Summer in the City: Experience the best of the City of London - ‘Top 40 Things to Do’ in the birthplace of the capital’

The City of London has launched its first destination website dedicated to showcasing the City’s world class culture and heritage, its experiences, its food and drink, its places to stay and most importantly, its best kept secrets…

Looking for the best things to do in London this summer? Look no further than the City of London, an unrivalled destination for the ultimate London summer. Whether it’s a first timer visiting, a local worker in the area or a seasoned resident, the City is a one stop spot for all things art, culture, history, dining, and more.

For the first time, the City of London is sharing its top 40 unmissable experiences, boasting a lively programme of free and paid activities including everything from spectacular rooftop bars to unique family art trails and extraordinary historic tours.

Make the most of the exciting event programme, whether it’s raising a glass for charity at the City Beerfest in Guildhall Yard, celebrating Pride at the Duckie Summer Fete or packing a picnic for an evening at the Barbican’s outdoor cinema. Catch a lunchtime concert at Leadenhall Market’s Funky Friday sessions or watch the Grand Prix live on the big screens while you experience a racing simulation – the offerings are endless.

If you’re looking to wet your whistle, the City is home to London’s best rooftop bars and outdoor terraces. Enjoy exclusive summer experiences such as Bloom by Four Seasons Pop-Up Rooftop Bar or Pan Pacific’s new summer al fresco seafood and cocktail terrace. If you really want to impress, take your guests to the phenomenal Sky Garden.

There’s even more on offer to entertain the whole family. Whether you’re keeping the kids busy with much-loved mischief-maker Morph on the adventure art trail, or following along Tower Bridge’s Cat Trail inspired by the beloved books, you’ll find something the whole family will get involved in.

Whatever you’re looking to do, the City of London promises a fantastic day or night out for every season.

40 of the top things to do in the City of London this summer:

  1. Drink beer for a good cause at the City Beer Festival: Beerfest returns to Guildhall Yard on 6 July. 12:30pm – 9pm with all proceeds going to charity.
  2. Duckie Summer Fete: Duckie Summer Fete celebrates Pride in London on 1 July, produced by the City of London Corporation in partnership with Duckie.
  3. Summer Outdoor Cinema returns: Returning to the Barbican for summer evenings on 23 August – 3 September.
  4. Take in views of the City from rooftop terraces: get sky high views from the City’s highest public garden, The Sky Garden, with 10 million visitors to date; see 360 degree views from The Garden at 120; or discover a different view of St Paul’s Cathedral’s famous dome from the One New Change rooftop terrace. All are free to visit.
  5. Funky Fridays at Leadenhall Market: The Funky Friday music series hosts free lunchtime concerts every Friday from 2 – 23 June.
  6. Bloom by Four Seasons pop-up rooftop bar: A summer pop-up rooftop bar with unparalleled City views is open until 31 August.
  7. Watch the Grand Prix and drive like a champion: Watch the Grand Prix™ live on F1 Arcade’s huge TV screens with live commentary, and even jump into the driver’s seat of a racing simulation.
  8. Celebrate Pride Month with Queer 90s: Explore queer representation in 1990s cinema from films all around the world. Running from 6 – 29 June at The Barbican Cinemas.
  9. Immerse yourself in the Roman Londinium: Go back in time to the Roman Londinium in an interactive family day at London’s Roman Amphitheatre and London Mithraeum Bloomberg SPACE. Running on 25 and 26 August.
  10. Sip on cocktails and seafood on the terrace: Pan Pacific London launches new summer al fresco seafood and cocktail terrace in collaboration with St-Germain.
  11. Happy hour at Hithe + Seek: Happy hour in the city at Hithe + Seek offers 20% off the bill everyday between 5pm – 7pm all Summer.
  12. Classical Pride by ViiV Healthcare and GAY TIMES: Featuring the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and an LGBTQIA+ community chorus, the charity event is the first Classical Pride concert given by a major orchestra in Europe.
  13. Stroll through Sculpture in the City: The annual sculpture park that uses the urban realm as a rotating gallery space launches the 12th Edition in late June 2023.
  14. City Music Foundation lunch time concerts: Monthly lunchtime concerts in Livery Halls with music from local and international musicians.
  15. Marvel at London’s architecture: The City of London is a host destination for the London Festival of Architecture with over 40 events and installations across the City from 1 – 30 June. Many outdoor installations – and the City Secret Spaces trail – are in place until the end of August.
  16. Visit the Summer Food Market and watch major sports this season: Food chalets will be popping up in Paternoster Square showing major summer sporting events on the big screens from 29 June to 9 August.
  17. Take the kids on Morph’s Epic Adventure trail: A free public art trail, which is outdoors and accessible. It’s hosted by the Whizz-Kidz charity for young wheelchair users. Running from 18 June – 20 August.
  18. Aldgate Sounds: Free Aldgate Sounds live mini concerts returns from 12pm – 2pm every Tuesday in July and August at Aldgate Square.
  19. Top tipples: Visit the City’s exquisite rooftop bars including Florattica inspired by the east’s textile history, Sabine, with a close-up view of St Paul's Cathedral. or enjoy afternoon tea at Searcy’s at The Gherkin.
  20. Catch ground-breaking theatre at the Barbican: Critically acclaimed musical ‘A Strange Loop’ bursts onto the stage this summer for a limited season on 17 June – 9 September.
  21. Transport to the French Riviera above the London skyline: Wagtail is transporting guests to the French Riviera with Château Minuty Rosé.
  22. Andaz Pride: Andaz London is hosting vibrant events to celebrate Andaz Pride Week, launching 25 June.
  23. Family fun along the Tower Bridge Cat Trail: Inspired by ‘The Tower Bridge Cat’ award-winning books, complete the interactive trail through Tower Bridge.
  24. Devour a Summer Breeze Brunch at Eastway Brasserie: A new Summer Breeze Brunch experience every Saturday from 1pm – 3pm throughout the summer season.
  25. Sip on an Aperol Spritz on the Terrazza Terrace: Eataly’s summer terrace is back in partnership with Aperol Spritzeria all summer long.
  26. See an indoor English Garden: spectacular floral decorations inside the Royal Exchange throughout the summer.
  27. Explore the City’s oldest surviving buildings: St Bartholomew the Great Church is one of the oldest surviving buildings in the City of London with historical elements from every century over the last 900 years.
  28. War of the Worlds Immersive Experience: Experience a Martian invasion with this interactive, immersive theatre. Tickets ranging in price from £45 - £82.
  29. Champagne and seafood at Fortnum and Mason: The pop-up outdoor summer terrace is open Monday - Friday with a new champagne and seafood menu.
  30. Get to know the Square Mile – take a tour with an official City of London Guide. Explore the City and discover the history, modern architecture, hidden secrets to the Romans.
  31. Book a court for a game: The first ever Padel Tennis pop up court in the City is open at Tower Hill this summer.
  32. Immerse yourself in the world of Sir Christopher Wren: visit the new Wren at Work exhibition at Guildhall Art Gallery, and experience the intensity of the rebuilding of London and the new St Paul’s cathedral after the 1666 fire.
  33. Spend an afternoon at The Royal Exchange: Experience some of the finest food and drink with dining options to suit every occasion or shop at the many luxury heritage brands within The Royal Exchange.
  34. Hear the Ibiza Orchestra at Madison Rooftop bar: The Ibiza Orchestra returns again to celebrate summer on 21 July at Madison rooftop bar.
  35. Spend some time in a City Garden: take a break and relax in one of the City of London’s green spaces.
  36. Catch a show at the Barbican Theatre: Home to theatre and dance performances from world-leading companies including the Royal Shakespeare Company, Ballet Black and Pam Tanowitz.
  37. Take a guided tour of the Old Bailey: The Central Criminal Court of England and Wales, known as the 'Old Bailey', is opening its doors to the public for guided tours this summer.
  38. Find new pop-up installations across the City: The Herbalist’s Press, an urban herbalist garden installation in Holborn Circus; sit, play or wander at the Urban Playground in Fen Court; or contemplate Common Ground in Bow Churchyard.
  39. Escape to a tropical oasis in the heart of the city: Explore the hidden oasis at the Barbican Conservatory, home to exotic fish and over 1,500 species of tropical plants.
  40. Learn the history of Tower Bridge: For the history buffs, Tower Bridge is launching a brand new highlights audio tour on 15 June.

City of London Corporation Policy Chairman Chris Hayward said:

We are spotlighting the incredible breadth of culture, food, history, and leisure available to explore in the Square Mile.

“We are excited to share this so Londoners and international visitors can enjoy the wealth of the City’s activities and experiences over the summer.

“The Square Mile is the birthplace of London with an unrivalled history and heritage, first-class arts, and outstanding pubs, bars, restaurants, cafes, and hotels.

“It is a truly world-leading leisure destination and a unique place that showcases the best of the capital.”

The full website features over 250 businesses, events and attractions across the City this summer and beyond. For more information and to access the guide visit:


About the City of London Corporation

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK.

About Destination City:

The City of London Corporation’s flagship Destination City programme sets out a vision for the Square Mile to become a world-leading leisure destination for UK and global visitors, workers, and residents to enjoy.

Find out more about the Destination City Programme here:


Photo credit: Ben Broomfield