While Notting Hill has become one of London’s most affluent and desirable areas, Portobello Road Market, which runs between Notting Hill Gate and Ladbroke Grove, retains the area’s former cool. There’s the architecture – colourful terraced houses and shops all tightly squeezed together – and the market, which is actually several markets melded together. Portobello Road Market is best known for its antiques, with hundreds of dealers selling jewellery, books and collectables dating from the 1600s to the 1960s.
There are numerous reasons for foodies to visit Portobello Road. Like many London markets it began life as a place to buy fruit and veg, something you can still do six days a week (the whole market is closed on Sundays). There are numerous eateries dotted around, like local institution Lowry & Baker, while street-food vendors pitch up on Fridays and Saturdays. Nearby Golborne Road has North African and Caribbean street food available during the week.
Under the Westway and along the walkway to Ladbroke Grove, second-hand clothes sit next to the wares of up-and-coming fashion designers. Fridays are a little less hectic here, and you’ll be able to explore fashion-focused Portobello Green Market, which comprises more than 800 stalls. But Portobello Road is a top tourist destination, so it’s always going to be busy. However, it’s full of character and charm, so embrace its craziness and soak up the vibe.
Top tip: In the summer, grab an iced latte from Coffee Plant, which serves coffee supplied by its own roastery, then walk over to The Last Place On Earth, a vintage store full of carefully curated curios. Alim Kheraj
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