London has some strange traditions, perhaps none more so than Bonfire Night (5 Nov). The evening marks the failed attempt by Guy Fawkes and his comrades to kill King James I and blow up the Houses of Parliament. To celebrate, effigies of Fawkes are burnt and fireworks displays take place across the capital, from Alexandra Palace (1-2 Nov) to Battersea Park (2 Nov). IF you're around on 5 November, head to a high spot in the city, such as Primrose Hill, to see people have their own fireworks in their gardens.
Start your engines! If you love cars, whether vintage or futuristic ones, head to Regent Street Motor Show. To tie in with Regent Street’s celebrations for its 200th anniversary, the area replaces regular traffic with classic cars. Hop in, see characters in period costumes and get your picture taken, then learn more
about models, such as zero-emission electric ones and low-carbon drive trains – this is a fun family day out.
England’s women’s football team is poised for a record-breaking attendance for their friendly against German at Wembley Stadium. More than 80,000 fans are expected to attend and a full house is likely – which represents an incredible increase in interest in the women’s game. This was highlighted in the 2019 FIFA women’s World Cup in France, which England were beaten in the semi finals by eventual champions USA.
Rivalries are renewed on the dazzling tennis courts at The O2, where the Nitto ATP Finals see the world’s top eight men, in singles and doubles, in a thrilling eight-day tournament. Tennis fans should be delighted that already (at time of research) the three most successful men’s tennis champions, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Novak Djolovic, have all booked their places. Look out for the young Greek star Stefanos Tsitsipas, qualified for the first time this year, who might just rock the boat!
21 November–5 January
Ice skating, a giant Ferris wheel and circus acts – the hugely popular family-friendly Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is free to enter, and marks the start of the fun winter season. The fair includes the world’s tallest portable observation wheel and the Magical Ice Kingdom, which is set in sub-zero temperatures and features striking ice sculptures.
As the city celebrates Thanksgiving, it’s a great time to learn more about our special relationship with America. Superb steakhouse Smith & Wollensky is serving the traditional dinner of turkey, pumpkin pie and Oreo cheesecake, and Christopher’s has rib-eye steak and chocolate pecan pie. The Nordic Bar is having an NFL Thanksgiving party – watch as the Detroit Lions take on the Chicago Bears, a strong tradition in the U.S. Finally, St Paul’s Cathedral holds its annual service, which is open to all and is attended by the U.S. Ambassador.
29 November–1 December
For souvenirs with a difference, head to the annual London Illustration Fair in OXO Tower. Founded by two schoolfriends, it captures the creativity of the capital through its emerging artists, with some stunning pieces for sale. You can meet the artists and buy your own, unique piece to take home as a great souvenr.
If you love house, techno and hip hop, grab a ticket for dance duo The Chemical Brothers at The O2. Following their slot at Glastonbury this summer, this is their biggest headline show ever. Expect hits from their new album, No Geography, plus club classics accompanied by state-of-the-art visuals. www.theo2.co.uk