People traveling to London are more or less covered by an endless stream of recommendations. Lists of popular attractions, events by season, places to eat, places to stay, and even day trips from the city are covered in thousands of articles all around the internet. However, most of this content speaks to what one can do in London during the day, or more broadly. There is a little bit less of a focus on what to do out and about at night in a city that’s just as lovely after dark.These would be some of my recommendations in this regard, excluding mere lists of bars, clubs, and restaurants.
Live Music In Soho
As any self-respecting big city does, London has its clubs. But the live music scene is more unique, and more memorable, unless you just happen to have a particular passion for nightclubs. There are options in various places around the city, but the live music venues of Soho has something of a reputation. In particular, Ronnie Scott’s for jazz, The Borderline for rock and blues, and Jazz After Dark (self-explanatory) are among the must-see spots for some late-night lounging and live music.
Theatre In West End
New York’s Broadway district (which is really more of an offshoot of Times Square) is famous all around the world, but London’s West End theatres are on its level. The city arguably has the best stage theatre on the planet, and while the active imitation of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre also has shows at night, the West End is better.
London, or at least the UK, has had a lot to do with casinos’ progression to the internet, and now online casinos go well past poker and blackjack. A lot of the more basic casino games like slot machines and jackpots thrive online now thanks to advanced graphics. The famous Gonzo’s Quest comes with 3D animated characters; the more traditional Starburst brags about galactic graphics and a futuristic soundtrack. Even with these kinds of features though and the success they’ve led to, the online experience arguably can’t match the real life one – which you can find at London’s Hippodrome. It’s a sprawling, dazzling casino venue good for a full night out, and right in the heart of the city.
The London Eye sits on the bank of the Thames and extends over the city as one of the world’s most striking and impressive Ferris wheels. But it is not, as you might guess from some photos, a glorified carnival ride meant for daytime amusement. In fact, it’s a little bit more of a production than that. The Eye’s cars are not open-air benches but rather entire enclosed rooms that can hold several people at once, and in which you can sip a cocktail if you’d like. And as you might guess once you know this about the Eye, it is operational at night as well. Thus, while it’s something of a popular tourist activity, a ride up into the night sky to look over the city really is one of the best things to do after dark in London.
The Sky Garden
Arguably offering the best views of the capital, the London Sky Garden is essentially a collection of restaurants, bars, and indoor gardens located on the upper floors of a skyscraper known as 20 Fenchurch Street. The garden facilities ostensibly close before late evening, but because the bars and restaurants remain open, this is a fairly magical place to spend a few hours after dark. There’s a mildly exclusive air to it that some may not love, but at the end of the day, you’re having a drink in a beautiful facility with towering windows looking out over one of the world’s great cities.
Lastly, don’t forget that you can also still take tours after dark. London has nighttime walking tours, ghost tours, and tour buses that operate after sundown. So if you simply want to get a feel for the city even after the sun goes down, you can still do so the old-fashioned way.