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Your up-to-the-minute guide to London life, news, culture, pop-ups, and openings

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Three cafés in Forest Hill with décor as delicious as the cakes

Forest Hill is bursting with sweet independent cafés where it's not unusual to find a vintage shop, a free art exhibition or even a therapy room alongside the tea and cake. And they're all really pretty too. Here are three worth checking out the next time you're in SE23.   The Montage  Spread over three floors, The Montage combines a café, free art gallery, and a vintage shop.     #TheMontageCafe #ForestHill #VintageShopLondon #ArtGalleryLondon #LondonCafes #LondonTea #Art #Vintage #London A photo posted by Camilla Laake (@camillalaake) on Jul 3, 2016 at 12:59pm PDT   Furnishings are sourced from vintage markets in the UK and abroad, and practically every item you see or sit on is for sale – you could literally go in and walk out with the whole café.     #TheMontageCafe #ForestHill #VintageShopLondon #ArtGalleryLondon #LondonCafes #LondonTea #Art #Vintage #London A photo posted by Camilla Laake (@camillalaake) on Jul 3, 2016 at 1:00pm PDT   Recipes and artwork (available to purchase) fill the walls – go in for a tea, and leave with a tip or two from ‘The Spice Cookbook’ (Avanelle Day and Lillie Stuckey), and a new painting for your home. 33 Dartmouth Rd, SE23 3HN   #TheMontageCafe #ForestHill #VintageShopLondon #ArtGalleryLondon #LondonCafes #LondonTea #Art #Vintage #London A photo posted by Camilla Laake (@camillalaake) on Jul 3, 2016 at 12:56pm PDT   Canvas & Cream If someone told you this café was made up of

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Eight awful people you'll meet at the theatre

London has some of the best theatre in the world, but nothing can ruin a show faster than an unruly audience member. The next time you catch a show, pray that you don't end up sat near one of these unutterable bastards. The Snacker Yes, that is a whole rotisserie chicken they just pulled out of their bag, followed up with a nice crinkly bag of crisps. And just when you think it's finally over, out come a few individually wrapped mints.   via GIPHY   The Commentator The set is quite impressive, that line was really funny and (in case you didn't already grasp the plot twist) those two characters are having an affair. Whether you ask for it or not, The Commentator will make sure that you (and everyone else in the audience) are fully up-to-date with every detail of the show.   via GIPHY    The Person Who Has Seen EVERYTHING This person will put even the most avid of London theatregoers to shame. Not only did they see Mark Rylance's star turn in 'Jerusalem', they saw it at the Royal Court, in the West End and on Broadway. They've also already got front-row seats to 'Hamilton', despite tickets not being on sale yet.     via GIPHY   The Enthusiast You thought the show was 'meh' at best, but The Enthusiast is on their feet before the curtain has even fallen. They clap until their hands turn red, blissfully unaware that no one actually yells 'bravo!' in real life.    via GIPHY   The Frisky Couple Want to hear some funny stories? As

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18 commuter struggles Londoners will understand, as told by 'Game of Thrones'

This year's 'Game of Thrones' season finale was full of major WTF moments – and if you're a fan of the show, you'll know that life in the Seven Kingdoms can be as hellish as London's transport network. Jon Snow almost being crushed to death during the Battle of the Bastards? Yeah, that's basically evening rush hour on the Piccadilly line. But even if you don't watch it, you'll know that the tube is 'dark and full of terrors'… and some serious struggles. Here are 18 you'll probably understand, GOT-style:    1. The queue to enter Oxford Circus tube station during rush hour. You'll be like: DRACARYS! via GIPHY 2. The lack of oxygen on the Northern line: via GIPHY   3. People who wait for the barriers to close before they swipe their Oyster card: via GIPHY   4. Drunk people on the tube who think it's perfectly acceptable to sit on the floor pissed out of their brains and take up valuable standing space: via GIPHY   5. People who try to make friends with you just so they can nab a seat:   via GIPHY   6. People who leave their litter behind on the train: via GIPHY   7. No air con. On anything:    via GIPHY 8. People who say: ‘can you move down the bus/carriage please?’ when there's no more damn space. DRACARYS! via GIPHY   9. When nobody gets the concept of PERSONAL space: via GIPHY 10. When you get on a bus home and then it suddenly gets diverted:  via GIPHY 11. People who breathe down your nec

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Abracadabra! Here are four magic shows worth checking out this summer

Magic is in the air! London is brimming with spell-binding performances this summer from some of the world’s most acclaimed illusionists.  Impossible Impossible, a magical multi-discipline spectacular, includes grand illusion, death-defying stunts, mind-reading and sleight-of-hand. Noël Coward Theatre, until August 28. The London Festival of Close Up Magic If you prefer your illusions up-close and personal, the London Festival of Close Up Magic kicks off this Friday in the labyrinth of atmospheric tunnels beneath Waterloo station. The launch night offers up an exclusive magic-themed cocktail menu and an hour of world-class conjuring from just £16.50. Subsequent shows on July 28-30 showcase more sensational sleight-of-hand from Fringe favourites Dominick Zwolinski, Chris Dugdale and Kockov. The Vaults, July 22, 28-30.    The Magic Hour Strictly limited to just 45 seats per performance, The Magic Hour is an intimate close-up magic show in the old world grandeur of the Grand Royale Hyde Park, inspired by the opulence and showmanship of the old Victorian masters of magic. Perfect for date night, a £25 ticket gets you a seat and a pre-show cocktail.   Piff the Magic Dragon at the Just for Laughs Festival Alternatively, Piff the Magic Dragon is a conjurer and comedian who performs in a dragon costume, aided in his magical endeavours by Mr Piffles the chihuahua. They’re performing together pre-Edinburgh Fringe as part of the Just For Laughs Festival, and there are st

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Watch this guy will make the fastest falafel wrap you've ever seen

Hungry and in an insane rush? Hot-foot it over to iFalafal in Petticoat Lane market on Goulston Street where this falafel wizard will you whip you up a tasty Middle Eastern snack in just 17 seconds. The street food vendor is taking fast food to new speedy heights and is getting a reputation as London’s 'falafel wrap master'. The £3 wraps come with a lightning speed addition of falafels, houmous, pickles, cucumber, lettuce, chilli sauce and tahini. They're getting such a reputation that there's even a Reddit thread called 'The Fastest Falafel Wrapper in London'. Don't believe us? Prepare to be amazed:   Still not impressed? Check this:      Hungry? Here are some more places to get some damn good falafel in London.

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Overheard in London: this week’s #wordonthestreet

Every week you share the weird things you’ve overheard in London. Above, a few perplexing snippets from the past seven days – don’t forget to tweet us your own! Like Word on the Street? We’ve now made a book of these little beauties! ‘Word on the Street: Ridiculous Things We’ve Overheard in London’ is out now, £6.99. To buy a copy, visit timeout.com/wotsbook​.

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Quit your job, become a... street food seller

Andy Parsons   Evi Peroulaki 38, market stall owner and co-founder of Souvlaki Street What the hell is souvlaki? ‘It’s a Greek wrap. We use Greek pita, tzatziki, salad and either pork, chicken or halloumi.’ Why set up a street food stall? ‘Pure greed! Both Conor (my partner) and I love souvlaki, but we couldn’t find good souvlaki in London. So we turned up at our local market in Clapton one day with a disposable barbecue from Sainsbury’s to see how it went. We brought enough to make 20 wraps and they all went within an hour.’ Can anyone turn up and do it? ‘No, we had an audition with the guy who runs the market. It was a bit like “MasterChef”. After that, we started turning up every other Sunday and it got really popular.’ What's an average day for you now? ‘Early morning starts to get to the market by 8am. If I can get up at 6.30am, it’s a lie-in! Then we set up and start serving. I don’t get to sit down again until 9pm. By 10pm, I’m dead.’ How do you fit in a social life? ‘What’s a social life? We don’t have any friends any more! It’s very hard, especially in the summer because we do so many festivals. It’s like having a child: it takes every single moment of spare time you have.’ It sounds awful... ‘It’s our baby! The fact that it’s ours and we can take it in any direction we want is definitely the best thing about it. No matter how tiring it is or how much it sucks the life out of you, it’s your thing. We watch it grow every day and it makes us proud.’ Do

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City envy: there's a wine theme park in Bordeaux

Theme parks: nightmare places of interminable queues, huge crowds of mardy teenagers, and £15 burgers filled with mystery meat. But take a moment to imagine this, if you will: the interminable queues have been replaced by row upon row of bottles of pinot noir. There are no rowdy youngsters, just glasses full of the finest cabernet sauvignon. And instead of dodgy food, there are gallons of delicious chenin blanc. This oenophile's wet dream is a reality, because the world's first wine theme park has just opened in the French city of Bordeaux. La Cité du Vin offers ten floors of adults-only fun, with experiences ranging from wine-tasting sessions to exhibitions on the history of wine and even a wine-merchant- themed boat ride. There are no rollercoasters, but the resulting hangovers should be able to recreate some of their effects. Want more great things in other cities? You can now get a pizza in a box made of pizza (!) in New York And there's an IMAX spin studio in New York

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11 reasons to go to Marchmont Street in Bloomsbury, WC1

Bloomsbury is something of an unknown quantity. It’s hidden away, tucked among and behind all sorts of places that everyone already knows. But head to its back streets, past the busy roads and you’ll discover one of central London’s greatest treasures. Neither crazy-busy like Oxford Street, nor aggy like the City, not touristy like Covent Garden, it has all the history of Soho but, brilliantly, none of the crowds. Despite being near London’s busiest bits, Marchmont Street is one of Zone 1’s most chilled-out places to wander around and it has an amazingly rich heritage. It’s got all bases covered: art, cinema, architecture, museums, green spaces, shopping, fine food, nice pubs and cheap eats. And if you turn up on a Sunday morning you basically get it all to yourself. That rich history I alluded to earlier? The street’s full of stories: from the LGBT powerhouse Gay’s the Word (recognise it from Pride?) to Percy and Mary Shelley’s old house and the gossip-worthy goings-on of Jane Austen-era Brunswick Square, it’s basically a living museum of London. So as all the tourists head straight to the British Museum, go a little bit east and give yourself the whole day to have a proper exploration of the road that London historians call Bloomsbury’s ‘original high street’. Drink this   A photo posted by nicolondon1985 (@nicolondon1985) on Jun 21, 2013 at 4:17am PDT The Norfolk Arms runs a mean bar and also serves pata negra and soutzouki as well as modern British food a

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Top five cheapest Londoners

© Nathan James Page       1. The exact-bill- divider-upper You and your work chums head out for dim sum, and eventually the bill arrives. Andy from Finance pipes up: ‘I only had one glass of pinot, and I didn’t touch the noodles.’ Dividing up the steamed dumplings, tofu skin rolls and lotus leaf rice parcels among you and seven of your colleagues is like thrusting a fully-grown Arizonian cactus up ya derrière. All because Andy foresees a personal economic meltdown if he spends a few extra pence on Donna from HR’s sticky rice. 2. The pots-of-cash-TK Maxx-weekender Kathy lives in a four-bed, three-bath, fifteenth-floor Thames-side apartment, has no comprehension of what the Jubilee line is and executes her weekly shop at Borough Market, but she’ll take up your whole Saturday dragging you round the aisles of TK’s in the hunt for a cost-effective kaftan. She’ll barter her way out of service charges, bully waiting staff for complimentary booze and wangle her way out of cancellation fees. You can take the girl out of the north-west, but not out of a 60 percent-less-than-the-RRP discount department store. © Nathan James Page   3. The daily saver, holiday splurger With Sam, it’s all voucher deals, Groupon bargains and TopTable offers; she’ll never start with an apéritif at a hyper-cool hotel or contemporary cocktail bar: ‘You can buy a whole bottle of plonk for the price of one cosmo in that gaff.’ She’ll happily bang on about P&O’s ocean-fresh lobster, the tasty p

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This tube map shows the average property prices at every London Underground station

Click for the full-sized map Everyone knows that if you ever want to get on the property ladder in London, you're going to need a helluva lot of cash. To quantify just how money we're talking about, the folks at TotallyMoney.com have put together this handy (if depressing) map, which shows the average house price, per square foot, within 0.3 miles of every London tube station. To put it into context, the average one-bedroom flat in London is about 500 square feet, so you don't need to be a mathematician to work out that Zone 1 is pretty much off-limits unless you're secretly sitting on a pile of gold. The research shows that the Hammersmith and City line is the most expensive at £1,125 per square foot, while the Metropolitan line has the cheapest average property price, at £504 per square foot. Although, it's worth bearing in mind that the Metropolitan line stretches all the way out to Zone 9, so you might save on property but you'll have a seriously long (and expensive) commute. Want more depressing property maps? This one show how unaffordable renting in London is. Here are 25 things you didn't know about the tube.

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Bum rush: photos of the World Naked Bike Ride in London

  A photo posted by A Broad In London (@abroad.inlondon) on Jun 11, 2016 at 9:23am PDT On Saturday, hundreds of cyclists stripped off and saddled up for the World Naked Bike Ride's London leg.   A photo posted by Paukova (@paukova_zhzh) on Jun 11, 2016 at 7:46am PDT Ostensibly a protest against oil dependency and a car-dominated public realm, it's also quite a good laugh.   A photo posted by Ming (@indieboy) on Jun 11, 2016 at 9:05am PDT Photos suggest quite a troubling number of arsehole-on-Santander-bike incidents. Let's hope everyone brought some Dettol wipes.    A photo posted by Norberto Gomes (@norgomes) on Jun 12, 2016 at 8:51am PDT The bike ride takes place in cities around the world, with recent happenings in Chicago and Los Angeles.    A photo posted by Secchi (@secchiyao) on Jun 11, 2016 at 2:33pm PDT The event happens each year, so if you're feeling inspired, make a plan for next June!   A photo posted by @chichiwawawa on Jun 11, 2016 at 12:44pm PDT And now to conclude the post, more naked people on bikes. Enjoy!    A photo posted by Monkey (@monkey_muscle) on Jun 13, 2016 at 2:01am PDT      A photo posted by Tom (@i_am_tomr) on Jun 11, 2016 at 12:18pm PDT     A photo posted by Ashish Surana (@_aashishclicks) on Jun 11, 2016 at 1:30pm PDT     A photo posted by Asier Susaeta (@assier78) on Jun 12, 2016 at 3:52am P

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