Time Out says
A flower-lover’s paradise in east London
One of London’s most visually appealing markets, Columbia Road overflows with bucketfuls of beautiful flowers every Sunday. From 8am-3pm, market traders line the narrow street selling flowers, houseplants, herbs, bulbs and shrubs.
It’s worth shopping around, don’t be afraid to barter and prepare for it to get very busy. The market is popular with locals and tourists and during the midday rush is rammed with people elbowing their way to that perfect pot plant. If you can’t bear crowds or just want to guarantee the pick of the crop, arrive when the market opens.
When you’ve bought your blooms, head behind the stalls and down side streets to find cute cafés, independent restaurants, delis, shops, antique dealers, vintage stalls and small galleries, many of which follow the market’s opening hours. Pop into Jones Dairy Cafe for organic and local produce, treat yourself to a no-frills British bake at Treacle or sink a locally brewed pint at the Nelson’s Head.
Top tip: For a bargain, visit when the market is winding down (around 2-3pm) because that’s when the traders reduce their prices to shift the remaining stock.
RECOMMENDED: London’s best markets
|Transport:||Hoxton/Shoreditch High St Overground|
|Opening hours:||Sun: 8am-3pm|
|Do you own this business?|
Users say (61)
Average User Rating
4.6 / 5
- 5 star:40
- 4 star:17
- 3 star:3
- 2 star:0
- 1 star:0
One of my favourite markets in London and if you go around 2pm there are some real bargains to be had! If you are a budding photographer there are some amazing photo ops http://bit.ly/1iS1wKX
It's way too busy, and the flowers aren't great value - but they are gorgeous! With such a love of flora I can't help but give it 5 stars. What I enjoyed most are the more unusual offerings that you wouldn't get in your standard florist - for example I picked up some non-edible cabbages that look like a whitish green rose.. absolutely stunning. Definitely a bucket list item - just be prepared for crowds.
This market is the perfect place to come on a Sunday afternoon. There are loads of lovely shops and cafes also.
Worth for the visuals of it, the colours everywhere and the sea of people; plus going later and getting beautiful flowers for "a fiver"
Magic place! You even don't need to buy flowers just having a walk with a coffee makes your day batter. It's crowded but it's London.
Particularly now that spring has officially sprung, a couple of hours walking through this market on a sunny Sunday is a rapturous experience. A short walk from Hoxton or Shoreditch High Street, Columbia Road Flower Market has been a stalwart on the London market scene for many generations. Every Sunday from 8am ’til around 4pm, come rain or fall, the street is transformed into an oasis of flowers and foliage. Punters can find blooms by the bunch, plant pots big or small, and I even spotted a 10 foot tall banana tree. The market offers some of the best flowers, depending on the season, you can find sunflowers, roses, hydrangeas and much more.
The atmosphere is vibrant and the traditionally cockney vendors tempt their customers with outrageously cheap deals. The street floods with punters, from stylishly hungover adolescents to smitten couples, mums and dads and even the occasional pup being carried through the bustle by its owner. Don’t be too quick to head home once you’ve purchased your bargain blooms, Columbia Road offers much more than its wonderful flowers. The street is lined with quaint independent shops, cafes and pop-ups. You can find quirky art galleries sat next to small eateries and alternative vintage clothes shops. Check out Lee’s Seafoods at no 134- you are in for a treat of calamari or tempura prawns with sweet chilli and seafood sauce to drizzle and dip. And just when you thought East London couldn’t push the boundaries of cool any further… there is even a man selling coffee out of a hatch! A Sunday afternoon well spent, Columbia Road Flower Market is a quintessential London gem.
A place to make a habit of going and for the generations after to follow, just as I have succeeded my Parents ^^
Sundays can be much happier and colourful - especially the sunny ones- when visiting this lovely flower market! The experience begins before arrival even while watching all the people coming from the same direction holding flowers- seems like part of a festival. And when you're finally there, things are even better: the colours, smells, buzz of the street and the shops nearby are overwhelming! Don't miss out on the opportunity for some real bargains near closing time (got an orchid for 5 pounds), but even if you don't want to buy anything, being there is still worth the visit!
Snap up exclusive discounts in London
Time Out's handpicked deals — hurry, they won't be around for long...