line-up ever’, including: three generations of Roux – Albert, Michel Jr and Emily – cooking together in a festival first; championed chefs such as Raymond Blanc, Bruno Loubet and Rene Redzepi; and some of the city’s top new restaurant newcomers, Sushisamba, Duck & Waffle and LIMA. With pop-up bars selling delicious sunny day Pimms and Laurent Perrier, live music, food stalls stocked with treats to pack in your suitcase for home, and far too much freshly cooked food to sample there and then, it’s a must for foodies. Book in advance from the official website for the best price.
Fashion: London Fashion Week – September 13th to 17th – attracts a plethora of pretty faces and top fashion names to the city, keen to model and unveil the looks for the next season (in this case, spring/summer 2014). Check the official website nearer the time for details of shows and events taking place around the city.