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Summer in London

“I’ve been walking about London for the last 30 years, and I find something fresh in it every day.”  Walter Besant, 19th-century novelist and historian

In an average year over 40 million people visit London, making it the third most visited city in the world. It can be no surprise that London is a very popular destination for people learning English. Here are some ideas for what to do when you visit London during the summer.

1. Behave like the locals

Did you know that during the summer London gets less rain than New York? London has a huge range of outdoor activities you can enjoy during the summer, and the occasional rain shower does not stop the locals from enjoying outdoor life. In fact, there is nothing more British than trying to eat icecream in a sudden rainstorm!

2. Watch TV amongst landmarks

When the sun is shining, most of the major sporting events can be enjoyed for free around the city on big screens, and many pubs and sports bars have outdoor screens. For example, the space in Canada Square Park has huge outdoor screens with seating where you can enjoya busy sporting calendar, documentaries, weekend children’s programmes, news and special film screenings for free.  

Enjoying sporting events and TV among the company of others surrounded by some of London’s most famous landmarks – what more could you wish for?

3. Enjoy outdoor cinema and theatre

In recent years outdoor cinema screenings have become hugely popular in London, and venues across the city show a variety of films, from black and white classics through to the latest releases.

There is simply nothing like the atmosphere of open-air theatre. Regents Park has an annual open-air festival where you can watch plays and musicals as night falls around you: as the trees cast long shadows and the wild animals (in the nearby zoo!) settle down for the night, open-air theatre becomes something magical indeed.

The Scoop Theatre, on the banks of the Thames opposite the Tower of London, often holds a summer-long free festival. Not only can you see new theatre and comedy shows but there is also a varied programme of live music. All you have to do is bring a cushion to sit on and you can enjoy it too

3. Visit the summer exhibitions

Many of the city’s art galleries host special exhibitions over the summer. The Royal Academy’s summer show is a tradition dating from 1769 and showcases the best new artists. Many other art galleries offer special exhibitions over the summer too. 

4. Go to the beach

Several pop-up beaches appear along the South Bank in London over the summer. Tonnes of sand are imported, deck chairs are placed around and with some seaside sound effects, if you close your eyes, you could almost be lying on a genuine beach by the sea...

5. Breathe in the fresh air

There are over 3,000 parks in London which together cover 18% of the city. These beautiful havens of greenery are perfect for a picnic, sunbathing, or a quiet space to enjoy a good book. From the massive expanse of Hampstead Heath (the biggest open space in London with breath-taking views of the city below), to central parks like Hyde Park or St James’s Park, London’s parks are beautifully maintained. They are a free space for everyone to enjoy and relax in. London is the greenest city in the world for its size, so there you can get out and enjoy nature at its best on a sunny day.

With all this on offer, what are you waiting for?


Destination: the place to which you are going to

Sunbathe: to sit or lie in the sun

Seating: an area with chairs

Screenings: to show a film or television programme

Landmark: a building, monument or landscape that is easily seen and recognised

Varied: different types, sizes, etc.

Showcase: to exhibit, display.

Genuine: real, authentic.

Expanse: a wide continuous area of something.

This blog has been written at level B2. Practise your reading and listening by reading the blogs below.

About The London School of English

The London School of English has over 100 years of history teaching English and communication skills to adult learners. It is the joint #1 English language school in the UK according to the British Council inspections, the highest rated English language school in the world on Trustpilot, and the best value for money school according The English Language Gazette. 

Our practical, individualised approach enables our clients to learn effectively and make rapid progress. Courses include General English, Individual English training, Legal English, Business and Professional English, IELTS preparation and Academic English. We also offer bespoke business solutions for staff training and assessment. 

You can learn English with our expert trainers in our London centre at 15 Holland Park Gardens, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, or you can choose to study English online in groups or in individual classes. Contact us online or via phone +44 (0) 207 605 4142.

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