Best things to do in London...


Active Member
I was just asked to compile a list of the trendiest and best things to do in London (missing out the seedier end of the spectrum) for a friend in Russia. I had lots of fun doing it and thought I'd pass on! Any more?

1. East Village
89 Great Eastern Street, Shoreditch, 020 77395173
Intimate bar/club paying homage to the disco icons of the 70s.
KissMyBlackAss is the best night - Quentin Harris from NYC plays all night and brings a vogue dancer called Vivacious who does amazing choreography with fans and wears ridiculous clothes.
I think the "disco roasts" are nice too.

2. Gay Bingo
Monthly at the ICA, The Mall, 020 7930 3647 (a stone throw from Buckingham Palace.)
The creme de la creme of London's outrageous trannies on the Queen's doorstep including Johnny Woo (who is destined for superstardom). THE funniest thing in the world. Ever.

3. Bethnal Green Working Men's club
44-46 Pollard Row, Bethnal Green, 020 7739 7170
This lot host a wide variety of events from high brow arty farty stuff to rowdy music. Expect an unrivalled mix of ages and quirks.

4. Shunt Bar & Lounge
20 Stainer Street, London Bridge, 08717031306
Huge venue under the railway arches oozing with character. Strange performances, art exhibitions, always busy, never publicised. Very impressive interior.

5. Cellar Door
Zero Aldwych, London
Very small cabaret space & cocktail bar...definitely one of central London's best kept secrets.
I don't think there's a telephone number available.

6. Anywhere on Dray Walk
Dray walk is a street off Brick Lane...a modern day Carnaby Street, the place springs to life on Sunday afternoons and becomes a fashion runway. Cafe 1001 & Big Chill are recommended.

7. Vivat Bacchus
47 Farringdon Street, London, 020 7353 3025
Fancy restaurant with a really nice wine tasting cellar downstairs.

8. Last days of decadence
145 Shoreditch High Street, 0207 729 2896
The new club on the block where all the cool kids seem to be flocking to...the lineups are shaping up quite well too.

9. Bateaux London Jazz Cruises
Embankment Pier, Victoria Embankment, 020 7695 1800
Atmospheric river jaunt with nice food and soothing music - definitely the best way for a tourist to take in all the landmarks.

9. Dover Street Market
17-18 Dover Street Market, 020 7518 0680
AMAZING clothes with a price tag to match. A fancy shopping experience without the sugary pompousness of Sloane Street - not that I've ever bought anything there! (if only)

10. 'Friday Late' at the V&A
Cromwell Road, 020 7942 2000
Themed late openings - I know it's a fairly obvious one and less off the beaten track but these are amazing - I went to a surrealist ball there once which was very impressive.

11. Meltdown at the Southbank Centre, June
The Southbanks largest contemporary music festival - Belvedere Road
They have different artistic directors every year. Last year's was Massive Attack. Previous ones have been John Peel, David Bowie, Patti Smith & Morrissey...the acts they book are always brilliant - I saw Grace Jones & George Clinton when I went. Tickets always sell out at lightening speed so it pays to be organised.
some good stuff on robder's list - saw a very funny vaudeville pianist at the working men's club last year:)

here's a few more

St John bread & wine - commercial street, spitalfield - food is a.m.a.z.i.n.g

the star of bethnal green - bethnal green road - really taking off now, if party boozers are your thing

the roebuck - richmond hill - the pub itself isn't all that, but in spring/summer, the sunset views of the Thames are as balearic as London ever gets

mau mau, portobello road, ladbroke grove - very nice intimate venue for live gigs (esp jazz, world) directly opposite Garcia - best spanish shop and cafe in the capital

horse & groom (curtain road, shoreditch) really beginning to take off too - loads of free/cheap nights still - make the most of the good vibes before the city boys catch on and ruin it

Life - Japanese bar/restuarant - old street (Clerkenwell Rd end) - the basement is ace, lots of tucked away nooks and crannies - some quality events happening there now, including Gilles Peterson on Wednesday

cafe cairo - clapham north - not been for a few years so I might be out of touch on this one - but this was another ace little dive I used to go to, whole place decked like a boudoir, with associated middle eastern vibes, rugs, cushions, hookah pipes, discreet booths in the wall etc - possible brownie points if you're with a lover

on similar note - Darbucka World Music Bar - 182 St John St, Farringdon - bar that hosts pretty wild belly-dancing nights

Also - gotta mention the Montague Arms in New Cross (my manor) - barking mad boozer which hosts all sorts of live music nights - anything from dub to rockabilly. Aspects are like an Dali-inspired acid trip - I say no more. A true gem, if a bugger to get home from
the bestest thing about london was searching through every single oxfam for old skool rekkids that cost like 1pound each..... S/C/O/R/E! :twisted:
Gay bingo, brilliant! Two little duckys!! :lol:

Gay bloke at work has kept that well quiet. The missus loves bingo!

I think you and Olly have covered everything trendy.