The Handbook
The Handbook

Every year there are certain events that sell out in an instant, and this summer is set to be no different. See in the end of lockdown restrictions style and book in for one of these summer events before they sell out. 

From foodie festivals to the Queen’s favourite flower show, here’s what to book now to avoid disappointment. 

RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Having spent last year entering the virtual world for the first time, the RHS Chelsea Flower Show will be returning this year and for the first time in 108 years, the royal’s favourite flower show will be held in autumn. 

The flower show, which usually takes place in May, will host a one-off autumnal run this September bringing with it its elaborate flower displays, inspirational garden designs and retail stalls to browse. 

Rather than celebrating the spring season, the designers will get a chance to fully embrace the changing of seasons with autumnal yellows, oranges and reds shining through.

When: 21st – 26th September

London in the Sky 

Fancy being flung up into the sky while you’re dining? Only if you can guarantee breathtaking views over the city… 

London in the Sky is returning for another summer season, meaning you can be lifted up 100ft in the air while enjoying delicious food and refreshing drinks. From breakfast and brunch to afternoon tea and dinner, choose your flight and see London in a whole new way this summer. 

Definitely one for the thrill seekers…

When: July – September

Pub in the Park 

We’ve all spent the last few months itching for an ice cold pint and some live music we can boogie away to, and thankfully, Tom Kerridge is bringing us the best of both worlds this summer with the return of Pub in the Park!

Led by Tom Kerridge, the talented chef and his team will set out on a UK tour bringing the pub-cum-fesitval to them. Scheduled to stop at Bath, Dulwich, Warwick, Tunbridge Wells, Chichester, Chiswick, St. Albans and Marlow, prepare yourself for one hell of a foodie adventure. 

Headline acts for London include Gabrielle, Kaiser Chiefs, Basement, The Feeling and Beverley Knight, while on the foodie menu expect Atul Kochhar’s Restaurants, The Hand & Flowers and The Begging Bowl to be fuelling you through the whole experience. 

On the lookout for other foodie festivals? Check out the best five here…

When: Various weekends from June to September

River Cottage 

Spent the whole of lockdown rewatching all of the old River Cottage reruns? Now’s your chance to beef up your foodie repertoire with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and his talented team in person as his famous TV cottage and farm on the border of Devon/Dorset. 

From one-day cookery courses to farmhouse feasts with Hugh himself, the River Cottage experience allows you to really explore what the whole countryside living thing is all about. Just be wary that it might have you uprooting your city lifestyle for good…

When: Various Dates May – September

The Alfresco Theatre Drive-In

Another one from the creators of Pub in the Park and Drive & Dine Theatre comes five days of big-screen movies, comedy gigs, live theatre and music acts as The Alfresco Theatre Drive-In takes over Syon Park. 

Scheduled to arrive at Syon Park 9th – 13th June, the moveable theatre experience brings with it an eclectic mix of family-friendly fun to West London. Comedy legends Mark Watson, Nina Conti and Ivo Graham will be making you giggle your way through the night, while The Bootleg Beatles will be pumping out all of your favourite Beatles songs. For the kiddies, there’s The Gruffalo Live on Stage to keep them entertained, alongside a mix of great films too. Think JoJo Rabbit, The Greatest Showman and Dirty Dancing. 

They’ll also be pulling up at other UK locations too so make sure to check out those as well.

When: 9th-13th June at Syon Park (various dates in other parks of the UK)

Van Gogh Alive: The Experience

Prepare for the unpredictable as you step inside the fully multi-sensory immersive experience taking place at Kensington Gardens this summer. Dedicated to the notorious artist, Vincent Van Gogh, the experience will see you uncover his timeless masterpieces in a whole new light. 

Hosted inside a 25,000ft purpose-built venue in Kensington Gardens, you’ll uncover over 3,000 images of Van Gogh’s popular works. Delve into the life sized representations of Van Gogh’s bedroom before taking part in immersive video tutorials and the mirrored sunflower room.

When: 4th June – 26th September

All Points East

It feels hard to believe that festivals will be allowed this summer after months of strict social distancing rules but All Points East is set to go ahead, bringing with it a stellar three-day line up of musicians. 

Spread over the August bank hols, Victoria Park is set to be transformed into a musical expanse where touring musicians will once again be able to play live on stage in front of thousands of audiences. 

The headliners include London Grammar, Jorja Smith, Jamie XX, Kano, Field Day, Foals and Bombay Bicycle Club. 

Wondering what other festivals are going ahead this summer? Check out our list…

When: 27th – 30th August

Alfresco Dining 

This seems like an obvious one, but many restaurants, bars and rooftops are already seeing their outdoor spaces booked up weeks in advance. If you’re hoping of any chance to head to your favourite riverside spot or romantic restaurant that boasts breathtaking views over the city, you are going to want to get your bookings in pronto. 

From terraces to rooftops, cobblestone streets to seaside beach huts, here’s where to book into this summer… 

Romeo & Juliet at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

Fall back in love with theatre through the timeless tale of Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet. 

Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre is preparing to reopen this summer with a special performance nodding to Shakespeare’s great classic – Romeo & Juliet. Kimberley Sykes will be directing the famed story of the two star-crossed lovers who are forced to love in secret due to the turbulent rivalry between their families. 

If Shakespeare isn’t your thing, there are also other performances taking place throughout the summer including Anansi the Spider, Carousel and Dragons and Mythical Beasts. Performances will run at a reduced capacity.

When: 17th June – 24th July

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