Having lived in London for six years, I’ve seen my fair share of bright lights, headlights and even the odd blue light. As such, I have also enjoyed, weathered and endured my fair share of experiences in many of London’s clubs, pubs, bars and venues. Consequently, here’s a quick lo-down of three of London’s most exciting, innovative and plain fun nights out – from an insider’s perspective.
The Alternative Bar Crawl
Organised pub crawls weren’t the big business they are now when I first arrived in London. Now they are, some of the organised crawls that hit London’s central venues have become a bit ‘touristy’ – which is absolutely fine if it is a night of revelry with like minded folk in some of London best known clubs and bars that you are after. If, though, you’re heading to London hoping to immerse yourself in a crowd of people that are less touristy and more ‘authentic’ (for want of a better word), The Alternative Pub Crawl operated by Nights Gone Wild will not disappoint.
The Alternative Pub Crawl is orientated around the East End and Shoreditch and provides pub ‘crawlees’ with ample opportunity to see a side of London almost untouched by the majority of tourists. Instead, bar crawl goers get VIP access to the sort of night, scene and shenanigans enjoyed by locals, inhabitants and the Capital’s bright young things on any given night in London town.
Antics and Acrobatics
One place that never fails to please both locals and visitors is Aeronaut. Aeronaut is quite simply a pub like no other. Combining all the best aspects of a decent London pub with all the most exciting aspects of the circus (yes, I said the circus), Aeronaut exemplifies and celebrates the two sides of London’s personality; it is one part British pub where a decent pint can be had and enjoyed in a leafy beer garden and one part bursting with colour, confusion, excitement and shocking acrobatic displays. Aeronaut patrons can roll up for a good old roast dinner, washed down with a selection of home brewed ales before partaking in a midweek pub quiz…and return come the weekend to find the Aeronaut event space decked out like the inside of a high top circus tent, stuffed with hula hoopers, jugglers, dancers and acrobats.
The atmosphere at Aeronaut is a surprisingly casual, embracing and warm one. That is, in a pub filled with entertainers, acrobats, circus folk and tipsy patrons, people here actually speak to one-and-another. Hence, for a fantastic introduction to the Jekyll and Hyde duality that make London so brilliant, Aeronaut is the place to go.
London’s Best Kept Secret
I’d like to spill the beans on a little known of club called The Candlelight Club. The first thing to mention about The Candlelight Club is that I cannot give an address or location, as the Club quite simply doesn’t have one; instead, the candlelight club is what the club itself likes to be understood as ‘ a clandestine pop-up cocktail bar located in a secret London venue’. Fortunately, even the folk responsible for the club are a bit too charismatic and excitable to forego the formality of providing a web address. Hence, to learn more about the mysterious and magical goings on of the club visit the Candlelight Club website.
While the venue might be a closely kept secret, the dress code certainly isn’t; when this club pops up, expect to find gaggles of flapper wearing, feather headband donned and pinstripe loving party goers disappearing like apparitions down some of Central London’s darkest alleys and behind its most inconspicuous looking doors. Bemusing and amusing for passers-by, no doubt, those joining in can expect a night of live music, cigar smoking, alternative DJing and cocktails worth going Art Deco for.