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Things to do during the school summer holidays 2022 in London

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People enjoying a boat ride, with their hands up in the air on a bright day.
Speed down the Thames this summer. Image courtesy of Thames Rockets.
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Find plenty of activities and attractions to keep children busy during the school summer holidays in London.

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Make the school summer holidays memorable by enjoying London's best interactive exhibitions, children’s theatre shows and kid-friendly museums.

Save money by grouping different activities together and choosing a wide-ranging London Pass or a Go City London Explorer Pass, depending on your plans.

There are lots of brilliant things to do in London during the kids’ school summer holidays. Whether you’ve got little ones or teenagers to keep entertained, we’ve rounded up summer holiday activities for all ages to enjoy below.

Some attractions might require booking in advance, even if entry is free.

When are the next summer school holidays in London?

The next school summer holidays in London are from 22 July to 4 September 2022.

Summer holiday events in London

Tom Felton holds a mandrake at the new professor sprout exhibit at Warner Bros. Studio Tour London.

  • Step inside the magical world of Harry Potter at Warner Bros. Studio Tour London. Brand-new for 2022, visit the studio’s special summer exhibition, Mandrakes and Magical Creatures. See your favourite creatures brought to life on screen and explore Professor Sprout’s greenhouse. 1 Jul-12 Sep 
  • Visit the Imperial War Museum London and enjoy a summer program of family-friendly events, from creating optical illusions with camouflage at the Dazzle Design Studio to meeting veterans of war on the museum's We Were There Family Days
  • Take the whole family to the Disney on Stage Pop-Up Experience at Covent Garden. 8 Jul-4 Sep
  • Enjoy the Carnaby summer festival full of music, fashion, food and art in one of London’s trendiest areas.
  • Find a new favourite flavour at Covent Garden Ice Cream Festival, 'The Cool Down’. 20 Aug
  • Celebrate the summer through theatre, art, dance and circus at the Greenwich + Docklands International Festival 2022. 26 Aug-11-Sep
  • Take to the stage at Shakespeare's Globe for a Midsummer Night's Dream Family Workshop, where the hilarious play comes to life through a range of activities and games. 4-20 Aug
  • Head to Trafalgar Square and check out the National Gallery's free festival of art, creativity and community. 11-29 Aug
  • Squeeze the most out of your summer in London with more unmissable events and experiences, which are perfect for lush summer days.

Find more exciting events the kids will love from July, through August and into September.

Summer school holiday activities for young children

A young girl steers the wheel of the Cutty Sark ship in Greenwich London.

Things to do with teenagers in London

A smiling family is taking a selfie with the city in the background on top the Up at the O2.

  • Meet your favourite superheroes at the Marvel Universe 4D experience at Madame Tussauds London.
  • Embrace your inner adrenaline-junkie as you climb The O2 while taking in scenic views, with Up at The O2.
  • Scare yourself silly on the Drop Dead: Drop Ride at The London Dungeon
  • Get competitive with a family game of Monopoly Lifesized.
  • Sharpen up on your Roman history at London Mithraeum and Roman Amphitheatre this summer to impress your history teacher in autumn.
  • Turn this summer into a season of self-care and pamper yourself at Covent Garden.
  • …then head to the West End for more shopping treats to rock this summer.
  • Explore Churchill’s office at wartime underground bunker Churchill War Rooms.
  • Sample some of London's tastiest cuisine on a Food Tour of Borough Market*.
  • Pick out some retro vintage threads at Camden’s independent shops.
  • And don’t forget to peruse through the numerous stalls of eye-catching accessories and treasures at Camden Market.

For more school holiday ideas, take a look at 101 things to do in London with teens.

Family shows in London

  • Take your pick from London's top 10 musicals, from family favourite The Lion King to the magical Frozen The Musical
  • Soak up the outdoor theatre atmosphere at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, which hosts family-friendly shows throughout the summer.
  • Enjoy a family performance at Shakespeare's Globe where classic plays are re-imagined for kids. Enjoy mayhem and madness at Midsummer Mechanicals (28 Jul-21 Aug), dance along with a Cbeebies special of As You Like It (9-10 Aug) and see a live storytelling of the world's most famous love story, Romeo and Juliet (24-26 Aug).

Keep the little ones entertained with more family theatre shows.

Outdoor adventures for the family

Children looking at and touching colourful plants and flowers at Kew Gardens

  • You can easily spend a whole day at Kew Gardens – so mark your calendar and book in advance for a fantastic day out.
  • London’s picnic spots and leafy parks await your visit! Prep a hamper and head to your local patch of green.
  • Alfresco cinema? It’s a thing! Find out what’s on at your local drive-in or outdoor cinema in London, from cult classics to new releases.
  • Get the kids asking “Is that a real dinosaur?!” around every corner at Crystal Palace Park.
  • Wander through the vast gardens of the Horniman Museum. Try to spot the velociraptor in the Prehistoric Gardens, find wild landscapes in the Grasslands Garden and marvel at the flowers in the Sunken and Display Gardens.
  • Head to the ultimate playground for families. From virtual reality adventures to outdoor art trails, spend the summer holidays having endless fun at Wembley Park
  • The 19-acre (8-hectare) gardens of medieval Eltham Palace are a great place to explore with a moat, pools and water features to discover.
  • Soak up the sunshine at Battersea Park, spotting fountains and the Peace Pagoda on the way. You can also greet the animals at Battersea Park Children’s Zoo.
  • Bathe in tranquility with just the sounds of birds for company at wildlife-rich London Wetland Centre, an 105-acre (42-hectare) oasis for nature lovers.
  • Spot wildlife on a day out at the Walthamstow Wetlands and Woodberry Wetlands.
  • See how many skyscrapers you can name from Parliament Hill, the high point of Hampstead Heath.
  • There's so much to explore at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park! Relax among the green spaces or pick up a racket and take in the 2012 Olympic spirit with a game on Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre’s outdoor tennis courts.
  • Spot the Chinese pagoda and have a leisurely stroll around the lakes on a day out at Victoria Park.

Top summer experiences

A colourful selection of cakes and sandwiches on Brigit's Bakery Afternoon Tea Bus Tour. 

Unmissable summer activities 

A shot of the path leading up to Windsor Castle on a sunny day in England.  © Shutterstock

Day trips from London

Children are shown how to use a sword by a knight at warwick castle.

  • Visit royal residence Windsor Castle, to explore many historical artefacts and enjoy the specially commissioned exhibit, Platinum Jubilee: The Queen's Coronation.
  • Combine the mysterious Stonehenge and beautiful Bath including a stop at the Roman baths on a guided tour of these two iconic historical sights. 
  • See medieval England brought to life through impressive displays and immersive experiences at Warwick Castle.
  • Tick off castles, cathedrals, the white cliffs of Dover and a boat ride along the Thames on a Leeds, Canterbury, Dover and Greenwich tour.

Family hotels and restaurants in London

Tables and chairs surrounded by plants and animals at the jungle-themed restaurant Jungle Cave in London.

For more inspiration this summer holiday, see what's on in London or take a look at our guide to London for kids, including the top family attractions, top family experiences and the best museums for children

If you're in London now, make sure to download the Visit London app for on-the-go tips.

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