Best Things to Do in London at Night for Families


Wondering our favorite things to do in London at night for families? The sun may go down, but the fun in London doesn’t have to end. 

If you’re traveling with children old enough to enjoy after-dark activities, there’s a lot you can do around the city at night. With a little planning, you can enjoy the nightlife while building memories with the little ones you love most.

What to Do In London at Night for Families:


Ceremony of the Keys

Every night for more than 700 years, the Chief Yeoman Warder has locked up the Tower of London with a ceremonious event designed to ensure the keys are kept safe overnight. Today, you can watch the event up close by securing tickets well in advance. And we do mean in advance because tickets are often claimed a year or more out. The good news is they’re free.

Covent Garden

Head to Covent Garden for an evening of lively street performances. This area is known for its theatres and other cultural attractions, and the street performers are part of the charm. You’ll also find a variety of museums and shops to browse in addition to restaurants and cafes.

You can check the current events and live performances online. That may help you determine the best night of your trip to visit Covent Garden.

Dinner at Benihana

One of the most fun in London at night with families, Benihana is a Japanese restaurant known for its entertaining art of tableside cooking. The intricate knifework and bursts of flames turn into a theatrical performance that even young children often find mesmerizing. That may sound dangerous, but rest assured, you’re a safe distance away even if it feels like everything is happening right under your nose.

The Benihana Piccadilly location is on Sackville Street. There are a variety of restaurants and stores in the area, including:

  • Royal Academy of Arts
  • Hatchards Book Store
  • Burlington Arcade

Free Tours by Foot

If you’re up for a scenic walk after dark, Free Tours by Foot offers some family-friendly options that won’t cost you a dime, including:

  • River Thames Tour
  • Harry Potter Films Locations Tour
  • Twilight River Walk
  • Royal London Tour
  • Dark Side of London Ghost Tour

Check out their calendar and book your tours online if this interests your family.

King’s Cross

This region of London runs alongside a canal and is nestled between King’s Cross and St. Pancras rail stations. It’s known for as a hub for fashion and food, and it has some open space for outdoor recreation as well as interactive fountains that will entertain every member of the family.

Take in a movie at the Everyman Cinema followed by dinner at one of the area’s family-friendly restaurants for a fun thing to do in London at night for families. Many of those restaurants have outdoor terraces that allow your family to enjoy the lights, fresh air, and enticing aromas from surrounding venues.

King’s Cross lights up for Christmas every year. You may find outdoor events and live entertainment at other times of the year as well.

Ride the London Eye

You can ride the London Eye past dark in any season except summer. In those warmer months, the last ride will occur before the sun sets. You can buy single-attraction tickets online or grab a deal by bundling the London Eye with a river cruise or other attractions.

You’ll find the London Eye on the southern banks of the River Thames. It’s just a few minutes from the London Dungeon walking, which is another after-dark experience that you may enjoy with older children or teenagers. It’s a revolving observation wheel that delivers spectacular views of the city whether you ride day or night.

Southbank Centre

There’s always something happening after dark in Southbank Centre. There are special events and outdoor activities offered throughout the year. You can check the current events online, planning the best night to visit during your trip.

This area is packed with restaurants, cafes, galleries, and a popular food market.  Some of the most popular attractions include:

  • Royal Festival Hall
  • Queen Elizabeth Hall
  • National Poetry Library
  • Hayward Gallery

You can get to Southbank Centre on the tube or with private transportation.

Theatre Shows

There are always a variety of theatrical performances happening around London, and many are kid friendly. Select from classics like Cinderella and fresh titles filled with loveable characters. You can make an evening of it by sitting down for a nice dinner in a restaurant close to the venue and then strolling the streets to browse local shops and perhaps take in a street performance or two.

There are many theatre venues in Covent Garden, and you may want to throw in a visit to the Royal Opera House if that suits the interests of your family. Even more theatres are located throughout London’s west end.

What are your favorite things to do in London at night for families? Share your experiences and ideas to help other families plan their after-dark adventures.

Related Articles: