10 Brilliant Outdoor Cinemas Popping Up In London This Summer

Hollywood’s cream of the crop are arriving at outdoor cinemas across London this summer, bringing the magic of film to rooftops, parks, and even canals. With a massive range of blockbusters, cult classics, and family-friendly films on offer, you’ll find something for everyone at any of the best outdoor cinemas in London. Fingers crossed they can bring some of that LA weather with them now!

1. Pop Up Screens, multiple locations (July 22 – September 11)

People watching a film at one of London's Pop Up Screens
Photo: @popupscreenscinema

Not content with a little outdoor cinema, Pop Up Screens are bringing a summer-long festival of film to London this year. They’ll be running outdoor cinemas in no fewer than eight different London locations, from Ravenscourt Park to Guildhall Yard, and the range of films is equally ambitious. You’ll catch Dirty Dancing, 10 Things I Hate About You, The Greatest Showman and Grease at these screenings, and that’s just scratching the surface. More info here.

2. The Luna Cinema, multiple locations (July 22 – August 15)

People enjoying themselves at the Luna Cinema in London, England
Photo: @thelunacinema

Having mastered the concept of open air cinema, The Luna Cinema are back for another summer of movie magic. A series of suitably atmospheric London spots have been found for their dreamy outdoor cinema nights, and the sheer range of films is unparalleled – think No Time To Die, Belfast and West Side Story for starters. You’ll be able to find it at Clapham Common, Regent’s Park, Chiswick House and even Westminster Abbey. More info here.

3. Rooftop Cinema at Bar Elba, Waterloo (until August 27)

People watching a film at the rooftop cinema at Bar Elba
Photo: @bar_elba

Most outdoor cinemas don’t come with bottomless drinks. Most outdoors cinemas are wrong. This one, found at the brilliant Bar Elba in Waterloo, has seen the bar turn their rooftop into one of London’s most atmospheric outdoor cinemas. As the twinkling lights of London unfold before you, films such as Bridesmaids, Sin City, House of Gucci and I, Tonya will delight and dazzle on the big screen. It’s truly dreamy stuff, and that’s before we even mention the bottomless prosecco or beer add-ons! Find out more here.

4. Rooftop Film Club (until September)

It’s the eleventh year for the Rooftop Film Club, who have taken up their usual positions at Roof East and atop the Bussey Building for the summer. It’s guaranteed to be fantastic once again this Summer, and the line-up of films is excellent as always. More info here.

St. Katharine Docks has announced the return of its annual Floating Film Festival, bringing Londoners a fortnight of fantastic films at the city’s original floating cinema. After a successful year last year post-pandemic, one of the city’s most intriguing outdoor cinemas is back in 2022, with another stellar line-up of films. Find out more here.

6. Adventure Cinema, Charlton House, Beckenham Place Park and Osterley Park and House (June, July and August)

Another fantastic addition to this roundup of the best outdoor cinemas in London, the Adventure Cinema takes over three separate locations over the course of the Summer. Expect films including West Side Story, Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again and The Rocky Horror Picture Show and some pretty epic locations. Picnics are encouraged and you can also get some street food here too. More info here.

7. Outdoor Cinema at the Barbican (August 23 – 28)

The sunny inner courtyard of the Barbican Centre in Barbican, London
Photo: @shutterstock

Set within the spectacular Barbican in Central London, the Outdoor Cinema is showing a week of films this August, with everything from Hitchcock’s Vertigo to David Lean’s Summertime. They’re also showing Sally Potter’s Orlando which stars the legend that is Tilda Swinton. You can find out more here.

8. Vision Cinema, Woolwich (July 22 – August 25)

Pretty Woman, The Lion King and Mamma Mia are just some of the screenings planned for Woolwich Arsenal Riverside’s Vision Cinema. They’re promising “the ultimate outdoor cinema experience”, which is a lot to live up to… More here.

9. King’s Cross Summer Love Film Festival (July)

So many brilliant outdoor cinemas in London to choose from, but only one of them is free. That’d be the King’s Cross Summer Love Film Festival, which is run by Everyman and turns the Granary Square steps into a serene outdoor cinema. The canalside cinema will screen family-friendly hits and other real classics. It’s first come, first served though, so an early arrival is suggested! More here.

10. Hideaway Cinema, Hampstead (September)

Hide away with new releases at this outdoor cinema, which last year secured a screen on Hampstead Heath and showed In The Heights, Cruella, The Suicide Squad, and Space Jam: A New Legacy. Last year Hideaway also went all over the UK, from St Ives to Rotherham, so even if you’re not in the capital, it’s a fine option for al fresco cinema. See more here.

Also published on Medium.