Brilliant Outdoor Cinemas in London | Best Open Air Movie Sites￼
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Who doesn’t enjoy a night out at the movies? Thanks to these brilliant outdoor cinemas in London, you can enjoy this classic outing with a twist. From rooftop screenings to drive-ins and even a floating cinema, they’ll take your movie experience to the next level.
Most of London’s outdoor cinemas take place during the warm months of summer, with the peak months being July and August. But some of these open-air cinemas operate during other times of the year too.
If you’re looking for nighttime activities in London, catching a show at an outdoor cinema is a wonderful option.
The Top Open-Air Cinemas in London
Let’s dive into the best open-air movie sites in London. No matter your age or interest, you’ll find a cinematic experience for the ultimate evening out.
Luna Cinema is one of the UK’s most popular outdoor movie venues. The company operates all over the country, including many venues around London. They screen both Hollywood hits and classic films.
An outing at the Luna Cinema is sure to be a memorable event. You can bring your own chairs and blankets or rent a seating option when you arrive. There are several concessions stands and bars for purchasing food and drinks (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic options are available).
If you don’t feel like queuing, you can order food online and have a text sent to you when it’s ready for pick up. There’s also an option for pre-ordering one of their tasty food and drink baskets when you book your movie tickets online.
Most of their venues also allow you to bring your own snacks with you. If you’re looking for a fun night out in the capital, this is a great option.
Rooftop Film Club
The Rooftop Film Club takes place on top of two London buildings. The first is the Bussey Building in Peckham. At this location, you’ll be able to admire dazzling views of London’s skyline alongside your film.
You can order food and drinks from the Bussey Rooftop Bar. This is the most elevated drinking location in the neighbourhood. The menu is full of creative cocktails, cold beer, and delicious pizza.
The Rooftop Film Club also runs from Roof East in Shoreditch, London. It’s on the seventh level of the Stratford Centre Car Park. You’ll be treated to views of East London as you watch your movie. You can order drinks and snacks from the Roof East Bar to enjoy before and during the film.
Both of these venues screen cult classics and new releases. They strive to make the movie experience a social event. The doors at both locations open one hour before showtime.
This means you’ll have plenty of time to find a seat and have a drink and meal before the show starts.
If you’re looking for another option for a night out in Shoreditch, book a pub crawl to discover one of London’s most trendy nightlife neighbourhoods.
Openaire Float Cinema
You’ve heard of a drive-in cinema, well, Openaire Float Cinema is the UK’s first float-in cinema. It allows guests to enjoy a unique movie experience on their very own boat.
The evening starts onboard a small passenger vessel, each holding up to 8 guests. Everyone in the boat will have a chance to be the captain as they steer through the waters of Little Venice. Afterwards, it’s back to the deck for a bit more free time to walk around on land and order some food and drinks for the movie.
Then, all that’s left to do is get comfy back in the boat as the movie plays on the big screen. For guests who’d prefer to watch the film on land, there are deck chairs next to the water with great views of the screen. And thanks to the personal headset everyone receives, the sound will be crystal clear.
Note: This outside cinema in London operates during the summer months.
Kings Cross Summer Love Film Festival
The Kings Cross Summer Love Film Festival is a London outdoor cinema that’s hosted every summer. It takes place in a scenic location along the banks of the Regents Canal, right on the steps of Granary Square.
The best part is, it’s free to attend and movies are shown throughout the day and into the evening.
From cult classics to blockbuster hits, the lineup is filled with plenty of different options. And you’ll be just steps from countless London restaurants, bars, and cafes. You can easily order something for takeaway to enjoy while watching the film.
Rooftop Cinema at Bar Elba
Bar Elba is a rooftop pub in Waterloo that puts on a rooftop cinema during the warmer months.
In their own words, they provide a “boozy big-screen experience”, complete with movie snacks and phenomenal views across London.
Enjoy movie night in comfy chairs in an airy setting. The movie is projected on a large screen and each guest gets their own set of headphones so they’re fully immersed in the show.
They have several different movie packages to choose from. Their standard option includes a movie ticket, ice cream, and popcorn. Their most exclusive option adds on unlimited drinks (beer, bubby, and Aperol or gin fizz spritz).
As far as the films go, they screen blockbuster hits, both old and new. You can see everything from new releases to classics going back to the 80s and 90s, like The Goonies, Clueless, and The Wedding Singer.
The Drive-in London
The Drive-in Cinema London channels some serious American drive-in movie nostalgia. Every aspect is meant to mirror the magic of a classic drive-in cinema experience.
The sound is broadcast directly to your car, and thanks to the venue’s large screen, there’s not a bad seat in the house.
Classic concession food and snacks, like popcorn, cheeseburgers, and hotdogs, are available for purchase. And if you’re plant-based, there are also vegan hot dog options. As far as drinks go, soda and alcoholic beverages are available. Everything will be delivered to your car by a friendly attendant.
If you don’t have a car, don’t worry. The theatre has partnered with Zipcar to allow you to walk up to the venue and rent a car for a couple of hours to watch the movie.
This drive-in cinema in Enfield is a fun way to see a film and provides a wholesome experience for all ages.
Pitch Cinema Stratford
Pitch Cinema Stratford is a local gem in East London. The private outdoor space has a 196-inch state-of-the-art outdoor cinema screen. They play everything from cult hits to classic flicks, and live sporting events.
You can rent out a private booth for your group to enjoy. Or, just rock up and grab a table when you arrive. Make sure to come hungry, half the fun is enjoying their dining and drinking options.
You won’t find popcorn and candy here. Instead, the venue hosts some of London’s best street food vendors. And the on-site bar serves everything from locally sourced beer and cider to colourful tiki-inspired cocktails.
This London open-air cinema puts a fun party spin on the typical moving viewing experience.
Vision Cinema is an outdoor cinema company that operates during summer as well as other periods of the year. Apart from their popular summer cinema, they also screen fun and festive Halloween and Christmas movies in the lead up to these two popular holidays.
They host pop-up screenings in several areas around London with both walk-in and drive-in movie options. While every event has a walk-in option, drive-in movies are for select screenings only.
If you book a walk-in movie ticket, a comfy blow-up seat or a fold-up chair, as well as a pair of headphones, are provided. If the weather isn’t so warm on the day you’re visiting, make sure to bring a blanket with you. You can also purchase one once you arrive.
Each event provides the full movie experience. There’s a full bar and food options on-site. You’ll be able to purchase everything from classic movie snacks to hot meals and a nice range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
Adventure Cinema hosts several outdoor screenings in London during the summer. In fact, this touring movie company operates at over 70 different venues across the UK.
The films include a nice mix of classics, musicals, family flicks, and blockbusters. The vibe is very casual. You can purchase food and drinks when you arrive to enjoy during the show, or take your own picnic basket with you.
As far as seating goes, make sure to bring either a blanket or an outdoor chair with you to relax on. Unless you’ve purchased a VIP ticket, which includes a luxury deckchair.
Barbican Outdoor Cinema
The Barbican Outdoor Cinema is located in the Sculpture Court of London’s iconic Barbican Centre. Each summer (usually in late August) the venue puts on an outdoor cinema event. This usually takes place every night over the span of about five days.
You can expect their lineup to feature options like indie films, foreign flicks and classic movies.
Seating is available on a first-come-first-served basis, so make sure to arrive early to snag a good one. Seating becomes available one hour before showtime. Cushioned pads are available for some extra comfort; you can also bring your own if you’d prefer.
You might also want to bring a blanket, as the weather can get a bit chilly once the sun goes down. All guests are also given a pair of headphones which can be collected upon arrival.
There are food and drink options available for purchase in the Conservatory, like burgers, nachos, fries, and alcoholic beverages. You’ll have everything you need for a delightful and entertaining movie night in the city.
Hideaway Cinema is an outdoor cinema that pops up in different locations around London every summer. The event creates a unique experience, with ultra-high-resolution screens and cutting-edge technology.
They have access to some of the most recent movies shown in theatres. They’re able to screen new releases only two weeks after their initial release date.
From old favourites like Greece and Dirty Dancing to newer releases, like Bohemian Rhapsody and Space Jam: A New Legacy, there’s always a nice range of options. Family-friendly movies are also screened, with past films including Moana and Tom and Jerry The Movie.
To complete the movie experience, there are concession tents selling classic movie snacks as well as gourmet food options.
Sunset Screening Sessions
Sunset Screening Sessions is a summertime event that puts on outdoor movies in London every year. This pop-up cinema features a diverse selection of British films. It covers all sorts of topics and themes, from romance and comedy to LGBT and black culture.
Food and drink are available for purchase to enjoy during the show. For guests’ comfort, there are also luxury chairs for lounging in. This intimate event is a great option for a low-key movie night in the capital.
Summer on Screen at Wembley Park
Summer on Screen is an annual summertime event in the London district of Wembley Park. This open-air cinema features an amazing lineup of movies, from cult classics and Hollywood hits to family-friendly films and Bollywood movies.
The best part is this event is free to attend. If you want a good seat, it’s best to arrive early, as there are only a limited number of deckchairs available. Guests are also welcome to bring their own chairs and blankets with them to relax during the movie.
As far as food goes, there are a number of eateries in Wembley Park to grab a to-go meal or drink from to munch on during the show.
Outdoor Cinema London | Final Thoughts
If you’re in the mood to see a movie, an open-air cinema in London offers a unique film-watching experience. These events cater to all cinematic tastes. Want to see a blockbuster hit with bottomless drinks? Or maybe you’d prefer to watch an indie film in an intimate setting. You’re sure to find the perfect option.
Whether you’re planning a romantic date night, a family-friendly outing, or even a solo excursion, everyone will appreciate a night at the movies thanks to these outdoor cinemas in London.
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