Big Ben and westminster bridge in London at sunny day

How to Keep Your Cool While London Swelters

Just because London is over heating, doesn't mean you have to...

Lead Photo: Getty

By any measure, London is hot right now and everything is melting. 

Fortunately as Londoners, we don't have to sweat this heatwave out with ice cubes and cold showers - we can do it in style. 

If you're looking for ways to stop overheating during these hot and sweltering days, here's how you can keep cool and carry on, as they say. 

1 Go to the Cinema

From local independents to big cinema complexes, there's a cinema near you. Ealing's first cinema in 13 years just opened its doors. Everyman Cinema have cocktails at the ready, The Castle in Clapton is a crowd-funded art-deco cinema brought to life by its community. Even outdoor cinemas are delightful on a balmy evening. So grab a box of popcorn and an ice cream and pick a long film if you're feeling particularly fried.

2 Take a Swim

Taking a swim with the sun on your back is one of life's simple pleasures, and London's not short on swimming holes. Tooting Bec Lido and Brockwell Lido in south London are great for splashing about, and London Fields Lido is always popular. Hampstead Heath's three ponds are also a good choice, and you can now swim in the Thames at Canary Wharf too. Want to be near the water but not in it? Ride your own BBQ in that case. 

3 Go to a Museum

Ahhh, aircon. With heat like this, hanging out in the office isn't a bad idea. But going to a museum is a much better plan. We're spoilt for choice in London, so whatever you're interested in, you'll find a museum for it. Like Sherlock Holmes? Go to the Sherlock Holmes Museum. Interested in the intersection of health and everything else? Visit the the Wellcome Collection. Like vaginas? Head to the Vagina Museum in Bethnal Green if you fancy.

4 Sit in a the Shade in a Park

Grab a book, pack a picnic and head for the shade. Where ever you are in London, you're not too far from a grassy green patch. Hyde Park is always a delight, if you're central. Victoria Park, Well Street Common and Greenwich Park in the east are always a safe bet as well. Hampstead Heath is a fave too, with great views of the city in parts. In the south? Make to Brockwell Park, or Dulwich Park, or Crystal Palace for the dinosaurs if you've got kids in tow. 

5 Stay Hydrated

Anyone who has ever had a hangover knows that advocating booze as a way to stay hydrated, doesn't know what they are talking about. Still, wouldn't a lovely cocktail poured over a mountain of ice while sitting in a shady part of a terrace be grand right about now? We think so. The Petersham in Covent Garden has a delightful terrace enshrouded by foliage. Le Pont de la Tour, with views of Tower Bridge is superb. There's also The Broadcaster and the Gin Terrace at Pantechicon west side. For more terraces, we've got great guides for alfresco spots in Chelsea, west London, east London, north London. We've got a pretty good guide for beer gardens in Islington too. 

6 Go to the supermarket

By all means, rummage around the frozen section at your local Aldi as if you're life depended on it. Or, you could head to the Japan Centre for green tea flavoured Kit Kats and super cute (but wasteful) packaging. Peruse the wine and cheese section upstairs at Eataly or keep cool under the arches and fresh fruit and vegetables at Borough Market.

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