Who says getting fit isn’t fun? London is home to unusual afternoon teas, hidden secrets and crazy nights out. It only makes sense that getting active in this town would look a little different than in most places around the world.
Sure you’ll find Crossfit gyms and swimming pools here. But I want to bring you the quirkiest ways to get active in London. With included cocktails and locations that look like castles, you may forget that you’re getting fit.
Quirky ways to get fit in London
Go Bouldering in a castle
The Castle Climbing Centre isn’t technically a castle, it’s a converted Victorian water pump facility but it’s still the most unique climbing center I’ve ever visited!
This gym is run by climbers, for climbers and receives more annual visits than any other climbing gym in the UK. Despite this, thanks to 10 different bouldering areas in The Castle, I didn’t feel crowded or wait too long for my turn to climb. Be sure to explore everywhere! Three of the boulders are housed in their organic garden outside.
If bouldering isn’t your thing, they also offer top roping, lead climbing and auto belay so climbers of all skill levels feel welcome. And after a great climbing session, hit up the café for a filling plant-based meal.
Want to save the planet and get your steps in for the day? Handmade Mysteries is a cross between an escape room and a scavenger hunt.
Meet Agent X at the pub for a briefing on your covert operation to save the world from a terrorist organization attempting to achieve mind control over the world population. Don your disguises and work quickly, because you only have 120 minutes to find the antidote to stop the terrorists from unleashing chaos and destruction across the globe. Agent X equips you with a spy kit and a tablet which will lead you to digital and physical puzzle elements all around the neighborhood. The integration of AR technology had us saying “How did they do that?!”
During Operation Mindfall, we had a blast exploring the Bermondsey neighborhood, testing our secret agent skills and seeing parts of London we would otherwise have left unexplored. As we (very seriously) carried out our mission, we made note of the craft breweries, Maltby Street Market and indie shops to return to once the mission was complete.
Our team completed our mission with only a few minutes to spare… but rumor has it, that pesky Spider Tech is up to no good again. Grab a team of 2-5 friends and sign up to save the world!
Note: I was a guest of Handmade Mysteries in partnership with Love Pop Ups London.
Get ready to dance the night away and look a fool (even more than usual). Don a pair of headphones and jam to the DJ tunes in your ears. Just remember that your fellow party-goers may have a different tune in their ears. And that even though you can’t hear yourself singing doesn’t mean that everyone else is immune to hearing it, too.
Several venues across London offer silent disco events, from the top of The Shard to a boat on the River Thames to SeaLIFE Aquarium, there are many options to get your (silent) dance on!
Join a free walking tour with Strawberry Tours
Want to learn a little about London, expand your mind and burn some calories without breaking the bank? Strawberry Tours offers daily walks around London for all interests. Join a Harry Potter tour and discover Diagon Alley. Learn about the seedy side of London as you hear about the sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll past of Soho. Find out the latest and greatest theories on Jack the Ripper. Or get spooked on a Ghost Tour after dark.
Whatever tour you choose, you’re sure to have an amazing, knowledgeable, and personable guide. I’ve toured with five different guides and haven’t had a ‘just ok’ one yet! Most are actors, and their enthusiasm and delivery help the facts to stick in a way that would have been helpful in my high school history class.
I always thought yoga was all about the zen. On Tuesday nights, zen gets covered in glitter, handed a cocktail and boogies to 70s music at Trapeze Basement Bar in Shoreditch.
It’s not just zen that gets glitter and cocktails at Disco Yoga… Douse yourself in glitter at the help-yourself glitz station before class. New to yoga? This is perfect for beginners, or yogis who don’t take themselves too seriously. A DJ spins songs from yesteryear that will have you shaking your hips and dancing to the boogie beat. Downward dog and other yoga poses get a disco spin and there’s an impromptu dance party every week during class.
And if the glitter and yoga isn’t beautifying enough… a superfood cocktail is included in the class will do the trick! Choose from “It’s Raining Melon, Hallelujah!,” “Blame it on The Blueberry” and “Disco Inferno” or other disco twisted cocktails on offer. I tried a gin and elderflower cocktail in a disco cup! I wish every yoga class ended with a cocktail!
If you’re a member of MoveGB, one Disco Yoga class is included in your £1/week membership. Otherwise, the class is £16 on Design My Night.