Whether you’re an American who happens to find themselves on the other side of the world, or simply wanting to get out of the office and in on the fun of the 4th of July celebrations, London is most certainly a great place to be this Independence Day.
So if you’re looking for a chilled out evening with friends, a wild night out on the town, or simply a picnic in the park, here are six cool things I found to do in London this weekend.
Strongroom Bar American Beer Festival
The Strongroom Bar in Shoreditch is often considered to be a quaint haven away from the hustle and bustle of the centre of London. With its large, ivy-clad courtyard and large, cosy seating, this is the perfect city bar to go and chill out with some friends.
To celebrate the 4th of July, they’ve decided to have an entire day dedicated to the finest American beers on the market from the best breweries including: Brooklyn, Flying Dog, Founders, Sierra Nevada, Anchor and Rogue.
Not only will there be beer, but you’ll also be treated to a Texas BBQ grill, live blues music and a bucking bronco. Opening at 12pm, the live music commences at 3pm and the bar will be open right up to 2am, making the Strongroom Bar the ideal place for you to soak up the atmosphere this Independence Day.
Free admission all day.
Independence Day Paint Night Special
If you’re looking for something totally different to do this 4th of July, look no further than this event in the Trafalgar Hotel by PopUp Painting. With no experience necessary and all equipment provided, you will learn how to paint in the pop-art style of Peter Max who created this iconic image of the Statue of Liberty.
You can paint any image you wish, and the good people at PopUp Painting will give you as much guidance as they can, and if you find yourself struggling, the hotel bar is there to lend a hand! Starting at 7:30pm, you can be sure that this will be an evening full of chatter and laughs.
Tickets are £35 and include a glass of prosecco; available here.
4th of July Boat Party
Amor Boat Parties are hosting their very own take on the 4th of July in the form of a massive boat party on the Thames. Departing from Festival Pier next to the London Eye at 8pm, the boat will cruise along the Thames until midnight where passengers will disembark before heading to the Lightbox for an afterparty until 6am.
Not one for the faint-hearted, this will be a serious night of music and dancing, with a mixture of DJs and genres on each deck. Amor will be going all-out USA for this party with hot dogs, cream soda and sloe gin cocktails, and have a special surprise American guest performing on the night. Tickets are sure to sell-out so grab them while you can!
Tickets from £10-£20 excluding booking fee and can be bought here.
Silent Disco at The Shard
Silent discos have become all the rage recently, and where better to dance the night away than in the EU’s tallest building? Standing at 1,016 ft high and spanning 95 stories, The Shard is the perfect place to lose yourself in the music whilst gazing out across the city.
Three DJs will battle it out until 2am, playing an array of pop, rock and party classics, so you can switch between the channels on your headphones, choosing from the latest chart toppers, indie anthems and iconic 80s power ballads! One of the best things about silent discos has to be that when you’re tired of dancing and just want to have a chat, simply take off your headphones and there’ll be no need to shout over any blaring music. With the most spectacular panoramic view of London, you’ll be certain to have a 4th of July to remember.
Tickets are £37.5, exclusively from TimeOut.
Independence Day at The Lockhart
Mississippi-born chef Brad McDonald runs a unique Southern US restaurant nestled in the centre of London with his wife, Molly. Offering a unique take on American gastronomy, The Lockhart has made its name as one of the most interesting places to eat in London, a must-try for any foodies out there.
The McDonald’s have created a special 4th of July feasting menu that features BBQ ribs, fried chicken, potato salad and fresh cornbread. To top it all off, Molly will be baking a special batch of red, white and blue doughnuts, so make sure you come on an empty stomach!
Portman Square Independence Day Picnic.
Whilst not technically on the 4th of July, the annual American Independence Day Picnic hosted by Democrats Abroad in Portman Square is the place to be on the 5th of July. Perfect for families, or those looking to recover from the celebrations of the night before, it’s a very popular event for those many Americans who have moved abroad.
With a whole host of American food vendors, top quality entertainment including live jazz, rock and folk music as well as themed entertainment and games for the kids, there really is something for everyone at Portman Square this 5th of July.
To buy a ticket, you do have to be an American citizen, but non-US citizens are totally welcome to go along as guests.
Tickets are £12.50 (£10 early bookings), concessions £5, children (6-16) £3.50, under-6s free and available online here.