Things to do in London this weekend with kids
When it comes to things to do in London this weekend with kids, there's a whole lot of festive fun to start ramping up the Xmas feels with.
Sleighride over to Hyde Park Winter Wonderland
It's back for its 16th wintry outing and guaranteed to be a hit with the whole fam. From a giant Disney ferris wheel to a huge ski-company-sponsored ice slide, a traditional circus to scream-inducing rides, there's something for everyone at Hyde Park Winter Wonderland. Dress warm and be prepared to spend a fair bit of moolah...
We tried it already and had an absolute blast, and ended up spending six fun-packed hours there - review coming later this week so keep your eyes peeled.
When: Now until 1st January 2024
Where: Hyde Park, Central London
Enjoy a page to stage fave
There's nothing not to love about a page to stage adaptation of anything Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, but this sweet and fabulous puppet version of Charlie Cook's Favourite Book got a huge thumbs up from 8-year-old London for Kidz roving reporter, Mae. Expect an enchanting musical packed with puppetry, original music and a sprinkling of pixie magic.
When: Now until 4 February 2024.
Where: Little Angel Studios, Sebbon Street, London N1 2EH
Meet Santa at London Zoo
Little ones will get a sprinkling of Christmas magic as they learn what it takes to become one of Santa’s helpers in London Zoo's elf school, before meeting Santa in his magical grotto at the heart of the Zoo. Every child will also receive a very special early Christmas gift to take home. We visited last weekend and had a thoroughly lovely time soaking up the festive feels while also exploring the sights of sounds of this epic London essential destination.
When: Now until 24th December 2023
Where: Outer Circle, London NW1 4RY
Get your panto on
Join Aladdin on a magical journey filled with dreams of love and fortune, an enchanted lamp and a mysterious genie. Be prepared for an unforgettable performance, adorned with dazzling costumes, side-splitting laughter, and song and dance numbers that are simply genie-us!
When: Now until 31st December 2023
Cost: From £9.30 per person Where: Hackney Empire, 291 Mare Street, London E8 1EJ
Find Santa at Legoland Windsor
You will get to see the big man himself – Father Christmas! - at Legoland during the festive period and we just know everything will be awesome. He’ll be roaming around the Park on the back of his magical sleigh, so don’t forget to wave! You can also expect puppet shows, elves and a giant Duplo Xmas tree. There's also the option to upgrade your visit to an overnight stay that includes Father Christmas making a personal visit to your hotel room door!
When: From 25th November 2023
Where: Legoland Windsor, Winkfield Road, Windsor SL4 4AY
Be dazzled at the Tower of London
This weekend head tothe Tower of London for its stunning and immersive light and sound show, Crown and Coronation, which will be going on tour around the UK in 2024. Historic Royal Palaces have partnered with Luxmuralis Artist Collaboration to create an immersive sound and light show that celebrates the spectacle of the Crown Jewels and Coronation Ceremony, and you'll also enjoy special after-hours access to see the Crown Jewels.
When: 17th to 25th November 2023, 5pm until 10pm Where: The Tower of London, London EC3N 4AB Cost: £12.50 for kids (age 5-15 years), £19.50 for adults.
Explore London Wetlands with Quentin Blake
Leave behind the bustle of town for an oasis of wildlife splendour and discover the magic of London's wetlands this autumn with Quentin Blake's illustrations as your guide. Quentin says "Visitors will be walking with me, and I like to think of myself walking with them. I shan't mind if I get my feet wet." Pick up one of our Drawn to Water illustrated trails and explore the seasonal natural highlights, from quiet spots with breathtaking views to close up wildlife encounters in a day out the whole fam will love.
When: Now until 1 January 2024
Where: London Wetlands, Queen Elizabeth Walk, London SW13 9WT www.wwt.org.uk/wetland-centres/london/whats-on/drawn-to-water-autumn
Get your graffiti on
Are you ready to unleash your inner artist and take on the streets like never before? Join graffiti artist, Marc Craig, for a graffiti workshop at the legendary Leake Street!You'll be given easy-to-follow instructions on how to use a spray can to bring your vision to life, and much more. Suitable for kids age 8 and above. All kids under 12 must be accompanied by a grownup.
When: 26th November
Where: Leake Street Arches, London SE1 8SW
Cost: From £40
Travel back in time to the days of Shakespeare's London
Opening this weekend visit The Globe's brand-new, walk-through exhibition space, you’ll be immersed in the sights, sounds, and secrets of Shakespeare’s London, travelling through over 400 years of fascinating history. You’ll be able to relive some of The Globe's iconic shows with seasonally curated displays, and even have the chance to get ready for the stage yourself with interactive costumes and props. When: From 2nd November 2023 until 31 October 2024 Where: 21 New Globe Walk, London SE1 9DT Cost: From £18 per person www.shakespearesglobe.com/whats-on/shakespeares-globe-story-and-tour
Head over to an animal sanctuary
Strap on your wellies and head to Hopefield Animal Sanctuary for a wholesome day out visiting 600+ rescued animals, birds and reptiles. Don't forget to walk all the way to the end of sanctuary to visit the new cows on the block - Pumpkin and Bonnie the Highland Cows are adorable!
When: Every Friday to Monday, 10am until 3pm
Where: Hopefield Animal Sanctuary, Sawyers Hall Lane, Brentwood CM15 9BZ
Cost: £7 for adults, £6 for kids. All profits go back into the sanctuary. www.hopefield.org.uk
Visit Ancient Egypt... at Westfield!
Brand new and located at Westfield Stratford City, Horizon of Khufu is a new virtual reality experience showcasing Ancient Egypt that features innovative VR technology developed in partnership with a leading Egyptologist and team from Harvard University. Voyage back in time 4,500 years ago to Ancient Egypt to the land of the Pharaohs in an Immersive Expeditions suitable for anyone age-8 and older. We tried it (and LOVED it) a few weeks ago so look out for our review, coming soon! When: Open daily 10am until 10pm (12pm until 6pm on Sundays)
Where: London Stratford Westfield City, 157 Montfichet Road, London E20 1EJ Cost: From £39 www.horizonkheops.com/en/
Help a wolf mend his broken heart
Think you know the story of Red Riding Hood? Think again! Bring the family to Big Bad Me, a charming new production that reimagines a classic fairytale that teaches children that they should never judge anyone on how they look.
When: Now until 19th November 2023
Where: 14 Dagmar Passage, London N1 2DN Cost: From £12
Boost your dopamine
If you fancy spending part of your weekend in London in a Pool of Joy then Dopamine Land is the fam-friendly multisensory experience for you. Combining media, technology and play in one place, this is an interactive museum that channels the limitless imagination of your inner child into reality. When: From now until 29th October, various times
Where: 85 Old Brompton Rd, South Kensington, London SW7 3LD
Cost: From £15 per person www.dopaminelandexperience.com/london/
Be a Big City Saver
We’ve got your back when it comes to ticking the very best of London off your list with some savings to boot. From the London Eye, Madame Tussauds to SEA LIFE London Aquarium and more, grab yourselves a Big City Saver London experience pass which will keep you busy for plenty of weekend fun ticking off all the iconic attractions you've been meaning to try.
When: Whenever you like!
Where: All over London
Cost: Click below for offers and combinations to suit
Be mesmerised by David Attenborough
BBC Earth Experience is a breath new London-based attraction offering visitors the chance to experience the extraordinary diversity of our seven unique continents, featuring bespoke narration from David Attenborough. BBC Earth Experience will fully immerse the whole family via the very latest digital screen technology. Expect a trip around the world without the need for a passport!
When: Now until 7 January 2024
Where: The Daikin Centre, Earl's Court, Empress Place, London SW6 1TT
Cost: From £15 per child (free for under 3s), from £19 per adult
Have a friendly (mostly!) family battle
Laser Quest over in the east of town has a special promo on making this fun family activity an affordable winner for the weekend. If you're early birds over the weekend then check out its Zappy Hour special offers!
Where: Laser Quest Romford, 57-59 High St, Romford RM1 1JL
Cost: From £12.95 per game
Cook like a Tudor
Now here's a fun AND educational event for families that will cook up a storm of good memories: Hampton Court Palace's Historic Cooking sessions. You'll get to discover what life was like working in the royal kitchens during the 16th centre, back when there over 450 people to feed twice a day at the palace during Tudor times.
When: Every weekend from now until 31 March 2024
Where: Hampton Court Palace, Hampton Court Way, Molesey, East Molesey KT8 9AU Cost: Included in palace admission price. www.hrp.org.uk/hampton-court-palace
Go on a most Shrekcellent adventure
We checked out Shrek's Adventure! London recently and had a blast. Check out our review here and then book tix for your own rib tickling activity winner.
When: Open daily, 10am to 5pm
Where: Shrek's Adventure! London, Riverside Building, County Hall, Westminster Bridge Rd, Lambeth, London SE1 7PB.
Cost: Adults from £30 (online discount), and children from £24 (age 3 to 15 years). Children age 2 and below are free. https://prf.hn/click/camref:1101lvZPY
Get your craft on: for free
Head along to the Kids Craft club for a fun, free event at Wood Street Library. When: Every Saturday, 3pm-4pm
Where: Wood Street Library, 1 Troubridge Square, Walthamstow, London E17 3GN
Cost: Free www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/wood-street-library
Ditch the kids and go on a date
For a night full of laughs sail on over to The Boat Show Comedy Club aboard The Tattershall Castle, which you'll find on Victoria Embankment. You deserve this, parents.
When:,Every Friday and Saturday, 7pm
Where: The Tattershall Castle, Victoria Embankment
Cost: From £18 per person.
Fling yourself off of Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Now here's a fun-packed adventure the kids are sure to love: the Dare Skywalk over at Tottenham Hospur FC! You'll need a head for heights when climbing to the top of the stadium before standing at more than 46 metres high above the famous pitch below. And if you're over 12, then you can also fling yourself off the side: abseil style! Which is exactly what Mum was about to do in that pic above.
The Dare Skywalk is open to children from the age of 8, and for younger fam-members there's the rather excellent stadium tour for families: check out our review of that right here.
When: Various times Where: Lilywhite House 782 High Road London N17 0BX Cost: From £44 for adults and £33.50 for kids. Member discount available.
Blast down the Thames
Now here's a high speed activity that's guaranteed to thrill! Revved up and raring to fly, the Thames Rockets team will take you on a sightseeing tour like no other and one packed not just with high speeds, but with lots of humour and banter too. The perfect combo! There are all kinds of tour options happening, so take a look at our review here, pick the adventure you fancy the most (you can't go wrong with any of them) use the link below to book. When: Daily, various times
Where: Boarding Gate One, The, London Eye Millennium Pier, London SE1 7PB Cost: From £39.95 for kids and £44.95 per adult (before discount code)
Hop aboard a floating museum
For an interactive gem of a day out it doesn't get much better for families than hopping aboard HMS Belfast. We recently checked it out and it was a huge success with the kids: even the teenager! All the wins and a surprisingly cool adventure. Read our full review here. When: Open daily 10:00am - 5:00pm
Where: The Queen's Walk, London SE1 2JH
Cost: Adults from £23.60. Members and under-fives free.
Flex your palaeontologist skills: VR Style
New adventure kid on the block DIVR Labs has brought a prehistoric world to Westfield London and we had a blast checking it out. With its state of the art VR system and a huge arena to explore, this is a roarsome activity the whole gang will love. Suitable for kiddos age around 7 and up, this Virtual Reality experience will take you on a mission around prehistoric terrain that features not just mindbogglingly real swamps, volcanoes and landscapes, but also a life-sized T-rex amongst other dinos. A huge hit here for Team London for Kidz and, if you're game, we happen to have a 15% saving for you. Just pop the code TRACY15 in at checkout and voila: a lovely saving.
When: Daily, various times
Where: Westfield London Shopping Centre Ariel Way, London W12 7GF Cost: From £27.45 per person (before discount) www.divrlabs.com/global
Shop at a Farmer's Market
Shady tree lined Phillimore Walk is the perfect place for a farmer's market and that's what you'll find there this Sunday: rain or shine. We're talking fresh food in the fresh air including from freshly caught fish and shellfish, seasonal fruit, vegetables, pies, bread, seasonal game, free range and organic eggs plus poultry, meat, preserves, flowers and much more. Happy browsing!
When: Every Sunday, 10am-2pm
Cost: Free admission
Have an awesome time at Lego Club
It's free and it's awesome: yep, it's the weekly Lego Club held at Blackfen Community Library every Saturday. Unleash your inner Master Builder and have a fun, family time whipping up creations galore. If the whole team are on board then make sure to book a family table to play and create together on.
When: Every Saturday, 10-11am
Where: Blackfen Community Library and Rooted Coffee House, Blackfen Road, Blackfen DA15 9LU
Cost: Free but make sure to register.
Discover a love of art at Tate Modern
Entry to the gallery remains free for everyone, with a charge for some exhibitions, and we love that Tate Modern has a whole programme for families. Booking is needed for exhibitions, but tickets are available on the door, and we think Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirror Rooms will definitely score big with the family. You don’t need to be an expert to look at or talk about art and Tate encourages this for kids with plenty of activity ideas designed with them in mind. It's ok to talk at Tate and noise is encouraged! Check out its website before you go for the family fun that includes workshops, tactile activities and plenty more.
When: open daily, 10am - 6pm
Where: 53 Bankside, Bankside SE1 9TG
Cost: Free admission
Check out a quirky, free museum
An aquarium, a butterfly house (closed for refurb right now) and the vast collections of well-travelled Victorian tea trader and philanthropist Frederick John Horniman, this wonderful gem of a museum is a treasure trove packed with anthropology, natural history and a stack load of curiosities. It's free to get into the museum and gardens but do book your spot ahead of time.
When: Open daily except Wednesdays
Where: 100 London Road, Forest Hill SE23 3PQ
Cost: Free (small charge for the aquarium, butterfly house and some exhibitions). Donations welcome.
Keep the kids busy with messy play
We love, love, love everything about Art Play nestled in the Shoreditch part of the city, and can highly recommend its cool weekend classes. These child-led sessions provide your little ones with the freedom to explore and create through sensory activities (and you don't have to do the clearing up!). All the wins.
When: Every Saturday, various times
Where: Art Play, 56 Middlesex Street, London E1 7EZ
Cost: Various depending on class.
Get down to a city farm
We've got not 1, not 2, not even 3 but 10 udderly fabulous farms and animal sanctuaries for you to check out in and around London this weekend and beyond.
Take a flight with the Red Arrows!
How cool is this happening over at the Science Museum? Fly Kids is a pay-as-you-go flight simulator that lets your child experience the sights and sounds of flying with the Red Arrows during one of their aerobatic displays, and is suitable for little ones age 2 to 5 years. For the bigger kids there is the equally as cool Red Arrows 3D. When: Open daily, 10.20–17.00. Last ride at 17.00
Where: Science Museum, Exhibition Road, South Kensington, London SW7 2DD
Cost: It's free admission into the museum, but Fly Kids is £2 per child and Red Arrows is £5 per child.
Discover London's dark history
If it's a day out with a difference you're after when it comes to things to do in London with kids, then Clink Prison Museum is exactly the kinda gruesomely good adventure you're after. Read our review on one of the best museums in London when it comes to hands-on, historic family fun and then get yourselves over there this weekend. When: 10am-6pm daily Where: 1 Clink Street, London SE1 9DG (nearest station: London Bridge)
Cost: From £6.50 per person
Check out the oldest natural history collection in the UK
Pickled brains, bones aplenty and over 68,000 zoological specimens: For an unusual day out in London with kids it doesn't get much quirkier than this! Head over to The Grant Museum of Zoology for a fascinating journey around the animal kingdom through a heap of family activities: all for free!
When: Every Saturday 11am-5pm
Where: Grant Museum of Zoology, Rockefeller Building, University College London, 21 University Street, WC1E 6DE
Cost: Free, and no booking currently required
Go on a free walking tour
The City of London has been plagued by disaster for Centuries and this free walking tour will take you to some of the historical sites you might not otherwise know about. From Pudding Lane (where the Great Fire of London started) to Roman ruins, mass plague graveyards to execution sites from the middle ages, this is a fascinating, guided tour not to be missed. When: Every Saturday, 2.30pm sharp
Where: Monument Station: look out for your guide carrying a green umbrella
Now you're all set for a weekend in London, don't forget to #londonforkidz on your social media platforms so we can see what you got up to.
Psst: if you have an event that you would like featured in our weekly 'things to do in London this weekend' guide then drop us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
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