London after class
London has a reputation as the financial and business capital of Europe, and with its fusion of culture and charm it is an excellent place to study.
London comes alive in the summer season, giving you a veritable smorgasbord of entertainment. Make the most of your time in London with these suggestions to keep you entertained after class.
London is the greenest city of its size in the world and with almost 40% of the city dedicated to green space there’s plenty of parks and commons to explore. During the summer months London’s parks become a hive of social activity as locals gather for picnics and sunbathing.
Right around the corner from Imperial is Hyde Park, a jewel in London’s crown. Check out the park here, or even explore the live events happening all season long.
Music and cultural festivals
With the hint of warmer weather, the festival circuit swings into action, and no matter what your persuasion, everything from philosophy to reggae, from punk rock and spoken word to trance is catered for. To see an extensive list of music festivals that are happening in or around London, try eFestivals.co.uk. Or for a really convenient celebration of music, why not try out the BBC Proms held in the Royal Albert Hall?
London is a town best seen on foot. Street art, hidden rivers, history, quirky comedy or bearded statues – whatever your interest, you’re bound to find a walking tour that suits you.
Pre-purchase tickets always sell out early for Wimbledon, but die hard tennis fans can try their luck with The Queue. For those wanting to take part (without spending hours in the ticket line), the pubs and cafes of Wimbledon will easily satisfy your Pimms and Tennis requirements.
Swimming and paddling
There’s more chances to take a dip in London than you might think. Open air lidos, pools and swimming ponds are dotted all over the city. If you’re after a low key, lunch time paddle, head over to the V&A courtyard or Hyde Park between classes to dip your toes in the dedicated water features. Or if you’re looking for a proper dip, visit the Hampstead Heath swimming ponds – a summer morning tradition in London since 1860.
Markets and pop-up experiences
If you’re looking for a refreshing cocktail to whet your pallet or a fun food experience, London blossoms with pop-up bars and el fresco eateries during the summer months. Try out Street Feast, touted as London’s nomadic street food circus, it’s a sure favourite with East London locals.
London is filled to the brim with iconic sights and buildings – it’s almost impossible to study here without seeing a few of the sights. Get your selfie stick ready and take a stroll along Southbank to see Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, Tower Bridge, City Hall and the London Eye, and, if you walk far enough, MI6.
Or visit The Mall to see the royal guard and, while you’re in the neighbourhood, check if the Queen is in residence. Throughout August and September you can even do a tour of Buckingham Palace.
Museum and zoo lates
Many of London’s best museums and the zoo have weekly or monthly open late evenings for grown-ups. Complete with special lectures, themed exhibitions, food and drink, these are not to be missed. Science Museum Lates is right on our campus’ doorstep and occasionally invites lecturers and scientists from Imperial College London to present.
Outdoor cinema and theatre
Summer opens up the opportunity for film and theatre entertainment in very special environments. From the rooftops of trendy bars, to under the glow of Tower Bridge, London has outdoor entertainment covered. Keep an eye out for film listings on londontown.com.
After a good day’s study, head toward the river for a beer with a view. London’s riverside pubs are an ideal opportunity to take in the city’s views while grabbing a bite to eat and a refreshing beer. Read VisitLondon.com’s top 10 riverside pubs for the choicest spots.