Exmouth Market is such a central London gem that it’s hard to believe it was considered seedy and run-down as recently as the ‘90s. Now comprehensively regenerated, this pedestrianised street within walking distance of Farringdon, Clerkenwell and the bustling City of London is a lunchtime hub for nearby office workers and a vibrant spot for after-work drinks.
There’s a weekday market featuring an impressive array of street food vendors. Spinach & Agushi’s hearty Ghanaian stews and Freebird’s bulging burritos are firm favourites with City slickers looking to refuel before closing their next deal. Because the market is so food-focused, it tends to wind down soon after lunchtime, so try to arrive before 2pm to check out every option.
But Exmouth Market is also worth visiting after twilight or on weekends to soak up its lively and convivial ambience. Because the majority of cafés, pubs and bars lining the street have outside seating and cover, it’s one of the rare London thoroughfares that offers a proper, continental Europe-style ‘sidewalk café’ vibe. Especially popular spots include Mediterranean fusion restaurant Moro, versatile all-day hangout Caravan, and Café Kick, where you can drink while honing your table football skills.
Top tip: Don’t forget to take a selfie outside the punningly named Barber Streisand hair salon. Nick Levine
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