As the autumn evenings draw in, November in London begins begins to crackle into life as Bonfire Night fireworks light up the city skyline. Wrap up snug, head to one of the capital’s many firework displays, and enjoy a show of spectacular colours over London’s top attractions and beyond.
What is Bonfire Night?
When Protestant King James I was appointed, English Catholics had hoped that the persecution they had felt for over 45 years under Queen Elizabeth I would finally end, and that they would be granted the freedom to practice their religion.
However their freedom to practice never came, and a group of conspirators planned to assassinate the King and his ministers by blowing up the Palace of Westminster during the state opening of Parliament. Subsequently, the plan failed when a group of guards discovered explosives expert Guido (Guy) Fawkes at the last minute!
Every year across the UK on November 5th, the country commemorates the failure of the November 1605 Gunpowder Plot by building bonfires and letting off fireworks; with straw dummies representing Fawkes sometimes being tossed on the bonfire itself.
Whether you want to watch the fireworks snuggled up under a blanket on Primrose Hill with a bottle of red wine, or whilst having a lovely meal at the top of the Heron Tower, there are many places for you to watch the fireworks; here are our top 5
Alexandra Palace is guaranteed to be one of the best spots in North London. Not only is there the usual firework display on 1st September, but it’s also the perfect spot for admiring distant celebrations from the top of the hill.
Where to stay? Old Street
It’s hard to find a better spot than London’s highest viewing platform, located on the 68th, 69th and 72nd floors of the Western Europe’s tallest building. Enjoy a casual drink and enjoy the views or sample the delicious food at one of the Shard’s celebrated restaurants.
Where to stay? London Bridge
This location is a very popular and rather obvious option when it comes to this time of year as numerous Londoners descend upon the 256 feet (or 78 metres) tall hill to watch the fireworks splinter the sky. Please note that there are no displays planned for this venue, but it’s a great spot for watching the nearby fireworks.
Where to stay? Hatton Garden
Another fantastic spot for watching distant celebrations (as well as the nearby Blackheath fireworks) even if there isn’t a display at the location itself. The vast park grounds also means that you’re unlikely to be crowded; perfect for raising a glass under a thick blanket!
Where to stay? Canary Wharf
Duck & Waffle
If you’d sooner spend your time watching London’s displays whilst inside and enjoying fine food, then look no further than at the Duck & Waffle restaurant, located on the 40th floor of the Heron Tower. The restaurant is open 24/7 and offers a birds-eye view of the Big Smoke – perfect for watching the fireworks while tucking into a stunning meal.
Where to stay? Aldgate
By following our top-5 places to see the best fireworks with bonfire night, we promise that your evening is sure to go off with a bang!