What to do in London in June
There are so many things to do in London this June! And of course the first thing that comes to mind when you think June in London is Wimbledon!
Wimbledon Championship is starting on the 24th of June until the 7th of July. The oldest tennis tournament in the world and one of the four Grand Slams, is a great way to experience a traditional London day out in the summer time! Its matches are still played on the original playing surface and the tournament attracts around 500,000 spectators, so why not you this year?
June is also the perfect month to go out with your friends or family, thanks to the arrival of the summer and the many events and festivals offered to Londoners during this season!
Check out the London events which are (according to our staff) the best in June!
If you like comedy
Martin McDonagh gave The Cripple of Inishmaan‘s lead role to Daniel Radcliffe (as in Harry Potter) on his comedy. You can go to Noel Coward Theatre and enjoy this dark comedy about Bill (the main character) who plans his escape from the gossip, poverty and boredom of his small village by becoming a movie star, in spite of his crippled arm and leg.
Going to see the “Sweet Bird of Youth” by Tennessee William at the Old Vic Theatre is also a good way to brag about how you got real close to Kim Cattrall AKA Samantha Jones from Sex & the City, for a couple of hours. For more information just click here!
However, if you feel that you haven’t been to the theatre unless you had a good cry, we recommend “Fences” at Duchess Theatre. Fences, is one of the great American dramas of the 20th century and winner of the New York Drama Critics’ Award, two Tony Awards and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
And you could also go see…
The National Theatre features “The Amen Corner” which is telling the story of an uncompromising female pastor who finds that her congregation are turning against her, with their grievances escalating upon the return of her absentee musician husband and her rebellious son.
At the same place, at the National’s The Shed Theatre you could see “Mission Drift” a great series of mythic and modern tales collide in this musical story created by the New York ensemble The Team.
At the Shakespeare’s Globe, you could enjoy two plays : “The Taming of the Shrew” with an all-female cast or “Macbeth” which is a Shakespeare’s gripping and bloodthirsty tale of the forces of evil and the pitfalls of man’s ambition stars.
For those of you, who are a little bit sentimental, do not hesitate to go at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre to see romantic comedy called “Pride and Prejudice”
The best of the fringe is Punchdrunk’s “The Drowned Man” at Temple Studios because Punchdrunk has a reputation for producing wonderful, memorable, immersive theatre.
Especially rewritten for a younger audience, “The Winter’s Tale” offers children an original and entertaining play at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre. Definitely one not to miss!
In the 100th year of the famous English composer, conductor, and pianist, Benjamin Britten, the celebrations continue.
“Death in Venice”, this Britten’s much admired final opera is staged by the English National Opera. It’s about two unspoken themes run throughout the opera: the unrequited love and the cholera epidemic.
To celebrate the occasion of Britten’s centenary, London has organised several events where his War Requiem will be performed by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra at St Paul’s Cathedral, a part of City of London Festival.
You could also enjoy “Gloriana” at the Royal Opera House to mark the coronation of Elizabeth II.
Additionally, “The Perfect American” which is played at the London Coliseum, is a fictionalised vision of Walt Disney’s last few years, epitomises the unimaginable and disturbing aspects of Disney’s life and American culture.
Another great way to enjoy the opera is to sign up for the Holland Park Opera with an exciting musical line-up.
Dance on Stage
For those of you who are already familiar with the Sadler’s Wells theatre and love it, this month you will have the additional pleasure to choose between various plays! A dance theatre which is exploring the perceptions of rites, riots and rituals: “RIOT Offspring”, a 14-strong company “The Forsythe Company” who is visiting the East London Dance House over the first half of 2013 or, if you’re crazy about dance, the Sadler’s Sampled will offer two weeks of dance where a performance taster (to choose from a huge variety) will be on stage! And for those of you who are not familiar with contemporary dance, another great reason to give it a try! We promise that you won’t regret it!
The English National Ballet performs the Swan Lake at the Royal Albert Hall, a magical revival of Derek Deane’s critically acclaimed production.
For the attention of Art fans:
The Tate Britain proposes a solo show “Lowry and the Painting of Modern Life” of LS Lowry, the Lancashire painter, and presents two Britain painters: Patrick Caulfield and Gary Hume.
Then, the largest regular contemporary art exhibition in the world, “The Royal Academy Summer Exhibition” at the Royal Academy of Arts that attract the Arts lovers every year, where both consummated and amateur artists get to exhibit if talented enough to be shortlisted.
The young Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto, who designed this delicate, cloud-like structure that experiments with immateriality and weightlessness Serpentine Gallery for the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion project of 2013 is due to be inaugurated on the 8th June. Note that this event is one of the most anticipated events on the cultural calendar.
With so many exhibitions to look out for this month, such as the “Collecting Gauguin” at The Courtauld Gallery, the “Discovery of Paris” at the Wallace Collection, the “Crisis of Brilliance“ which is about the first World War at Dulwich Picture Gallery or Masterpiece London at Royal Hospital Chelsea which is a high end exhibition for serious art collectors, the actual challenge will be how to fit as many as possible in one trip.
Additionally, the Olympia Exhibition Centre every June presents, the “Olympia International Fine Art and Antique Fair”: this major art fair displays a broad range of antiques, jewellery, paintings and more. The second Affordable Art Fair of the year in Hampstead Heath, displays artwork with price tags ranging from £40 to £4,000 from over 100 galleries.
To finish the arts section, we recommend those travellers looking for less traditional exhibitions, to visit the New Designers Exhibition Part One at Business Design Centre with its fresh and innovative creations from thousands of young designers.
Festival & free events
June is synonym with good weather (well, mostly) so it’s the best time to enjoy the Open Garden Squares Weekend. It’s the opening of truly wonderful private gardens which are for exclusive use of the residents of the adjacent buildings (remember Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts in Notting Hill?).
If you’re gourmand you will probably love the “Taste of London” at Regent’s Park where London’s top restaurants provide tasting opportunities at this giant gourmet picnic opportunity.
As you can see, June not only brings the sun but a lot of other open air events such as the Kew Fete at Kew Green or the Monocle Country Fayre, a free weekend of entertainment dedicated to celebrate the English traditions in the Midori House Courtyard.
And if you could only go to two festivals in London this summer, you just can’t afford (although these are free) to miss the “More London Free Festival” and “Greenwich and Docklands International Festival”. The first one takes place at The Scoop at More London and features an open air theatre, musical intermezzos and free films, and the second takes place at Greenwich with over nine days that include free theatre performances, dance and lots of family entertainment.
Yoko Ono’s Meltdown Festival 2013 returns to the Southbank Centre to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the alternative music festival. Click here to have more information and buy your ticket.
The Hampton Court Palace Festival takes place at Hampton Court Palace (fittingly) in the open-air court of King Henry VIII’s Palace, and is one of London’s festivals for the older generation.
You can also enjoy concerts by Green Day, Rihanna, Maroon 5, Robbie Williams, Bruce Springsteen and so many more in the London’s O2 Arena!
If you just can’t wait for Wimbledon, the legendary tennis tournament (or you didn’t get tickets and can’t be bothered with the long day entry queues) you can try to get tickets for the slightly less famous (but equally prestigious) Queen’s Club championship, this is one of the best kept secrets for those hoping to see their tennis heroes while they are in London.
In June, the Kia Oval Cricket Ground offers two spectacles! The ICC Champions Trophy: West Indies v Pakistan which is a part of four round-robin games in the competition and the 1st & 2nd NatWest International T20s which opposite England and New Zealand!
A great summer outdoors event is Polo in Park at Hurlingham Park or still with horses; the Royal Ascot is a good entertainment at the Ascot Racecourse!
At Westminster Abbey, as a part of the 60th crowning of the Queen this month, there is a special Coronation Jubilee Concert while Trooping the Colour at Horse Guards Parade celebrates the official’s birthday of the Queen with a vibrant display of ceremony!
To book, or just to find out more information about any of these events, do not hesitate to speak to one of our receptionists! We hope that you found some inspiration on to have the greatest time in London, this June.
And if you go to one (or several) of these events, don’t forget to tell us what you thought!
The Palmers Lodge Team