Whether you’re ringing in a major milestone, want a fun part for the kids, or simply want to enjoy an impromptu birthday celebration, London is the perfect place to mark the big day. With so much to see and do all over the city, it’s not hard to find the perfect way to celebrate.
If you’re planning a big bash for someone special, or fancy a laid back day in the city to mark the occasion, it’s worth taking advantage of special deals with Montcalm Hotels by booking a relaxing overnight or weekend stay, to help you enjoy the special day in style.
Read on for some great suggestions on how to celebrate a birthday in London, for every age.
Indulge in afternoon tea
Whatever your age, a birthday needs cake, and there’s no better way to indulge in a delicious cake and other treats than with a sumptuous afternoon tea. This classic tradition involves plenty of tasty delights, including cakes, cookies, savoury sandwiches and pastries, as well as plenty to wash it all down with.
While the typical afternoon tea set up will usually include delicious, warm scones filled with cream and jam, dainty cakes and freshly made sandwiches, you’ll also find plenty of more creative variations on the classic, too. Check out restaurants near Finsbury Square for plenty of stylish spots near the Montcalm Royal London (and some inside the hotel!) if you’d like something impromptu to start a special birthday.
For something a little more unique, opt for a themed afternoon tea experience instead. You’ll find something for everyone in London, from Harry Potter or Roald Dahl experiences that are perfect for a children’s birthday party, to fashion themed or adult flavoured versions, that are ideal for a grown-up celebration.
Get crafty at a fun workshop
If you like the idea of learning something new to ring in a new year, London has plenty of fun, inspiring workshops taking place all year round. Choose everything from a dance class to help you strut your stuff like Queen Bey, to a workshop where you can learn how to make your own rum.
Check out Drink Shop Do in Islington, a short ride away from Liverpool Street Station. The innovative events space offers up a fun-packed calendar of activities and classes, where you can learn to make a Frida Kahlo-inspired flower pot, try out some life drawing, make a tote bag, or even some naughty nipple tassels.
Many of London’s top museums and galleries will also offer a variety of fun workshops, often themed around a current exhibition or seasonal event. When you’re staying in hotels near Finsbury Square London, the nearby Barbican Centre is the perfect place to discover a variety of cultural classes and workshops, based on arts, food and science.
Or for something for younger visitors to the city, check out the Victoria and Albery Museum of Childhood, in nearby Bethnal Green. Dedicated to the history of childhood and play across different cultures, the museum often puts on a variety of creative activities that are perfect for kids.
Hit the dance floor
London is the ideal place to strut your stuff on the dance floor, with some of the most iconic clubs in the city to choose from. If you’re staying in one of the Montcalm Hotels, chances are you won't be too far from the trendy neighbourhood of Shoreditch, a short distance away from the Royal London House. Home to fantastic clubs including XOYO and Queen of Hoxton, you’re unlikely to ever have a dull night celebrating.
The city also has plenty of other surprising gems to help you get your birthday groove on, too. If a night out in a club doesn’t quite tickle your fancy, why not dance amongst impressive works of art instead? Keep an eye out for late-night events at major galleries including the Tate Britain and the Natural History Museum, which often hold late-night silent discos inside their prestigious spaces.
And if you’d rather celebrate without worrying how you’ll feel on the morning after, look out for Morning Gloryville’s innovative sober morning raves, where you can enjoy a fresh juice to power you up, before dancing through the dawn.
Take in a West End production
When you’re wondering how to treat someone to a special gifted experience in London, tickets to a brilliant West End play or musical are often a great way to impress. There are plenty of theatres around the city to choose from, with dozens of shows every day.
Take your pick from award-winning musicals such as The Lion King or Wicked, perfect for anyone who loves an impressive, inspiring show with great sing-along tunes, fantastic drama with some of today’s leading stars, or check out some of the city’s smaller theatres for up and coming artists and more surprising gems.
If you’re planning to enjoy a show as part of a birthday celebration, it’s worth booking tickets well in advance to make sure that you can choose the best seats for the day. With evening performances often ending late, make the day even more memorable with a stylish stay at one of the Montcalm Hotels.
Escape to nature
While London might be a teeming metropolis, there are plenty of spots to escape from it all, without needing to venture too far out of the city. With dozens of impressive parks and reserves all over the city, they can often be the perfect setting for a laidback birthday picnic, or a romantic walk when you’re celebrating with someone special. Choose from beautiful gardens, filled with exotic blooms and plants from around the world, or open, rambling spaces that provide a welcome breath of fresh air from the busy pace of city life.
For something truly magical, head to Richmond Park, a designated National Nature Reserve and home to over 600 red and fallow deer, who freely roam across the grassland. Just remember that they are wild animals, and keep a generous distance when trying to get that perfect shot.
Discover the city’s cultural highlights
For keen fans of the arts, a cultural day out in London can easily be a perfect birthday treat. Whether you love contemporary art or the classics, the city has a plethora of cultural institutions to explore. With many of them offering free entry to major collections, they’re also a great option if you’re looking for a low-cost birthday outing.
If you’re staying at the Montcalm Royal London House, one of the most popular cultural spaces to get to in the city has to be the Tate Modern. A short Tube ride away near the south bank of the river, you’ll find a huge variety of things to see and do, from film screenings and live dance performances to a diverse collection of art and interactive events. To make the day extra special, head to the rooftop café where you can enjoy spectacular views over the city with a delicious meal or snack.
Enjoy a night of live music
In case you’re planning to celebrate a birthday in the city with a music lover, a night out at a live concert after a meal at one of the restaurants near Finsbury Square never disappoints. Music fans of all genres will find something to embrace in London, from beautiful classical performances to the biggest headline acts in pop and rock, and anything in between.
The city has some incredible venues where you’ll often find top acts performing. Check out the city’s major venues such as the Wembley SSE Arena and O2 Arena, where international stars such as Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande and others will regularly perform.
For somewhere with a little more ambience, try the Royal Albert Hall. The illustrious 19th century always offers an incredible experience, not least because of the stunning architecture and fantastic acoustics inside.
For music fans with more contemporary tastes, you’ll also find hundreds of great concert venues all across the city, where you can enjoy small, intimate performances, to livelier gigs. Shows in London, whatever the size, often tend to sell out quickly, so if you’re planning to buy tickets as a birthday present, it’s always a good idea to book well ahead to avoid disappointment.
Check out the city’s culinary delights
For a major birthday, a night out at a delicious meal has to be one of the best ways to mark the occasion. And with plenty of great food to discover all over London, the only problem you’ll have is trying to choose where to go.
Start the celebrations early with a great brunch experience. You’ll find some delicious brunch options at the Montcalm’s own restaurants, with everything from plenty of Prosecco to your favourite breakfast treats. Or if you’re in the mood for some serious indulgence, head to BIRD, for their crispy fried chicken, served up American-style with homemade waffles and lashings of maple syrup.
For a gourmet experience later in the evening, take your pick from some incredible Michelin-starred restaurants and bistros around the city, or discover something new in one of the many smaller independent spaces around London.
Or for an experience to remember, keep an eye out for more exclusive pop up events and dinner club experiences, where you’ll find a delicious themed meal served up in all kinds of novel places, from disused Tube trains to underground vaults. As well as serving up delicious food, these can often provide a much more intimate experience, with the chance to make new friends and discover something new in the city.
Find the perfect place to play
If a day at the museum or a fancy dinner doesn’t sound like a great birthday in the city, don’t worry. For those who have more energy they know what to do with it, London has some incredible places where you can play and have fun, however old you are.
For kids, check out some of the great adventure playgrounds and indoor play spaces around the city. Many major parks feature exceptional play areas with a variety of creative toys and equipment, from climbing frames to epic swings and slides. The most impressive of them all has to be the ArcelorMittal Orbit at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Measuring an unbelievable 178 metres tall, with 12 twists, turns and corkscrews, this is the world’s tallest and longest tunnel slide. For anyone over eight years old and with a love for adrenaline, this is the perfect birthday surprise.
Play doesn’t have to be quite so hair-raising though – for those who’d love to celebrate a birthday with a chilled out gathering with friends, the city has a growing number of bars and cafés stocked with classic board games, vintage arcade games, ping pong and more, where you can enjoy a nostalgic and relaxing night of fun.
Enjoy a change of perspective
When you need to find an impressive birthday gift for a relative, significant other or parent, none of the usual presents will do. If it’s time to pull out all the stops and enjoy London from a whole new perspective.
For those who love heights, head up into the clouds with some extra-special experiences in the city. The London Eye is the perfect place to enjoy the impressive sights from up high – and you can even book your own private capsule, complete with delicious cake, as a special celebratory ride.
Or take in the dazzling views from one of the city’s skyscraper bars and restaurants, where you’ll be served delicious food and drink, alongside some of the dazzling views over the city.
If heights aren’t your thing, then try a change of perspective by heading off the beaten path. Skip the busy city roads for a calming and beautiful cruise along the River Thames, where you can take in the scenic sights while enjoying a glass of champagne. For something a little more private and intimate, you can even book a private boat for a special ride along the city’s waterways, for a truly tranquil and romantic celebration.
When is your birthday? Come celebrate with us!