As an international student whose first introduction to London nightlife was *sigh* freshers week, I would have liked it if someone would have come to me with a list of the best clubs to check out on a night out in London. It would have saved me lots of time, disappointments and money. That’s why we’re bringing you the ultimate guide to plan your next night out, with our top ten London nightclubs, as well as key details such as type of music, dresscode and price. You can thank us later.
Many university students remember Egg fondly as the club that took over their Wednesday nights during their first year. The main reason? £1 drinks, and if you post your name on their Facebook wall and get there before 11:30pm, you get in for free. Musicwise, expect all kinds of Deep House, Hip Hop, Grime and Trap – you’ll be thanful the dancefloor is so huge. Dresscode: Smart/casual (yes to jeans, no to hoodies) Price: Entry tickets from £3 (or free if you post your name on their Facebook)
Tropical vibes in the middle of Covent Garden! Unlikely but not unheard of at Tropicana Beach Club. Your Thursday nights will never be the same after experiencing their all night long Happy Hour (2 for 1 beers, what else?). Warning: the morning after you’ll find embarassing videos of your drunk self playing samba limbo with beach party anthems as a soundtrack. Dresscode: Summer wear is encouraged, so get your Hawaiian t-shirt out! Price: £10 after 9pm on Fridays, but on Thursdays entry is FREE!
A particular favourite among City University students because of its proximity to Old Street Station and Unite Students halls. If you’re a fan of Queen Bey, you will love XOYO’s The Yoncé Experience, in which for a whole night you can dance to the best of Beyonce. In the case that’s not really your scene, don’t worry: this two-room nightclub is well-known for playing some of the best dance, techno and house hits. Dresscode: Relaxed, it will be a jeans and trainers type of night (tracksuits are not encouraged, though) Price: £7 (we advise you buy them online, as prices go higher when you buy tickets at the door!)
Located in an old railway yard (hello hipsters), Cargo is a multi-purposed venue only a few minutes from both Old Street and Shoreditch High Street Stations. It’s got a garden, a bar, a restaurant, and a club area, but don’t be discouraged by the swiss knife approach, for Cargo’s wide variety in terms of music (from live performances to techno) makes it the perfect spot on those nights when you and your friends can’t decide where to go. Dresscode: Smart/casual Price: Get your tickets online from £3
You have not experienced London nightlife until you’ve danced the night away in Cirque Le Soir. Expect weirdness, lots of it. Imagine Moulin Rouge, but instead of a love story featuring Nicole Kidman, you get a mix of American Horror Story and a Lady Gaga videoclip. Dominatrix dwarfs, semi naked dancers dressed as pigs, and a big fat Santa Claus in a thong if you’re lucky enough to get in during the Christmas Holidays! Dresscode: Fancy, go casual and you’re out. Price: £20 (booking a table highly recommended)
Self-described as “The Home of Dance Music”, Ministry of Sound offers four different dancefloors, several bars and discounted tickets for students. Located in an old bus depot, the underground vibe will make for a pretty memorable night. Dresscode: “Stylish, fashionable and fresh” Price: Get tickets online from £10
Out of all the clubs in Mayfair, there’s something about Toy Room that never disappoints. Whether you go for the mix of Hip Hop and RnB tunes, the stylish look of the venue or for the massive teddy bear that will join you in the dancefloor if you stay until late enough, fun is always guaranteed. That said, this place is considered “exclusive” for a reason, so it helps knowing a few (or more than a few) friendly promoters. Dresscode: Smart casual (not too casual though, heels are highly encouraged) Price: £20 (although girls who arrive before 11pm stand a chance to get in for free)
Recently renovated, this legendary London club features three massive dancefloors, and has hosted some of the world’s best known DJs. Any self-respecting fan of electro, techno and disco music needs to visit Fabric at least once (although the most probable is you will return). Dresscode: Casual (jeans, trainers and caps allowed) Price: Get tickets online from £10
The Scala’s history of hosting live music performances not only goes a long way back, it also features some of the best known faces in the music industry (Rihanna and Ed Sheeran, for example). However, Scala is mostly known among Spanish and Latino students as the venue where the MEGA SPANISH PARTY takes place. If you’re done with techno and are in bad need of some nice Latin tunes, check their website for their next fiesta! Dresscode: Usually there is no dress code to get in Scala, unless it is stated on the description of the event they’re hosting, so make sure you double check before picking your outfit. Price: £3 tickets at the door for early birds (make sure you arrive early or you’ll end up paying for an £8 ticket instead)
It might also happen you and your friends are looking for a different type of night out, which means less bouncing to techno music and more getting cocktails while enjoying a live performance. In that case, Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in Soho is the place to go. Check the What’s On section on their website and find the event that suits your mood that night. Dresscode: Relaxed, but most people there go for a smarter look. Price: Varies accordingly to the artist they’re hosting.
Which one of these London nightclubs is your favorite?! Let us know down below in the comments!
Journalism student from City, University of London. Originally from the Canary Islands. I am super enthusiastic about women rights, arts, fashion and everything that involves learning and growing as a person.