Unusual London Traditions

To say that you got 100% experience from a different place, you need to go to the tourist’s spots and eat the native delicacies. However, you can fully enjoy your trip if you attend one of their ceremonies and traditions together with the local citizens.

There are officially almost 200 countries all over the world with different language, religion, culture, beliefs, and practices. Thus, it is fun to learn about the differences about each place because there is always something unique about it. However, there are some traditions that will render some people speechless. Below is the list of unusual traditions that you can observe in London.

Peter Pan Cup

The members of the exclusive club of the Serpentine Swimming Club celebrate the Christmas morning by stripping down and swimming 100 yards across the central London Lake. Thus, you can only be a spectator during this event. It started in 1864 but only got its name in 1904 when Sir James Barrie gave a Peter Pan cup to the winner of the race. Only those who are accustomed to extremely cold water (approximately below 40°F) can join the said event.

Pearly Kings and Queens Harvest Festival

This is a 140-year old tradition by Londoners to celebrate the autumn harvest. Members have to wear their best dark suits covered in hundreds of bright pearl buttons. Note that only the people from the original families are accepted as members. However, other people can participate in the entertainment and activities. The entertainment like maypole dancing and a marching band performs in front of Guildhall. It will be followed by a parade around the city of London. Lastly, there will be a thanksgiving service at 3pm in St. Mary Le Bow Church.

Bankside Twelfth Night

Londoners celebrate New Year with Twelfth Night festival at the Bankside. There is a play featuring The Holly Man that will arrive using a boat with the accompaniment of Wassailers and mummers performing a traditional hero/combat play featuring St. George. After the play, people will be given with cakes and the lucky ones who will find a concealed bean and pea inside will be crowned as King and Queen of the day. It will be followed by a procession going to the Borough High Street where there will be more dancing, Kissing Wishing Tree, and storytelling.