While London is more famous for rainy days than it is sunshine, the summer months give Brits a chance to make the most out of the dry weather. From music festivals, to lidos to rooftop bars, London is ripe with options for outdoor activities when weather permits.
One of the best things to do in London while it’s warm is to enjoy a film outdoors. It’s a versatile activity, perfect for family fun or a romantic date night.
With that being said, visitors and locals must add outdoor movie nights to the season’s bucket list. Keep reading for our favourite outdoor movie nights showing cult classics and new releases throughout the summer.
River Thames Boat Cinema
From mid-June to early September head on over to the Tower Millennium Pier at Aldgate for a cinematic treat.
The cruise will be up-and-running five times a week, from June to August. Head on over after work or a day of sightseeing and don’t worry about food and drinks. A variety of items are served on the river Thames movie boat, making it an all-inclusive evening out on the town.
The entertainment goes beyond the movie, though, as you’ll be able to watch London come to life as dusk falls. It’s a magical experience that almost all visitors would highly recommend.
The cruise will be playing favourites like Mamma Mia, The Shape of Water, The Great Showman, and Breakfast at Tiffany’s this summer.
If you’re on the lookout for a free event to attend this summer, head over to Wembley Park for outdoor movie nights perfect for families, couples or solo travellers visiting the city on a budget. The décor is very Hollywood circa 1950 and the movies are screened on a wooden vintage television screen. Settle into one of the comfortable chairs and enjoy a flick you haven’t seen before.
The celebration will feature Western and East Asian Cinema such as Chaal Jeevi Laiye as well as Opera in an effort to appeal to a greater and more varied audience. They will also be playing the Whoppi Golberg classic Sister Act, music-infused Moulin Rouge, drag queen karaoke and a six-piece gospel choir. There are no restrictions or limits when it comes to Wembley Park, there truly is something for everyone.
For a full list of what’s on this summer, check out the parks upcoming films on their website!
This one is for all the Hollywood fanatics as LA Night (aptly named) promises to deliver on the latest blockbuster films and Hollywood classics. On the roster, you’ll find easy-to-love flicks like Dirty Dancing, Captain Marvel, Crazy Rich Asians, and the Greatest Showman Sing-A-Long.
With the summer holiday just around the corner, several venues are catering to mums and dad’s eager to entertain their littles ones. After all, adults can’t have all the fun! These will be kid-friendly zones, with many showings starting a little earlier than some other venues on the list – a consideration made for boys and girls with a bedtime.
But you don’t need children to enjoy an excellent classic kids movie! Court Palace and Dulwich Park are showing blockbuster Frozen, Aladdin, Dumbo, Spider Man and Mary Poppins Returns. If you’re into animation, this one’s for you.
Somerset House is hosting Film4 Summer Screen. Given the venue, this is sure to be one of the most luxe outdoor screening venue, truly fit for a queen (or king). If you’re staying in one of the nearby London luxury hotels, this is a must-visit for the summer.
Doors open to the public at 6:30 PM, allowing visitors to enjoy a pleasant evening picnic. While you wait for the film to start, you can enjoy the set from the DJ who will be playing music inspired by the film.
They will be playing films daily from 8-11PM starting in August. Films being shown include Pain and Glory, Black Panther, Wild at Heart, Mandy The Princess Bride, Matrix, and many more!
With various locations around London, Secret Cinema is pulling out the big guns for their 007 theme. From June to September, the outdoor movie nights will be playing at top-secret locations and screening Casino Royale. Tickets are available online and, because it’s Secret Cinema, you’ll have to attend the event to learn more.
Starting in July and running ‘til the end of September, you will find inflatable screens in various London locations including City of London, East Dulwich, Fulham, Greenwich, Hammersmith, Hither Green, Holborn, Hornsey, Kingston and Parsons Green.
The pop-up locations will be playing Grease, Dirty Dancing, 10 Things I Hate About You, and the Greatest Showman. If you’re a London local and don’t want to miss out on these great films but don’t live downtown, treat yourself to a night away and check-in to a Montcalm Hotel. You could even make a weekend out of it!
An outdoor movie night can be the perfect excuse for a weekend getaway in London.
The Luna Cinema
Set in multiple venues across London including Kensington Palace, Westminster Abbey, and Hampton Court, a screening at Luna Cinema could be the perfect date night idea, especially if you’re staying in hotels near central London for the night.
Our advice? Bring a picnic, as BYOB is accepted at most locations. For those staying at the Brewery Hotel, you’ll have easy access to shops where you can pick up bits like cheese, wine, and sweets to enjoy while you watch.
This pop-up cinema is open from May to September, showing The Meg, The Favourite, and A Star Is Born.
Rooftop Film Club
Head over to the Stratford outdoor movie venue, open from May through to September. As the name suggest, the screenings will take place on a roof. As you look out over the city, you’ll find director’s chairs to sit in, wireless headphones for easy listening, and blankets just in case.
The show starts at sunset, but the area opens at 5 PM. The Rooftop Film Club is also planning on running pop-up locations in neighbourhoods like Shoreditch and Peckham where they will be playing a Bohemian Rhapsody Sing-a-Long and modern classics like Tina Fey’s Mean Girls and Cruel Intentions.