Something A Little Different in London

The capital is packed to the gunnels with bars - big bars, small bars, sports bars, cocktail bars, chain bars and independent bars. While this is great most of the time, finding something off the beaten track, something a little different in London, is often easier said than done. Never fear, when it comes to the more unique venues in the city we've kept our ears to the ground and rounded up a selection of cool London bars to help you on your hunt. Read our recommendations for where to find something a little a different on the London bar scene, and if you're looking for other quirky and fun events, check out our Events in London guide!

Last updated on 9th September 2020




It's time to add a big old dose of glitter and gold to your brunching habits with this new killer event; expect an hour of bottomless cocktails, two courses of brunch food and all the disco you can handle.

Step inside the Breaking Bad inspired ABQ RV for a unique cocktail masterclass that will be teaching you the basics of molecular mixology in style. Don you hazmat suit because things are about to get all kinds of crazy.

Merchant House

99 user reviews 5

Taste your way through Merchant House's fine collections of gin, rum and whiskey, with a masterclass dedicated to one of the spirits. 

A ball pit is definitely our idea of something a little different in London. Dive into one million different balls, enjoy unlimited pizza and drink two hours of bottomless prosecco on Saturdays or join the ball pit and cocktail bar madness. 

  The Murdér Express

722 user reviews 5

@ Pedley Street Station on Various dates from Friday 2nd October 2020

One of London's most popular immersive dining experiences, The Murdér Express is a train journey quite unlike any other. Head to Pedley Street station and climb aboard this luxury carriage for an evening of drinking, dining and crime-solving. When a murder is uncovered, you'll need to team up with your fellow diners to find the culprit and bring them to justice.

Come to Alcotraz, the high security prison that's hiding an alcoholic secret. Get in your orange jump suit, smuggle your favourite bottle of alcohol in, and Don't. Get. Caught. Then the fun can begin as one of the inmates shakes you up tailored cocktails from Shoreditch to Covent Garden.

Social gaming and drinking just got a whole lot more fun, as did your repertoire of unusual things to do in London; this is the new revolution, the new era of darts. Changing all pre-conceptions of what you think darts is about, it's not all balding men in waistcoats here. It's the darts digital age where you play games and your score is calculated for you. Now that's a bullseye. 

  The Big London Bake

699 user reviews 5

@ The Castle Tooting on Various dates from Tuesday 22nd September 2020

Perfect for any amateur bakers out there, The Big London Bake is a quirky event taking place this summer, revolving around all the yeast-based fun of baking. Guests will be split into teams of two before being set a handful of baking tasks. Pipe your way to the top with this quirky event in South London.

Tropicana Beach Club

1683 user reviews 4

Tropicana Happy Hour

Dressed as a tropical bar, the Tropicana Beach Club has become accustomed to dropping jaws and raising more than a few eyebrows. Covered by over 500 bird decorations, with huge palm trees stretching from the floor to the ceiling, a lagoon pool-style dance floor and various cabanas spread throughout, every aspect has been meticulously planned and arranged to transport everyone to a sun-drenched tropical beach. Alongside the menu of beach-grill inspired dishes on offer, the bartenders serve over 50 different types of rum and fruit infused cocktails.  

The Piano Works Farringdon

1247 user reviews 4

Winehouse Wednesday: 7pm til close every Wendesday and 5 other offers

Bursting full of character and loaded with songs that pull you to the dance floor, the Piano Works in Farringdon has changed the way London experiences live music. The team behind this venture take guests back to a time when couples danced in pairs to the latest music sensation and turn this Victorian warehouse into a haven of stellar singing and dubious dancing. Look no further for a quirky London night out. 

Notting Hill Arts Club

11 user reviews 4

Leading the way in West London's underground clubbing scene, Notting Hill Arts Club is an experimental space of raw and cool character, a far cry from the opulent clubbing meccas of Mayfair or Central. If you're looking for a night that's off the beaten path but where you'll find a spread of big beats to dance to - this is your calling card. 

This 8th March, celebrate International Women's Day, aka the most empowering date of the year, with a Legally Blonde film screening, silent disco, Beyonce orchestral addition, or one of the many other events and exclusive offers available.

Inamo Covent Garden

321 user reviews 4

Up to 50% Off - Eat Out To Help Out extension and 1 other offer

With orders placed via sleek tablets and tabletops that you customise with your own images, Inamo is the place to be for an interactive dining experience in London. Check in on executive chef Jon Claro and his team via chef cam, you'll find them conjuring up all kinds of pan-Asian tapas plates as well as a healthy choice of sushi and sashimi options. Check in at the downstairs bars for Oriental-themed cocktails afterwards.

Sounds Familiar Music Quiz

189 user reviews 5

Less of a pub quiz, more of a rowdy disco, Sounds Familiar is great fun from minute one. Useless trivia is no good here, it's all about scribbling down songs and artists played out loud, and having a right old sing-along in the mean time. A unique night out in London for the extroverts, Sounds Familiar will have you dancing on the tables and belting out your favourite tunes long into the night.

Top Secret Comedy Club

229 user reviews 5

The Top Secret Comedy Club has remained undetected by the masses for too long. We're here to spill the beans once and for all, shouting from the rooftops about a comedy club that welcomes top notch comedians for a night of thigh-slapping, rip-roaring jokes. There's an open bar serving cheap booze, an amazing atmosphere and the chance to meet lots of funny people along the way.

Thames Rockets

40 user reviews 5

This really is a unique way to take in the city. Hop about Thames Rockets for an unforgettable experience, you'll feel the wind in your hair as you zip past iconic landmarks with music blasting, and there's even a refreshing welcome cocktail ready for you arrival back to land. 

Simmons Fitzrovia

117 user reviews 4

The ultimately kitsch and oh-so-charming cocktail haven known as Simmons has to be a consideration when looking for somewhere unusual to drink in London. Something of a contemporary version of your nan's lounge, Simmons Fitzrovia is bathed in a neon ambience, where the cocktails pack quite a punch served in queen decorated china and the shelves are stacked with random memorabilia. 

Always fresh, innovative and colourful, Christabel's throws among the most creative pop-up experiences in London. Casting their net as wide as Mad Hatter's brunches, edible playgrounds and botanical speakeasies, each of these immersive drinking and dining experiences is held from a stunning location overlooking Regent's Canal.

Locked in a Room

1 user review 5

Puzzling, brain-teasing and heaps of fun, Locked in a Room is a cool concept taking place in ExCeL. Head over to the venue for a birthday, stag & hen do or just group of mates, to race against the clock and solve all the puzzles.

A Moroccan wonderland of belly dancing babes, Arabian entertainments and fragrant foods is what Kenza is all about. Take a seat on their plump, metallic cushions and experience a palate of Middle Eastern delights at this quirky restaurant in London. With classic Lebanese food and a dedicated cocktail lounge, you are guaranteed to leave this restaurant with a stomach full of great flavours and a smile etched across your face.. 

Blues Kitchen Shoreditch

53 user reviews 4

Bottomless Brunch!

A heaving, meaty mess of Deep South BBQ and music of the soul persuasion describes Blues Kitchen in Shoreditch. Dose up on heart-stopping recipes of burgers, pulled pork stacks and other Americana inspired treats as Blues is a carnivore's nirvana. The epic venue also plays host to live music of all funky, brass band and Motown sizes for one cool restaurant bar in London. 

  Paranormal Activity Tour

2 user reviews 3

@ Infront of Newspaper Stand Outside Farringdon Station on Friday 13th November 2020 and 27 other Fridays

Travel across London and uncover the bloody past of the city. With the help of Ouija boards, K2 meters, you will search for spirits and poltergeists in some of the scariest places in London, from abandon goal cells formally hosting the world's worst serial killers to mountains of bodies that commuters walk on every day.

The Exhibit

561 user reviews 4

Complimentary Espresso Martini for Diners Thursday & Friday Evening* t&cs apply

Covered head to toe in cool, The Exhibit's got a little bit of everything going on. There's beaut cocktails and freshly prepared British food for starters, but it's probably the eclectic entertainment that you'd know it best for. There's weekend comedy, life drawing classes and cutting-edge art exhibitions to look forward to, as well as cool London screenings from the inbuilt independent cinema.

Bashment Brunch

46 user reviews 4

Brought to you by the team behind Hip-Hop Brunch, Bashment brunch is a celebration of all things tropical music. Expect a raucous afternoon of banging music, tasty brunch dishes and unlimited booze, with plenty of party games thrown in food good measure.

  The Southbank BBQ Club

185 user reviews 4

@ The Southbank BBQ Club on Wednesday 23rd September 2020 and 4 other dates

If you're looking for one of the most unique dining experiences in London, this fun, hands-on BBQ experience is one to head for. Located on the banks of the Thames, The Southbank BBQ Club offers you the chance to grill up your own dinner, and they'll even let you bring your own drinks.

GIN-HOUSE BURLESQUE

101 user reviews 4

The King's Head is hosting another night of sexy burlesque and cabaret performances as Gin House Burlesque are back in town with their scintillating and captivating performances. With everything from a Josephine Baker tribute act to a ventriloquist, the night promises to put the spark back into your evenings.

The London Cabaret Club

75 user reviews 4

More than just an events venue, The London Cabaret Club combines fine dining with an innovative, interactive cabaret experience. Boasting a traditionally British theme that runs throughout, both the menu and the show here celebrate the rich heritage of British culture; both past and present. With exquisite dishes and a show packed full of West End stars, this promises to be quite the quirky night out in London. 

Puttshack Bank

874 user reviews 5

One of the funnest bars in the City, Puttshack's Bank location is the ultimate party location. Fronting some of the finest high-tech mini-golf in London, you can enjoy round-after-round of highly competitive action, with plenty of food and booze on hand to keep you fuelled up.

Aeronaut

232 user reviews 4

If you're looking for a bar with some serious character then Aeronaut is the place for you. Hosting some of the most weird and wonderful events in London, along with brunches, bingo nights and even fancy wine dinner, it's certainly something a little different in London.

Oddbins Events

1 user review 5

Private Hire Special

A far cry form your usual swilling affair, Oddbins offer something a little different in London when it comes to tutored tastings. Whether you want to learn about and drink wine, beer, spirits or some other liquor (do we hear whiskey?), the Oddbins team will tailor their event service around whatever you desire whilst simultaneously bringing some fun quizzes and games to the table too. 

Sipsmith

15 user reviews 5

Shake up your midweek routine by tuning in to one of Sipsmith's at-home masterclasses. You'll be sent an ingredients kit courtesy of The Cocktail Delivery Company ahead of time, and you'll also receive a virtual guide - helping you to create a selection of spicy and sweet sips.

If you're looking for a truly unique way to dine in London, check out Bustronome where you'll get to feast on fine dining delicacies expertly paired with delicious wines, in an unparalleled setting. The glass-topped top deck is sure to provide the perfect surrounding for your dinner. 

Toulouse Lautrec Jazz Club

485 user reviews 5

An intimate brasserie and wine bar tucked away in Kennington, nobody's debating Toulouse Lautrec's rep as one of the best places to catch live music in south London. Tailor-made for date night, come by for food and drinks with bohemian Parisian vibes while a 9-piece band playing anything from jazz to swing and funk to soul plays some silky smooth tunes into the evening.

One of the most unique open air cinemas in London this summer, this fun offering in the heart of Paddington is putting you and your pals in an 8-man boat and sending you for a float on Merchant Square. Alongside the aquatics action, you'll find them screening a top-notch array of fantastic films.

The Luna Cinema - London

42 user reviews 4

Looking to do something a little different this summer? Head on over to The Luna Cinema where they'll be screening a series of top-notch movies against the backdrop of some of London's most iconic locations. It's the perfect quirky date night idea, birthday treat and summertime hangout with mates. 

Venn St. Records

140 user reviews 4

Bringing some variety to the Clapham nightlife scene is Venn Street Records, a vinyl-clad, rock 'n' roll drinkers den fitted with vintage music memorabilia. Track down the large neon sign outside and follow the sounds of the live bands and DJ sets inside, there's happy hour offers every day and #CheapDate deals that offer 2 drinks and 2 pizzas for £15 between Sundays and Wednesdays.

For all the art lovers out there, be sure to head to Dream Bags Jaguar Shoes in Shoreditch where their quirky London bar lies in wait. Bursting full of character and beautifully decorated, this cosy nook combines delicious cocktails and stoned baked pizzas with beautiful art installations and inspiring exhibitions. Expect fantastic colours, irresistible drinks and a night you won't forget anytime soon. 

Barrio Soho

180 user reviews 4

Come over and get your fix of Latina flair at this gem of a Soho party bar. With flamboyant interiors, exotic tequila drinks and a lovely choice of Spanish bites, Barrio is a tropical oasis with a lovely atmosphere making for a quirky place to drink in London. Share a few plates with your mates, knock back a few of their corking cocktails or find your way to the dance floor, where a mix of live bands and DJs play until 1am.

From magical underwater viewing tunnels to haunted prison cells, London's top attractions are opening their doors after dark for an exclusive evening of exploring and prosecco. See the awe-inspiring exhibitions away from the crowds, with space to roam freely.

Giant maypoles, wicker masks and brass icons converge to create an eccentric spirit at the Hand of Glory. Projecting a colourful exhibition of British folk culture, it's your place for rural ciders from some of the UK's best independent brewers, a cocktail menu fronting Seven Deadly Gins and a fresh menu influenced by award-winning chef Mark Edwards. They don't get much cooler than this.

The Escapologist

1804 user reviews 4

In 1848, the infamous Baron fled to London shrouded in scandal, his every action prompting outrage on the streets. He landed a date with the gallows - only to escape and develop his mythical reputation by befriending the likes of Disraeli, Brunel and Nightingale. Popularly referred to as The Escapologist - he now has a bar paying homage to his exploits - a basement bar styled as part Victorian men's club, part Masonic Lodge. Expect cocktails, authentic design and cheese-drenched pizzas at this inventive and intriguing Covent Garden drinking joint.

The Bat And Ball

593 user reviews 4

Get away from the traditional Central London night out at this East London ping pong hub. The Bat and Ball is a bit off the beaten path and something a little different for a night out in London. Grab your table tennis racquets and have your taste buds ready. This East London bar has a 'Games Hall' ready for your best shot, equipped for twelve ping pong tables, and a pizzeria loaded with slices to satisfy your drunk munchies. 

The Last Tuesday Society

201 user reviews 5

If you like your cocktails with a side of strange, this place might just be your spiritual home and the answer to all unusual things to do in London. Displaying all kinds of weird stuff; The Last Tuesday Society is part Natural History Museum, part car boot sale and part nightmare. In the downstairs bar, suitably stiff drinks such as The Geneva Martinez with chocolate bitters are being served in abundance alongside tapas and bar snacks. 

Strong cocktails, a dressing up box and tons of power ballad anthems makes for one lively night out in London. Get your mates together and engage your inner pop-star; there's thousands of songs for you to pick between and an adoring crowd awaits. Naturally perfect for fun-loving birthday shindigs, you can also add a cocktail masterclass to your package and make a real event of it.

If you're after something a little different in London, then it's time to check out Fuller's Shakespeare in the Garden. From Ealing to Greenwich, this outdoor theatrical event is perfect for date nights, quirky evenings and more.