Pubs (Public Houses) typify one of
England's traditional institutions and are often the main social focal point
for individuals and communities. London, with its chameleon-type environment,
will have pubs, bars and clubs to suit every taste - there are over 5,000 to
Pubs closely reflect their neighbourhood, stylish and trendy in the West End, cheap, but homely in the East End and suit-packed in the City. The English pub tends to be popular with real ale drinkers, who sit at the bar chatting with other drinkers, normally attracting the same crowds, many of which are known as regulars.
The Victorians were responsible for the sudden flux of drinking establishments around the city. Traditional old-style pubs with oak beams and open fires still exist, although more so on the outskirts of the city. British pubs continue to evolve, many tied to large breweries and selling mainly their own brands of Beer and Lager. Beer drinkers may be attracted to the 'free houses' which are not tied to breweries and are free to sell what ever beers they like, often including 'real ales'. In the summer, popular pubs are those with a garden, riverside or canalside view.
Most pubs serve food, ranging from snacks to hot meals.
Pubs call 'last orders' at 11pm, usually allowing a further 20 minutes to drink up and leave. Bars are open later.
Wine Bars are more upmarket than pubs, although a little more expensive, offering nice surroundings and a quieter place for people to sit and chat. Student Bars tend to offer loud music and cheap alcohol which get very busy, not the place to go if you're hoping for a quiet drink. Strip Bars and Clubs offer alcohol, often at inflated prices, and normally have at least one stage where young ladies will perform strip tease. Comedians display their wit at comedy clubs, just the place should you want a laugh or two. Sports bars have televisions showing all major sports events, a place for enthusiasts to socialise and drink without missing their favourite sport. Music Bars are large pubs where bands perform live music. Tomorrow's 'wannabe's' perform here hoping to be spotted by one of the many talent scouts that visit these establishments.
Some of London's night-clubs are famous throughout the world. London is a leader in the dance music industry, and lives up to its reputation as the Dance Capital of Europe.
There are also many clubs that have different themes such as sixties and disco.