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Top London family friendly events and activities for July 2021

There's everything from food festivals to theatre shows, museums and summer festivals and loads more to keep little people and their parents entertained.

Get your diaries at the ready for July as there are so many great family friendly events in London and beyond. We’ve collated our favourite mix but do keep an eye out on our Instagram for more fun activities to enjoy with your little one.

Underbelly Festival

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Underbelly Festival 2021

Underbelly Festival returns this summer with a brand new home in Cavendish Square in the heart of Central London’s Oxford Street District. This is one of the UK’s top summer festivals and aLondon cultural event for over a decade. This year the festival includes a great number of top live family events and family entertainment, atmospheric outdoor bars and premium street food and drink. Baby Loves Disco, The Comedy Club 4Kids and Fun Kids Science Weekly Live are just few that caught our eye. Check out the full list of family friendly events on the festival’s website.
When: 1 July – 26 September 2021
Where: Cavendish Square
How much: prices vary depending on the event. Full details here

South West Fest

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This year, the SouthWestFest takes place online and in venues and outdoor public spaces across London’s south Westminster. With over 100 free and low cost events, this festival has something to amuse and entertain people of all ages. The art and health trail, documentary film making workshop, sing along sessions, pret a portrait workshop and a day of play are just the few that caught our eye. For full list of workshops and festival events please check their website here.
When: 2 – 23 July 2021
Where: South Westminster
How much: Most events are free but please check the website for full details.

Summer Lights

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Summer Lights is an outdoor exhibition within the Canary Wharf estate and features eleven exciting new artworks that shimmer and shine in natural light. This unique exhibition launched on Midsummer, with a selection of stunning artworks that all are enhanced by the sun’s rays. Unlike the always popular Winter Lights, this exhibition is designed to be enjoyed during the day.
When: ongoing until 21st August
Where: Canary Wharf
How much: free more info and map via website.

Nature Elly

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Elly runs the best little farm in Lincolnshire, but not everything is going to plan. The corn has been trampled, all the apples have vanished and there’s hay everywhere! What could have happened? Come and help Elly and Bob the Pheasant fix the farm in time to save the harvest, and discover the secrets of the mystery animal hiding in the hay-stack. Nature Elly is full of interactive fun, beautifully written original music and a cast of stunning and adorable animal puppets for little ones to meet.
When: 2 – 31 July 2021
Where: Little Angel Theatre
How much: £13.50 adults and £11.50 for children over the age of one. More info and booking here.

The Thinkery at Hobbledown Farm

From jumping pillows to feeding the meerkats and cuddling a Coati or spending time in the imaginative indoor play areas, Hobbledown offers a fun-filled family day out. The Thinkery is the brand new animal and events demonstration are opening up on the 3rd of July 2021. You can book one of the four daily interactive story sessions via the Hobbledown App once you arrive. Professor Topperpot and the rest of the Hobbledown characters will interact with visitors around the park during at Peak Times. The ticket to Hobbledown includes a 45 minute time slot in the indoor play barn, access to all outdoor play facilities, Archery Arena, and zoo.
When: From 3rd of July ongoing through the summer
Where: Hobbledown Farm
How much: Check out the website for various prices and access restrictions

Mama G’s Family Pride Party

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Family Pride Party 2021

Mama G is hosting a family pride party and you are all invited! Come and join “everyone’s favourite pantomime dame,” (Metro) and a whole host of singers, comedians, drag acts and more for a packed day celebrating rainbow families and the LGBTQ+ community. The afternoon will feature a range of performances, workshops and events including Elmer the Patchwork Elephant, 90s popstar Lolly, Stiles and Drewe’s The 3 Little Pigs, Littlecrowns Storyhouse, Pride Panto and much much more.
When: Sunday 4 July
Where: Stanley Halls
How much: Pay What You Can (All ages are welcome) Check out their website for full details.

Taste of London

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A foodie extravaganza for the whole family (even your fussy toddler!). Taste of London food festival have searched far and wide to bring you future food heroes, chefs about to launch their next big thing and the best of London gastronomy. Sample some of the city’s tastiest new concepts and enjoy the garden party atmosphere.
When: 7 to 11 July and 14 – 18 July 2021
Where: Regent’s Park
How much: from £23 more info and bookings here

Hot Air

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A fully inflatable exhibition that explores the playfully innocent and darker underworld of the blow-up. The space will be teeming with inflatable creations so check out the monster balloons, the world’s smallest bouncy castle and lots more.
When: 9 -11 July 2021
Where: Manor Place Warehouse
How much: free more info and booking here.

Paddington: The Story of a Bear at the British Library

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Paddington: The Story of a Bear is a new, family-friendly exhibition celebrating one of the world’s most beloved fictional bears over 60 years on from when he was first published. Featuring over 50 books, documents, film clips and original artworks, the exhibition explores Michael Bond’s creation of Paddington, from his arrival in the UK from Peru, to finding a new home, and his exciting adventures in London and beyond. The exhibition is accompanied by a programme of events, workshops and online activities for schools and families.
When: 9 July – 31 October 2021
Where: The British Library
How much: £8

Sports Day

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Curated in collaboration with Hemingway Design, you can celebrate a massive year for sports with games including hula hooping and hopscotch. You can get stuck right in with football fresstylers and break dancing or just sit back and enjoy the show! Try your hand at mini golf (course designed by Yinka Ilori) or if you like a bit of healthy competition, fitness experts Outrivals will put you through your paces. There’ll be street food and a pop-up bar (for the big kids) all day long, so bring your appetite. Plus they’ll be screening highlights from the Wimbledon Finals.
When: 10 July 2021
Where: Greenwich Peninsula
How much: free more info via the website.

Royal Opera House Unlocked

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The Royal Opera House and Capco welcome you to join in a free summer festival for all the family. Expect to see shows on the summer stage, take part in storytelling in the ROH story shop, take part in dance workshops and explore the amazing costumes and displays.  
When: 10 & 11 July
Where: Around Royal Opera House and Covent Garden
How much: free

Young Artists’ Summer Show at the Royal Academy

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The Commute. Jack, Year 5 (Young Artists’ Summer Show 2020)

Now in its third year, the show brings together work by primary and secondary level students from across the UK and beyond.
When: 13 July to 8 August 2021
Where: The Royal Academy
How much: Free and you can visit in a group of up to six people but you must book here.

Dodge at Somerset House

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The new thrilling new open-air experience in Somerset House’s spectacular courtyard features dodgems with a difference, bold installations from acclaimed artists and a delicious selection of food and drinks, Dodge is the perfect setting to celebrate quality time with family and friends once more. On Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 12.00 and 15.00 those aged 12 and under can ride on the dodgems for free with a full paying adult! 
When: 15 July – 22 August 2021
Where: Somerset House (Courtyard)
How much: Various prices. Full event information, ticket booking and answers to all questions available here.

Family friendly musicals season opening in West End

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West End Musicals’ season opens in July with much popular shows like Wonderville Magic and Illusion and Horrible Stories Barmy Britain Part 5. We partnered with Theatre Tickets Direct to offer best price tickets to all London’s West End Musicals.
When: From 16 July 2021
Where: Various London theatre venues
How much: check the best ticket price offers here

Nocturnal Creatures

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Whitechapel Gallery has teamed up with Sculpture in the City once more to bring you this late night arts festival taking place throughout the gallery and outdoor and unusual spaces in East London. Expect a variety of installations, films, live performances, music, and food experiences.  Pre-bookable tickets will be available from July 1 2021. For those who aren’t able to attend this extraordinary experience in person, a complementary programme of digital content is available on Instagram.    
When: Saturday 17 July 2021 6pm -11pm
Where: Whitechapel Gallery
How much: free more info and bookings here.

ChessFest 

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ChessFest will take place from 16th-18th July at locations in central London, drawing on the chess theme of Lewis Carroll’s “Alice Through the Looking Glass” and culminating in a day of chess activities open to the public at Trafalgar Square on Sunday 18th July.
When: 16 -18 July 2021
Where: Trafalgar Square (and various other London venues)
How much: Free. Event details here.

Therrible Thames Tour 

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Climb aboard and prepare to hear the horrible history of the most famous river in the world! The wicked new tour of the therrible Thames. This new venture from award-winning theatre producers Birmingham Stage Company and Woods’ Silver Fleet, a family-run company of Thames Watermen since 1866 brings performance and river sightseeing creating an experience like no other.
When: Daily sailings begin from 17 July 2021
Where: Tower Bridge Quay
How much: £22 Adult/£14 Child more info and booking on the website here.

Bubble ‘n Bop Children’s Summer Festival at Marsh Farm

Enjoy a fun-packed day of family festival fun riding a train, petting adorable farm animals, play in the sand pit, take a game of crazy golf, get the small (and the big) faces painted with glitter, enjoy delicious food and run to catch trillions of bubbles. And if there is some energy left make a splash in the paddling pool or walk in (and out) the foam machine.
When: 19 July to 3 September 2021
Where: Marsh Farm  
How much: £16.99 more info and booking via their website.

UNIQLO Tate Play

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Tate Modern invites visitors of all ages to transform the floor of the Turbine Hall into a giant work of art. This extraordinary invitation is part of a transformative project by artist Ei Arakawa, which will launch UNIQLO Tate Play, Tate Modern’s new free programme of playful art-inspired activities for families, in partnership with UNIQLO. More things for families to see and do will be unveiled in upcoming school holidays, as well as free workshops and creative materials on offer during term time. 
When: 24 July – 29 August 2021
Where: Turbine Hall, Tate Modern
How much: free

Wilderfest

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WILDERFEST music festival is perfect for young festival-goers – so whether its your first one ever, or your first one this year – don’t miss out on Britain’s WILDEST Festival. Tickets are now available and the one day ticket also includes entry to Theme Park, Zoo & SEA LIFE Centre!
When: 24 July – 31 August 2021
Where: Chessington World of Adventure Resort
How much: from £37 Add block

Jurassic Encounter Where Dinosaurs Come To Life – UK Tour 2021

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Jurassic Encounter – UK Tour 2021

Jurassic Encounter makes its UK debut in London at Grovelands Park and will no doubt be a hit with any dino enthusiast both young and old. Expect to encounter dinosaurs of all shapes and sizes from the Jurassic, Triassic and Cretaceous periods as they stare down at you from a great height. They will be hiding in the bushes, grazing in the tree tops and towering above your heads.
When: 24 July – 10 August (London)
Where: London Grovelands Park
How much: Adult £13.50 / Child £11.50 (online bookings). Checkout the event website to book a ticket and see all price variations.

Theatre on Kew: The Wind in the Willows

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A rollicking yet gentle adventure with best friends Ratty, Mole, Badger, Otter and, of course, the arrogant, vain and hilarious Toad. This critically acclaimed, outdoor theatre production set against the magical backdrop of our stunning Lake, is packed with much-loved colourful characters, music, song and laughter.
When: 24 July – 30 August 2021
Where: Kew Gardens (Victoria Gate)
How much: Adult £22.90 and children £17.90 and it includes entry to the garden more info and booking here.

ActiveFest

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ActiveFest 2021 at the Royal Airforce Museum

Get the whole family moving at ActiveFest this summer the Hercules outdoor obstacle course; race against your friends or try to compete for the top spot on the leader board. You will face the ninja wall, crawl under cargo nets and swing over water to get to the finish line. Sign your little ones up for a parent and baby yoga session or get them moving in the available activity classes.
When: 24 July – 15 August 2021
Where:
Royal Airforce Museum
How much: Various prices depending on the event. Full details here.

Family Activity Days: Chocolate Tuesday

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A day at the Chelsea Physic Garden is always a good idea. This family activity day gives children the opportunity to learn about the history, geography and science of chocolate and celebrate this very special plant-based food. The day includes craft activities, a Garden tour, chocolate tasting, and the chance to create your own mixtures to take away. Suitable for children aged 6 and above who must be accompanied by an adult.
When: Tuesday 27 July 10:30am- 2:30pm
Where: Chelsea Physic Garden
How much: £35 more info and booking via their website.

Camp Bestival

This award winning family friendly festival is organised by Rod da Bank and his wife Josie and really places children (of all ages!) at the centre of everything. From wild adventurous pursuits in the Wild Tribe area (with mud-slides and drumming circles) through to the world’s biggest bouncy castle so you can get your bounce on. There is also go-karting, fairy tales and (bedtime) storytelling from Cbeebies, raves from Big Fish Little Fish and vintage fairground rides. The science tent will captivate and educate whilst the youngest of ravers can enjoy soft play (yes!) and sandpits or catch a spectacle from Cirque Bijou and brush up on your circus skills, learn to walk the rope or admire some late night cabaret. New for 2021 you can expect a festival within a festival for teenagers as well as the keep it cosmic dance tent and a new eco-camping experience. When it comes to music you can expect big names for 2021 including Groove Armada, Fatboy Slim and Kelis. Full line-up here. Bring it on!
When: 29 July 2021 – 1 August 2021
Where: Lulworth Castle, Dorset
How much: Adult tickets start at £190 and there are a variety of children’s options. More info and booking via their website here.

Revel Puck Circus

Embracing The Revel Puck artistic mission of redefining the circus’s place in culture, The Wing
Scuffle Spectacular explores what circus ordinarily tries to hide. After a year of anxious
uncertainty, The Revel Pucks believe it is time to celebrate fear, to laugh with it and to revel in it
together.
When: 29 July – 8 August
Where: Leyton Jubilee Park
How much: £15 and can be booked via the website.

The Gruffalo Live On Stage at Alexandra Palace

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Join Mouse on a daring adventure through the deep, dark wood in Tall Stories’ magical, musical adaptation of the classic picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. Songs, laughs and monstrous fun for children aged 3 and up and their grown-ups, in the much-loved show that’s toured Britain and the world!
When: Various dates from 30 July 2021
How much: From £13.65. Book a ticket and more info here.Add block

Family Film Club

Film Club

The best film club in town meets every Saturday. Join other young film aficionados on Saturday mornings for Family Film Club for a wonderful programme of films for young fans.
When: Various dates throughout July 2021
Where: Barbican Cinema 2 & 3
How much: Under 18s £2.50 / Over 18s £3.50. Booking essential. Full details here.Add block

The Magic Garden at Hampton Court Palace

The Magic Garden is an enchanting children’s play space in the heart of Hampton Court Palace. Exeect to find castles, towers, water play, landscape gardens, mounds and mythical beasts that your little ones can explore. Learn about the history of Hampton Court Palace and explore the secret grotto in this magical children’s playground.
When: Ongoing throughout the summer
Where: Hampton Court Palace (Pre-booking essential)
How much: £25.30 Adult/£12.60 Child over 5. Check out the event website here

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