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64 best things to do in autumnal London this October

The best things to do in London this autumn to add to your bucket list...

Time to pack away summer wardrobe and make way for waterproofs and chunky boots – pumpkin spiced latte season is almost upon us!

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If you're ever short of things to do in London, you've come to the right place. Discover HELLO!'s best picks of things to do in the city this October, from discovering London's most beautiful autumnal walks to tucking into the best food and drink the capital has to offer.

Best things to do with children this October half-term

NERF Upload: A YouTuber Masterclass

This official NERF event will give children the exciting opportunity to learn the very basics of what it takes to become a content creator, whilst giving parents an insight into the creative skills (not just screentime!) that this involves.

It will be hosted by some of the most popular YouTubers in the UK including Morgz, AJ, and Sharky, and kids will spend 3.5 hours learning the creative and practical skills that go into content creation, with plenty of NERF blasting fun on top!

They'll learn everything from how to set up the perfect shot, basic editing skills, how to unbox (with their own NERF boxes to give it a go themselves) and the art of mastering a NERF trickshot.

For more information visit eventbrite.co.uk

KidZania London

KidZania London is getting ready to welcome kids and adults this October half term - and you can't miss it!

Kids aged 4-14 can join the thrills and frights as the indoor city full of immersive activities based on real-life jobs is transformed into a fa-BOO-lous ghost town with six new activities especially for Halloween.

Meanwhile, adults can take over the city for one night only on 22 October, from 7pm to 11pm, and try everything on offer to release the inner child. From an airline pilot to a doctor, firefighter or a radio DJ, grown-ups can make their dream career a reality… It's a little scary and a lot of fun!

For more information visit kidzania.co.uk

Shrek’s Adventure! London

The residents of Shrek's Adventure! London are celebrating Halloween this half term with a visit from a clumsy witch!

This Halloween, the clumsy witch needs all our help to find her dropped belongings after crash landing in London. Guests can pick up a trail card from the entrance and keep their eyes peeled for the spooky items before they board the magic 3D bus that will whisk them to Far Far Away.

At the end of the tour just hand your list to the witch and she will delve into her spooky cauldron to give you a special treat!

For more information visit shreksadventure.com

Looking for a beautiful night out with friends or family? Then look no further than the Illuminature light trail at the London Wetlands. The stunning trail runs from 22 October all the way up to 9 January and features gorgeous illuminations of iconic wetland creatures from swans to flamingos to even a gigantic owl! Tickets cost £17.50 for adults and £12.50 for children, with under fours going free.

To book a light trail like no other, visit wwt.org.uk

 

Best Halloween-themed events in London in October

Get into the spirit of Halloween at Ivy Soho Brasserie

No plans for Halloween yet? This October, The Ivy Soho Brasserie is inviting Londoners to embrace your inner sinner as they partner with Horse With No Name Bourbon on their first debut and Monkey 47 Gin to unveil a selection of delicious cocktails, rich with mischief and desire, inspired by the Deadly Sins and created in celebration of Halloween.

Available from 11 October to 7 November, guests will be able to enjoy a series of limited-edition cocktails including Wrath (£10.75), a fiery blend of Horse With No Name Bourbon infused with Habanero pepper, Fever-Tree Ginger Ale, Angostura Bitters and Maraschino cherries.

What’s more, on Saturday, 30 October, The Ivy Soho Brasserie will come alive with a host of Deadly-Sins themed performances and DJ sets.

To book tickets for the devilishly fun event, visit theivysohobrasserie.com/book-a-table/

Go crazy for Wahaca's delicious Dia de Muertos menu

Where better to celebrate one of Mexico’s most momentous annual fiestas, Día de Muertos, than at Wahaca? The Mexican street-food favourite is marking the occasion between 20 October and 2 November, with visitors to its restaurants across the UK having the chance to enjoy a feast of Mexican street food and a specially-created cocktail, as well as complimentary tasters of tequila and mezcal. Each restaurant will be decked out in traditional papel picado and specially-created altars inspired by the traditional ofrendas set up each year in homes across Mexico to honour loved ones.

Indulge in delicious pork pibil tacos and grilled chicken & avocado tacos, or be tempted by squash & crumbled feta tostadas, marvellously moreish lamb barbacoa tacos and seasonal chargrilled hispi. The brand new Wahacamole - a fresh, sustainable take on guacamole, switching out the avocado for organic British fava beans - is a delicious and planet-friendly way to kick off your Day of the Dead feast. 

To book your table, visit www.wahaca.co.uk

Brace yourselves at Brasserie of Fright

Not for the faint-hearted! This Halloween, Brasserie of Light in Selfridges has transformed into 'Brasserie of Fright' with a horrifying October campaign, offering a limited-edition cocktail menu in partnership with Edrington-Beam Suntory, and a deadly dessert to shock and delight this season. What's more, the restaurant will be filled with chilling characters, including The Shining Twins, Annabelle the doll, Pennywise from IT and Rosemary’s baby. During Halloween weekend the restaurant will be dimly lit and characters from the movies will roam around providing an immersive experience for diners - perfect for horror film fans!

Book - if you dare...brasserie-of-light.co.uk/

Have a spooky night on Wandsworth Common at Le Gothique's Halloween Beer and Cider Festival

In its twelfth year now, this annual beer and cider festival is held on Wandsworth Common during Halloween weekend, with the perfect spooky backdrop of the incredible gothic Royal Victoria Patriotic Building, home to Le Gothique restaurant. 

With 100 cask ales and 25 ciders on offer this year, alongside street food and live music, it's South London's largest independent beer festival. This year you need to purchase a ticket in advance (£10, which gives you a first pint for free). Kids are welcome for free until 6pm and four legged friends are also encouraged. 

More details here....legothique.co.uk/beer-festivals/

Go back in time at Balthazar

Balthazar is transporting its guests back in time and reimagining the Hell Café in Paris, which opened in 1892. For Halloween weekend, each diner will be taken back to an era of ghoulish hedonistic celebration, where the ghosts of Paris’ age of jazz and cocktails are bought back to life. The restaurant will also be adorned with a ghoulish installation, in keeping with the hellish theme, as well as offering a bloodcurdling dessert, and reimaging classic cocktails to help guests celebrate. Transport yourself (and your guest) back two centuries just for an evening? Put us down...

Info: balthazarlondon.com/

Willa Wonka Halloween Party at Cloud Twelve

Cloud Twelve family wellness club in Notting Hill is running a weekend of spooktacular Halloween events on 29-31 October. Embrace your inner Ogre with slime making, get lost in the pumpkin hunt, decorate ghostly masks, feed a giant spider and bust mischievous ghosts.

Get picture perfect in the Spooky Photobooth and explore our enchanted forest to find a golden ticket to Willy Wonka's Trick Or Treat Shop. Finish with a monster parade and a haunted disco.

For details visit cloudtwelve.co.uk

SEA LIFE London Aquarium: Creepy Crawly Adventure

This Halloween, from October 17 to November 1, SEA LIFE London Aquarium's Rainforest Adventure is taking a scary turn as it is overrun by thousands of creepy crawlies.

If brave enough, guests are invited to discover some of the Amazon's most amazing inhabitants, including the UK's largest population of piranhas, crocodiles, poison dart frogs and snapping and pig nosed turtles. There is so much more to discover throughout the rest of the attraction too, from Shark Walk, Penguin Point and Rock Pool Explorer, all the way to Coral Kingdom.

Visit visitsealife.com for more information.

Spook-tacular Halloween Afternoon Tea 

To celebrate Halloween, luxury French tea purveyor Mariage Frères is introducing a bewitching new afternoon tea experience at its resplendent tea emporium in the heart of London’s Covent Garden. From 25th-31st October, guests can enjoy a limited-edition Halloween Afternoon Tea (£35pp) in the flagship store’s stunning Salon de Thé.

Each and every item has been delicately infused with tea from Mariage Frères’ exquisite Halloween tea collection – expect spooky Black Bao Burgers filled with beef tataki and coleslaw infused with Chaï Parisen® tea; an assortment of mushroom and cashew sandwiches; and a hauntingly delicious Chicken Ballotine with pumpkin, ginger and polenta and infused with Full Moon Party® green tea.

Sweet treats include the signature annual special, the ghoulish Fantome de L’Opera: a yuzu sponge cake infused with Earl Grey Imperial® tea and coated in Italian meringue; alongside a pumpkin and orange cheesecake, and frighteningly-good black macarons filled with chocolate ganache infused with Midnight Magic® red tea and a gianduja gooey centre.

To book, visit mariagefreres.com

London Never Dies

This month, the London Cabaret Club's sell-out, Bond-inspired, immersive entertainment and dining experience, London Never Dies at the iconic Bloomsbury Ballroom is back! The team have launched a special Halloween adaptation of London Never Dies, with a glamorous, Mexican Day of the Dead twist inspired by the Bond film Spectre and featuring specially designed menus celebrating the flavours of El Dia De Los Muertos. The unique cabaret concept combines world-class specialty acts - including dancing dogs - singers and choreographed dancers as well as fine dining - with canapés, tapas and three or four course gourmet meal options - wines and themed cocktails, some served by somersaulting waiters and featuring plenty of martinis... shaken and not stirred.

To find out more, visit thelondoncabaretclub.com

Magical Afternoon Tea for Two Adults and Two Children at Wands and Wizard Exploratorium

Step into a world of magical adventure with a family afternoon tea at Wands and Wizard Exploratorium for just £108. You'll be able to select a magic wand and begin spell casting to make the tea stand turn before you unlock a puzzle chest full to the brim with ingredients to make your own magical afternoon tea. After mastering the art of magic, indulge in a tempting selection of sweet treats and savoury nibbles.

To book, visit redletterdays.co.uk

London Bridge Ghost Walking Tour for Two

Journey back in time on this spine-tingling tour of the capital, as you explore where law-abiding citizens would not dare enter and pass the site where anaesthetic-free operations were carried out, in the world’s oldest operating theatre. An experienced guide will take you to visit prostitute graveyards, secret alehouses, cockfighting rings and bear-baiting pits, on this two-hour tour of London Bridge's horrible history.

Prices from £40, visit redletterdays.co.uk

Celebrate everyone's favourite spooky holiday

With spooky season right around the corner, Crosstown - a scratch bakery in London - are ready with the launch of their limited edition Halloween dough bites, featuring the return of their black cocoa sourdough. The Halloween dough bites are crafted with Crosstown's spooky black cocoa dough, filled with homemade raspberry jam, and topped with a dark berry glaze. Finished with a spooky bat or pumpkin decoration – suitable for vegans. Be sure to grab a Halloween Trick or Treat Box!

For more information, visit crosstown.co.uk/halloween/

Sip on Day of the Dead cocktails

Granary Square Brasserie in King's Cross is getting into 'Día de los Muertos' festivities with a show-stopping installation across its entrance, as well as a limited-edition cocktail menu created in collaboration with Cointreau.  The gorgeous floral installation has given the popular venue a Mexican makeover, featuring bold bursts of colour and breathtaking blooms.

Devilishly tasty cocktails include the El Diablo, a fruity blend of Cointreau, Tequila, Mezcal, lime, pineapple, apple and avocado and the Café Naranja, a special twist on an Espresso Martini.  The special menu is available from Monday 11 October to Sunday 7 November – and make sure to book because the venue (including the terrace) is always bustling. Those dining at the venue on Saturday 30 October will be treated to a Halloween spooktacular featuring live entertainment and DJs.

To make a reservation, visit granarysquarebrasserie.com

Spooky drinks at MY&SANNÉ

MY&SANNÉ, the popular Mediterranean restaurant in the heart of Knightsbridge has conjured up a selection of spooky cocktails to be enjoyed this Halloween. Each cocktail has been hand-crafted with unique flavours and designs to capture the essence of the spooky season.

The Munchkin Scary Spice, topped with Italian meringue, boasts a fiery pumpkin kick while the Bloody Mary has been given a terrifying twist – the showstopping drink literally comes served within a blood bag!

Book a table at myandsanne.com

MORE: 10 mysterious places in London to visit this Halloween – but are you brave enough?

Best things to do in London in October on a budget

Autumnal walks in London's parks

There's nothing quite like autumn in the city. Watching the leaves turn from green to golden brown over the weeks of October might not sound like a thrilling activity, but trust us when we say there really is no better way to explore London than on foot.

London is stunning in autumn, and crisp October days can be spent rambling through the city's best parks. Why not try Richmond Park for your chance to spot deer? Or take the family through Regent's park for a glimpse at the animals in London Zoo. Stroll through Kensington Gardens, one of the most glorious royal parks in the capital, or soak up the sunset in Battersea Park at dusk.

Explore Kew Garden's Japan Festival

This October the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew invites visitors to immerse themselves in the art, plants and culture of Japan with a brand-new autumn festival. The Japan festival, supported by Daikin UK, will run from Saturday 2 October to Sunday 31 October 2021 in Kew’s majestic Temperate House. The world’s largest surviving Victorian glasshouse, the Temperate House is home to over 10,000 plants from across five continents, a beacon of the future for plant science and biodiversity. In a year when travel has been limited, RBG Kew is delighted to celebrate the fascinating culture of Japan with this festival.  At its heart is a large-scale artistic installation by Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota, titled One Thousand Springs.

To book visit kew.org

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Storytime with Father Christmas at the Hall

It's may only be October but tickets for Storytime with Father Christmas at the Hall are finally available!

In this very special festive experience, magic awaits your little ones as the Albert Hall's beautiful porch is transformed into an enchanting winter grotto.

Little ones will step inside a whimsical world where they'll be greeted by Father Christmas and his merry head elf Crumpet as they take them on a joyful journey in this charming Christmas Storytime session, ending with each child taking home their very own gift!

For more information visit royalalberthall.com

Disney On Ice presents Find Your Hero 

Disney On Ice presents Find Your Hero is coming to the UK - get your skates on because you can now pre-order tickets for this fab show, which kicks off in Birmingham later this month!

Audiences will discover what it truly means to be a hero as Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and friends from around the Disney Kingdom come together to take families on a journey through timeless tales.

The show will feature more than 50 Disney characters, such as Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Goofy and Moana!

Frozen's Anna and Elsa and the hilarious snowman, Olaf, will also be in attendance, captivating the audience with songs like Let it Go and In Summer.

What are you waiting for?

What are you waiting for? To book visit disneyonice.com

BYOB pottery making

We may be out of lockdown, but that doesn't mean you don't have time to start a new hobby. If you're a keen creative, you'll love this 90-minute BYOB pottery workshop in London Bridge. Learn how to throw a potter’s wheel and create miniature pottery of your own – the perfect head start for handmade Christmas gifts. Bring your own booze to make the experience even more fun!

To book your pottery workshop, visit wowcher.co.uk

Have fun at MCM Comic Con

Looking for something different to do with friends or family? Whether they’re a Bruce Wayne with an inner Batman, or a Clark Kent concealing a Superman, discover a different side to your mates as you enter the MCM Comic Con universe together. Film and TV buffs in the group will be pleased to hear there are a whole host of exclusives lined up for this year’s events, as well as celebrities from your favourite movies - including Tom Hiddleston and Hayden Christensen. Whether you're a gamer, comic book collector, film fanatic or cosplayer, there's something for everyone!

22nd - 24th October at ExCeL London. Info: mcmcomiccon.com

Celebrate World Vegan Day

Make sure you make a visit to Common Ground in Clapham where Oat milk fans can enjoy complimentary PureOaty coffees served all day on Monday. Whether you’re an oat milk aficionado or new to the world of milk alternatives, World Vegan Day is the perfect opportunity to take your coffee with a delicious plant-based twist. Located on the West side of Clapham Common, will be open from 9:00am - 6:00pm to brighten up the day, for your morning coffee fix or an afternoon pick-me-up.

For more information, visit organiser9.wixsite.com/commonground

Best bars and restaurants to visit in London this October

Find the best steak in London at Bricco e Bacco

If you're after a truly indulgent feast, look no further than Fitrovia's Bricco e Bacco. Bringing the taste of Palermo and an unmissable Sicilian flair to Charlotte Street, this steak restaurant is the ultimate spot for truly delicious food. Heralding from a family of ‘carnezzieri’ (butchers in Palermitan dialect) the team imports an exquisite selection of premium beef from across the globe. The steaks are lovingly prepared and cooked to perfection before arriving at your table on a hot Himalayan rock salt pan for added flavour. 

We devoured our buttery steak served with hand cut fries, watching it sizzle on the salty base. Our waiter told us" "If a steak is truly good, it won't need sauce," and he was right. 

Theatre lovers due to visit the Dominion Theatre this month can also benefit from exclusive discounts at Fitzrovia restaurant favourites - including NormaAmpéli and Bricco e Bacco.

Kick back with Bottomless Brunch

The Phoenix London opened this summer, at the bustling Westfield in Shepherd Bush. The Phoenix London provides the ideal area for all-day-dining and post-shopping fuel in a relaxed English garden setting.  Not one to miss out on, the Bottomless Brunch includes unlimited Bloody Marys, Bloody Marias, an array of delicious Spritzs and unlimited Prosecco. A starter of maple honey pancakes and a selection of a main course off the delicious brunch menu. There will also be a selection of fresh juices and ginger shots for those who need a pick-me-up during the brunch as well as refreshing Tank Budvar beer fresh from the Czech Republic to help wash down the dishes. Quick, hurry!

Book here, thephoenixlondon.com

Have a heavenly roast at New Street Grill

We're all familiar with the dilemma of deciding which meat to go for at a Sunday roast. Luckily, New Street Grill has put an end to the indecisiveness with their new 'Return of the Roast' menu this season. For £28 per person, diners can feast on a gargantuan plate of three expertly cooked cuts of meat – beef, lamb and chicken which is served alongside seasonal vegetables, a Yorkshire pudding overflowing with roasties and an extra jug of gravy. And even better news, the sides are all bottomless so you can keep asking for more to your heart's content.

As expected from a grill restaurant, the meat was prepared and roasted to perfection, in particular the succulent beef. Make sure you try some of the special brunch cocktails; the elderflower bellini is an excellent pick-me-up.

To book a table, visit newstreetgrill.co.uk

Sip on the finest port cocktails at newly launched bar 1857

Port isn't just an after-dinner drink. It can be sipped on during mains or fashioned into delectable cocktails and the newly launched bar at St. James's Hotel & Club in Mayfair, 1857, is celebrating all things port. The bar, which aptly refers to the year that the historic club was established, specialises in port from the Symington Family Estates, producers of premium port wine for five generations.

Guests are invited to while away the afternoon and evening, selecting from the widest range of port found in any London bar including vintage ports and aged tawnies. We highly recommend hitting the cocktails and if you're new to the world of port, the Port Sour, made with Graham's Blend Series No. 5 and mixed with egg white and lemon, is an absolute delight. 1857 also caters for non-port drinkers, but we highly recommend giving it a go. You might be pleasantly surprised.

To book a table, visit stjameshotelandclub.com

Indulge in a lobster dish of dreams at Burger & Lobster

Londoners, it’s time to dabble in decadence, seduce your senses and dive tastebuds-first into Autumn as renowned surf and turf specialists, Burger & Lobster, have teamed up with Giz ‘n’ Green, aka the legendary chef Gizzi Erskine and world-class musician Professor Green, to bring you a limited-edition, wild Atlantic lobster dish of dreams.

We headed down to Burger & Lobster's Bond Street branch to try their Sleezey’n’Bisquey Mac & Cheese, and instantly fell in love with the elevated and unashamedly indulgent take on the classic creamy macaroni and cheese. Starring succulent meat from half a lobster – claws and all - sustainably sourced from the coasts of Nova Scotia, Canada; a rich, boozy lobster bisque-infused cheese sauce; and fresh tarragon, all loaded into a lobster shell and encrusted with a Gruyere and garlic breadcrumbed top. This is comfort food turned up a gear and the pinnacle of mac & cheese excellence.

If you're tempted by the limited edition dish, be sure to book in before 31 October at www.burgerandlobster.com

Go for pasta at La Nonna

La Nonna made the jump from street food to sit-down food! Headed up by Roman-born chef Daniele Pino, their menu at the new Market Row location features thoughtfully-refreshed versions of comforting Roman pasta dishes, using an assortment of pasta shapes made fresh in-house daily, plus innovative daily-changing dishes and exemplary Italian desserts. We popped down and our favourites are the Ragù della Nonna Pappardelle and Torta al Pistacchio. But make sure you check the specials menu - we were blown away by the meatballs! Situated in Brixton Market, you can head straight out afterwards, making it perfect for a weekend date spot.

Info: lanonnaldn.com/

Enjoy handcrafted cocktails for London Cocktail Month

Apothecary is a Tokyo inspired tavern with Shoreditch energy, serving handcrafted cocktails, rare spirits, beers, wine and Japanese style small plates and bar snacks. This stunning Japanese Izakaya spot for small plates and excellent cocktails is the place to be this month, especially if cocktail lovers are looking for a tempting sundowner this London Cocktail Month.

Zen Garden is Apothecary's refreshing, green and citrusy martini style drink with Roku gin, Zen garden cordial (green tea, shiso, lime juice) and salt minerals. Served with an origami bird.

To book, visit apothecaryeast.co.uk

Enjoy exquisite Indo-Chinese food at Fatt Pundit's new Covent Garden location

If you're already a fan of Fatt Pundit, the new Maiden Lane opening will be a welcome addition, slap bang in the middle of vibrant Covent Garden. If, like me, the Indo-Chinese cuisine of Fatt Pundit is something new then boy are you in for a treat! From the moment you enter this intimate restaurant, you realise you're in for a treat (and be sure to make a reservation as this place is popular!).

The menu is incredible. Sharing plates mean you get to try lots of different options, and the vegetables are so out of this world that my guest and I spent the evening planning a return with our usually veg-averse children who we knew would wolf down the lot in seconds. Crackling spinach and bombay potatoes are on the must-have list, while the Malabar monkfish curry, honey chilli duck and Kolkatta chilli chicken make my mouth water just thinking of them. There are delicate cocktails to sip, which perfectly compliment the spice and flavours, and we defy you not to take a video of the sizzling brownie desert when it arrives at the table, the ice cream gently melting on top. The perfect way to round off a very delicious meal.

Book a table at fattpundit.co.uk/covent-garden/

Dine out to support Action Against Hunger

This month, over 200 restaurants around the UK are showing their support for Action Against Hunger's Love Food Give Food campaign. Restaurants are encouraging diners to add on just £1 to their bill, which will help the world's most vulnerable and hungry. Just £1 covers the cost of a day's worth of life-saving therapeutic food to treat a severely malnourished child, while £25 is enough to fund an emergency kitchen kit for a family of five people.

Restaurants that are taking part in the campaign include big names like Hawksmoor and Hakkasan, while we were fortunate enough to dine out at local eatery, The Begging Bowl, in Peckham to see what the campaign was all about. The Thai eatery has created a special dish for the month – crispy fried tofu parcels with a sweet dipping sauce – £1 of which will be donated to the campaign.

Love Food Give Food is still running until the end of the month, with generous donations from diners pouring in. If you only make it to one restaurant on the list, make sure you book in at The Begging Bowl. Designed for sharing, you really can't go wrong with whatever dish you order on the menu. Definitely start with the betel leaf, which is a small leaf topped with ginger, peanut, shallot, coconut, galangal and palm sugar. Fold it up, eat it in one and wait for the explosion of flavour to hit your tastebuds. As staff say, it's all the flavours of Thai cuisine rolled into one.

Other standout dishes include the understated celeriac and golae peanut curry, which may not sound that exciting but trust us, even the hardcore omnivores will devour this satay-inspired dish. The stir-fry hispi cabbage and the pomelo, cashew and lemongrass salad are also two delicious vegetarian sides.

To find out more about the campaign, visit actionagainsthunger.org.uk or to book into The Begging Bowl, visit thebeggingbowl.co.uk

Try Jason Atherton's new brunch menu at Café Biltmore

Fans of Jason Atherton can rejoice as the talented chef has introduced his new brunch menu at Café Biltmore, located in The Biltmore Mayfair hotel. Choose from a two-course or three-course set menu, featuring classics like buttermilk pancakes with vanilla cream and berries, or the indulgent Croque Monsieur, as well as more out-there and creative dishes like the confit duck leg with kimchi and egg atop an English muffin.

The starters are substantial in themselves, but for mains, you can opt for all-time favourites like the beef or chicken burger, or fish and chips. For those with a bigger appetite, the steak with bearnaise sauce and skinny fries is an absolute winner. Desserts are equally as indulgent; we particularly recommend the Valrhona chocolate moelleux, a rich, gooey, melt-in-the-middle chocolate pudding served with a scoop of milk ice cream. And if you're feeling extra fancy, you can also add bottomless prosecco or mojitos to your order for 90 minutes.

As well as the mouth-watering, dependable great food, brunch at this chic restaurant is also accompanied by live entertainment. A three-piece band croons away, rotating from the indoor and outdoor seating areas, adding a pop of energy to the room.

To book a table, visit jasonatherton-thebiltmoremayfair.com/cafe-biltmore

Experience private dining at Sidechick

Looking for somewhere to book for a larger group? Sidechick has you covered. The new private dining area at the Marylebone restaurant has room for eight to 20 people to mingle and dine together, with a Sidechick's trademark juicy chicken with a selection of seasonal vegetables, salads, and flatbreads.

The roast chicken concept restaurant recently opened its first restaurant on James Street and it was bustling when we visited, keen to see if it lived up to the hype.

If you're a Nando's fan, this is next level – and we promise you won't look back. We dined on a half chicken in mouthwatering chimichurri, piri piri and zaatar sauces, with middle eastern inspired vegetable sides that are both flavoursome and beautifully presented. The crispy roast potatoes with thyme salt are a must-try – moreish and melt in your mouth. Not to mention the portions are extremely generous!

To book, visit sidechick.co.uk

Unwind at west London's newest restaurant and cocktail bar

Ready to wind down for the week? Head to Meadow, a brand new Italian fusion restaurant that's just opened in Ealing. Brought to you by the founders of Las Banderas, one of London's most successful brunches, the new venue is bringing Instagrammable cocktails, floral vibes and authentic Italian cuisine all in one relaxed venue. Dishes to try include the hanger steak, burrata and pappardelle pasta, to finish, the dark chocolate cremeux and strawberry tiramisu is a must.

To book, visit meadowrestaurant.co.uk

Enjoy a Levantine feast at Barboun

If you haven't heard of it, Barboun opened in Shoreditch quietly during lockdown and provides all-day delicious dining. Championing a philosophy of using fire, smoke or grills, the mouthwatering dishes are served all day in the modern restaurant with a mixture of fresh locally sourced ingredients and imported spices from Istanbul. We popped down and our standout favourite was the talagani cheese starter, the lamb rump with burnt aubergine, and the sticky date pudding (so make sure you save room for dessert!). Whether you want to pop in for brunch or enjoy a special dinner, the relaxed setting and great cocktail list makes it a perfect spot.

Info: barboun.com/

Delight your senses with Wagamama's new plant-based menu

Calling all vegan foodies! Wagamama has become the first high street restaurant to proudly make 50 per cent of their menu entirely plant-based. The HELLO! favourite restaurant chain pledged to make half their menu plant-based by the end of the year as part of their ‘2021 Positive Action Plan’, but have hit that target almost three months early. 

Passionate about sustainability, wagamama continue to promote plant-based eating as one of the most powerful choices consumers can make in the fight against climate change - and let's be honest, wagamama's vegan food is so good, it's tough to tell if it's actually vegan! Check out their all-new Spicy Teriyaki Vegan ‘Chicken’ Steamed Buns, Spicy Vegan ‘Short Rib’ Ramen, Teriyaki Vegan ‘Chicken’ Ramen, and Shu’s ‘Shiok’ Jackfruit for a guilt-free meal. 

If you're not already tempted, in return for guests promise to plants, wagamama is offering a vegan side on them until November – to get guests started on their plant-based journey. So, what are you waiting for?

Head to wagamama.com to get inspired by their new menu.

Have an indulgent feast at Dirty Bones' new flagship restaurant

Setting up shop in the middle of Kingly Court is Dirty Bones' new flagship restaurant. The New York-inspired restaurant and bar opened its Carnaby site earlier this month and boasts a buzzy alfresco terrace as well as chic, moody interiors. Known for being the king of comfort food, Dirty Bones has even created a new burger that's exclusive to the central London branch.

The Reverse Truffle Cheeseburger really is as indulgent as it sounds – two beef patties dripping with warm truffle-cheese sauce, smothered in black garlic and truffle aioli, and topped with crispy onions and chives. Take the restaurant's advice and tackle it with a knife and fork. Another showstopper on the menu is the favourite Mac Daddy, comprised of two steak and bone marrow patties, pulled beef short rib and a generous serving of heavenly mac and cheese, not to mention espresso-spiked BBQ sauce. It really will make you go 'wow' when it's placed in front of you. Make sure you start your feast with the cheeseburger dumplings (Genius creation? Yes) and finish with the milk and cookies ice cream sandwich for dessert.

A meal out at Dirty Bones really is the time to binge on some good old-fashioned American food, so don't feel bad about pigging out. If chicken on waffles, flat iron steak and buffalo hot wings are right up your street, you'll have a real dilemma deciding what to order.

To book a table, visit dirty-bones.com

Take a trip to New Zealand via Selfridges

Finished some shopping and fancy a treat for the senses? Cloudy Bay has created an immersive installation on the ground floor of the department store, where guests enter through an opening in the Cloudy Bay tent, with lanterns and outdoor lights to guide the way. We recommend the Flight Tasting, which will teach you about their wines and champagne, alongside some perfectly paired nibbles (such as caviar blinis). You can also buy a personalised map - Christmas presents sorted!

For more info, head to selfridges.com

Let your imagination run wild at St James cocktail bar

If you're feeling at all blue as the new season sets in, there's one place you have to visit - the St James Bar at the Sofitel London near Trafalgar Square which has just launched an absolutely incredible Imagination cocktail menu that will be certain to put a huge smile on your face.

The talented team at St James Bar have put together an awe-inspiring array of cocktails in their on-site cocktail lab, and prepare to have your mind blown! Whether it's whisky cocktails served with giant bubbles full of citrus smoke, edible cocktails that burst in your mouth, pretty pink cocktails with a floating Einstein on the top, these drinks not only taste sensational, and are sustainably made (the freeze-dried raspberries around your glass started life on the breakfast menu), they are guaranteed to make you smile! 

Book a table and treat yourself to a night out you won't forget. Your Instagram feed will thank you! sofitelstjames.com

Be transported to the South of France

This November, Figaro’s Bar will be bringing an immersive vision of the South of France to the heart of London. Inspired by a convivial local bar in the small fishing port of Cassis, Marseilles, Figaro’s will bring the outside in and evoke the spirit of the picturesque clifftop bar overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Situated on Shaftesbury Avenue, guests arriving at the bar will feel as if they’ve been transported to the idyllic holiday destination, allowing them to imagine they are immersed in the South of France. Located in the heart of London’s West End Theatre district, Figaro’s Bar will be a secret escape for those looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of London or enjoy a pre-show drink, with a unique all day summer vibe and relaxed holiday atmosphere.

To book, visit figarosbar.com

 Après ski retreat

Take refuge from the cold and cosy up at The Refinery Bankside’s Après Ski Terrace, complete with festive sparkle and plenty of cover, courtesy of Casamigos Tequila. Guests will be greeted with glittery trees adorned with fairy lights and plush faux fur blankets for a luxe alpine finish, whilst the Insta-worthy gondola, bookable for up to four people for drinks, will provide the perfect spot for that après shot! Enjoy tequila cocktails including the Casa Hibiscus Tea (served hot or cold, £9.95) and the Après Ski Paloma (£9.95), alongside a selection of grazing plates, steaks and hearty pies.

To book, visit: The Refinery Bankside

Try the newest Soho offering

Soho's latest food joint is open! Mamma Pastrama, a new offering focused on modern pastrami has landed at 13 Ganton Street. Co-founder and Executive Chef Jay Morjaria has constructed a menu focused on cured meats, using a secret process that combines a blend of proprietary spices and a unique 'rub' technique. Foodies can take their pick of classics such as Big Mamma Melts (smoked chicken, bacon, house pastrami, mustard and pickled onions sandwiched between toasted sourdough) Pastrami & Kimchi Toasties – featuring house pastrami, spicy kimchi slaw and a three-cheese mix - pulled and grilled together in toasted sourdough.

To book your table, visit mammapastrama.co.uk

Tuck into some Thai classics

Rosa's Thai fans are in for a treat this autumn! The popular restaurant is set to launch their first retail range of pastes and sauces; from chilli oil, peanut satay dipping sauce and green/red curry paste to Massaman curry paste. So there's plenty to pick from! Each product is priced under £10 so would make an excellent stocking filler or secret Santa gift for keen chefs or cooking novices - particularly the chilli oil and the satay sauce. But if you can't wait till November, head to your local Rosa's Thai, and devour their authentic fresh Thai food in person. 

Book here, rosasthaicafe.com

Indulge in delicious pizza and pasta at Prezzo Islington

There's nothing better than indulging in delicious Italian food, and where better to do it than Prezzo's newest restaurant in Islington? The perfect place to tuck into a delicious pasta al forno, or warm up your Autumn nights with a butter roasted mushroom and mascarpone cheese pizza – Prezzo is the ultimate location for authentic Italian food, affordable prices and guaranteed satisfaction.

When HELLO! visited, the cosy restaurant was teaming with families and friends enjoying colourful cocktails and feasting on Italian classics. It was promising to see just how busy the venue was given its recent opening. We can only imagine it'll soar in popularity once the cold weather kicks in and Londoners will be cosying up indoors in the atmospheric haunt – casual dining at its best.

To book your table, visit prezzorestaurants.co.uk

Sample Honest Burger's new NIGERIA burger

We never really needed a reason to go to London's best burger joint, Honest Burgers, but they've given us a pretty good excuse with the launch of their new burger, the NIGERIA. The chain has teamed up with Nigerian tapas restaurant, Chuku's, to launch the limited-edition burger, which is available at all Honest Burgers until 1 November. The NIGERIA is the definition of the perfect, indulgent dirty burger and you shouldn't feel one bit guilty while you're eating it – just get on board!

The Honest beef patty is stacked with Fanta-candied bacon, cheddar, red onion, spinach, and pickles, not to mention jollof sauce, plantain crisps and Chuku's spicy mayo. The burger is served with the restaurant's signature homemade rosemary salted chips as standard, and goes down well with Eko Gold lager, which is also on the menu for the limited-time collaboration.

To try the new burger, visit honestburgers.co.uk

Celebrate Day of the Dead

This month, The Hawk's Nest will be pulling out all the stops with an array of Halloween events kicking off on 30 October. There will be an all day long fiesta, kicking off with face painters and spooky baked goods from midday. With a live DJ from 4pm spinning tunes all night long and Mexican style piñatas decking the ceilings, ready for the taking, this is not an occasion to be missed.

Book here, the-hawks-nest.co.uk

Celebrate London Cocktail Week at Distillery Bankside

Distillery Bankside welcomes guests to sip on their newest cocktails. Tantalise your tastebuds with Spooky Trail, a frightfully good mix of Silent Pool rare citrus gin, Campari, Cocchi di Torino Sweet Vermouth, Mr Black Coffee Liqueur, pumpkin treacle, or sip away on Green Yard, a heady mix of Silent Pool rare citrus gin, Spiced Melon, Absinthe, lime, lemon sorbet, and Anna de Cordoniu Blanc de Blanc Cava.

The venue pays homage to the hotel’s heritage by highlighting its gins and local craft beers. Inspired by this history, the bar mixes signature cocktails and uses homemade aromatics, infusions, and bitters to accent the drinks - not one to miss!

To plan your visit, see thedistillerybankside.co.uk

Tuck into tapas at Iberica Farringdon

Autumn might be rolling in and the weather getting colder, but that doesn't mean you can't escape to the Mediterranean for an evening as you dine on delicious tapas and Spanish wine at Farringdon's Iberica restaurant.

Iberica promises to take its guests on an inspirational journey through the authentic flavours, spirit and style of their beloved Spanish homeland – and trust us when we say you won't be disappointed. Tuck into artisan cheeses and salty Iberico ham before sinking your teeth into freshly baked bread topped with juicy tomatoes. If you're not already tempted by the tapas, don't miss trying one of their Valencian dry-style paellas, which form a crunchy base during cooking for the perfect bite, before finishing your meal with sugary churros or creamy crème caramel. The friendly staff are always on hand for excellent wine pairings to complement your palette – the ultimate hangout for a laidback date or post-work catch up.

To book a table, visit ibericarestaurants.com

Best luxury things to do in London in October

Get an autumn hair makeover

We don't know about you, but when the seasons change, we always want to switch up our hair colour, and Autumn is the best time to do it, don't you think?

Beautiful London salon Blush + Blow not only does every beauty treatment you can think of, but they now also have an incredible team of top hair colour experts to bring you the very best personalised colour. Their Colour Bar has an impressive menu;  from balayage to highlights and full colour to semi-permanent.

The service 'What's your blush?' is super bespoke and includes a detailed, personal consultation to ensure you get the look you want. Creative Director Siobhan Jones says: "I truly believe in using colour to accentuate the features and beauty of my clients. My unique approach to colour consultation and application enables me to design a totally bespoke colour for each and every one of my clients."

To book visit Blush + Blow

Have a facial at the most Instagramable spa

If you've ever walked past LINNAEAN in Vauxhall, you'll be forgiven for thinking the venue is just another pretty café. With a pastel colour scheme, an eye-catching floral canopy and an impressive bar, it's every Instagram fan's dream place to have a coffee and a light bite. But upstairs is the cosy Medi-Spa, which offers a range of beauty and wellness treatments.

We can't recommend booking in for a facial enough. We tried the Susanne Kaufmann Discovery Facial which left us in heavenly bliss. Your expert therapist will tailor the 45-minute pampering session to your skin's needs, which includes use of RÉDUIT's fancy product, RÉDUIT SPA. The advanced Magnetic Misting technology of the snazzy device means the mist breaks through your skin's protective barrier and products are absorbed deeper and faster. The RÉDUIT SPA can also be used from the comfort of your own home. Trust us, you'll leave your facial relaxed, refreshed and with a dewy glow.

To book in for a treatment, visit linnaean.co.uk/medispa

Sip on complimentary cocktails while you switch up your hair colour 

Pioneering in their approach to hair, Taylor Taylor London has paved the way for boutique salons across the globe. Effortlessly merging a bespoke service with premium products and expertly trained colour technicians and stylists; creating an experience that is both memorable and luxurious. Established in 2003 with an ambition to revolutionise unisex hairdressing, Taylor Taylor London adopts a multi-faceted attitude to hairstyling. Determined to shake up the ‘one size fits all’ which all too often dominates the landscape of hair,  building meaningful relationships and genuine connections have led Taylor Taylor London to become one of the most coveted hair salons in the U.K. Nurturing their clients through a friendly yet knowledgeable experience, Taylor Taylor London are also noted for their longer appointment times, custom service and complimentary cocktails - yes, you heard that right! 

To book, visit taylortaylorlondon.com

Experience a celebrity treatment at Hannah London

It's no secret that living in London can wreak havoc with your skin. From high levels of pollution to dirt and grime from public transport (not to mention the ongoing mask acne), keeping a clear complexion whilst living in the capital isn't always easy.

Luckily Hannah London's expert facialists are on hand to offer celebrity-approved treatments to keep your skin in check. We love the HydraFacial, a relaxing treatment that promises instant results for radiant, glowy and refined skin. With no downtime and no invasive procedures, the HydaFacial is perfect for combatting acne, fine lines, hyperpigmentation and scarring, leaving you with bright, hydrated and rejuvenated skin - all in just 30 minutes.

To book in for a HydraFacial at Hannah London, visit hannahlondon.com

Afternoon tea for two at Royal Albert Hall

London’s most famous music hall has seen everyone from the royal family to some of Hollywood's biggest stars climb its steps and enjoy the best of London's theatre. If you're fascinated by the Royal Albert Hall's history, you'll love this tour and afternoon tea for two.

There’s a history of tea being taken at the Royal Albert Hall, with the first tea party taking place just over 100 years ago. You can continue that tradition at the Hall’s curved Verdi restaurant, where you’ll indulge in a feast of sweet and savoury treats. You’ll each get to enjoy a selection of finger sandwiches, scones with clotted cream and jam, desserts, and a pot of refreshing tea. Along with your afternoon tea, you’ll also be able to take a tour of one of the most famous venues in the world as it prepares for the next amazing performance. Journey from the front of the Hall through to the spectacular auditorium, including the view from the Gallery as well as an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the Royal Retiring Room.

To book tickets, visit virginexperiencedays.com

Experience the best of London's West End with an overnight stay

The iconic Pretty Women musical has returned to the West End, and will continue to thrill audiences at London's Savoy theatre right through until April 2022.

What better way to escape into Beverley Hills and fall in love as the iconic characters Vivian and Edward take to the London theatre stage, than with an overnight stay at a London hotel? We’ve sourced the best staycation deal currently on offer, which includes a one or two-night stay at a four-star London retreat that’s been recognised for providing only the highest levels of service and tickets to watch Pretty Women – a tempting treat for October half term.

To book your tickets and overnight stay, visit wowcher.co.uk

Best alternative things to do in London in October

Get blown away by Back to the Future: The Musical

HELLO!'s Head of Digital, Sophie, highly recommends a night in London's West End to watch Back to The Future.

"Ok - I'm going to be honest. I love a musical and I was really ready to get back to the theatre, but I was pretty sure Back to the Future - the Musical was one that was really going to be enjoyed by the kids. How wrong could I be? This stage show, currently at London's Adelphi Theatre, was an incredible night out and I'm pretty sure I enjoyed it as much, if not more than, my 12 year old son, who was giving a standing ovation at the end and gasping in awe as Marty McFly's famous DeLorean time machine car came zooming out into the audience.

"This is a really great way to get back into live theatre, and the special effects are mind-blowingly spectacular. I have been telling all my friends about how much fun this show was, ever since I saw it, and they're all lining up to take their kids. But even if you don't have kids, this is a fantastic night out - the story is familiar but adapted so well that you feel it's fresh, the music is catchy and the performances from Olly Dobson and Roger Bart, while very funny, are also moving. But what they do with the DeLorean is really something special; it's something that you'll be thinking about with a big smile on your face, for weeks to come."

Book tickets here: backtothefuturemusical.com/cast-creative/

Do yoga on the London Eye

Take an unforgettable ride on the London Eye, doing yoga 135m above the city. This really is a combination of all the best things in life - a really fabulous and accessible yoga class run by Equinox Gym's incredible teachers, plus the chance to have your breath taken away with views over the most beautiful city in the world. 

At times you're so lost in yoga you forget you're slowly moving through the sky, miles above London Town. At other times, when breathing deeply on your back in Shavasana, you feel a momentary rock of turbulence and literally feel like you are you floating on a cloud. 

It's a fantastic experience and the stop for pictures on your second rotation will give your friends instant Instagram envy! 

Wellness Pod classes are running into November and take place daily at 12:00pm (check in for 11:30am).

The experience is running six days a week, from Sunday-Tuesday and Thursday-Saturday for £37.50pp.

For more information and to book tickets*, go to: londoneye.com/wellnesspod

Feel like you're at a musical at SingEasy

Haven't managed to grab tickets to the theatre? SingEasy at The Piano Works is back and it's the next best thing for musical theatre fans. Many of the waiters are West End performers and will entertain you with your song requests while you eat and drink in the hidden, speakeasy-style room at The Piano Works West End. West End-trained party hosts and expert pianists also add to the rip-roaring entertainment. Trust us, it's a guaranteed fun night out that'll have you jumping up, dancing along with the pros. It's also perfect for those who prefer a group sing-along and are a little intimated by karaoke, as only the waiters are allowed to take hold of the mic. 

There's a pre-dinner theatre menu, a normal dinner menu and a bottomless brunch option on weekends, with dishes including vegan shepherd's pie and 35-day dry-aged rib-eye steak.

To book a table, visit singeasy.bar

Live music and cabaret

Louche, Soho is a brand new, rakish late-night drinking den that has just opened, emulating the old, infamous louche Soho culture. The 260-capacity, three-storey venue will be Soho’s new home for diverse nightlife, live music and cabaret and will be brimming with disreputable Soho culture. Brought to you by the team behind the Records Bars, the venue with two bars and two stages will be open six days a week with dynamic live music, hosting exceptional cocktails and light bites.

To book, visit louchesoho.com

Cocktail masterclass

Bluebird Chelsea and Bluebird White City will be embracing the arrival of the colder months with Cointreau on an exclusive Autumnal inspired cocktail menus, alongside a series of events. On Wednesday 27th October at 7pm, Bluebird White City will be hosting a Cointreau Halloween Masterclass with Kevin Sueiro, Cointreau International Brand Ambassador, who will be educating guests on the history of Cointreau’s signature drinks and how it has evolved into the brand it is today, as well as demonstrating how to make two signature cocktails. Guests can enjoy their carefully created cocktails alongside a selection of tasty bar snacks, with tickets available for £25 per person.

To book, visit shop.danddlondon.com

Party at the Paxton

The Paxton, the popular pub located in Gipsy Hill, south east London, is back! The venue is launching its new autumn gastronomic and culture programme on Thursday 28 October with a celebratory event. The programme will include monthly rotating street food menus, amazing food and drink deals, DJ takeovers and comedy nights, The Paxton is hoping to change perceptions about what to expect from your local gastropub.

The Paxton is hosting a very special launch event, featuring a line-up of live performances (including a full Gospel choir), an immersive art installation, as well as complimentary food and drinks straight from their amazing new menu. Head on down!

For more information, visit thequeenshouse.co.uk.

Go crazy with the family at Gravity Wandsworth

Adventurers and explorers get ready, as London's brand new three-story family-friendly adventureland is perfect for this half term. With endless amounts of fun spread across 3 floors, this completely original, interactive gaming zone will keep kids entertained for hours with themed bowling lanes, urban street golf in the streets of New York to racing their friends through the hectic streets of Japan in all-electric-go-karts. Book your tickets now to avoid disappointment.

To book, visit booking.sms-timing.com 

Affordable Art Fair

The Affordable Art Fair is returning to Battersea Park, London, from 21 to 24 October.

Visitors will be welcomed by over 100 local and international galleries, with a huge array of contemporary artworks to suit every taste, whether you're looking for bold and bright or suave and subtle, larger than life or delicately detailed. It's the perfect chance to get closer to art, and revel in the remarkable output of this international creative community.

If visiting over the weekend with little ones from 10-11am, they'll be able to enjoy kids' activity packs and face painting.

Visit www.affordableartfair.com to book.

Work up a sweat at Old Street's new F45 studio

You can always rely on London to provide the very best options for working out, and F45 is no exception. This Australian-born cult workout is rapidly growing in popularity – and it's easy to see why.

F45 is specifically designed to provide a functional full-body workout while improving energy levels, metabolic rate, strength, and endurance, with trainers helping you work up such a sweat, you can burn up to 820 calories in one 45 minute session. Get your sweat on whilst raising your heart rate to a live DJ, and push yourself to reach your fitness goals. Check out F45's newest studio in Old Street for state of the art equipment and impressive F45 technology.

To check out the new studio, visit f45training.co.uk/oldstreetlondon

Hire a private chef for your next dinner party

Love having people over for dinner but find that the cooking and the hosting can all get a bit much? Cue: YHANGRY. The online catering company, founded by two friends and former work colleagues Heinin Zhang and Siddhi Mittal (and as seen on Dragon's Den), allows you book a private chef to your home, whether you're planning a romantic meal for two, or a dinner party for six. Everything is taken care of; you simply need to start by picking your menu and booking date. There's a wealth of cuisine to choose from, including Pan Asian, Italian and Indian, as well as brunch options, canapé selections and even Sunday roast dinners.

Once you've selected your menu, the groceries will be delivered to your house ahead of your dinner date. On the day, your private chef will whip up your meal using your cookware, utensils and appliances, then leave your kitchen clean and tidy for yourselves and your guests to enjoy dinner. It really is as easy and simple as it sounds. YHANGRY also sends out personalised menus and invites to your guests – a cute touch to kick off the celebrations.

To book a private chef, visit yhangry.com

Treat your dog to afternoon tea

Who says afternoon tea is strictly for hoomans anyway? Drake & Morgan King's Cross has just launched a dog-friendly afternoon tea, inviting pooches and their owners to have a paw-fect Sunday afternoon in the city. The restaurant's Sipsmith Gin Afternoon Tea features savoury delights like mini fish and chips and Brick Lane salt beef bagels, and of course gin cocktails, for the humans, while their furry four-legged friends can tuck into treats like the Puppy Dog Paw Loaf and Doggie Brekkie. The afternoon tea may not be the best you'll try in London, but the experience is guaranteed to be a lot of fun for your pooch. It takes place every Sunday from 1 to 4:30pm and is priced at £49.95 for two people, plus £15 per pup.

To book a table, visit drakeandmorgan.co.uk

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