Notting Hill Carnival 2014 - Things to do in LondonThe Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event that has taken place since 1966 on the streets of Notting Hill in West London in the Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.
The West Indian street carnival takes place every August over three days (the August bank holiday Monday and the two days beforehand).
Notting Hill Carnival has attracted a cool one million people over the years making it the largest street festival in the world.
Carnival goers from all over the globe descend on the streets of Notting Hill to experience a wide variety of entertainment ranging from West Indian inspired food, drinks and music.
With the local bars and restaurants taking part in the carnival expect to see street style food and drinks being served out of make shift portable bars and floats on the streets of Notting Hill.
Navigating through the carnival can be a bit confusing or even daunting as some roads will be closed off to the public to ensure the safety of the carnival goers.
If you are planning to come to the carnival this year here are a few tips on how to enjoy the atmosphere safely.
Top Tips For Staying Safe At Notting Hill Carnival
- PLANNING – Plan your journey beforehand Expect trains and tubes to be busy and buses / cars will have limited access to the roads.
- MEETING POINTS – If you are meeting your friends at the carnival then decide and agree on a meeting point away from the busy parts, Ideally at a bar / pub or even a train station a couple of stops away.
- SAFE POINT – During the carnival you may find yourself estranged from your group so instead of going back to look for your friends, it’s wiser to agree on a spot where you can regroup if you get lost. It’s easier to spot a building or landmark than it is a moving person.
- EMERGENCY MONEY – Always carry some cash (Not too much) with you as most cashpoints will have big queues and will probably run out of money, also most of the street vendors will not accept card.
- MOBILE PHONE: Make sure your phone is fully charged as you may need to call friends if you get lost.
- VALUABLES – Don’t carry more than you need to and keep your mobile phones, wallets and bags safe and with you at all times. Bumbags and rack sacks are great for carrying valuables and also keeps your hands free.
- DRINKING ALCOHOL – With the carnival atmosphere and weather you can find yourself drinking more than you normally might, so make sure you don’t overdo it and ensure you are eating plenty of food and drinking water also.
- THE PARADE – Make sure you walk with the flow of the parade and the crowd, it’s a lot easier than walking against the flow.
- AFTER PARTIES – As the carnival draws to the end of the night, most carnival goers head straight for bars, pubs and clubs and as every year it is extremely busy so deciding on a venue and making a reservation a couple of weeks before is highly recommended. In some cases advanced tickets for after parties are available weeks before the carnival.
- GETTING HOME – Make sure plan your journey home, trains and buses will be running but expect delays. If you’re getting a cab make sure it’s a license cab or taxi.
The Notting Hill Carnival Is a fantastic experience and we highly recommend people coming down and taking part in the fun, we hope our tips have been helpful and for more information on where to go for drinks in Notting Hill click here.