Schools take a week-long half-term holiday in May. Choose from lots of family-friendly activities put on by top attractions this week.
In May, spring is well under way with warm weather and some delightful sunshine, but you may still need a light coat and a brolly, in case of a light drizzle.
Unmissable London events May 2022
- Enjoy the Hampton Court Palace Artisan Festival, included with entry to the palace: Browse the stalls, play traditional garden fête games or enjoy a Shire horse carriage ride. 13-15 May
- Marvel at stunning horticultural displays at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show: Pick up the latest gardening trends and rehome a plant or two. 24-28 May
- Check out world-class photography at Somerset House's Photo London: Experience a large-scale celebration of photography, featuring emerging talent from across the globe. 12-15 May
- Join the Eid Festival celebrations in Trafalgar Square: Enjoy family activities and feast on street food from around the world. 7 May
- Admire vibrant floral displays at Chelsea in Bloom: See the streets of Chelsea burst with colour at London's largest free flower festival. 23-28 May
- Don't miss the exhilarating eSkootr Championship at Printworks: Watch athletes compete in London at the world's first electric scooter racing series. 13-14 May
- Get a ticket for the Men's FA Cup Final (14 May) and Women's FA Cup Final (15 May) at Wembley stadium: Or join football fans in pubs all over London to cheer on your favourite team.
London Theatre in May
- Be captivated by My Fair Lady at the London Coliseum: Follow Eliza Doolittle on her quest to become a high society lady. From 7 May
- Groove along to Grease at Dominion Theatre: Have an electrifying summer night at the much-loved musical based on the iconic film. From 3 May
- See Disney's The Lion King at the Lyceum Theatre: Join Simba on his adventures in the majestic Serengeti.
- Be spellbound by Wicked at the Apollo Victoria: Experience magic as you watch the witches in the Wizard of Oz.
- Go on an epic journey with Life of Pi at Wyndham's Theatre: Be mesmerised by a story of strength and survival, featuring amazing puppetry and effects.
- Be amused by The Book of Mormon at the Prince of Wales Theatre: Chuckle at the hilarious musical numbers in this award-winning show.
- Watch Legally Blonde at Regent's Park Open Air Theatre: Enjoy a musical version of the popular Hollywood movie in the stunning surrounds of Regent's Park. 13 May-2 Jul
Family activities in May
- Make the most of a whole week for May half-term: Check out London's top attractions and the capital's popular kids attractions.
- Spend special moments together and see multiple attractions in one go: Pick up a sightseeing pass, such as the London Pass, the London Explorer Pass or the Merlin London Attractions Pass.
- Plan a Harry Potter-themed day out: Have a magical adventure at Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter, where the iconic films were made.
- Head outdoors and explore London: Tour the city on an open-top or hop-on hop-off bus tour, or take to the river on a special Thames tour or cruise.
- Climb the famous masts of the Cutty Sark: Bring out your inner adventurer as you climb the rigging of London's iconic ship and experience breathtaking views of the capital.
- Celebrate the release of the new Downton Abbey film with a Downton Abbey walking tour of London: Follow in the footsteps of your favourite characters from the period drama.
- Take a multimedia tour of the Houses of Parliament: Explore the Palace of Westminster and learn about the history one of the world's most famous buildings.
- Don't miss Jurassic Park in Trafalgar Square: Marvel at a state-of-the-art life-sized dinosaur at London's famous landmark, to celebrate the film release of Jurassic World Dominion. 25-29 May
London exhibitions in May
- Immerse yourself in a rainbow landscape at Pip & Pop, included with entry to Kew Gardens: Head to the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art to see vibrant artworks made from everyday materials such as sugar and candy. 21 May-5 Mar
- Discover Japan: Courts and Culture at the Queen's Gallery: Get a glimpse of rare Japanese art and diplomatic gifts from the Royal Collection.
- Experience at Our Time on Earth at the Barbican: Discover how global creativity and technology can transform the future of our planet in this thought-provoking exhibition. 5 May-29 Aug
- Don't miss Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirror Rooms at Tate Modern: Be mesmerised by endless reflections as you step into the immersive installations.
- Be intrigued by Cornelia Parker at Tate Britain: See the artist's iconic large-scale installations along with her films, paintings and drawings. 18 May-16 Oct
- Explore Surrealism Beyond Borders at Tate Modern: Be mind-blown by dreamlike images and the imaginary creations of renowned artists from around the world.
- Admire The Credit Suisse Exhibition: Raphael at the National Gallery: Learn about the life and legacy of the iconic Italian artist through his celebrated work and ingenuity.
What else is on in May?
- Start your spring at the annual Tulip Festival at Hampton Court Palace: Admire spectacular displays of rare and historic flowers all across the gardens. Until 2 May
- Be thrilled by The Gunpowder Plot at Tower Vaults: Immerse yourself in virtual reality and multi-sensory special effects as you travel back in time to experience the infamous Gunpowder Plot of 1605. From 6 May
- Go on an adrenaline-fuelled adventure with Tomb Raider: The Live Experience in Camden: Step into the world of Lara Croft in this high-energy immersive experience.
- Be awestruck by Ilan Eshkeri's
- Watch ABBA Voyage at the ABBA Area, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park: Sing along to your favourite ABBA hits in this state-of-the-art digital concert. From 27 May
- Explore the Urban Village Fete at Greenwich Peninsula: Spend a day immersed in arts and crafts, browsing markets and dancing to live DJ sets. 15 May
- Be part of the action in Jeff Wayne's War of the Worlds: The Immersive Experience: Save London from an alien invasion in this epic immersive adventure.
For more things to do in London in May, take a look at this events calendar and guide to what's on in London. And catch the best of the London stage with this London theatre guide. For on-the-go adventure ideas, download the Visit London app.
WEATHER: For average seasonal temperatures and rainfall, see our London Weather page.