When the clouds of winter break and the parks begin to bloom, London is at its most beautiful. It’s no surprise then, that spring is such an important time in the capital’s cultural calendar. Whether you’re interested in local arts events like London Craft Week, cultural traditions like St Patrick’s Day Parade, gastronomic occasions like London Wine Week, or international exhibitions like the Chelsea Flower Show, the city offers plenty of opportunity to explore your greatest passions, or develop a new one. Take a look at our guide to the best events in London this spring.
This annual crafting extravaganza bringsa host of events and new skills to the city. It celebrates crafts, bringing together the best and brightest talents from across the UK for a series of exhibits. Discover hidden exhibitions and workshops with master makers, plus it’s a great place to pick up a bespoke souvenir or two.
The Irish sure know how to have a good time, and with London’s large Irish community, the St Patrick’s Day Parade is a big deal. Follow the leprechauns over the rainbow and you’ll find a huge street party at Trafalgar Square. Watch floats, bands and pageantry or head to the square for live Irish music, dancing and entertainment. Don’t forget to wear green.
Rowing is one of England’s most prestigious sports, and spring offers ideal rowing conditions. A number of popular races take place around the same time each year, including the Head of the River Race on the, during which 400 crews from around the world compete on the River Thames. Also, the BNY Mellon Boat Race and Newton Women’s Boat Race see the best teams from competing Oxford and Cambridge universities battle it out on the water.
Whether you’re a supporter or participant, the Virgin Money London Marathon is an exciting experience. Line the route, which runs alongside many of London’s most historic sights, and cheer on world-famous runners or support those raising money for a good cause.
One of London’s most eccentric annual events, the Covent Garden May Faye and Puppet Festival, is a celebration of old-fashioned, family-friendly British entertainment. Step back in time as puppeteers from across the country descend on the capital to put on Punch and Judy-style puppet shows at The Actors’ Church. There’s also a brass band parade, maypole dancing and live folk music.
Following swiftly on from London Beer Festival in February, this festival celebrates the capital’s flourishing wine scene. Over 100 bars and winemakers come together for a seven-day event dedicated to our favourite wines. Register for a wristband online and get access to special events, exclusive tastings and discount offers.
The gardening equivalent of London Fashion Week, Chelsea Flower Show showcases the latest trends in horticulture through show-stopping displays in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea. As well as touring the beautiful garden arrangements, don’t miss the stunning floral competition in the Great Pavilion. The event is incredibly popular so make sure to book tickets well in advance.
A centuries-old tradition dating back to the 16th century, the State Opening of Parliament is perhaps the best opportunity to get a sneak peak into the British monarchy. Thousands line the streets as the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh make their way in the royal coach from Buckingham Palace to the Houses of Parliament, where the Head of State delivers an anticipated speech.