July 3rd, 2014 by Alicia Drewnicki

8 Hot Summer Date Ideas in London

When temperatures in London are soaring, you should make the most of it! From rooftop bars to ice cream parlours and picnics in the park; here are 8 great summer date ideas in London.

1) Go to an Outdoor Concert
There are so many great outdoor concerts and festivals to look out for in London from July onwards. Be sure to check out Kew the Music festival in Kew Gardens, Wireless Festival at Finsbury Park and British Summer Time Hyde Park, which is a seven night live music extravaganza at Hyde Park. Other ones to watch out for are Somerset House Summer Series, Lovebox at Victoria Park and South West Four on Clapham Common.

2) Meet for an Ice Cream
Hot days and ice cream go together like champagne and caviar; it just works. If you’ve got a craving for gelato, head to Oddono’s in South Kensington which has the company motto: ‘Life’s too short to eat bad ice cream.’ The company pride themselves on the quality of their ingredients and the owner bases his flavours on his grandmother’s recipes, so you know you’re getting the ‘real deal’. There are over 130 flavours to choose from including: peanut butter, apricot sorbet, cookies and cream, pistachio and salted caramel. Another great option that many claim to be the best ice cream parlour in London is Gelupo in Soho. Flavours include all sorts of weird and wonderful creations such as ricotta chocolate with black pepper, avocado, lemon curd and mint green tea!

3) Go to an Outdoor Movie Screening
There are so many cool places to watch a film in the fresh air. Look out for The Rooftop Film Club at three venues (Kensington Roof Gardens, Queen of Hoxton in Shoreditch and the Bussey Building in Peckham Rye). Hot Tub Cinema is another unique choice – watch a movie whilst you’re in water! There are twenty hot tubs available to hire on their screening nights. Another popular choice is The Luna Cinema which screens movies at historic locations such as Hampton Court Palace. Somerset House is another ideal date option if you’re after gorgeous rooftop views.

4) Have Cocktails at a Rooftop Bar
If fun in the sun is the aim of the game, then you really can’t beat drinking refreshing cocktails from a swanky rooftop bar! Kensington Roof Gardens is an excellent choice, as is the luxurious Radio Rooftop Bar at ME Hotel. Another great option to check out is Sushisamba at the top of the Heron Tower or Coq d’Argent.

5) Picnic in the Park
London is blessed with eight stunning royal parks as well as lots of other gardens and open spaces. Take your pick from the perfect sunset watching spot of Hampstead Heath to the iconic Hyde Park, Regent’s Park or the vast and beautiful Richmond Park. The opportunities are endless depending on which part of London you happen to be in, so pack some strawberries, champagne, sandwiches and cakes and get ready for a romantic afternoon.

6) Go for a Swim
Fancy a dip? Well then why not head to the largest open-air fresh water swimming pool in the whole of the UK? Tooting Bec lido is a gigantic 100 yards long and 33 yards wide. There’s a cafe, shower facilities and changing rooms, and the area is close to Tooting Commons, so if it’s a nice day, why not go for a sunbathe after your swim?

7) Beer Garden Hopping
Sometimes the best afternoons are spent in the fresh air with an ice cold drink and great conversation. Luckily London has some of the best beer gardens in the whole of the UK, so get ready to explore them! Grand Union in Brixton is one of the biggest beer gardens in London and as well as benches, it has four really cool tree houses. Another classic option, especially popular on a Sunday is The Ship in Wandsworth. A chilled out East London option is Vibe Bar on Brick Lane.

8) Have a BBQ
Summer time is all about good BBQ food and there are so many options in London! For outdoor tasting, why not head to Broadway market in East London, which is especially good on a Saturday. Another great option is Brick Lane market on a Sunday. If you don’t mind being indoors, but are just craving that authentic BBQ taste, go to one of the many Bodean’s in London or the Big Easy Bar.B.Q Crabshack in Covent Garden or Kings Road. If you’re confident in your own culinary skills, why not grab some meat from Borough Market and then impress your date with your own barbecue feast?

So next time you’re planning a date with someone who is as hot as the forecast, pick one of these ideas and it’s guaranteed to be a scorcher!

Image via Gabriel Li on Flickr

Alicia Drewnicki is a travel, fashion and lifestyle writer living in London. She's super interested in body language, exploring the world and writing about it all!

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