Spring into spring with London’s top festivals and events

Spring is one of the best times to explore London, and in March there are a host of new activities, exhibitions and festivals to enjoy. Discover our top 5 and enjoy a cultural start to spring in the capital.

1. The Affordable Art Fair


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Vacation souvenirs don’t come much cooler than a good piece of art (at a good price), and the Affordable Art Fair in Battersea promises just that. Featuring works by some of the best up-and-coming and established artists in the UK and beyond, you can find sculptures, photography and original prints starting at just £100. Held in Battersea from 7th-10th, tickets start at £10 for adults.

The Affordable Art Fair

2. WOW: Women of the World Festival


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Coinciding with International Women’s Day on 8th March, the two-day WOW festival returns to the capital this year with a host of performances, discussion and debates that put women at the centre of the story. Held at various venues around the Southbank Centre in Waterloo, highlights include women’s rights activist and writer Angela Davis in conversation, the launch of Margaret Busby’s New Daughters of Africa Anthology and British Comedian Jo Brand’s Born Lippy: How to do Female

WOW Festival

3. The Orchid Festival at Kew Gardens


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Now in its 24th year, the annual Orchid Festival at Kew will bring a little taste of Colombia to the heart of London until 10th March. The greatest example of biodiversity anywhere in the word, Colombia has more than 4,720 species of orchid alone. See the beauty of this delicate flower in all its colours, shapes and sizes, with thousands of orchids arranged to represent the landscapes and wildlife of this exotic country – from a forest zone complete with jaguars to a multi-coloured Caño Cristales river made entirely of flowers. Discover the legend of El Dorado in blossom form, see floral sloths, turtles and toucans and enjoy a bite in the glasshouse film room, which has been transformed into a Bogotá-themed eatery complete with vibrant murals.

Kew Gardens

4. London Beer Week


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Keeping with the party theme, from 12th-18th March visitors to London can sample some of the UK’s best craft beers, as London Beer Week descends on the capital. Now in its second year, the festival is held at a variety of locations, including the Old Truman Brewery in east London – the designated London Beer Week Hub – and The Whisky Exchange at Covent Garden. Snap up a wristband for just £10 and you can enjoy craft beers for just £3, a snip compared to prices in most pubs. Those with a head for spirits can also splash out on £5 boilermakers, a mix of bourbon and beer!

London Beer Week hub

5. St Patrick’s Day


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Ireland’s patron saint comes into his own in London from March 16-18, when the city stages its annual St Patrick’s Day Parade from Piccadilly Circus to Trafalgar Square and iconic buildings are lit up with neon emerald lights. Enjoy traditional music and dance performed on passing floats topped with giant green leprechauns, savour Irish cuisine at the Irish street food market, sip a pint (or two) of Guinness at one of the city’s many Irish pubs, and enjoy great craic (Gaelic for 'good time').

St Patrick’s Day Parade
15 Apr 2019(last updated)