Among the long list of things to do in London is experiencing London nightlife, so below I am guiding you through the London nightlife areas. Whether you want to check out Soho clubs and bars, experience punk and techno in Camden, edgy and hip in Shoreditch, of if you want a little hip-pop with a Carribean vibe in Brixton, there is plenty of cool and amazing nightlife in London waiting to be experienced. So if you are looking tips on the best places for a night out in London, read on!
The beauty of London lies in its variety. This big, beautiful and bodacious metropolis is a melting pot for different cultures and with that, you have this rich mix of places serving up entertainment to satisfy whatever your soul is yearning for.
Want soul music? We have that in spades. Prefer it in the background as you dine? Want live music? Want to dance like its 1999? Well, there are clubs serving up dance tunes whether you want techno, punk or want to dance to 80’s tunes, there are clubs for every genre of music that floats your boat!
The Best London Nightlife Areas Perfect For Evening Entertainment and Partying
Below is a guide to the best London areas for nightlife, whether you are here for a little weekend stint a week-long vacation or a longer stint. There is something for students budgets to the very luxury of custom-tailored evening entertainment where you can sample the best districts in London.
If your idea of the best nightlife in London is pubs, clubs for dancing, casinos or cool bars with great music London as all that and then some. Among the places mentioned below, you will also find the best bar areas in London for an easy evening for conversations over a drink.
Nightlife In Camden
Camden is not just known for one of the coolest markets in London but the bars and clubs in Camden draw the crowds in their own right. There pubs, music venues for play host to many concerts from small to the large. Similar to Shoreditch with alternative street art and live music almost every night.
There are also plenty of night clubs in Camden. Music has part of live in Camden. This is also where Amy Winehouse lived here. You can find some of the coolest and quirkiest bars in Camden. Check out Brewdog, Camden Assembly, Blues Kitchen, and Fifty Five to name a few.
For the best clubs in Camden include the Underworld, Electric Ballroom and Jazz Cafe.
Nightlife In Westend, Soho and Covent Garden
Soho is home to a great mix of entertainment hubs. From cellar bars to Londons largest if not the UK’s LGBT scene. There are plenty of Gay bars serving up all manner of entertainment for the LGBT folks. Soho, Piccadilly Circus, Leicester Square, Tottenham Court Road and including Covent Garden and Mayfair here too. This is where you will find plenty of good pubs near Tottenham Court Road like The Dog and Duck Pub or The Guinea near Oxford Street.
Towards Strand and Shaftsbury Avenue you have cocktail bars, here you will also find Ronnie Scott’s famous jazz bar. Among one of my favourite places in London for a good dose of live jazz performances. Greats like Ella Fitzgerald and Miles Davies have performed here. Westend also plays host to a couple of speakeasy bars, like Cahoots just off Carnaby Street of which I shared in my post on things to do in London at night.
Soho and the Westend as far as nightlife areas in London as concerned. There is plenty! This is the place in London that never sleeps. Open 24/7, there are restaurants that are open all day and night. Many of the bars and clubs in Soho London open until 6am. There are a couple of nightclubs by Leicester Square, in the heart of Soho and near Covent Garden too. If you are looking to club-hop there are plenty here where you can find the music you want to vibe to.
Nightlife In Shoreditch And Hackney
If you are looking for cool, quirky and funky night clubs in Shoreditch London, there are plenty! From Shoreditch and stretching all the way to Kingsland Road and Hackney, there are plenty of cool hangouts to fill your evenings for the whole week. Kingsland Road has a strip of pubs, bars, clubs, restaurants and gig venues for whatever entertainment you are in the mood for.
In the heart of city, you have night clubs in central London’s Shoreditch. I shared tips on top things to do in Shoreditch recently. You can find indie shops, cheap food, markets, galleries, bars and nightclubs.
Places to check out for bars and nightclubs in Shoreditch include:
- The Queen of Hoxton: pub, club and everything in between – offers an eclectic mix over two fun floors, with DJs playing on a cutting-edge disco/house tip on the weekends. They also have a rooftop perfect for summer evenings.
- Trapeze: a two-floor venue with a bar and kitchen up top and an intimate basement club down below. The house, disco and funk feel of East Village’s programming remains a fixture at Trapeze. Open Tues-Thurs 4pm-2.30am; Fri-Sat 4pm-3.30am.
- The Horse & Groom: a pub-clubbing venue in Shoreditch. During the day, it’s a good old East End boozer, but at night, the two-floor space turns into a disco hotspot.
Dream Bags Jaguar Shoes: A trendy Shoreditch hangout split over two floors where you can catch exhibitions and club nights too.
- East Village: one of the East End’s best medium-sized venues, East Village is spread across two floors with a laid-back lounge space on the ground floor and a serious beat basement below. The top-notch, eclectic programming of DJs at East Village should suit any sophisticated clubber, with everything from monthly reggae sessions from old master David Rodigan to the finest house, disco and techno sounds.
Nightlife In Kensington And Chelsea
Among the best London nightlife areas for a classy night out in London. In Kensington and Chelsea, you can find London’s top clubs and bars. If you want to experience London nightlife on the stylish scene then this is where to head to. If you feel like a little jazz over cocktails then check out 606 Club and Barts in South Kensington for a speakeasy-themed cocktail bar.
For something super trendy check out Tonteria in Sloane Square. While you are in the area you also have Eclipse South Kensington and Ritorno on Kings Road all of which are just the perfect spot in London for London nightlife with a touch of glam.
Nightlife In Brixton
Brixton has always had a mix of Carribean vibes to it but has seen a lot of gentrification in recent years and with that a slew of new restaurants and bars has arrived altering the vibe. There are spots to grab the latest street food trends or the most in-demand craft beers.
You can still find a little of the area’s originality to grab the best jerk and fried. It is still one of the cool places to go out in London. Brixton offers nightclubs, jazz cafes, cool bars and still is one of the best party areas in London. Places like Phonox, Aquum and The Blues Kitchen offer places to dance.
For places to grab a drink in Brixton, check out The Prince of Wales or Crown and Anchor for pubs in Brixton worth checking out. For the best cocktail bars in Brixton head to The Shrub and Shutter, Three Eight Four, Cattivo and Effra Social.
Nightlife In Southbank And City Of London
One of my favourite places to hang out in London any time of day is Southbank. This place is alive at all hours. More so in the evening. There are bars, there are restaurants and cafes, cinemas and markets. If you are looking for cool things to do at night without too much fuss. This is the place to be and one of the best best place to stay in London for nightlife. Many bars here come with views of the river. They now have music to the mezzanine outside the Elizabeth Hall just about the Skate park and there is usually a stage for dancing both day and night so if you want to dance there is something for you as well.
If you are looking for something upscale then head further up the river towards London Bridge. You can stop and Mondrian which has a lovely Rumpus Room and further along the river is The Shard which has GONG Bar. Usually dimly lit creating an ambiance of mystery and intrigue about it. We visited this place last year and loved it!! Located in the Shangri La Hotel which I had the pleasure of staying in, GONG Bar comes with stunning views across the city as you chill out to music and cocktails.
This is the highest hotel bar in Europe! For similar views check out The Sky Garden and Skylounge Double Tree Hilton. Across the river, there is also another popular place on the London city nightlife scene. Just by St Paul’s Cathedral, you will find Madison Bar which I have posted about on the blog.
In the city, you have plenty of people who work hard and play hard so there are plenty of funky clubs in London that cater to this crowd. There are also pubs too to check out. Many of these are close to the river and by Borough Market too. Nightlife spots are plenty to suit whatever you feel like when evening comes.
Nightlife In Greenwich, Canary Wharf And Docklands
One of the financial hubs in London. Another spot in London where folks play as hard as they work. Here you also have another Ronnie Scott as well as a long list of trendy bars, some of which come with stunning views. I have had the pleasure of having many a project in Canary Wharf and many an evening night out for drinks.
This is not only another one of the best places for a night out in London if you want to hang out with city slickers. Canary Wharf is constantly changing and love the recent addition to their list of cool bars in Canary Wharf. The Big Easy, an American-style barbecue and seafood joint with a Jamaica-influenced rum bar. It’s open from 7am everyday!! There’s nightly live tunes too.
There there is the sky-high restaurant and bar over Novotel in Canary Wharf. Bōkan’s bar is up on the 38th floor of the hotel, with amazing views of London’s skyline. Going out in London tonight and looking for somewhere easy-going with views and a long list of cocktails and wine list. This is the place to check out.
Another place in Greenwich that is now making a mark among London nightlife areas, is the O2. There are bars and restaurants that have popped up now that this is a fully-fledged entertainment venue for concerts and sports. Open 7 days a week until late.
One of the places to go out in London’s Greenwich district is the LA Lounge. Its a two-floor nightclub on the waterside playing a mix of pop, rock and urban music. For something easy you can also check out The Grapes. A small but historical Pub said to have been visited by Dickens and Wilde. You also have river views on the back.
If you are a student at UEL another cool hang out is the Underground Bar.
Elephant and Castle
Not a lot of tourists hang out around this side much but if and when you make this side you will not be disappointed as you mingle with the locals. Here you will find one of the best places to go dancing in London.
This is where you will find the Ministry of Sound, the home of dance music. Opened in 1991 and inspired by New York’s cavernous house venues. The club consists of four rooms: The Box, The 103, The Baby Box and The Loft. Each and everyone is worth checking out. If you want to dance, this is where to go.
Where To Stay In London For Nightlife
As far as where to stay in London for nightlife, the above London nightlife areas offer great options for hotels, bed and breakfast and hostels. There is everything from budget to luxury. I have shared tips on where to stay in Soho, hotels near the London Eye on Southbank, cool hostels in London for partying as well as a comprehensive guide to best areas to stay in London for tourists and tips on the best place to stay in London for nightlife. For more options on where to stay to experience London nightlife click here for hotels in London covering every budget and party size.
Getting Around London At Night
London Transport at night just got easier as we now have London tubes running 24 hours for some lines. Check out the Night Tube map here for lines running 24 hours. Currently, Night Tube runs on Fridays and Saturdays on the Victoria, and on Jubilee. Then parts of the Central, Northern and Piccadilly lines.
If you are using Uber and Taxi just make sure the car and driver match what the app says and always ask them to confirm the name not the other way around. Remember that black cabs may be significantly expensive. Many now accept credit cards but always just before getting in.
There you have it, places to experience the best nightlife in London. Whether you want to see Friday night out in London or Saturday night out in London. We have the best place for drinks in London to satisfy all tastes.
How many of the bars above have you been to? Which one of the London nightlife areas is your favourite?