Attractions, theatres and other venues are currently closed due to the four-week national lockdown. But if you’re missing London or looking for fun things to do from home, don’t worry...
London venues are streaming live events and performances, and there are plenty of other ways to enjoy the capital from your sofa: watch live webcams, take virtual tours in museums and galleries, and join online classes.
Don't forget to plan ahead for your return to the capital after lockdown. London looks forward to welcoming you back soon!
Live London concerts, streamed shows and recorded performances
Online concerts and music festivals
- Get your jazz hands ready for some top acts, as the EFG London Jazz Festival hosts online events, interviews, workshops and more. 13-22 Nov
- Be transported to "the Deep South", during Facebook Live Nashville Nights concerts from Under the Bridge, based at Chelsea FC’s home Stamford Bridge. Various dates
- Help support London's smaller independent music venues with the Save Our Venues initiative. Concerts are free to stream but donations are encouraged. Various dates
- Catch up on Glitterbox Virtual Festivals, events and DJ sets from London-based label Defected Records.
- Learn more about musicians and other notable people from Brent, the Mayor's London Borough of Culture 2020, in a video series as part of Brent 2020 Unlocked.
- And dance along to a seven-hour celebration of reggae culture with Brent 2020's No Bass Like Home Online Festival. 15 Nov
Streamed shows and London theatre
- Head over to Official London Theatre's YouTube channel for your fix of theatre, behind-the-scenes videos and interviews...
- Hear a global cast read complete Shakespearean works every week with The Show Must Go Online. Wednesdays at 7pm
- Catch ballet or opera from Royal Opera House broadcast on BBC radio and television (UK only). Various dates
- Get to know dance companies with Digital Stage in Focus and view full-length dance films and performances on Sadler’s Wells' Digital Stage.
- Make use of free content on Globe Player, Shakespeare’s Globe’s online platform, which also offers recordings of its productions for a small fee.
- Watch a series of online performances with eight different artists ranging from contemporary dance to comedy in Oracles in Sepia. Various dates
Go online for your theatre fix and watch In Search of a White Identity, part of the new season of on demand theatre from The Actors Centre. 27 Nov-6 Dec
Paid-for live streamed performances
- Stream Royal Opera House shows such as Carmen and Macbeth, and The Royal Ballet: Back on Stage as part of the #OurHouseToYourHouse series (from £2.50). Various dates
- Sit back, relax and enjoy a streamed performance by the Cinematic Orchestra at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall, featuring exclusive new music (£13). 11 Dec
- Rent some of English National Ballet's most popular titles, including Akram Khan's Giselle, La Sylphide, Dust, and Le Corsaire with Ballet on Demand (from £4.99).
- Enjoy an eclectic range of music and watch Black Music & History of the East End as part of Spitalfields Music Festival at Home (£15). 5 Dec
- Watch Tony and Olivier Award-winning stage productions from London's West End on Stage2View (from £4.99).
- Tune into MelodyVR for an interactive live-streamed performance of Fontaines D.C. at the O2 Academy Brixton (£10). 23 Nov
- Get cosy for The Legend of Moby Dick Whittington by Sleeping Trees (from £5). 1-31 Dec
Online classes and workshops
Recipes and online cooking classes
- Brush up on your culinary skills with Borough Market’s online sessions on IGTV.
- Bring tastes from some of Carnaby’s top eateries into your home by recreating their favourite dishes: Crumbs and Doilies, The Detox Kitchen, Dishoom, Kaleido and Pizza Pilgrims are all involved.
- Gain new skills with recipes for beginners on The Cookery School at Little Portland Street’s blog.
- Experience Covent Garden cuisine from the comfort of your own home with easy-to-make recipes from Avobar, Frenchie and Frog by Adam Handling.
- Learn how to ice like a pro and create Insta-worthy biscuits as part of the Biscuiteers ice-olation challenge – things to do when you're bored never tasted so sweet!
- Pick up some simple and quick recipes to make in your kitchen throughout lockdown with Itsu's Fake Off [the professionals] live on Instagram.
Online art and craft workshops
- Enjoy the best of King’s Cross’ creatives from the comfort of your home, with live masterclasses, webinars and competitions as part of its #KX2U series.
- Feeling creative? Follow the V&A’s Facebook and Twitter accounts for weekly #LetsMakeWednesdays challenges.
- From costume making, to hosting your own show or getting crafty with puppets, the Barbican’s Read, Watch, Learn activities are perfect for adults and bored kids.
- Embrace your inner fashionista while brushing up on new techniques, as well as hearing from top designers, makers and curators, on the Fashion and Textile Museum’s blog.
Gardening tips and tricks
- Keep your green fingers active with top tips from Covent Garden's Head Gardener and horticulture expert Kenny Raybould.
Virtual Christmas things to do
- Watch the London Philharmonic Orchestra's free-to-view In the Stream of Life concerts, filmed live from the Southbank Centre. Until 30 Dec
- Enjoy more than 40 online events as part of Southbank Centre's Inside Out series and see big names from the worlds of music, comedy and literature. Many events are free, with others available for as little as £5. Until 30 Dec
- Kids can meet Father Christmas virtually at Santa’s Virtual Grotto. 30 Nov-9 Dec
- Get up close and personal (virtually) to the Barbican's stage with 12 Live from the Barbican performances. Settle down for acts from the likes of Sir Bryn Terfel, The Divine Comedy and Shabaka Hutchings. Until 13 Dec
- Grab the popcorn and get cosy on the sofa for a session of London films, whether it's the Christmas staple Love Actually or family favourites Mary Poppins and Paddington.
- Celebrate the end of 2020 and welcome in the new year by enjoying performances from popular artists and cultural performance groups with London’s New Year’s Day Parade live online. 1 Jan
Keeping fit and mindful
- Train like Anthony Joshua with Instagram sessions from his Chiltern Street boxing gym BXR London.
- Get world-class ballet training at home from English National Ballet's team of instructors with BalletActive.
- Take your pick from classes by Third Space's personal trainers and yoga teachers on IGTV.
- Catch up on JAB Boxing's boxing classes or punch your way to fitness with workouts from Kobox, on Instagram.
- No kit, no problem! Psycle is doing live workouts, including yoga and barre classes.
- Take time out to try free yoga and barre with FLY LDN.
- Find some inner calm during online meditation classes with daily sessions from Inner Space.
- Join a five-minute meditation with National Gallery, based on artist Odilon Redon’s painting Ophelia Among the Flowers.
- Soothe your soul with uplifting poetry from the National Poetry Library.
- Get the sweat flowing with Cirq’s 15-minute HIIT sessions.
- Discover the virtual Love Lunch programme, which is filled with free wellbeing events from local businesses in London Bridge. Various dates
Live webcams of London
Keep watch on some of London’s top attractions with these webcams of London.
London virtual tours
Museum and gallery virtual tours
- Visit the National Gallery without leaving the house – there are hundreds of paintings to explore, so put the kettle on and get ready for hours of exploration.
- Step inside the beating heart of the UK government as you go behind the scenes on a virtual tour of the Houses of Parliament, including the famous House of Commons Chamber.
- Travel through time as you learn more about the objects that shaped history with the British Museum’s virtual tour.
- Get expert takes on exhibits and delve into the stories hidden within the Royal Museums Greenwich through videos, talks and archived material. Or tune in to live Facebook talks with curators and special guests every Thursday.
- Ride the underground Mail Rail, virtually, with The Postal Museum’s narrated 10-minute video.
- Experience a mix of digital content from various art forms, regularly shared by the Barbican's Read, Watch & Listen programme.
- See animal exhibits, Hope the whale and many other natural wonders of the Natural History Museum using the Google Arts & Culture tour.
- Take a virtual tour of "Britain’s Sistine Chapel" and marvel at the Baroque interiors of the Painted Hall at the Old Royal Naval College.
Sightseeing in London
- It doesn’t come much more iconic than a tour of the Tower of London with a Beefeater – and you can now do it from home with a fact-filled video tour.
- Step inside the regal walls of Buckingham Palace on a virtual tour of the Throne Room.
- Strap yourself into your favourite armchair and explore London with video installments of Twizy Tours' tours, all filmed from its quirky electric cars.
- Take a high-speed trip along the Thames with Thames Rockets’ 360-degree virtual RIB ride.
- Be amazed by the art deco interiors of Eltham Palace or explore its gardens on Google Arts & Culture virtual tours.
- See the Grave of the Unknown Warrior and the Coronation Chair on a virtual tour of Westminster Abbey, one of London's most iconic places of worship.
- Be guided around London with Golden Tours' virtual experiences of the capital.
- Check out the likes of The Beatles’ Abbey Road crossing and pretty Little Venice without moving from your spot with British Tours 360 images.
- Take in the tranquility of Kew Gardens with a video tour of the famous grounds, including its sparkling glasshouses.
- Time to walk the line... Greenwich’s art walkway, The Line, can now be explored online on a virtual interactive tour.
- Navigate around top sights on a 360-degree virtual tour of London attractions.
Online tour guides
- Keep an eye out for London Walks' donation-only virtual tours. Other virtual tours are available for a small fee.
- Delve into the history of some of London's much-loved areas with Alex Lacey's daily #GlobalTeaBreak on Instagram Live.
- Follow Dani the Guide for quirky London history, its people and lesser-known stories.
- Find out more about London areas, sights and its notable people with Guide Emily.
- Join The Association Of Professional Tour Guides (APTG) for regular London-themed broadcasts on YouTube.
- Explore the capital's best bits from the comfort of your own home with Footprints of London virtual walking tours. Various dates
More things to do at home
Virtual events in London
- Experience the Royal Docks' festival of culture and creativity, Join the Docks, in a new way this year. Its autumn programme promises to be full of online and socially distanced events and activities from artists and groups in the local area. Until 15 Dec
- Take part in a virtual whodunit with District Theatre's Murder on the 28th Floor. 2 Nov-29 Jan
- Join Dance Umbrella for workshops, debates, discussions and a party online. 23-27 Nov
- Tune in to Multilingual London and celebrate the languages of London through songs, poetry, stories and books by the city's writers. 28 Nov
- Listen to conversations with architects, designers, urbanists and citizens during the Open House Worldwide festival. 14-15 Nov
- Find more virtual events with our guide to what's on each weekend in London.
London virtual exhibitions
- Calling all Harry Potter fans... Magic, myths and witchcraft combine in an online version of the British Library’s Harry Potter: A History of Magic exhibition.
- Join the curators of the Andy Warhol exhibition at Tate Modern, as they give a room-by-room tour of the pop artist's life and works.
- Explore the monochrome works of Aubrey Beardsley at Tate Britain, without even setting foot outside.
- See the world's longest public artwork online via a Google Arts & Culture tour of Illuminated River, taking in four of London's bridges at night. Or join tour guide Katie Wignall of Look Up London on a virtual guided tour of the installation.
- Delve into some of Picasso's most intriguing works on a virtual tour of the Royal Academy of Arts' exhibition Picasso and Paper.
- Become inspired by five pioneering black British women, who have become leaders in their fields, with Stories of Black Leadership II: Breaking Barriers from the Black Cultural Archives.
- If you're not yet able to visit the Florence Nightingale Museum’s latest exhibition, take a look at the online guide instead to learn more about “The Lady with the Lamp”.
- Step back to 1851, when Hyde Park hosted The Great Exhibition. Learn all about the industrial age with a virtual tour of this epic event housed in the “Crystal Palace”.
- Watch art being created in the moment by live streaming monthly quick-fire commissions as part of Somerset House's I Should be Doing Something Else Right Now series.
- Catch a glimpse of life in the UK during lockdown as The National Portrait Gallery hosts Hold Still.
Free online quizzes and challenges
- Assemble a team for a quiz about Tower Bridge, put together by a team of expert guides and historians.
- Don your thinking caps as quizmasters including Dame Helen Mirren and Sir Lenny Henry host the National Theatre at Home Quiz.
- Enjoy a quiz with a difference, as Sink the Pink’s outlandish LGBT+ quiz night moves to IGTV with its usual mix of cabaret, drag and cocktails.
- Know your Mozart from your Monteverdi? Test your classical music knowledge each Tuesday with the London Symphony Orchestra’s quiz on Instagram Stories. Tuesdays
- Create a new masterpiece to share each day with the #RADailyDoodle on Twitter, set by the Royal Academy.
London podcasts and talks
- Go behind the scenes and explore the British Museum during its regular podcast.
- Learn fun facts about the some of London's favourite parks and their inhabitants, from the St James’s Park pelicans and tiny bugs to Trooping the Colour, with the Royal Parks Podcast.
- Enjoy a fresh perspective on identity from young Londoners in the VENT Weekly podcast as part of Brent 2020, London Borough of Culture, in collaboration with VICE UK.
- Delve into lesser-known stories of art icons and movements with Tate's regular Walks of Art podcasts.
- Learn about the history of one of London's most famous landmarks with Tower Bridge podcasts.
- Or join more City of London attractions for podcasts, talks and weekly round-ups as part of the Our City Together season of cultural activities.
- Mingle with thinkers, artists and performers with Southbank Centre’s regular podcasts.
- Gain insight from the world’s top playwrights in regular Royal Court Playwright’s Podcasts, including the co-writer of hit BBC3 series Normal People, Alice Birch.
- Join Stephen Fry and the Barbican for a look at music, art, mental health and a combination of all three with regular The Art of Change podcasts.
- Hear from world leaders and thinkers in the fields of science, engineering, health and business with Imperial College London's monthly podcast.
- Learn more about the centre of government, from its furniture to sculptures, with free online talks from the Houses of Parliament.
- Explore further into the British Library’s collections with talks and discussions on its YouTube channel.
- Work through the history of the British Army, its conflicts and little-known stories with the National Army Museum’s live talks. Various dates
- Join Imperial War Museum's new innovation hub, IWM Institute, for debates, podcasts, live events and more to understand conflict related issues. From 17 Nov
- Listen to conversations with members of the Royal Docks' London community in Dock Tales, part of Join The Docks 2020. 30 Nov
- Hear thought-provoking conversations with Kevin Le Gendre in ARTicle 10: Conversations In The Era Of Black Lives Matter. 17-19 Nov
London TV and movie nights
- Snuggle up to free short films from BFI Player.
- Relive classic London films from your collection, whether rom-com Notting Hill, thrill-a-minute James Bond or post-apocalyptic horror 28 Days Later.
- Tune in to BBC Four and watch Battersea Arts Centre’s original musical film, Frankenstein: How to Make a Monster, as part of BBC Art's Culture in Quarantine.
Things to do at home with kids
Creative kids activities from home
- Fancy bringing a touch of magic to your home? Have a go at film-making, costume design and more with Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter.
- Experience the magic of Disney's West End shows with a range of fun crafts for kids, from mask-making for the Lion King to creating Mary Poppins storyboards.
- Step into the Georgian era or the 1960s with fun tasks based around George Frideric Handel and Jimi Hendrix at Handel & Hendrix in London.
- Keep the kids' art skills as sharp as ever while at home with Tate's range of activities, from games to online and offline resources.
- Get creative with book-themed fun with the British Library, from drawing The Gruffalo to making a tiny book.
- Sadler’s Wells Digital Stage is hosting regular dance workshops for children and over-60s.
- Take part in an interactive and sensory online show with your under-fives via the Barbican's Akin, We Cover the Universe. 10-20 Dec
Fun learning ideas
- Enjoy visiting the City of London from home, with everything from virtual exhibitions to activities for all ages.
- Be transported to another world with learning resources created by scientists and astronomers from the Royal Observatory.
- Mix art, science, coding and more with Royal Museums Greenwich's Cabin Fever: Maritime Home Learning.
- Make the most of transport-inspired activities, quizzes, games and learning resources for children from the London Transport Museum.
- Welcome to the Museum of Fundon... Take part in the Museum of London's family activities, from a Great Fire of London game and Roundhouse quiz, to puppetry.
- Stage a royal coronation, make your own secret sign language and play navigation games online with Westminster Abbey.
- Delve into history with the Imperial War Museums' new digital programme, Adventures in History, including virtual tours, collections and stories online. Or join the Family Mission every Friday at 11am on the museums' Twitter and Facebook channels, for challenges and fun activities.
Behind the scenes at London attractions
- Watch as the zookeepers reveal behind-the-scenes footage in regular ZSL London zoo videos.
- Enjoy a look at the SEA LIFE London Aquarium with live streams taken by its team.
If you're chatting to friends and family online, you can experience London from home with stunning Zoom virtual backgrounds showing the best of the city.
Looking for more inspiration?
Make sure to head to Visit London’s IGTV to discover our London Stories video series, which shines a light on the people who make up the very fabric of the capital.