What’s On: London’s Best Events for November 2023
It’s impossible to miss the beginning of November, probably because of the slew of fireworks set off on Bonfire Night that mark the city’s scandalous past. Now that the technicoloured lights in the sky have settled down a bit, it’s time to plan for the month ahead by sifting through the best London events in November. From Christmas light switch ons and twinkling ice rinks to new immersive experiences and upcoming art exhibitions, we’ve got everything you need to make this month memorable. If you’re still looking for more ideas, hop onto the free Bindy Street app to find more fun events!
The nights may be dark and the air cold, but the lights of Diwali are all set to brighten up the chilly streets of London. Immerse yourself in the festival of lights with Greenwich Peninsula, who are holding spectacular celebrations consisting of an eye-catching photography exhibition, a kaleidoscopic installation from artist MURUGIAH, traditional Indian music, and to wrap it all up, an awe-inspiring light procession featuring eco-friendly lanterns. It’s safe to say that even the coldest of hearts will be uplifted by the joys of this South Asian celebration - and best of all, the family friendly event is free to enjoy.
11 November 2023
Location: Greenwich Peninsula, London SE10
Now, your neck might ache a little with our next suggestion, but believe us it’ll be worth it. Look up as you’re travelling around the city and you’re likely to come across a dazzling array of unabashedly bright Christmas Lights that are impossible to ignore. If you’d like to take your nearest and dearest out for a festive sightseeing crawl, here’s some of the best Christmas lights in London that you can see this month.
- Oxford Street Christmas Lights (From 2 November 2023)
If you’ve ever wanted to know what having the stars in your eyes really feels like, then make your way down Oxford Street this month to appreciate rows upon rows of dangling, celestial bodies.
- Covent Garden Christmas Lights (From 7 November 2023)
Covent Garden is a certified Christmas classic, so go and see what all of the hype is about by gazing at their twinkling tree, wholesome wreaths, and impressive new bells installation - you may even come across some gentle snow flurries too.
The Carnaby Street lights are always a wildcard as far as Christmas installations go, and this year won’t be any different. Past displays have featured gigantic fluttering butterflies, huge snowmen, and planets in orbit, so expect to set your eyes upon something special.
- Regent Street Christmas Lights (From 9 November)
What would a walk around London at Christmas be without a trip to Regent Street’s iconic angels? Stroll down the bustling street and prepare to set your eyes upon their gigantic, glimmering wings.
- Winter Light at Southbank (From 13 November)
Offering something more unconventional than your standard candy canes and twinkling stars, Winter Light at Southbank is providing us all with a magnificent art trail featuring glowing works from contemporary artists.
Is the modern age getting you down? If so, simply hop into a time machine with Rumble in the Jungle Rematch, the ultimate immersive experience transporting you all the way back to 1974 for a thrilling night out. Once you’ve entered Congo-Kinshasa, you’ll be gearing up to see a recreation of the legendary boxing match between Muhammed Ali and George Foreman. As if that weren’t already enough, you can sip on drinks from the bar, tuck into Congolese dishes, and dance the night away at the historical music concert, Zaire 1974.
Throughout November 2023
Location: Dock X London, Unit 1, Canada Water Retail Park, Surrey Quays Road, London SE16 2XU
As the allure of mulled wine and seasonal spices starts to take hold, it’s time to give into temptation with a cosy winter warmer this November. Luckily for you, Covent Garden’s Winter Warmer festival is back in town and will be offering a variety of dreamy drinks from local businesses. Miracle at Henrietta are enticing all with their Hot Buttered Rum, whilst Whittards of Chelsea are charming taste buds with their Mulled Wine Instant Tea. To try one of these delicious offerings (or potentially treat yourself to a few more), you now know where to go.
7 - 26 November 2023
Location: Covent Garden, London WC2
5. Drop by a London Ice Rink For a Festive Skate
‘Tis the season to be skating! That’s right, the drop in temperature means that the city’s prettiest ice rinks are opening up this month. It’s time to grab your family members, your pals, your colleagues, or your date, and get ready to hit the ice for a jolly good time. You might even find a moment for a cosy hot chocolate along the way. If you’re not sure where to book your next skating session, here’s a few of our recommendations:
- Alexandra Palace Ice Rink (Throughout November 2023)
Open all year round, this popular rink is a natural choice for an outing on the ice. Becoming extra magical during the festive season, you can expect a huge Christmas tree to rock around, flurries of snow, DJ nights, and cups of Baileys hot chocolate from the bar.
- Canary Wharf Ice Rink (Throughout November 2023)
The glimmering disco ball at the centre of Canary Wharf’s ice rink really says it all. Drop by one of their designated DJ nights and you’ll be gliding along to pop anthems, 80’s classics, or the smooth soul songs around - date night is sorted.
- Skate West End (From 4 November 2023)
If you like the sound of waltzing around the ice for a good cause, then you’ll want to check out London’s latest ice rink, Skate West End. Made in partnership with Great Ormond Street Hospital, a percentage of each ticket sale will go towards the charity.
- Skate at Somerset House (From 15 November 2023)
The city’s liveliest ice rink has to be Skate at Somerset House, returning with their 40ft Christmas tree, festive bar offerings, and music nights with some of the hottest DJs on the circuit.
- Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink (From 17 November 2023)
Give yourself the royal treatment with a trip to Hampton Court Palace’s majestic ice rink, featuring the winning combination of breathtaking views and a spacious, open-air rink where families can glide around to their heart’s content.
As far as Madame Pigg is concerned, heaven comes in the form of a spectacular roast dinner. Throughout November, the Dalston legends will be taking over Islington Arts Club, serving up generous portions of Roast Beef with Horseradish, Butternut Squash and Chestnut Wellington, and other seasonal dishes from their repertoire that were made for chilly, autumnal afternoons. Oh, and don’t forget to tuck into the ultimate sweet treat, their dreamy Apple Tart Tatin.
4 November - 17 December 2023
Location: Islington Arts Club, 235 Upper Street, London N1 1RU
7. Get Your Cultural Fix at a Top Art Exhibition
As per usual, London is bustling with an array of new exhibitions providing the city’s art aficionados with their cultural fix. Whether you’re into classic impressionist painters or are looking for something a bit more contemporary, there are plenty of galleries you can explore this November. Here are a few of our personal recommendations fit for a day of artistic exploration:
- David Hockney: Drawing from Life (From 2 November 2023)
Due to the success of David Hockey’s immersive Lightroom experience, it only makes sense that another exhibition would open up soon after. At the National Portrait Gallery, explore the artist’s work over the past five decades through his intimate portraits.
- Koestler Arts: IN CASE OF EMERGENCY (From 2 November 2023)
To experience the transformative power of art, then make haste to the Royal Festival Hall for Koestler Arts: IN CASE OF EMERGENCY. You’ll discover handpicked artworks created by people in the criminal justice system, spanning visuals, writing, and music.
- Women in Revolt! (From 8 November 2023)
If the limitations of womanhood makes you want to scream, check out this cathartic exhibition at Tate Britain. Showcasing feminist works from over 100 UK artists, Women in Revolt! demonstrates how these perfectly provocative pieces have contributed to the women’s liberation movement.
- Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Boundless (From 15 November 2023)
Couples who create together, stay together - that’s what we’ve gathered from this retrospective exhibition at Saatchi Gallery. Exploring the profound creativity and love shared between artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude, you’ll explore monumental visual works and sculptures reflecting environmental concerns.
- Impressionists On Paper: Degas to Toulouse-Lautrec (From 25 November 2023)
London has seen its fair share of exhibitions on the impressionists this year, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore the Royal Academy of Art’s latest offering. From Degas to Morisot, this is your chance to explore the most radical works created by the 19th-century visual artists.
As the countdown to Christmas continues to tick away, it’s the perfect time to start bringing everyone together for some festive celebrations. Tipis on the Green, London’s alpine-themed bar and restaurant, is home to everything you’ll need for an evening of indulgence alongside loved ones. We’re talking dreamy charcuterie boards packed with French and Italian cured meats and cheese, the cosiest mulled drinks, a margarita bottomless brunch offering, and fire pit tables to warm up by - doesn’t that sound like the perfect festive treat?
From 17 November 2023
Location: Parsons Green, 235 New Kings Rd, London SW6 4XG
After weeks of anticipation, Bubble Planet is finally open for business near the end of November. Expected to be one of London’s most joyous immersive experiences, you’ll be in for a giant bathtub turned ballpit, LED rooms brimming with underwater scenes and flourishing sealife, a mind-bending infinity room, virtual reality goggles that’ll show you what it’s like to be a floating bubble, and even a robot-led bubble show. To experience these whimsical activities, secure your tickets as soon as possible.
From 24 November 2023
Location: 22 Fulton Road, Wembley, London HA9 0TF
10. Catch a Cheery Christmas Show on Stage
What better way to forget about your worries than with a trip to the theatre? With a new month comes an array of spectacular productions - and it seems that November is filled with a flurry of festive shows to enjoy. Ranging from immersive performances to recreations of classic tales, these are the shows we’re most looking forward to this month.
- The Great Christmas Feast (From 14 November 2023)
The theatre meets fine dining at this unmissable, immersive experience. As you indulge in the ultimate, three-course meal, you’ll time travel back to Victorian London as Charles Dickens writes a Christmas Carol - Michaelmas Duck anyone?
- Elf! (From 15 November 2023)
Whether you love it or hate it, the sensational musical version of Elf! will be back on stage this November. A festive, family friendly classic, join Buddy the Elf on his adventures at the Big Apple and watch him bring the magic of Christmas to everyone he meets.
- The Snowman (From 18 November 2023)
Snowmen are not only fun to make and adorable to look at, but they’re also pretty good at floating through the air. Come and watch this Christmas classic on stage at the Peacock theatre, offering a dazzling display of storytelling, dance, live music, and magic based on Raymond Brigg's illustrated tale.
- Peter Pan Goes Wrong (From 23 November 2023)
If you were looking for a lively production of Peter Pan, we’ve found one for you. Only thing is, there’s a slight catch - nothing in this production goes to plan. Expect flying mishaps, technical hitches, and popcorn-worthy actor disputes that’ll have you cracking up with laughter.
- A Sherlock Carol (From 24 November 2023)
You may be familiar with Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, but have you experienced the story from the perspective of Sherlock Holmes himself? At A Sherlock Carol, you’ll experience a “winning crossover mystery” as the esteemed detective finds out that Ebenezer Scrooge has died under mysterious circumstances.
Photo credits: Diwali at Greenwich Peninsula
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Greenwich Peninsula, London SE10