13 amazing days in Britain to beat the January blues
The details: This two-hour story search is suitable for both adults and families (children ages eight and up) and will be led by an experienced guide. Tickets start at £ 25; runs throughout January (020 8742 0057; thames-explorer.org.uk). Stay at citizenM Bankside (020 3519 1680; citizenm.com) for a block of character in an enviable zip code within walking distance of the Millennium Bridge. Double rooms from £ 95. Read the full hotel review here.
Enjoy a sober sequel in London
According to recent studies, one in five alcohol drinkers now opt for a non-alcoholic dry January. It’s the sober sequel to a drunken December. But that doesn’t mean we should deny our taste buds all the joys of a fun night. After all, why was the mocktail invented? So instead of a Knock-Out Punch, leave the kids at home and try a winter sangria (blueberries, apples, oranges, blueberries and ginger beer over low heat); a Ginger Peach Kambucha (green tea, cane sugar, peaches and ginger); a lychee flower (lychee, jasmine tea, honey, strawberry and lemon); or even a Colada Verge 34 (pineapple, lime, roasted coconut, cream and marrasquino cherry). Are you thirsty? And no hangover assured.
The details: Some of the best non-alcoholic cocktails can be found in London bars, such as Heads + Tails, West Hampstead (07926 968 33534; headsandtails.bar) and 34 Mayfair, Grosvenor Square (020 3350 3434; 34-restaurant.co.uk) . Stay at The May Fair (020 7769 4041; themayfairhotel.co.uk) for a stylish urban retreat with first-class service and a self-catering bar offering a couple of non-alcoholic cocktails. Double rooms from 262 £. Read the full hotel review here.
Enjoy the popular festivities in Glasgow
Definitely banishes January blues in Glasgow, which will come to life with Celtic Connections: hundreds of performances, leading musical collaborations, talks, workshops, film screenings, theatrical productions, ceilidhs, exhibitions, free events and music sessions nocturnes. Europe’s largest winter festival is an 18-day program of events featuring traditional folk, roots, American, jazz, soul and world music performed by more than 1,000 musicians.
Taking the title of the old Aberdeenshire love song popularized by the late Tony Cuffe, the opening act of ‘Neath the Gloamin’ Star will showcase the new generation of young artists leading the renaissance of Scottish folk song . The lineup includes Fiona Hunter, Steve Byrne, Paul McKenna, Ellie Beaton, Cameron Nixon and Jenny Sturgeon.
The details: Tickets from £ 24.20. Open January 20 at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall (0141 353 8000; celticconnections.com); Until February 6. Stay at Dakota Glasgow (0141 404 3680; dakotahotels.co.uk), a former construction and guest house building that has been transformed into a modern, stylish boutique hotel offering affordable luxury and excellent cuisine. Double rooms from 117 £. Read the full hotel review here.
Embrace Veganuary in London
With the Christmas turkey a distant memory, make January a vegan extravaganza without dairy and without animals. Veganuary is a non-profit organization that encourages people around the world to try to be vegan during January (and beyond) and works with companies to increase the amount of vegan food in stores and restaurants. During the 2021 campaign, more than 500,000 people committed and embarked on a vegan diet. Get started on some of London’s best vegan restaurants and cafes, including Hackney’s WAVE (We Are Vegan Everything), Stem & Glory’s Bart Square restaurant and Rudy’s Dirty Vegan Diners in both Camden and Islington.