The summer nights in London often last until nine or 10 pm and that’s ideal for those who are looking to enjoy some of the city’s finer points after an early dinner. These are some of the best things to check out in the English capital during the evenings.

1. The London Zoo

(photo by mielnik)

The London Zoo offers an adults-only theme every Friday in July as the gates are opened after hours to those who are 18 years of age and older. The nights are quite celebratory as they feature a wonderfulPimms bar, an ale tent, an international food festival, and a champagne tent.

You’ll be able to visit all of the popular animals such as the penguins, lions, owls, giraffes, and mongoose. The carnival atmosphere also features a cabaret, silent disco, and face-painting. The zoo stays open up until 10 o’clock but the animals go to bed at 9.

2. Somerset House

(photo by vulture labs)

Somerset House’s grand courtyard was constructed way back in the year 1547 by the Duke of Somerset, Edward Seymour. It’s an ideal place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Between July 27th and August 7th the courtyard will be turned into a huge open-air movie theatre.

It will feature a series of contemporary and classic films, with a different one being screened each night. Some of the movies are ‘Thelma & Louise,’ ‘The Big Blue’ and the British premier of ‘The Skin I Live In’. You’ll also be able to get some excellent views of the Thames River from the terrace at Somerset House while you enjoy a drink before or after the film.

3. The Chelsea Physic Garden

(photo by thepurplepassport)

Founded in 1673, this is the oldest botanic garden in London. It was started by the Society of Apothecaries as a place where their apprentices would be able to grow medicinal plants and study them. The 3.5-acre site in the Chelsea district is known as London’s Secret Garden. The garden features a wide variety of ferns, plants, flowers and herbs from all four corners of the world.

There are many examples of medicinal plants as well as a few poisonous ones. The garden is also educational and one of the most popular features is a series of late-night talks that take place each Wednesday between June 29th and Aug. 31st. The talks deal with various topics about trees and ticketsget you into the garden as well as the Tangerine Dream Cafe.

4. The Science Museum

(photo by darlo2009)

If the skies open up and the rain starts pouring down, you can still have a good night out indoors at theScience Museum. Late-night visits are for adults only and you can check out the many interesting exhibits while enjoying a glass of wine. The museum features numerous interactive exhibitions and displays where visitors can educate themselves at the same time as being entertained.

The late-night openings for adults take place on the last Wednesday of each month. They typically feature a disc jockey in the museum’s entrance hall, and as well as café dining. Entry is free so make sure you get there early as the events are quite popular.

5. The Globe Theatre

(photo by danielvoyager)

This popular theatre sits in the trendy South Bank area of London on the site of the original playhouse. It’s popular for recreating the experience of visiting the theatre during Elizabethan times. The crowds love the idea of viewing theatre productions in the open-air. You can get as close to the stage as possible by standing in the theater’s pit or you can check out the entertainment from one of the benches.


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