On 6 February 2022, Queen Elizabeth II became the longest-serving British monarch ever, notching up 70 loyal, tireless years on the throne. While initiatives and parties and plaques have sprung up across her extensive queendom ever since, the ultimate commemoration of her service will take place over the UK’s special four-day holiday weekend from Thursday, June 2 to Sunday, June 5, in line with when her actual coronation took place on 2 June 1953.
Brits everywhere will be given the Thursday and Friday off work to join in the merriment— including a special 1 am pub closing time. While some big-bill events, such as the Platinum Party at (Buckingham) Palace concert on Saturday, June 4, have already allocated tickets via ballot, and others, such as the Big Jubilee Lunch, require locals to organize their own fun, there are hundreds of events for visitors to take advantage of, too—and plenty with tickets still available (at time of publication, anyway). From flag-waving parades to Royal afternoon teas and Corgi cafés, here are the things to do in London to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
Catch the Queen’s birthday parade
The official Jubilee weekend kickstarts with a dedicated Trooping The Color procession in front of the Queen herself at Horse Guards Parade in St. James’s Park. A tradition that is believed to hark back to the 17th century, it will see thousands of soldiers perform alongside up to 400 musicians. Tickets have already been assigned to locals or sold out, but you can catch a limited IRL view at The Mall by St James’s Park from 9 am, where you can also watch a fly-by from the Royal Air Force at 1 pm You might as well pack a picnic.
When: Thursday, June 2, 2022, 10 am – 12.2.5.pm
Where: Horse Guards Parade, 13 Macclesfield St, London W1D 5BR, but catch it from The Mall, London SW1A 1AA
Price: Tickets are sold out; free from The Mall
Watch the Platinum Jubilee Pageant
More than 6,500 performers, including volunteers, dancers, musicians, soldiers, and essential workers, will march along The Mall in front of Buckingham Palace and around the nearby streets to celebrate the Queen’s reign. Expect music, theater, circus, carnival, costume, and street art—as well as, more specifically, a giant, multicolored dragon puppet. Several A-list stars and national treasures have also now been added to the line-up, including Ed Sheeran, Heston Blumenthal, Gary Lineker, and Jeremy Irons. The Pageant will tell the story of the Queen’s reign, as well as fly 200 silk flags entitled the ‘River of Hope’, created by hundreds of school children to reflect how they would like the planet to look in 70 years. Don’t expect it to be quiet.