May Bank Holiday 2016: How to Have the Perfect Weekend
Got a long weekend ahead of you and looking for things to do in London and beyond to fill the bank holiday? Take a look at our suggestions below for fantastic activities in and around England, whatever your budget.
Note: it's worth checking the opening hours of places mentioned here, as they sometimes do odd things (or close completely) over bank holiday weekends.
Hit up London's Culpeper Roof Garden
You’ll get double the gherkin at this idyllic inner-London spot, since The Culpeper’s rooftop space is used to grow vegetables for its kitchen, as well as for rooftop drinking with City views. The cocktails from the cute greenhouse bar are of real quality and pack in loads of herbs from the neighbouring beds.
Head to Britain's premier literary festival
The annual Hay Festival
is not just about high-minded academics discussing their latest tomes. The celebration of literature and performance incorporates poetry, speaking events, workshops and demonstrations. Famous names speaking at this year’s event include Simon Armitage (Sunday May 24), with poems on Somerset, Devon and Cornwall, and Marina Warner in conversation with the winner of the Man Booker International Prize.
When: until May 31
Eat at London's most talked about new "foodie" restaurant
The third venue from Moro and Morito chef proprietors Sam and Sam Clark, Morito on Hackney Road fuses Spanish, North African and Eastern Mediterranean cuisine to produce a menu that references the best elements of the two existing restaurants but offers diners something new entirely. Among the new dishes on offer are aubergine manti with yoghurt and pistachios, and kid mechoui with goat’s curd, preserved lemon and harissa. Interiors have been designed in collaboration with artist Dillwyn Smith and include a horseshow-shaped marble-topped bar and bespoke Dinesen Douglas Fir furniture.
Take a walk along our glorious coastlines
May is National Walking Month and even if the weather is not at its best in your part of the country, a long walk across field and fen is a good way to blow away the cobwebs. Telegraph Travel has detailed numerous itineraries around the UK coastline, all on National Trust land.
Head to the alternative Chelsea
London's “alternative gardening festival” – Chelsea Fringe – celebrates everything that is pleasing about cultivating one’s own patch of land, be that by installing art or participating in a grassroots (sorry) community project. This year’s spectacles include an installation on the site of Bedlam hospital that will explore how plants have been used in the treatment of mental health conditions throughout history, as well as the rather less dour wildflower bee hotel on Turnham Green, and a dry stone wall workshop in Crossbones Garden.
When: until June 7
Join the scone debate
Jam or cream first? Along with other first-world problems, such as jam flavour preferences and the aesthetics of scones, cream teas are big business in the south-west, and delicious country-wide. It's National Cream Tea Day on June 26, but that doesn't mean you can't go for one of the traditional high teas beforehand.
Living in London? For a great afternoon tea, try Brown’s Hotel, Scandal Water, The Ritz, or Ichi Sushi for an untraditional afternoon tea.
Spice up your life at Kew Gardens
Give a second thought to the ingredients you use on a day-to-day basis at "Full of Spice", a celebration of all things piquant at Kew Gardens. There will be a series of workshops and talks, including the chance to make unique spice blends using a “Super-Computer”, guided tours of Kew's spicy plants, spicy bread making sessions, and rickshaw rides around the gardens.
When: May 23-September 6
Sip England's best reds and whites
OK, so we don’t have France's cachet, Italy's rolling vineyards or Georgian cool, but England has an increasing number of delicious wines. Tastings and tours take place across the country, including at the Marlow Winery, Humbleyards Vineyards, Pasture Vineyards in the Midlands and at venues across London. Is it a coincidence that the week coincides with half-term, for all the frazzled parents out there?
When: May 24-31
(Source: The Telegraph