What’s on in London this Bank Holiday weekend: Ice cream festivals and Notting Hill Carnival

144 views 12:32 pm 0 Comments August 24, 2023
The Slice
This is all the fun stuff that’s on in the capital this week (Picture: Metro.co.uk/ Kocktail/ Art of London/ OfficialLondonTheatre.com)

Welcome back to the Slice, your weekly guide to what’s on in London.

It seems that London is clinging onto those last glorious days of summer as hard as it can: rooftops at sunset, Caribbean carnival vibes and scoops upon scoops of ice cream.

We predict this will be one chill Bank Holiday weekend…

The Slice’s Pick

Kingdom of Winter

It might seem a bit early to be thinking about December on a balmy August evening like this, but in just a few short months we’ll be dusting off the Michael Buble Christmas album and stuffing our gobs with mince pies.

Time to be organised and book tickets early to London’s newest festive attraction: Kingdom of Winter.

ExCeL’s gigantic 21,332 sqm convention centre will be transformed into a wintry wonderland, complete with an ice rink, fairground rides, circus, an awe-inspiring ‘Ice Expedition’, alpine stalls and two food and drink villages.

And as it’s fully indoors, you won’t have to worry about any frostbitten fingers or freezing December drizzle spoiling the fun.

Early-bird tickets from £5.50, available until the end of September. 8 December 2023 to 7 January 2024, ExCeL London.

Food and Drink

Covent Garden Frozen Festival

The chilly theme continues, but this time it’s much more suited to the glorious Bank Holiday weather.

Head to Covent Garden’s Piazza to cool off with frozen margs at Kocktail’s quirky vending machines; Frosé Prosecco from Bubblebros; Vai’s intricate 3D gelato designs; ice-cream rolls from Pan-n-Ice; and Ladurée’s decadent Plaisir Glacé (we love violet and blackcurrant). CG’s resident restaurants and cafes are also embracing the chill, with special sub-zero treats including Avobar’s creamy vegan avocado soft serve, affogato at Chesnut Bakery, naughty frozen Pornstar Martinis at Mrs Riot and iced tea at posh Parisian tea emporium Mariage Freres.

While you’re in the neighbourhood, pose with the colourful apes on the free Tusk Gorilla Trail or get your end-of-season wardrobe sorted at the Smart Works Holiday Shop, with discounts up to 70% off across GANNI, Rixo, Reformation, Bobbi Brown, Caudalie and Neal’s Yard. And 100% of proceeds go to charity! Now that’s cool.

24 August – 4 September, various venues, Covent Garden.

Looking for more ways to cool off? Check out two more of our frozen faves…

World Cup Winning Gelato

Eugenio, the current reigning World Gelato Champion has teamed up with Mercante for an exclusive gelato menu including raspberry drizzled Golden Summer, fiery Sweet & Spicy and dairy-free Parco Verde. 

From £7.90, available to takeaway on the terrace until 31 August, Mercante at Sheraton Grand Park Lane, Mayfair.

Limited edition Frosé Dough·Chi

The mouth-watering Frosé Dough·Chi consists of strawberry and rosé prosecco flavoured sorbet wrapped in melt in the mouth light pink vanilla cookie dough.

From £1.75, available 24 – 30 August exclusively at Harvey Nichols, Knightsbridge.

Madison’s Summer Roof Terrace  

Summer isn’t over yet and if you’re looking for a rooftop with a view made for the Gram, Madison is the place to be. The terrace is synonymous with DJ sets and cocktails, but head inside the restaurant for a quieter night, where the atmosphere is still lively, but muted enough for conversation.

This season you’ll find an array of fish dishes, from swordfish steaks to lobster tacos. Add on thick-cut beef dripping chips for real indulgence.

Alternatively, pasta lovers will drool at the New York-inspired Italian mains. We opted for the ABSOLUT rigatoni alla vodka followed by the rum caramel pineapple tarte tatin. Divine.

Two courses for £45, Madison Restaurant, Rooftop Terrace, One New Change, St Paul’s.


Greek food is simple but powerful, and requires top-quality ingredients more than most. Thank the Greek gods, then, that KIMA lives on Marylebone’s Paddington Street, a veritable Mount Olympus of fine Hellenic dining.

Across the road from KIMA is Ospo and its supplies of rich and impeccably preserved seafood. Chucked across the road and into the hands of chef Nikos Roussos, these staple elements become sprightly and ingenious inventions.

No part of the fish is wasted, and some of the most ostensibly unusable bits (hello, fish bones) turn out to be the most useful of all (fish bone broth turns out to be delicious).

Mains from £17, 57 Paddington Street, Marylebone.  

London’s best… places to celebrate Notting Hill Carnival

Sunday 27 – Monday 28 August

Check out Metro.co.uk’s guide to the day here

BEST FOOD:  Limin Southbank 

Get ready ‘to lime’ (AKA have a good time) this Bank Holiday Weekend at Limin Southbank with Caribbean beats, treats and a sandy island beach. Its limited edition ‘A Taste of Trinidad Carnival’ menu, DJ sets and riveting dance performances are all you need to have a blast and celebrate the beautiful heritage of Trinidad.

25- 28 August, Gabriel’s Wharf, 56 Upper Ground, Southbank.

BEST ENTERTAINMENT:  London Cabaret Club

The dancing continues with London Cabaret Club’s latest production.  ‘Copacabana’ brings Carnival vibes to The Bloomsbury Ballroom with three distinctive acts featuring dancers, singers, acrobats – and several surprises! But it’s not just a feast for the eyes – indulge in their Caribbean menu and limited-edition rum cocktail, ‘Euphoria’. 

25 – 26 August at The Bloomsbury Ballroom, Victoria House, Bloomsbury Square, Holborn.

BEST PRE’S: Trims ‘n’ Tings

Before you head to Carnival, you need to get ready for carnival. That’s why Wray & Nephew is opening its doors to Trims ‘n’ Tings barbershop tonight. Think fresh trims, bold nail art, immaculate vibes and likkle taste of Wray Rum Punch. You might even catch an exclusive performance from the legendary Saxon Sound System if you’re lucky!

23 – 24 August, 316a Ladbroke Grove.

Deals of the Week

WIN a set of four tickets to Paultons Park, the home of Peppa Pig World

Oink oink! Metro.co.uk have teamed up with Paultons Park to give five readers the chance to take their family on a fun-filled day out at the home of Peppa Pig World.

We’ve got five sets of family tickets (worth £222!) up for grabs, each giving four guests day entry to one of the UK’s highest rated family theme parks.

Enter to win family day out to Peppa Pig World at Paultons Park (Picture: Paultons Park)
Enter to win family day out to Peppa Pig World at Paultons Park (Picture: Paultons Park)

You have until midnight on Sunday 3 September 2023 to enter, so make sure you sign up soon!

In the meantime, don’t forget to sign up for our brilliant travel newsletter The Getaway, for weekly holiday inspiration, reviews and offers.

Click here and fill in your details on the form to enter. Good luck!

GB, 18+. 21.08.23 – 03.09.23. The prize is day ticket entry to Paultons Park for four guests (including at least one adult), on a pre-arranged date of your choice subject to availability and park opening times. Children under 1 metre in height enjoy free entry and do not require tickets. The prize does not include travel or any other expenses. There are 5 winners. Enter using the form here. 1 entry per person. See full terms and conditions for further details. 

Art of London’s Season 2023

Art, meet Theatreland. Art of London have just launched their third annual season, and this time they’re taking installations across the West End, with the theme ‘The Art of Entertainment’. Start in Leicester Square with Art Reframed, a collection of 52 of the National Portrait Gallery’s most iconic portraits.

Spot modern-day legends like Olivia Coleman and Elton John amongst historic figures like William Shakespeare and Nell Gywn, hoisted high above the street on giant colourful cubes. Next up, take a moment at Piccadilly Circus to witness Ray Burmiston’s dazzling photography spectacle, screened on the Piccadilly Lights.

On 30 and 31 August, you can also find a two-day pop-up of tranquility in Leicester Square Gardens, where you can unwind with various minfulness sessions and art workshops.

Think there’s an iconic London mug missing from the line-up? Send a selfie with your eyes closed for the chance to be featured in the installation.

Free, events running until October, various venues.


Kid’s Week

As the summer holidays come to an end, so does one of the best deals of the season: Official London Theatre’s Kids Week.

Until August 31, you can score a free ticket for a child under 17 (accompanied by an adult, of course) to one of more than 30 shows.

There are more than 300,000 tickets on offer to see West End classics like Wicked and Grease The Musical, star newcomers like Tina and Frozen, plus tot-friendly shows like Fireman Sam Saves the Circus.

Ends 31 August, various venues. 


Super League Triathlon

Add some speed to your Bank Holiday Sunday and see the world’s fastest triathlon at West India Quay. Jonny Brownlee and his fellow Olympians will line up for a breathtaking afternoon of world class sport.

Often likened to F1 racing, it’s not for the faint hearted; this full-speed, thrilling race promises non-stop excitement with unpredictable events at every turn.

Plus there are plenty restaurants and bars to keep you fed and watered while you take in the swim-bike-run action. Register below for your free ticket.

Free, 27 August, West India Quay.

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