Sightseeing: London by Night


2014 edition: Sightseeing and things to do in London at night

There’s never any shortage of nocturnal activities for Gay and Lesbian visitors to London, but there’s more to life than drinking and dancing the night away in gay bars  (isn’t there?!)

Here we take a look at other things to do in London on a Spring night!

MUSEUM & GALLERY ‘LATES’

 

Sir John Soane’s Museum

The weird and wonderful collection at the Soane’s Museum can be explored by candlelit the first Tuesday evening of every month, from 6pm – 9pm (last entry 8pm although aim for getting there at 5.30pm to stand a chance of getting in to this popular night).

John Soane’s Museum, 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London WC2A 3BP
Cost: FREE
T: +44 20 7405 2107
W: Sir John Soane’s Museum website

 

National Portrait Gallery

London’s National Portrait Gallery is open until 9pm on Thursday and Fridays to get an after-dark look at the dazzling array of portraits, including Great Gays of Old such as Noel Coward and Oscar Wilde and modern portraits of royalty and celebrities. These “Late Shift” evenings (6pm-9pm Thursdays and Fridays) include live music and special talks and tours.

National Portrait Gallery, St Martin’s Place, London, WC2H 0HE
Cost: FREE (special exhibitions: see website)
T: +44 20 7306 0055
W: National Portrait Gallery website

 

Tate Modern

Open on Fridays and Saturdays until 10pm, Tate Modern, in a former power station on London’s Southbank, has grown to become one of the world’s most popular art galleries.

Tate Modern, Bankside, London, SE1 9TG
Cost: FREE  (special exhibitions: see website)
T: +44 20 7887 8888
W: Tate Modern website

 

V&A

Open until 10pm on Fridays for their V&A Lates session (from 6pm), including special events, talks, music, food and drink

V&A, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 2RL
Cost: FREE  (special exhibitions: see website)
T: +44 207 420 9736
W: V&A website

 

WALKING TOURS AFTER DARK

 

Ghosts of the Old City

At night the ancient City of London is deserted… and eerie. Explore its shadowy back streets and dimly lit alleys in this tour.
Starts at 7.30pm on Tuesday and Saturdays at St Paul’s Tube

W: London Walks website
W: London Walks – more ghost tours

 

Jack the Ripper Walking Tour

The last tour starts at 6pm for this infamous London walking tour – which in winter means that you are walking through London’s streets at night. But fear not, this fascinating tour guides you through the back streets of the City and the East End to discover more about the notorious London serial killer.

BOOK TICKETS TO THE JACK THE RIPPER WALKING TOUR

 

LONDON ATTRACTIONS AT NIGHT

 

London Zoo

Go to London Zoo on a Friday night in June and July (from 6pm to 10pm) and see another side to Zoo life.

BOOK TICKETS TO LONDON ZOO LATES
BOOK TICKETS TO LONDON ZOO
London Zoo, Regent’s Park, Outer Cir, London NW1 4RY
Cost: Adults from £24.00
T: +44 844 225 1826
W: London Zoo website

 

London Eye

Friday evenings in July and August the London Eye runs until 11.30pm – allowing you to take in London at night. General closing times are: in winter until 8.30pm, and in summer until 9pm (9.30pm Fridays/Saturdays)

BOOK TICKETS FOR THE LONDON EYE
London Eye, Riverside Building, County Hall, Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7PB
Cost: Adults from £26.55
T: +44 871 781 3000
W: London Eye website

 

The View from the Shard

One of the latest editions to the London skyline is Western Europe’s tallest building – The Shard – featuring breathtaking views of London from a number of viewing platforms. Thursday to Saturday The Shard is open until 10pm (last entry 8.30pm) to enjoy a spectacular night-time look at the capital.
BOOK TICKETS TO THE VIEW FROM THE SHARD

The View from the Shard, Joiner Street, London, SE1 9QU
Cost: Adult tickets from £24.95
T: +44 844 499 7111
E: enquiries@theviewfromtheshard.com
W: View from the Shard website

 

Tower of London – Ceremony of the Keys

The only way to gain access to the Tower of London at night is to join the free Ceremony of the Keys tour. The ceremony has been held every single night of the year for the last 700 years. See website for information on applying for tickets.

The Tower of London, London EC3N 4AB
Cost: FREE
T: +44 20 3166 6000
E: visitorservices.TOL@hrp.org.uk
W: Tower of London website

 

TOUR LONDON AT NIGHT

 

See London by Night Bus Tour

See London all lit up at by taking a guided open top bus tour of London that includes the Royal Albert Hall, Natural History Museum, Harrods, Westminster Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, Houses of Parliament, London Eye, Waterloo Bridge, St. Paul’s Cathedral, London Bridge, Tower Bridge then makes it’s way back along the Embankment to Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus, Haymarket and back to Green Park.

BOOK TICKETS TO THE SEE LONDON BY NIGHT BUS TOUR

 

Thames Dinner Cruise

Spend a cvilised evening cruising along the Thames and having dinner courtesy of the Bateaux London cruise boats, taking in the sights of London at night.

BOOK THAMES DINNER CRUISE

 

MORE AFTER DARK

Somerset House: The lovely Fountain Court within Somerset House is open until 11pm  Website

Wellcome Collection: Fascinating free galleries and exhibitions much about the history of medicine, open til 8pm on Thursday  Website

Barbican Art Gallery: Open til 9pm on Thursday and Fridays Website

Royal Academy of Arts: Open til 10pm on Fridays Website

National Gallery: Open til 9pm on Fridays  Website

Science Museum: Open til 10pm (from 6.45pm) for adults only on the last Wednesday of each month Website

Natural History Museum: Open til 10.30pm on the last Friday of the month for their Lates session Website

British Museum: Open til 8.30pm every Friday Website

Whitechapel Gallery: East End institution with expansive galleries of modern art, open til 9pm on Thursday Website