Ahhh Autumn in London, a time when daylight hours get shorter, and rain dominates the weekly weather forecast. Despite the changing seasons, October in the big smoke is still packed full of fun, with so many amazing events taking place in each corner. From the arts, history, culture, food, drink and more, the calendar for cool things to do in the city is looking good. To save you the trouble of having to sift through pages of events, we’ve compiled a list of the very best of what’s happening in London this October, as reccomended by our community of local insiders.
Moniker International Arts Fair
London is a highly revered destination for creators, collectors and all those curious about contemporary and urban art. No event better champions this artform than the much-awaited Moniker Art Fair. In its 11th year, this annual event brings together the artists and galleries from across the globe, to showcase the very best in cutting edge creative contemporary and urban art. A firm fixture in every urban art lovers calendar, this year will see the 4-Day event move from Shoreditch to the Chelsea Sorting Office. Though the venue has changed, one thing that will remain is the high quality and unique creative pieces on display. So if you’re mad about art, make sure to check out Moniker 2019.
When: Wednesday 2nd – Sunday 6th October | Where: Chelsea Sorting Office
Frieze London 2019
This October, Regents Park will be the host of Frieze London, an international Art extravaganze that will showcase the works of over 160 Galleries, who’ll be coming to London from over 35+ countries. Here, there will be a good mixture between renowned galleries such as Hauser and Wirth and Sprüth Magers, who will be joined by a whole host of other big and upcoming names. As ever this years event will have presentations, talks, workshops, thought-provoking debate and discussion about all things art. The event coincides Frieze Sculpture and Freize, two more amazing art exhibitions, which are also worth checking out. Sound like your kind of thing? Then make sure you free up some dates in your October iteniery for Freize, London’s coolest cultural contemporary art congregation of this year.
When: Thursday 3rd – Sunday 6th October | Where: Regents Park
London Restaurant Festival
London has an unrivalled food and drink scene, with the melting pot metropolis home to the very best restaurants, serving delicious cuisines from across the globe. So if you’re a foodie, then you’re in for a treat, as it’s the annual London Restaurant Festival. Since 2009, foodies from across the globe have descended on this gastronomical escapade to experience the very best in London’s culinary scene. This October, LRF is back and bigger than ever before, with over 70 events taking place across the city, from tastings, talks, restaurant hopping to masterclasses and more. To top it all off, over 250 restaurants in the city will be taking part with special menus and discounts for the festival. So if you’re in London this October, get ready to fulfil your foodie fantasies.
When: Tuesday 1st – Thursday 31st October 2019 | Where: Various Locations
BFI London Film Festival 2019
London isn’t just the capital city of England, it’s one of the biggest centres for cinematic arts in the world. This October London will be rolling out the red carpets, welcoming the biggest stars in showbusiness for the 62nd BFI London Film Festival. Over 11 days, there will be some awesome events taking place across the city, from premiers, exclusive screenings, workshops, q & a’s and much much more. Kicking off this year’s festivities will be the opening night Gala, which will see screening Martin Sorceresses. The Irishman. So if you’re a film fanatic, check out what events are going on, it’s going to be huge.
When: Wednesday 2nd – Sunday 13th October | Where: Various Locations
London Cocktail Week
Cocktail lovers in London are rejoicing, as the arrival of October signals the start of London Cocktail Week. A week-long celebration of the magical world of mixed drinks, and the thriving London cocktail bar scene. From rooftops, basements and speakeasies, the best bars across the city will be hosting some spectacular events for you to enjoy. Oh, and events aside, alot of the bars will also be offering discounted drinks. Yes that right, discounted drinks, we’re talking cocktails in the city’s best bars for just £6. So check the schedule, head to a bar and sip your way through this cocktail escapade.
When: Friday 4th – Sunday 13th October | Where: Various Locations
World Zombie Day
On Saturday 5th October, if you stroll through the streets of Central London you’ll most likely bump into a bloodthirsty being as the zombie apocalypse takes over. Ok, you got us, it is isn’t an actual zombie apocalypse. People will be adorning their most terrifying outfits and covering themselves in blood for the annual World Zombie Day celebrations. The day will start with a walk through the city, culminating in one helluva a party at the 100 Club on Oxford Street. All of this is for a good cause, as the proceeds from the event will be going to City Harvest, a charity that’s on a mission to help fight homelessness in London. So don’t be scared, get yourself involved in World Zombie Day.
When: Saturday 5th October | Where: 100 Club
Boiler Room Festival
The Boiler Room brand is the bee’s knees when it comes to DJ sets, raves and live music. The musical platform that allows listeners to stream top tunes, will now let you experience them in person with the Boiler Room Festival 2019. Over 4 days, venues around Peckham will host a string of parties that will leave you skanking till the early morn. Day 1 will focus on Jazz, Day 2 on rap, Day 3 on Bass and Day 4 will be club tune central. Although their will be big names, the focus on this event is to provide a platform and showcase the best of the next-gen. So get your gun fingers at the ready, the boiler room festival is going to be a banger.
When: Wednesday 9th October – Saturday 12th October | Where: Various Locations
Paintings and metal sculptures are pretty awesome, but have you ever experienced the intriguing world of glass art. If you haven’t, don’t fear, you now can with the Chihuly Nights exhibition at Kew Gardens. Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday of October, the grounds of this venue will display the colourful creations of glass art pioneer Dale Chihuly. Stroll through the gardens and admire his work, illuminated by the night sky to a backdrop of music composed by Nico Muhly. There will also be other live music and also food and drink available. So if you’re in town and looking for something a little bit different, Chihuly Nights is the one for you.
When: Thursday 3rd – Saturday 26th October | Where: Kew Gardens
Chelsea History Festival
Mention Chelsea to most people and football, affluence and reality TV will come to mind. However, this South West London neighbourhood has a rich history that few would even know about. From medieval times, the world wars, to modern times, there will be a whole host of talks, discussions exhibitions delving deeper into the past and present of Chelsea. The events at which these events will be taking place will be the founding venues, which include the National Army Museum, Royal Hospital Chelsea and Chelsea Physic Garden.
Where: Wednesday 9th – Sunday 13th October | When: Various Locations
Diwali: Festival of Light
Diwali, also known as the festival of light, is one of the biggest religious celebrations on the calendar for both Hindus and Sikhs. Being the multi-cultural hub it is, London has a sizeable community of people who will be celebrating this occasion across the city. You can join in the festivities at the Diwali celebration at the National Maritime Museum. There will be lanterns, rangoli painting, stories, talks, performances, and to top it all off an evening parade. So join in this unique celebration of Diwali, it’s going to be colourful and one helluva an experience.
Where: Wednesday 9th – Sunday 13th October | When: National Maritime Museum
If you were struggling to find what to this October in London, you shouldn’t have any problems now. Oh, and if you think this is the October is the end of fun in London, stay tuned for our guide to What’s happening in London in November. In the meanwhile, you can start exploring London off the beaten path with the Like Locals App. Stay tuned, there are some exciting updates coming very soon. Download now for free, available on both iOS and Android devices.