Activities in London

Things to do in London | Activities

Hope you packed your sense of adventure as well as your Oyster card because your fun-fuelled London weekend starts here. There’s just so much to do! From horse riding in Hyde Park to a roof walk along the top of the iconic O2 Arena, the UK capital is packed with exhilarating activities and many of them give you breathtaking views at the same time. Weather looking a bit British outside? There’s no need to let rain stop your fun because, with crazy golf and ice climbing on offer, there are plenty of indoor activities to get stuck into. And when your action-packed day draws to a close, rest assured that one of our London hotels will be just round the corner.


Outdoor

Who says you have to fly to the Alps to get an adrenaline rush? While London may not have mountains to whizz down, it does have plenty of adventures of its own on offer - if you know where to look.

Ever wanted to stand at the very top of the iconic O2 Arena? The Up at The O2 experience lets you do just that. Your instructor will clip you in before you attempt the exhilarating 90-minute climb over the roof of the world’s most popular entertainment venue. Walks are available at twilight, at sunset or, for the really brave, at night. The 380m walkway reaches heights of 52m and when it’s clear you can see landmarks up to 15 miles away.

At Hyde Park you can rent paddle boats on the Serpentine, or brave the chilly waters for a spot of wild swimming in the Lido. But if you’re feeling really adventurous, why not see the park on horseback? Hyde Park Stables offer adults and children the chance to ride horses all year round round from 9am to 4pm, seven days a week. Beginners are welcome and there are five miles of bridleways to trot along.

One of the most exhilarating activities in London can be found at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in East London. The ArcelorMittal Orbit and Slide created by German artist Carsten Höller sees you climbing up to a height of 178m. Enjoy the views from the platform and then it’s time to slide! The descent takes just 40 breathtaking seconds and there are some loops, curves and tight corners to enjoy. Our advice: go before you eat your lunch.


Indoor

If you’re unlucky with the weather and stuck with a rainy day, you’ll find that the city will more than make up for it with its supply of exciting indoor activities.

For a real challenge, head to the Vertical Chill Ice Wall in Covent Garden where you get to use ice picks to claw your way up 8m to the top. You’ll find the refrigerated unit inside the Ellis Brigham store and temperatures are kept very chilly, from -5°C to -12°C. All equipment and warm clothing is provided, and there are a variety of routes to test you, from novice right up to Bear Grylls level.

Give your socialising a competitive edge taking your friends for cocktails, street food and a few rounds of crazy golf at Swingers. Just off Oxford Street, this huge venue has a 1920s British seaside theme and two nine-hole crazy golf courses. The courses are well-designed to accommodate even large groups and there are four cocktail bars to choose from. They’ll even bring you drinks as you play.

There’s nothing like watching a movie on a rainy afternoon, but at the Curzon Soho you can do so much more - and all in luxurious surroundings. Once voted the number one cinema in London by Time Out magazine, there’s always something interesting going on, from documentary screenings complete with Q&A sessions with the directors to world and indie flicks.

Turn watching a movie into an immersive experience at the BFI Imax. With a screen as high as five double-decker buses and crystal-clear surround-sound, your eyes and ears are in for a feast. With a variety of 2D and 3D showings, you’ll find everything from action to independent films and animations.


Walking tours

Comfy shoes at the ready. Even if you already know the city like the back of your hand, walking tours are a great way to see some of London’s hidden gems and secret spots. There’ll be one to suit you, whatever your interests, whether that’s street art, literature or even food,

Calling all wizards! If you loved the Harry Potter Studio experience, why not try the Harry Potter Walking Tour? Learn secrets about the magical movie series as you visit all of the London locations you’ve seen on screen, from Diagon Alley to the Leaky Cauldron. Wands and glasses are optional but you will need a valid Oyster card to travel in Zone 1.

With pieces by Banksy and Ben Eine, Brick Lane is the epicentre of London’s street art scene and a walking tour is the best way to get to see it all. Shoreditch Street Art Tours is one of the best on offer, with friendly guides who’ll tell you all about the stories behind the pieces, the artists and the area.

Get a taste of what the city has to offer by booking a Borough Market Food Walking Tour. The three-hour walk takes you through London’s street food scene and helps you discover the best produce in the area, from fudge to Cumberland sausages, with some secret foodie treats thrown in, too.


Cycling trails

Cycling in London can pose its challenges, but there are ways to make it less stressful. So grab your own two wheels (or hire a Boris bike) and head to some of the city’s quietest cycling trails.

When it comes to cycling trails in the capital, Richmond Park can’t be beaten. This vast green oasis in South West London has a 10.8km circuit that has to be the most picturesque in town. You’ll feel like you’re in the heart of the countryside, just watch out for the deer as you whizz along.

Cycling trails around Richmond Park

The route along the Regent’s Canal towpath is totally traffic free. Start in Regent's Park, then follow the towpath as it meanders through London Zoo, offering tantalising glimpses of the animals inside. Then dodge the tourists at Camden Market, before the ride back to Regent’s Park again.


Looking for a hotel in London?

Whether you're staying in the heart of London, perhaps near Buckingham Palace, the Tate Modern, or the Natural History Museum, we've got
a perfect hotel room for you. If you're looking for a weekend break, going to the football and want to stay in a Premier Inn near Wembley Stadium we've got you covered. And if you're flying in to London on business, we've convenient hotels right next to Heathrow and Gatwick Airport