Things to do in London for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee 2022

7. Be mesmerised by drag queens

Nothing says 70 years of committed queendom than a frequently changing lineup of drag artists, burlesque beauties, circus acts, risqué comedians and a thrashing live band. At least that’s what they’re saying in Woolwich, where immersive events company Shotgun Carousel is bringing its Grotteaux extravaganza, apparently with a springtime makeover, as an unforgettable celebration of the Queen’s lifelong work. Either seats or cabaret tables are available to book.

When: Wednesday 18 May–Saturday 4 June 2022
Where: The Fireworks Factory, 11 No 1 St, Royal Arsenal, London SE18 6HD
Price: Tickets start from £15.50 

8. Peek inside Buckingham Palace’s State Rooms

Portraits of the Queen by photographer Dorothy Wilding will be on display in these central Buckingham Palace rooms this summer, along with the personal jewellery Her Royal Highness wore to sit for the shots. Some of the most important pieces of art in the Royal Collection, by legendary artists such as Canaletto, Rubens and Van Dyck, are shown in these important spaces. Opening once again a few weeks after the Platinum Jubilee weekend, the public rooms were originally designed for the Sovereign to receive subjects and visiting dignitaries. Look out for the gilded piano, originally given to Queen Victoria. 

When: Friday 22 July–Sunday 2 October 2022
Where: The State Rooms, Buckingham Palace, London SW1A 1AA
Price: Tickets start from £19.50 

London ZooLondon Zoo/Dave Stevenson

9. Join in the Zoobilee Festival at ZSL London Zoo

The Queen is Royal Patron of ZSL London Zoo, and to celebrate her decades of support, the world’s oldest scientific zoo and its 15,000 animals will be hosting a special Zoobilee Festival over the Platinum Jubilee week, which also happens to be May half-term. There will be a new outdoor picture gallery and exhibition charting the Zoo’s royal visits from as far back as 1829, when King George IV first granted it a Royal Charter, as well as special picnics at the Terrace restaurant including cream teas and finger sandwiches. For the kids, there will be a Teddy Bear’s Picnic, Q&A sessions about the kings and queens of the animal world, and (less royal-themed) bug hunting, pond dipping, visiting alpacas and pygmy goats and more.

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