Spending time alone doesn’t have to be lonely. It’s been hammered into us that we should constantly be surrounded by groups of people to fit into society, whether it’s working in an office setting, making endless plans for the weekend or spending every last waking minute with that special someone. But it’s ok to step away, recalibrate and have some time to yourself.
It’s a delicate art to be comfortable with your own company. It’s hard to switch off the intrusive thoughts that tell us we should be doing something productive or we’re missing out on the fun, but it’s not true. We’re allowed time to process and be alone.
Whether you’re looking to schedule in some well deserved ‘me’ time or your plans get cancelled and you find yourself at a loose end, FIENA has put together a guide of things to do alone in London.
Go museum hopping
One place that’ll never make you feel alone is an art gallery or museum, and thankfully London is home to plenty. Spend your day hopping from one to the next, exploring the latest exhibits and collections you might not have ever explored before.
Get your culture fix topped up and go from the V&A and explore their brilliant Fashioning Masculinities exhibition, a deep dive into the creativities in men’s fashion and reflection on gender, to the Natural History Museum where you can meet the dinosaurs and learn more about civilisation from the ground up.
Explore Eccleston Yards
Home to independent eateries, wellness workshops and a really community spirit, Eccleston Yards is one of our favourite places to explore alone in the capital. There’s always something going on, whether you’re looking for a new menu to taste or a new pop-up to give a go.
Begin your morning with a meditation session or breathwork workshop at the wellness studio, Re:Mind. Their team will guide you through the steps, helping you to ignite your inner self and relieve you from the stresses and pressures of everyday life. Once you’re feeling a little lighter, head over to MasterPeace, the creative art studio in Belgravia that offers in-person classes for all abilities. Challenge your inner creativity and unwind through the mindful practice of painting.
If you’re looking to work up a sweat, stop by Barry’s to kick away any anxieties and worries or give HotPod Yoga a go and practice your downward dog in a unique new way.
Spend the rest of your afternoon dining solo at our favourite restaurant, Wild by Tart, munching through the delicious small plates. All paired with a glass of your favourite.
Catch a show at the Shakespeare's Globe
Who said you couldn’t go to the theatre solo? Be bold and go see a show by yourself! Fall back in love with a Shakespearean classic at the Globe. The renowned theatre celebrates the late works from William Shakespeare, putting on performances throughout the year in their alfresco circular stage.
There are always plenty of performances to see, from King Lear to The Tempest, Much Ado About Nothing to Henry VIII. Each performance is one-of-a-kind filled with community spirit, laughter and fun.
Lose yourself in nature at Box Hill
Central London can often be quite daunting when it comes to being alone. You can be surrounded by thousands of people going about their own day but feel a million miles away from being involved. If you’re new to spending time by yourself or just fancy a break from the hub of it all, Box Hill is a little countryside oasis just outside the centre.
A stunning woodland and green space in the North Downs, Surrey, you’ll find an eight-mile circular route waiting for you, home to beautiful views over the countryside and plenty of space to lose yourself in.
Whether you’re looking to hit the National Trust site by foot or want to explore it by wheels, it’s a great afternoon away from it all. Bring a book and find that perfect spot to spend the afternoon in your own fictional adventure land, hike around the area or simple take in the views as you explore the area for the first time.
Immerse yourself in the activities at Coal Drops Yard
Another one of our favourite spots to explore when we’ve got a spare hour or two is Coal Drop Yard. Located in King’s Cross, this space is home to so many great brands, venues and eateries. Start your day with a candle making workshop at Earl of East where you’ll be guided step-by-step through the processes of candle creating, from start to finish.
Once you’ve made your masterpiece, spend a few hours perusing the independent stores around the area, from stocking up on beauty favourites from Aesop to trying on clothes from American Vintage and MHL, and filling your home with dried flowers from Roseur.
Stop by one of their independent eateries for lunch - we love Hicce for their fresh veggie plates and heady cocktails. Before spending your early evening catching a cult classic at their summer cinema pop-up, Screen on the Canal.