Looking for the best things to do in London in January 2023? Look no further than HELLO!'s guide of the newest restaurants, best shows and exciting exhibitions
As we hit 2023, we're all about doing more of what we love in our favourite city - London. January is notoriously glum, so why not brighten those blues and make some plans with your loved ones?
From vibey new restaurants to wholesome candlelit evenings, family-friendly things to do and romantic date night ideas, HELLO! writers have scoured the very best offerings in the capital this month. Scroll on for the ultimate guide to things to do in London in January.
MORE IDEAS: 33 best things to do in London when it rains
Best luxury things to do in London in January
Treat yourself to a luxury manicure at Petit Townhouse in Mayfair
Beat the January blues with a blissful manicure at Petit Townhouse in Mayfair, a sparkling new salon that is the height of luxury. Whether you're after the perfect set of crisp gels, overlay, nail art or removal, Townhouse has got you covered. The salon is only a few minutes
stroll from Bond Street tube station and is nestled in The House of Elemis.
Why not visit the brand's other celebrity-approved salons which are dotted around London? Locations include Notting Hill, Liverpool Street, Knightsbridge, Kensington, Fitzrovia, Cribbs Causeway and Milton Keynes. What better way to kick off the new year than with some new nails, right?
Wilkommen, Bienvenue, Welcome to the Kit Kat Club's Möet & Chandon Suite
Looking for a glimmer of pre-theatre glamour? The Moët & Chandon Suite at the Kit Kat Club will offer unforgettable hospitality to intensify the enjoyment of Ambassador Theatre Group’s and Underbelly’s award-winning production of Cabaret. With a capacity of twenty-six, the Moët & Chandon Suite is intimate, sumptuous, and ornately decorated, the perfect private theatre hideaway.
Boasting its own bartender and VIP host, guests of the suite will be offered exclusive entry to the club, enjoy the best seats, and benefit from a dedicated space (with private bathrooms) throughout the pre-show and interval. This new offering will give audiences the opportunity to enjoy champagne, cocktails, and a specially crafted food menu while entertaining friends, family, and colleagues within a dedicated private suite in the heart of the club. Have you booked your tickets yet?
Visit kitkat.club/cabaret-london for more information.
Delight at a performance from Cirque du Soleil
Returning to its coveted run at the Royal Albert Hall, Cirque du Soleil presents Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities from 13 January 2023. The mesmerising performance follows the journey of the Seeker who is convinced that there exists a hidden, invisible world – a place where the craziest ideas and the grandest dreams await. A collection of otherworldly characters suddenly steps into his makeshift mechanical world. When the outlandish, benevolent characters turn his world upside down with a touch of poetry and humour in an attempt to ignite the Seeker’s imagination, his curios jump to life one by one before his very eyes.
Don't miss it, book tickets at cirquedusoleil.com.
Get a hair glow up at GA salons
Treat yourself to a fresh haircut and colour this new year at GA Salons. Londoners looking for a luxurious experience will love the chic interiors and incredible stylists who use only the most nourishing, organic products and methods that are kind to your hair and scalp. Salons are located in Notting Hill, Chelsea, South Kensington, Westbourne Grove and Wimbledon.
To book visit gennarodellaquila.co.uk
Best alternative things to do in London in January
Be inspired by Lucian Freud New Perspectives at the National Gallery
The new year marks the perfect opportunity to marvel at Freud's lifetime of work in his first major exhibition for more than 10 years, bringing together his work from seven decades. Through more than 60 paintings, you will see the development of an artist: paintings of powerful public figures are followed by private studies of friends and family; the familiar, domestic setting gives way to the artist’s paint-splattered studio – a place that becomes both stage and a subject in its own right – and the approximated features of his earliest paintings are complemented by the expertly rendered flesh of his final works.
To book, visit www.nationalgallery.org.uk.
Discover the works of British artist Lynette Yiadom-Boakye at Tate Britain
Lynette Yiadom-Boakye is a British artist and writer acclaimed for her enigmatic portraits of fictitious people. This exhibition brings together around 70 works from 2003 to the present day in the most extensive survey of the artist’s career to date.
Catch it before it goes, book tickets at tate.org.uk.
Visit Brian May's exhibition Stereoscopy is Good For You: Life in 3-D
Stereoscopy is Good For You: Life in 3-D is an immersive experience held at the Proud Galleries and ;celebrates 3D photography and earth. The exhibition showcases the work of over a hundred modern stereo photographers sharing aspects of life that lifted their spirits during the Covid period.
Through his personal Instagram and the LSC’s social media platforms, legendary Queen guitarist Brian May invited stereoscopists everywhere to capture and share images of living under lockdown and beyond. This showcase is the result of that and spreads beauty through the uniquely powerful 3-D photographic medium. A book featuring the work of the stereo photographers is also available to purchase via londonstereo.com.
To book, visit proudgalleries.com. Stereoscopy is Good For you is on from 3 November 2022 to Saturday 25 March 2023.
Sing along to West Side Cabaret Story
Proud Cabaret is showcasing the very first cabaret adaptation of West Side Story in the UK. The show is an outrageous cabaret twist on the timeless love story we all know and love. The ultimate tale of passion and rivalry performed live on the Proud Embankment stage will include your favourite songs from the West Side Story score plus modern tracks.
What to expect? Spectacular dancers, acrobats, circus performers, aerialists and fire breathers all rolled into one production. Not to mention guests can indulge in an exquisite fine dining menu, and choose an ice-cold cocktail from the tantalising selection on the drinks list.
To book, visit proudcabaret.com.
Avoiding the rain? Catch a movie
Cosy up and watch a movie at one of London's most unique cinemas. From classic musical sing-alongs at The Prince Charles Cinema to an immersive viewing of the latest blockbusters at the BFI Imax, you won't be short of places to go. The Every Man Cinema is also popular with Londoners.
Find your local cinema at londonnet.co.uk/cinemas.
Experience some history at the Tower of London
Take a step back in time to explore the Tower of London, where you can learn about its history and see the Crown Jewels on display in the Jewel House – some of which are still used in royal ceremonies today. Book your tickets at hrp.org.uk. If you're planning a day of sightseeing you might want to look into a London Pass ticket.
To book Tower of London tickets, click here.
Play a game of mini golf at Swingers
If you're looking for an activity for a fun day out with your friends, look no further than Swingers. Choose between an English country golf club setting at Swingers City or a funfair-themed English riviera at Swingers West End where you can play a round of mini golf and enjoy lots of tasty treats and cocktails.
Throughout January, Swingers are offering a round of golf for just £11 per person during off-peak times and £13.50 per person during busier times - a great way to stay social whilst pinching the pennies after Christmas.
To book, visit swingers.club/uk
Watch Newsies and make the most of Wembley Park
Based on a true story, Newsies is set in New York City at the turn of the 20th century, where the young newsies from across the city come together and rise up against the exploitation of wealthy publishing tycoons and fight for justice using the only power they have – solidarity. You'll be cheering and tapping your feet by the end, but make sure your visit to Wembley Park isn't just a triumphant show! With a Boxpark, restaurants (we love Pasta Remoli), and even a designer outlet, you can have a whole day (or weekend!) of fun, and is perfect for everyone: friends, families, and couples.
Join Tomb Raider: The Live Experience
Situated in Camden Stable’s Market, visitors can combat the January Blues alongside Lara Croft with a morning fitness or wellness session before taking on the day ahead. With five sessions that include strength and conditioning, yoga, guided dance, mindfulness, nutrition, and calisthenics resistance. Visitors can opt for a high-energy workout session or retreat for a calming talk on nutrition before taking on the globe-trotting journey through the LIVE experience.
To book visit: www.tombraiderlive.co.uk
Shoot your shot at Clay's Canary Wharf
London’s premier indoor virtual shooting experience bar has now opened its doors to the second site in Canary Wharf’s buzzy West India Quay, bringing a slice of the British countryside to East London. Designed to emulate the classic British sport of clay target shooting in game form, players can book this unique take for a thrilling 90-minute experience for groups of up to 20 people. As well as offering a truly unique activity, Clays Canary Wharf also offers an impressive food and drink menu meaning guests can settle in and savour the experience.
To book visit: www.clays.bar
Best restaurants and bars to visit in London in January
Take your bottomless brunch to new heights at Wagtail
Have we just found London's most luxurious bottomless brunch? Wagtail has just launched its ultra-indulgent offering for weekend brunchers, which features a simple but sumptuous menu including elegant and light breakfast favourites and flavoursome sides.
Their latest menu focuses on classic dishes with a modern twist, profiling the best of British produce, provenance, and seasonality. Diners can now pick from a grill menu which showcases Britain's most prestigious cuts including rare ancient beef breed White Park Chateaubriand, as well as Pan-seared Veal Chop, Olive-Fed English Wagyu Rib-eye, Grass-Fed Sirloin, or the Wagtail’s Butcher Burger. Guests can also choose from a number of main courses including the Whole Brill Meunière with Lemon and Caper Butter and Roast Guinea Fowl Breast with Green Lentils and Red Wine Jus.
If you're a fellow skyline seeker, you'll love this upscale rooftop restaurant offering breathtaking panoramic views across the city. Even the bottomless offering is elevated, with everything from vodka to gin, house wines and Prosecco on offer.
To book, visit wagtaillondon.com
Make the journey to Babur in Forest Hill - trust us, it's worth it
South Londoners truly are spoilt with Babur, a stunning restaurant that specialises in gourmet Indian cuisine and modish culinary creation. The menu strays away from the classics we have come to love as a nation, but don't be fooled - you certainly won't be pining for your chicken Korma when you taste the delights of Babur's Michelin-star menu. We dined out on clove-smoked lamb chops doused in roasted garlic yoghurt, followed by mouthwatering chicken labadar, swordfish tikka and creamy dal makhni that left us speechless after the first bite. Everything brought to the table was beautifully presented and packed with flavour, leaving us to savour every single bite until we unapologetically scurried home with takeaway boxes full of leftovers to delight in the next day.
It's clear to see why so many flock to this beloved restaurant. The staff are just as much of a delight as the delicious menu, and the excellently paired wine list and eclectic Asian-themed cocktails make for a truly special dining experience.
To book, visit www.babur.info
Côte's alpine menu brings the slopes to London
Côte Brasserie has become a favourite amongst city dwellers, theatre-goers, work lunchers and date nighters alike, loved for its elegant French-inspired cuisine and much-loved tempting Prix Fixe. If you dine at any of the restaurants this winter, you'll also be treated to their new alpine menu, inspired by the deliciously indulgent dishes on the slopes. Those wanting the taste of the French Alpes but without the travel can enjoy the classic Tartiflette, and 'Diots', a traditional French starter of smoked sausage and cherry tomatoes in white wine and caramelised onion sauce served with sourdough baguette.
We loved tucking into the apple and blackberry crumble tart doused in cinnamon ice cream. Don't miss the fiery spiced blood orange mule, perfect for warming up after a day in London's sub-temperatures this winter.
To book, visit www.cote.co.uk
Treat yourself to brunch at temper
Head down to temper on Saturdays to enjoy 90 minutes of free-flowing drinks and delicious smoky brunch classics. The new bottomless brunch menu including coal-roasted, dry-aged Belted Galloway beef, homemade smoked beef sausages and pork burnt end served with Andean yellow potatoes cooked in gochujang butter, fried eggs, charred ramiro peppers, red onions, bourbon-pickled chillies, paratha and chimichurri.
The new brunch will be available from 12-3.30pm every Saturday at temper Soho, temper Covent Garden and temper Shoreditch, and is priced at £45 per person.
Grab your table at temperrestaurant.com/reservations.
Celebrate Burns Night at The Cadogan Arms
Planning your Burns Night celebrations? The Cadogan Arms in Chelsea and The George in Fitzrovia have curated a three-course traditional Scottish menu in partnership with Aberfeldy Whisky. Both pubs will be kicking off the Burns Night celebrations on 25 January with a three-course menu, carefully curated by Executive Chef Alex Harper.
You’ll dine on Scottish favourites including Whisky Cured Smoked Scottish Salmon, Venison and Haggis Wellington and Scottish Raspberry and Whisky Chranachan to finish, all washed down with an accompaniment of Aberfeldy Single Malt Whisky. Priced at £75 per person, the three-course menu includes two Aberfeldy whisky cocktails and a dram of Aberfeldy 12yo.
Bookings are required, head to thecadoganarms.london to secure your spot.
Go booze-free in style
Giving dry January a go? Going alcohol-free doesn't have to be boring. Coco Restaurants are completely booze free, and once you've tried their mocktails you'll realise you don't even miss the hard stuff.
At Coco Grill & Lounge taste comes first but the theatrics are impressive too. We loved the dry ice show that accompanied our drinks and starters. There's a reason their mango and passionfruit mojito is the most popular (spoiler alert: it's delicious). Food wise? Shrimps to start and the salmon main were heavenly. With booze-free evenings looking this good, we just might consider dry Feb too!
Reserve your table now at coco-restaurants.com
Sip Cocktails at London’s hottest new destination
This January Markus Thesleff, multi-award-winning restaurateur, opened Viajante87, an innovative and experimental cocktail bar in the heart of Notting Hill. The intimate, high-energy hideaway will thread the Baja-Nihon energy of its sister Los Mochis, through all elements including cocktail, design, and bar bites. The cocktail development will be spearheaded by Bar Director Panos Kanatsoulis, with a dedicated mixology lab sprawling across the basement (with only a handful existing in London). The seductive yet elegant late-night destination will focus on 100% agave-based signature cocktails alongside all the classics, spanning the flavour and palette spectrum.
To book visit: www.viajantebar.com
Try Holland Park's latest Greek restaurant Vori
This neighbourhood restaurant will be offering creative seasonal dishes prepared in a charcoal oven, award-winning Greek wines, and award-winning beer from Greek microbreweries. Alongside the heart-healthy menu, visitors can order a variety of Greek-inspired cocktails, including an all-Greek Negroni, Vori Margaritas, and Greek Gin and Tonics - each crafted with Greek spirits and liqueurs.With olive green, white, navy blue, and terracotta orange tones, the restaurant will evoke an earthy Grecian landscape and provide a comfortable and relaxing escape from the tree-lined street.
To book visit: vorigreekitchen.co.uk
Make your Dry January decadent at Wagtail
Nestled in the eaves of one of the capital’s grandest art-deco buildings (with a seriously incredible view!) and at the gateway to the City of London, Wagtail serves up a grill menu which showcases their decadent meats, including rare ancient beef breed White Park Chateaubriand, as well as Pan-seared Veal Chop, Olive-Fed English Wagyu Rib-eye, Grass-Fed Sirloin, or the Wagtail’s Butcher Burger. Guests can also choose from a number of main courses including the Whole Brill Meunière with Lemon and Caper Butter and Roast Guinea Fowl Breast with Green Lentils and Red Wine Jus. Feeling like this doesn't quite align with your Dry January? They also have launched a Lighter Lunch menu complete with non-alcoholic cocktails - so there's no reason for your social life to suffer!
Immerse yourself in Park Row's Batman themed-menu
From the minute you arrive at Park Row, you know you're in for something good. Be it the curious doorman leading you through a hidden bookcase, or the towering light instalment guiding you down a spiral staircase to the Gotham City-inspired dining room, there's a reason this eclectic London hotspot has swiftly made its way to the bucket list of punters in the city.
It's difficult not to marvel at the creative cocktails that stay true to their DC theme, while the performance-based desserts see the restaurant light up as dollar bills disappear into flames at each table. Dining at Park Row is more than just a meal out, it's a culinary experience - made better by the highly accommodating staff and the enchanting addition of 'Dry Ice' in many of the dishes.
To book, visit parkrowlondon.co.uk.
Try Notting Hill's most exciting new brunch spot
If you're looking for the perfect new spot for a mouth-watering breakfast then look no further - Los Mochis in Notting Hill has got you covered. The Mexican-Japenese fusion eatery has everything you need from tacos to Masa Chicken & Waffles with honey-truffle fried chicken, maple syrup & whipped butter or even treat yourself to a hearty portion of churros.
Breakfast goers can also indulge in the most perfect tequila-spiked cocktails to wash down their fabulous food and the best part is the whole menu is gluten and nut free! You certainly won't want to miss the best new place start the day.
For more information visit Los Mochis.
Celebrate Burns Night in serious style at Seven Park Place
Because why not? Head to Seven Park Place at St James's Hotel & Club for a decadent feast (including the fanciest haggis you've ever had), exclusive for Burns Night. Beginning in Bar 1857, enjoy a glass of whisky from notable pours including Dalmore’s 15 Year Old Highland Single Malt or the signature Dalmore Port Wood Mackenzie Highball - the perfect tipple to kickoff your night. As the evening draws on, head to the intimate dining room for a tasting of Michelin starred chef William Drabble’s Menu Gourmand with dishes including Roasted Veal Sweetbread and Baron Bigod; black truffle with Calvados and Brioche Crumb. Exclusively for Burns Night, William will be serving his signature seasonal Haggis Raviolo, with confit turnips and Dalmore 12-year single malt and thyme jus.
Indulge in Town House's new sensory experience
If you're looking for an elegant dining experience in London, look no further than Town House at the Kensington. This candlelit spot makes for the perfect space to romance your loved one, whilst equally providing the perfect setting to catch up with friends. Their new sensory dining experience seeks to take visitors on a journey through the world of fragrance, partnering with coveted British perfumery brand Jo Loves, and legendary French aperitif, Lillet, on a menu based on pure escapism and discovery: The Golden Age.
This colourful menu guides your through the tastes of four cocktails inspired by four olfactory destinations – the rolling hills of Tuscany, a plentiful English Estate, the sun blanched landscape of the Mediterranean and the rich, vibrant vineyards of Provence - which will be paired with four Jo Loves scents. The perfectly paired cuisine is where this menu truly shines, with fragrant fresh prawns, buttery fillet steak and mind-blowing desserts that unite rich flavours with elegant, hearty food.
To book, visit townhousekensington.com.
Mark Lunar New Year at The Ivy Asia
The Ivy Asia, Mayfair, is making it impossible not to visit over the next few weeks, as they celebrate Lunar New Year. To mark the Year of the Rabbit, the restaurant has partnered up with Ki No Bi Gin to create a range of limited edition cocktails and sweet treats, with names such as The Good Fortune and the Lunar Martini. What's more, a beautiful golden rabbit installation is currently sitting outside the entrance of the venue - helping to bring good luck, peace, and prosperity to all.
To book, visit theivyasiamayfair.com
Best Veganuary options in London in January
Go vegan with Mildreds' Veganuary offerings
London’s most iconic vegan restaurant, Mildreds, is kickstarting 2023 with a Veganuary celebration inspired by the Vietnamese Lunar New Year. Known for having the tastiest vegan food in town, their limited-edition menu features three new dishes including sharing Tempeh Rice Cracker Cups filled with sesame tempeh, carrot pickles, mirabelle plum nuoc cham and peanuts followed by larger plates of Char Siu Mushroom Banh Mo, made with pulled oyster mushrooms, chilli mayo and mushroom pâté in a fresh baguette.
If you're in the mood for something light, try the Lemongrass Chick’n Goi Ga, a fragrant salad with pomegranate and pistachio. For those of you partaking in Dry January, the menu also includes three delicious, Vietnamese inspired no and low alcohol cocktails.
Mildreds' limited-edition menu runs from 2 – 31 January across all five London sites. For reservations, visit mildreds.co.uk.
Try Wagamama's new Veganuary offering - and give someone in need a wholesome meal
Wagamama leads the way with vegan food offerings and this January it's launching another delicious meal - a vegan 'chicken' kare lomen (udon noodles served in a nourishing bowl of coconut broth with a chilli kick, topped with ean teriyaki 'chicken'). It's really delicious and a delight for both vegans and those trying for the first time.
But in a new approach for 2023, Wagas is not only inviting us to enjoy a meal out in January, but also making sure we feel great about doing it. Working hand in hand with their new charity partner The Bread and Butter Thing, the chain will ensure that they deliver 1 million meals worth of food to low income families who use the charity to receive a more affordable weekly shop. Treat yourself and someone in need at the same time. Perfect.
Visit one of its many London restaurants, more info here.
Veganuary? Bill's has got you covered
Everyone's favourite brunch spot Bill's has just launched their new, Veganuary-friendly menu, full of dishes that are perfect for vegans, fully-fledged Veganuary challengers and those flexing it with meat alternatives from time to time. For those seeking a breakfast or brunch of champions, Bill’s is serving up the THIS™ Plant Plate with the new meat alternative bacon and sausages along with roasted plum tomatoes, mushrooms, fried potatoes, scrambled OGGS, baked beans & toast served with spicy sriracha sauce.
Looking on to lunch and dishing up for dinner, Bill’s is cooking up a storm with the THIS™ Isn’t Bacon Mac & Cheese, made up of vegan bacon lardons folded through a plant-based smokey cheese sauce and served with a green leaf salad.
Check out all their vegan delights at bills-website.co.uk.
Best active things to do in London in January
Relax with Yoga Healing Mornings
Join yoga instructor Francesca Liviero at Zen Yoga Studio in Camberwell for a morning of healing and connection. The classes offer yoga in a deeply calming and spiritual setting. The session will begin with a grounding meditation to help you connect with your body and feel supported in the new year. You will then be able to choose an angel card for guidance, and Francesca will give you an individual reading at the end of the session, when your cards are revealed.
She will lead you through a guided journaling session for self-inquiry before you begin the gentle vinyasa flow yoga practise. The yoga practise will end with a final meditation to leave you feeling rested. Enjoy a free healthy smoothie at your first class and yoga mats are provided.
To book, visit Wild Peace Tree Yoga. Prices start from £22 per session.
Desperate to escape London? Fun things to do abroad
Discover the magical new experiences on offer at Disneyland Paris
Whilst we've offered many fun activities to enjoy in London this January, you might be desperate to take a mini break, and where better than to Disneyland Paris, which has been celebrating its 30th Anniversary over the course of 2022.
Here you can enjoy their first ever nighttime drone show performed daily and dedicated to Marvel Super Heroes, which combines music, lights, pyrotechnic effects, video projections and up to 500 drones that will form an awe-inspiring series of icons representing the powers of iconic Super Heroes, including Captain America, Captain Marvel, Scarlet Witch and for the first time at Disneyland Paris, Shang-Chi.
For more information, visit disneylandparis.com
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