The 21 best things to do in London in January

things to do in London in January
Westminster Abbey – this month you can make your own crown during a family activity

The Christmas trees have been taken down, the kids are back at school and the days are still dark and cold. But don’t worry, there is still a lot going on in London in January 2022 to help keep the festive sparkle going for a little bit longer.

Best of all, it looks like – fingers crossed – that there are no further restrictions planned.

January tends to be a quiet time of year in London so it’s a good time to see some of the city’s most popular attractions such as Buckingham Palace or the Tower of London and the Crown Jewels without the crowds. Don’t forget that museums including the British Museum and the Tate Modern are always a good way to escape the cold weather. If visiting with young children make sure to pick up an explorer trail from the British Museum.

In central London, Covent Garden is always fun to visit with children and Borough Market is a great – and tasty – way to spend an afternoon. As is afternoon tea!

If you’re looking for things to do in London that don’t cost much money then take a look at our guide to the best free things to do in London with kids.

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Hogwarts in the Snow

There’s still one more week to visit Hogwarts in all its winter wonderland glory. Hogwarts in the Snow, which for the first time ever includes the Forbidden Forest, have been decorated for the festive season with Christmas trees in the Great Hall, wreaths and a dusting of snow. The last day for Hogwarts in the Snow at Warner Bros studio is January 16.

Natural History Museum Ice Rink

Have one final spin around the ice before the legendary ice rink at the Natural History Museum closes for good – the space is being transformed into a new urban garden. The ice rink is open until January 16.

See Cirque du Soleil Luzia at the Royal Albert Hall

The always amazing Cirque du Soleil is back this year at the Royal Albert Hall this time with a Mexican-inspired show, Luzia. Expect jaw-dropping acrobatics, beautiful costumes and a celebration of Mexican culture.

Singing with the Sea at The British Library

The British Library is hosting two workshops on Saturday January 29. Join artist Helen Rousseau and Musician Paul Rubinstein to play, create and explore all the wonderful sounds of the coast; create your own boat costume while listening to sea shanties from the museum’s sound archive and sing along with songs before writing your own.

The workshops are 1.5 hours long and will be held at 10.30am and 1pm.

things to do in London in January
Tower Bridge – this month test your drawing skills and knowledge of Tower Bridge during a fun family activity

Bring It On at the Southbank Centre 

The smash-hit Broadway cheerleading musical is tumbling around the Queen Elizabeth Hall at the Southbank Centre until January 22. The show stars Amber Davies and Olympic gymnast Louis Smith. Book tickets here.

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

The annual Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition is now on at the Natural History museum showcasing some of the world’s best wildlife photographers as they capture “the natural world in all its fragility and diversity”. The 100 photographs on display are always amazing. The exhibition runs until 5 June.

Titanic: The Exhibition

Opening earlier than planned is Titanic: The Exhibition, an immersive experience that takes visitors on board the world’s most famous ship. Discover 200 original objects never before seen in the UK, listen to stories from passengers on board and walk through life-size, detailed recreations of the ship’s interior.

The exhibition takes place in at Dock X in Canada Water. Family tickets are available.

Crown making at Westminster Abbey

To celebrate 70 years of HM Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, Westminster Abbey is hosting a family crow making activity on selected dates between January 8 and February 5. The activity is included in the price of admission. 

Ice rink at Canary Wharf

The ice rink at Canary Wharf is welcoming skaters until Saturday February 26 so you have plenty of time to get your skates on. New for 2022 are skates with colourful LEDS attached to them to add some sparkle to your ice skating moves – and light up the winter nights. The park is located in Canada Square Park.

Lewisham Borough of Culture

This year the London Borough of Culture goes to Lewisham and the ‘We Are Lewisham’ festivities kick off on 28 January with live music at transport hubs, create challenges and workshops as well as a mass collective dance moment. The programme runs throughout the. year with events celebrating Lewisham’s people communities, and stories.

Chocolate Workshops at Somerset House

Just in case the kids didn’t eat quite enough chocolate over Christmas there’s still time for them to indulge their sweet tooth (teeth?) at Somerset House on January 15 and 16. The one-hour sessions teaches budding chocolatiers the history of chocolate and how chocolate is made, before showing them how to decorate their own chocolate masterpiece.

Children’s Workshops last one hour for ages 5 to 13-years-old, parents are required to remain in the West Wing of Somerset House during the session. Workshops cost £20 per child.

things to do in London in January
Take a final skate around the ice skating rink at the Natural History Museum

Tower Bridge Family Activities 

On Saturday January 15 Tower Bridge is hosting a drawing challenge for families. Test your drawing prowess and your knowledge of the tower itself in this fun, family-friendly activity. 

Family activities are drop-in and included in the price of admission, meaning you can join at any time between 10am – 4pm. 

Beano: The Art of Breaking Rules

This popular exhibition celebrating the Beano gang – including Dennis and Gnasher, Minnie the Minx, Bananaman and the Bash Street Kids – runs until 6 March at Somerset House. Enjoy original comic artwork and amazing artefacts from the Beano’s archive; it’s a great place to spend the day and beat the January blues.

History in Action at the Old Royal Naval College

The Old Royal Naval College runs free family events on the third Sunday of the month. This month the session takes place on January 16 and the theme is Treasure Island Pirates. Children are invited to Become a pirate and discover the mysteries of a deserted treasure island.

These events are aimed at children aged 5-10, but all ages are welcome. No need to book but there is limited availability so that social distancing can be maintained.

The London International Mime Festival

Opening on January 12 and running until February 6 is the London International Mime Festival with a packed calendar of workshops and shows featuring everything from dance to puppetry. Take a look at the website for the full schedule.

Family shows at the Arts Depot

The Arts Depot in Finchley have a number of family-friendly shows taking place this month. On January 16 is Robin’s Winter Adventure (aimed at ages 3 – 7); on January 23 is Woodland Tales with Granddad, a puppet show for ages 3+; and on January 30 is Comedy Club for Kids.

Stars in the Sky at Half Moon Theatre

Aimed at children aged 4+ is the tale of Stella who sets out on a magical night time adventure to play with the stars. At the Half Moon Theatre, Saturday January 15 at 11am and 2pm.

Building as Body with Amy Leung at Camden Art Centre

Join artist Amy Leung for Building as Body, free family sessions exploring connections between the body and the Camden Art Centre building. The fortnightly sessions explore a range of different themes starting with skin on January 16 and Networks & Systems on January 30. 

The free Family Takeover sessions are aimed at children aged between 3 – 12 years and run from 2 – 4.30pm. Advance booking is required. 

Pond-dipping at Camley Street Natural Park

Join in the fun at the Family drop in day at Camley Street with pond-dipping, mini-beast hunting and a nature trail. Sunday 16 January, 10.30am – 3.30pm 

Family Sundays at the Royal Opera House

Unfortunately the Family Sunday events at the Royal Opera House have sold out for January but do bookmark the page as there are more events coming up in the next few months. These workshops allow families to discover more about opera, ballet and the Royal Opera House itself.

The Little Prince at the Kings Place

Enjoy a spellbinding performance by Matthew Crampton as he tells his version of famous French tale, The Little Prince. Accompanied by pianist Olga Jegunova, this unique fusion of words and music promises to captivate and delight. 

Sunday January 23 at the Kings Place, 3pm. Tickets £9.50-11.50. Family offers are available. 

Things to do in London in February

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