London’s Biggest Street Party: Tips for Visiting Notting Hill Carnival
It’s almost that time of year for the fabulous Notting Hill Carnival in London. This year it takes place from August 26 to 28, and it’s essentially one huge vibrant, exciting party that you don’t want to miss. There’s incredible food, costumes, music, dancing, and—of course—fantastic people. The event itself is free but there will be a charge to attend after parties. This Caribbean celebration is an ideal way to end your summer, so let’s get ready to party and talk about just some of what you need to know if you’re planning on attending the Notting Hill Carnival in London.
Dress With Comfort in Mind
This is a 3-day party that can have you on your feet for hours on end, even more so if you’re showing up for one of the parades on either Sunday or Monday and you want to make sure you get a good spot to watch all the action. Dress comfortably, especially when it comes to your shoes, so you won’t be in pain when you’re just trying to enjoy yourself and have a good time.
Don’t Take Your Valuables
Pickpockets can be a concern at big events, even at the Notting Hill Carnival, so opt to leave your valuables at home. This includes a substantial amount of cash, multiple credit cards, and expensive jewelry.
We can’t emphasize enough how much you’re probably going to want to opt for any other means to get to the Notting Hill Carnival than by driving whether you take public transportation, walk, ride your bike, etc. Between traffic and street closures, you’re better off leaving your car at home. Keep in mind, however, that if you’re taking public transportation, there will be a lot of schedule changes so make sure to review ahead of time.
Review the Schedule
As previously stated, the Notting Hill Carnival runs three days: 6 pm to 10 pm on the 26th and 9 am to 8:30 pm on the 27th and 28th. The Grand Finale/Parade takes place on Monday and Family Day with a Children’s Parade is on Sunday. Take a look at the event website and read what each day offers so you can plan accordingly for which day you want to go.
Get a Plan in Place
Whether you’re going with one other person or many, get a plan in place for a variety of situations. For example, what do you want to do if all of you get separated? What happens if you need to use the bathroom? How are you going to easily find each other? These are just some of the situations you want to plan for in advance so if they should arise you’re already set and know what to do.
Bring Your Appetite
You’re going to want to bring your appetite when you attend the Notting Hill Carnival, especially if you’ve been looking forward to digging into some phenomenal Caribbean foods. Don’t hesitate to try different foods that you may have never had before. You may even come home with a new favorite food.
Now that you know a little more about preparing to visit Notting Hill Carnival, who’s ready to party?