Things to do on May Bank Holiday in London
With summer just around the corner and warmer days creeping in, bank holiday weekend in London is a great time to get outdoors and spend time with family and friends during a long weekend. This year, early May bank holiday falls on Monday 2nd May and, as always, we’re hoping for sun!
However you choose to take in the city, hop on a Tootbus sightseeing bus and combine unrivalled views of the capital with your plans to enjoy the May bank holiday special weekend in London.
Music and Concerts
Whether you enjoy a relaxing orchestra or upbeat fiestas, there are some great live music concerts and celebrations in London this May bank holiday.
The Crusting Pipe
If you’ve ever seen a crowd gathered around the balcony of Covent Garden’s market building, or heard classical melodies echoing around the market, they were probably coming from The Crusting Pipe. Grab a bite to eat and enjoy live performances of classical music from 11 am every day in the lower ground floor of the market building.
How to get there? Hop off at stop 5, Covent Garden on the yellow route.
Throughout May, Rebel Music celebrates radical musicians from Lewisham's past, present and future. A series of events including an installation by dub poet Linton Kwesi Johnson, a dance party with Black Obsidian Sound System, musical performances by Charles Hayward, techno band Test Dept. and CURL from New Cross, and even a free afternoon of music with the Lewisham Sound System Trail around Deptford and New Cross in South-east London.
See a Show
A night out at the theatre is one of the best things to do in London with family and friends in May. The area is home to some of London's biggest theatres, which offer a wide variety of musicals. Take advantage of the long weekends to see one of the West End's famous theatre shows. Les Misérables, The Lion King, Wicked; you really can't go wrong!
How to get there? Hop off at stop 1, Coventry Street or stop 2, Trafalgar Square on the yellow route.
The Globe Theatre
To see or not to see, that is the question. Whether you’re a Shakespeare fan or not, a trip to The Globe Theatre is essential for a taste of traditional British theatre. You can see the Twelfth Night, The Comedy of Errors and Pericles on bank holiday weekend in London from just £5!
How to get there? Hop off at stop 7, London Bridge on the yellow route.
Underbelly Festival is now in its 13th year. Head over to West End on Earls Court or Cavendish Square this May bank holiday for a mix of entertainment, outdoor bars and international street food. From acrobatic circus performers and comedians to plays and children’s theatre, there’s something for all the family! The StreetEat with food stalls and bars is free to visit and most shows cost less than £20 for a ticket!
How to get there? Hop off at stop 1 Coventry Street, or stop 2, Trafalgar Square on the yellow route.
May marks the first summer bank holiday in London and the warmer months are on the way, so what better way to celebrate than by getting out and about in London, whatever the weather, to enjoy.
Hyde Park is especially beautiful when spring has sprung. Head to the park with a picnic and football or hire a boat or bike for a few hours before ending your trip with an ice cream in one of the waterside cafes. There are also lots of statues and memorials, including one of Peter Pan which is tucked away in Kensington Gardens. A stroll through the park green spaces is the perfect end to bank holiday Monday in London.
How to get there? Hop off at stop 14, Hyde Park on the yellow or the blue route.
Take advantage of the May bank holidays to discover a different side of London and the surrounding countryside. City farms are the perfect place for a family outing close to nature. Meet the farm animals and get your fill of locally made, good quality produce. It's also the perfect place for a picnic with family and friends if the weather is nice.
Go White Water
Grab a group of friends and head to Go White Water this May bank holiday for a day trip at Lee Valley White Water Centre. Try white water rafting, canoeing, kayaking or tubing on the Olympic course from just £35 per person and enjoy an action-packed May bank holiday. And don’t worry if it’s raining, because you’re going to get wet anyway!
Food and Drink
An extra day off work means an extra day of great food and drinks. Whether you’re after a healthy lunch or you want to party all night, there are some great places you can visit.
For alternative street food from all over the world, head to one of the Street Feast venues in London. Choose from a selection of pop up restaurants, quirky bars, dessert stalls and more at different Street Feast locations and enjoy an afternoon with the family or a night out with friends. Most stalls are open from 5pm-late on Fridays and Saturdays.
Skip Garden Kitchen
If you’re looking for some delicious healthy grub that you can enjoy outside, head to the Skip Garden Kitchen in King’s Cross. Indulge in seasonal veggie dishes made with locally grown ingredients for brunch, lunch or afternoon tea from 10am-4pm Tuesday-Friday. The Skip Garden also hosts Fire Feasts throughout the year which are great fun during the summer months.
Piano Works Bar
For a night out to remember this May bank holiday, head to The Piano Works in Farringdon or in West End. Every bank holiday Sunday, the resident band plays music requested by you from 1pm-1am with a DJ set until 3am. With drinks offers, food and a personalised concert, The Piano Works should be at the top of your list this bank holiday.
How to get there? Hop off at stop 6, St Paul's Cathedral or stop 2, Trafalgar Square on the yellow route.
Southbank Centre Food Market
Located on the south bank of the River Thames, Southbank is a dynamic area of London with many cultural and family activities. Take a walk along the Queen's Walk and stop at the Southbank Centre Food Market. This must-visit market offers a wide range of street food and drink to suit all palates.
How to get there? Hop off at stop 4, Waterloo Station on the yellow route.
The month of May is finally here and it announces the return of good weather! It's the perfect time to discover the wide variety of rooftop bars that dot London. Enjoy a cocktail and take in the views from the high terraces, which regularly host fun events and live music. We recommend booking as these bars are often packed!
If you’re looking for the most original rooftop bar in London to begin your evening in a perfect way, hop on the Tootbus London Bar Bus! Our bus has a roof terrace like no other as you take in London’s magnificent sights while relaxing with a few drinks.
And why not make the most of your visit to London in May to play a round of golf? But be warned, this isn't a classic game of golf where concentration and endurance are required! Instead, try a crazy golf with a twist and even a drink. We recommend the Swingers West End where you can also have a meal and the Junkyard Golf Club for its flashy and festive atmosphere.
How to get there? Hop off at stop 1 Coventry Street on the yellow route.
However you choose to spend your extra day off this May bank holiday, take some time to sit back, relax and enjoy the stunning sights of London from the top of a sightseeing bus with Tootbus.