London’s best bits: our street-by-street guide to the city

Discover great things to eat, drink, do and see on the best streets in London

Columbia Road Flower Market
Piers Allardyce / Time Out

London is a bit different to other cities. Most of its neighbourhoods were once outlying villages, and though they may have been smooshed together by urban expansion, plenty still have a distinct character and feel – often focused on a single main road. Here’s our street-by-street guide to London’s best spots: local history, the best places to eat, drink and shop, and great things to do on streets all over London. For more local goodness, see our London area guides.

Browse the map of London’s best streets…

Central London’s best bits

13 awesome things to do on Newburgh Street, Soho
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13 awesome things to do on Newburgh Street, Soho

Carnaby Street may get all the attention, but Newburgh Street was once home to the shop credited with kickstarting the ’60s fashion revolution. ‘Vince’ was the pseudonym of photographer Bill Green, and his shop of the same name (which opened in 1954) specialised in risqué images of the male physique when homosexuality was still illegal. It also sold skimpy, flamboyant garments for the lads that provided an alternative to drab post-war suits, and became popular with a predominantly gay clientele. One of Vince’s sales assistants, John Stephen, went on to dress The Beatles, The Kinks, Jimi Hendrix and The Rolling Stones. Vince kicked off the sartorial tradition in this bit of the West End, which has since become known as a hotbed of subcultural fashion. Punks, mods, skinheads and new romantics all clustered here, and although London’s alternative side has been more or less banished from Zone 1 by now, this corner of Soho is still known for indie fashion stores, lifestyle boutiques and experimental street styles. So if the chains on Carnaby Street aren’t for you, pace the villagey cobbles of Newburgh Street and discover, behind its stylish shopfronts, a wealth of heritage labels, offbeat emporia and low-key foodie pitstops. And look out for Vince’s green plaque at number 5. Drink this A post shared by Tye Rutherford (@papatye) on Nov 14, 2017 at 6:03pm PST Friday pints on the cobbles outside the White Horse. Cups of the strong brown stuff at Department o

11 enticing things to do on Rupert Street, Soho
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11 enticing things to do on Rupert Street, Soho

Cutting across Shaftesbury Avenue from Chinatown up into Soho, Rupert Street was named in 1676 after Prince Rupert of the Rhine: the nephew of King Charles I, and a handsome devil who used to ride into battle with his pet poodle. His namesake remains handsome too: despite countless redevelopments there’s a distinctive architectural splendour to the place, and bags of history. The White Horse pub on the corner of Archer Street has existed under that name since 1739, which is worth paying tribute to with a half-pint. Even though plenty has changed, the flamboyant Prince Rupert would have felt right at home here today, what with the street’s smattering of excellent restaurants and cosy LGBT+ venues (although the nearby BarCode was expunged by rent hikes in 2012).  The best time to see the place is during Pride every July, when it’s decked out in rainbow regalia. But it’s a culinary hotspot all year round, with more options than you could fit into a year of lunch breaks. As well as the sit-down restaurants, Street Food Union’s 15 stalls dish up everything from gluten-free Venezuelan to po’ boy sarnies six days a week. Go ahead and gorge on the delights of this Soho stalwart: it’s what Rupert and his poodle would have wanted. Drink this A post shared by Leona Chow (@leona_q) on Feb 26, 2018 at 12:34pm PST Ceremonial-grade matcha at Tsujiri Soho, a Japanese shrine to green tea in all its forms. Or go off-piste with a matcha soft-serve

13 superb things to do on Shepherd Market, Mayfair
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13 superb things to do on Shepherd Market, Mayfair

Nestled between Piccadilly and Curzon Street, Shepherd Market is a comparatively quiet haven of gorgeous eateries and high-end retailers smack in the centre of the priciest bit of London. Blink and you’ll miss it: Shepherd Market is a single thoroughfare by name but a village-like jumble of narrow side streets in reality, with every corner packed with eclectic cuisine and hidden shops and galleries. In fact, this is where Mayfair started. Originally the centre of the 15-day market and festival that became Mayfair’s namesake, Shepherd Market was developed by local architect Edward Shepherd in the 1730s and ’40s. Despite (or maybe because of) its incredibly posh location, it went on to become one of the most notorious red-light areas in London: Jeffrey Archer started his controversial entanglement with sex worker Monica Coghlan here in 1987. In other colourful local history, both The Who’s Keith Moon and Mama Cass Elliot from The Mamas & The Papas died in the same flat around the corner, four years apart. These days, Mayfair is better known for oligarchs’ mansions than doomed rock stars and sleazy scandals, but Shepherd Market hasn’t lost its cosy village atmosphere: it’s still perfect for those seeking some temporary refuge from city life. Eat this A post shared by TakaMayfair (@takamayfair) on Oct 30, 2017 at 7:05am PDT Marinated black cod cooked on a traditional robata grill, a speciality at brand new Japanese joint Taka. Classy comfort food from C

18 awesome things to do on Old Compton Street, Soho
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18 awesome things to do on Old Compton Street, Soho

The late Soho dandy Sebastian Horsley called Soho ‘a madhouse without walls’, and if you stroll down Old Compton Street today, you can still get a flavour of that electric eccentricity. Running from Charing Cross Road to Wardour Street, intersecting the hectic grid of lower Soho, it pulsates with theatre-goers, rickshaws, café-dwelling people-watchers and parading characters. It’s a thoroughfare for tourists and busy media types, a high street for the local community, and home to some of Soho’s oldest surviving businesses. Over the years, Old Compton Street has given refuge to many minorities and subcultures, from the Huguenots in the 1680s, through the poets Arthur Rimbaud and Paul Verlaine, to the British rock ’n’ rollers who played at 2i’s Coffee Bar in the ’50s. Today it’s one of London’s main LGBT+ hubs. It’s seen tragedy – in 1999  the Admiral Duncan pub was bombed in a homophobic attack – but strength and unity too. Crowds congregated here in 2016 after the Orlando nightclub shooting, and it’s a major focus of London’s annual Pride celebrations. When I interviewed Horsley about Soho in 2008, he lamented: ‘The air used to be clean and the sex used to be dirty, and now it’s the other way around.’ But despite the sanitisation, Old Compton Street clings on to its alternative filthy spirit. Drink this A post shared by Lizzie Munro (@lizzieamunro) on Sep 2, 2017 at 10:50am PDT A potent, bottle-aged negroni at tiny cocktail and coffee haven Bar Termin

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North London’s best bits

14 glorious things to do on Golders Green Road
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14 glorious things to do on Golders Green Road

According to the latest census, Jews make up less than 2 percent of the population of London. But in Golders Green more than a third of residents are Jewish, and if you take a walk down the neighbourhood’s main thoroughfare, you can’t fail to notice us. Along with Stamford Hill, this is one of the city’s two concentrated areas where the orthodox – both modern and Hasidic – and secular communities congregate. It’s occasionally known as ‘Little Tel Aviv’. The influx of Jews into Golders Green began after a Jewish cemetery was opened on Hoop Lane in 1895. The community expanded rapidly during the 1930s, as people fleeing from Germany and Eastern Europe came to settle in London. Today, more than 50 restaurants, 40 synagogues and 30 schools serve the area. The diversity of Jewish culture in this area is unparalleled in the capital. You’ll find Israelis in the restaurants, while orthodox Jews – mostly from London but many from New York – run supermarkets and Judaica gift shops. Secular younger Jews can be found in White House Express getting a shawarma in the early hours. There’s also a growing East Asian population, with Japanese and Korean restaurants popping up. It may be in Zone 3, but trust me: this diverse hood is well worth the schlep. Drink this A post shared by @j_flacks on Aug 2, 2017 at 9:45am PDT A peanut butter hot chocolate at social enterprise Head Room Café. It’s run by Jami, a charity that offers support to adults with mental health problem

16 sublime things to do on The Broadway, Crouch End
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16 sublime things to do on The Broadway, Crouch End

There’s a reason Crouch End is often referred to as an urban village. Just over 100 years ago it was entirely rural, before bursting on to the London scene thanks to a busy new railway line which, ironically, no longer runs. These days, without its own convenient tube or train station, this arty north London neighbourhood can feel like a bubble. Not that the residents – long-time Londoners, young families, well-off bohemian sorts and the odd famous face – are complaining. There’s no denying Crouch End has a fancy side: you could collect some material for ‘Overheard in Waitrose’ before heading down Park Road to splurge a month’s salary on antique furniture, superior tapas and high-end house plants. But there’s authentic creativity and a sense of tradition too, with festivals in the town hall square and lots of old-fashioned community spirit. It’s all there on The Broadway and its extension Broadway Parade (becoming Tottenham Lane further north) running through the middle of Crouch End past charity shops, traditional boozers, unusual stores and the iconic clock tower. Copycat coffee chains are present but outgunned by enough thriving independents to keep you brunching all year round. Hop on a bus and check it out. Drink this A post shared by BearBQ (@thebearbq) on Feb 18, 2018 at 11:27am PST   Seriously good cocktails at Nickel, a tiny bar down the road (Crouch Hill) that also boasts an ace wine list. A pint of craft ale while

15 champion things to do on Chalton Street, NW1
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15 champion things to do on Chalton Street, NW1

‘I will not declare that those who have not visited Somers Town have missed much,’ wrote Charles George Harper in his book ‘A Londoner’s Own London’. But that was back in 1927. These days, tourists and Londoners killing time before a train at Euston or King’s Cross would be missing out big time if they didn’t take a walk up Chalton Street. Nestled between the two stations, Somers Town could so easily have been Cocks Town: it was named after Charles Cocks, 1st Baron Somers. Nondescript it may seem, but Charles Dickens, Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley all called this area home, and more recently, Shane Meadows set his whole film ‘Somers Town’ here. Chalton Street is the area’s main drag, home to two art galleries, a shop selling vegan cheese, historic pubs and a diverse assortment of restaurants. The twice-weekly street market is the glue that holds the neighbourhood together: in its heyday, it was one of London’s most thriving. With the HS2 railway set to change the face of Somers Town, Chalton Street has big ambitions not to be left behind. A crowdfunder by the local community association to save Chalton Street Market hit its £60,000 target in the summer, with Sadiq Khan pledging £15,000 in support. Got some free time before your next train? Race you there. Drink this A post shared by Thomas Martin (@monkmartin) on Jan 14, 2018 at 3:12am PST A handcrafted cocktail from the three-page list at family-run smokehouse Cattle & Co. A lychee sake at no-f

14 fabulous things to do on High Road, East Finchley
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14 fabulous things to do on High Road, East Finchley

In many ways, East Finchley is the Beverly Hills of London. Over the years all the greats have lived around here: George Michael, Emma Bunton, Spike Milligan, Margaret Thatcher… And if you fancy seeing where the likes of monarchs, business magnates and incredibly wealthy celebrities live today, check out the ridiculously expensive properties on The Bishops Avenue. (Justin Bieber rented one of the houses there in 2016 for a reported £25,000 a week.) But N2 isn’t all about one-percenters. Take a stroll up the High Road through this lovely part of north London; it’s close enough to reach Zone 1 easily on the tube yet far enough out to feel cosy. With its wide, tree-shaded pavements and residential side streets, the High Road is home to many fantastic restaurants and inviting drinking holes, along with independent and occasionally quirky shops and other delights. It’s a great place to live, shop, eat, drink and unwind – and it’s close to some of the best views across London. The High Road, it should be noted, doesn’t just cover East Finchley: it runs all the way through North Finchley and winds up in Whetstone. But stick around the southern end for a while, and by the time you’re done taking in all the treats you might well be sporting an ‘I heart N2’ badge. Eat this A post shared by Bufi (@pizzeriabufi) on Jan 1, 2017 at 11:18am PST An epic pizza at Italian restaurant Bufi (great gluten-free options are also available!). Arrive super-hungry so you can fi

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South London’s best bits

14 cracking things to do on Kennington Lane, SE11
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14 cracking things to do on Kennington Lane, SE11

What links Vauxhall and Elephant & Castle? For many years, that uninspiring question had an equally uninspiring answer: ‘the A3204’. But given that road nowadays connects Voho, Vauxhall’s flourishing gay village, with the resurgent cultural hub that is the Elephant, it’s high time to revert to its proper name, the rather more refined ‘Kennington Lane’. The teetering Victorian chimneystacks to the north, familiar to the young Charlie Chaplin, soon give way to grand Georgian terraces peppered with florists and cafés. It’s a corner of Kennington that feels more like Kensington. Then again, SE11 was something of a royal borough itself: it was once the location of a long-vanished palace. Parliament was even held here in medieval times, and this road is still popular with MPs, since you can just about hear the chimes of Big Ben from here. (You know – when they’re actually chiming.) If that’s all sounding a little square, head to the Triangle: a dining and drinking enclave created by the Lane’s junction with Kennington Road. It’s all Mediterranean and Middle Eastern places, with delis and bars spilling down side streets and buildings painted every colour of the LGBT+ rainbow. By the time you’ve reached Vauxhall, with its pubs and pleasure gardens you’ll be truly in the pink. Drink this A post shared by Erik Winther Paisley (@ewpaisley) on Aug 3, 2017 at 10:32am PDT London-brewed beers at the eccentric, comfy, taxidermy-filled pub The Dog House. You’ll have no bones to pick

15 lush things to do on Lewisham Way
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15 lush things to do on Lewisham Way

Like that Stealers Wheel song, Lewisham Way is stuck in the middle. Stretching from New Cross past the imposing Goldsmiths College, it jostles through leafy St Johns, skims bougie Brockley and stops just short of Lewisham’s busy town centre. It’s not grand: aside from Goldsmiths you won’t find much ornate architecture here. It doesn’t have an illustrious history like neighbouring Deptford: Christopher Marlowe didn’t do much drinking along Lewisham Way. But what it does have, in bucketloads, is an offbeat and quirky spirit. While New Cross and Lewisham have seen the arrival of chains and gastropubs, the Way retains its south-east London spirit. Strolling down the road is like wandering through a curiosity shop where you never know what you might find: you’ll pass the secret Stone House, built in 1773, a charming café posing as an appliance centre and a farmers’ market in a car park. Ten years ago a papier-mâché elephant looked down on the street from a dilapidated Victorian house-cum-squat (now demolished). Now, rumours are rumbling that beloved salvage yard Aladdin’s Cave is under threat of development. But this is a street of resource and ingenuity: the kind of place where phone boxes are turned into mini libraries. Lewisham Way won’t give up its eccentricity without a fight. Drink this A post shared by Tanith (@tanboeuf) on Aug 28, 2017 at 6:10am PDT   A silky flat white from kooky café Birdie Num Nums. Head along for Sunday brunch and you might ca

17 wonderful things to do on Westow Street, Crystal Palace
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17 wonderful things to do on Westow Street, Crystal Palace

Take a steep seven-minute walk from Gipsy Hill station, or a flatter stroll from Crystal Palace, and you’ll hit Westow Street: one third of the minor marvel of Victorian town planning that Norwooders call the Triangle. Each of these three interlinked streets has plenty for south London explorers to discover. Church Road is filled with vintage and antiques stores, while Westow Hill is home to some lovely pubs and a community-run library. But it’s Westow Street that feels most like Upper Norwood’s high street. Although there’s a large Sainsbury’s on one side, this characterful patch of suburban south London is dominated by independent shops and restaurants offering everything from Portuguese to Vietnamese food. If you overindulge (you probably will), burn off those calories afterwards by strolling around nearby Crystal Palace Park, which boasts its own maze and some famous, very Instagram-friendly dinosaur sculptures. Despite the area being a bit of a commuter dormitory, Westow Street feels lively throughout the week, but for a real taste of Crystal Palace life it’s best to visit on a weekend morning and mingle with a cross-section of the local community. Just be sure to allow extra time, as you’ll probably end up queuing behind a good few of them for brunch. Eat this A post shared by Domali Bar & Kitchen (@domalibarandkitchen) on Aug 18, 2017 at 6:15am PDT Crab mac ’n’ cheese at Domali Bar & Kitchen, a vibey restaurant that used to be pescatarian but n

Ten top-notch things to do on Northcote Road, Battersea
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Ten top-notch things to do on Northcote Road, Battersea

…picked by Jenny Conlon, 31, from Colliers Wood. Don’t get me wrong, I adore London. If London was a man, I’d marry him (if I wasn’t already married). But most of the time, this city is a rat race. Everyone is always in such a rush to get from A to B, so it’s really invigorating to stop and talk to an actual human sometimes. That’s why a jaunt down Northcote Road is good for the soul. I like to run – I’ve completed the London Marathon twice – and for me, running is the best way to explore London. You see things you wouldn’t normally see from public transport. A couple of times per month, I run from my home in Colliers Wood (aka Collywood) to Battersea to visit the independent businesses of Northcote Road. Despite a good few chain restaurants and bars creeping in, it’s a rarity to find so many indies on one street in London these days. Some have been there for well over 30 years, and I love speaking to the owners: they’ll tell you fascinating stories and reveal knowledge that you’d never find on Google, and most of the time they’re genuinely happy to stop and have a good old chat. It makes me sad to think they might not be there in another 30 years. So I urge you: pay a visit to Northcote Road and give the independents your support. Here are a few of the places you need to go. Eat this A post shared by Charlotte Cain (@charlottecain) on Jan 11, 2017 at 10:24am PST Sticky sumac chicken wings, then boneless sea bream cooked in the charcoal oven,

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East London’s best bits

15 first-rate things to do on Ridley Road, Dalston
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15 first-rate things to do on Ridley Road, Dalston

On market days, Ridley Road is the beating heart of Dalston, bursting with shoppers, trader banter, reggae rhythms and the smells of wafting incense and butchers’ shops. It’s been a market street since the late 1880s, and was once the centre of Hackney’s thriving Jewish community, but these days Turkish, African, Jamaican, Asian, Indian and Middle Eastern traders set up side by side. Unlike lots of bits of Hackney, Ridley Road has so far managed to fend off regeneration. It’s a strong community and a hub for locals to do their weekly shop and catch up on the neighbourhood gossip. Forget halloumi fries: the only street food you’ll find here is gözleme, patties and jerk chicken. And despite being just off the Kingsland Road ‘strip’, there’s only one bar: the wonderfully unpretentious Ridley Road Market Bar, which hosts some of the best nights out in east London. The road comes to life each September for Hackney One Carnival, with a joyful mix of families, art-school kids and old locals dancing to competing soundsystems and drinking home-made rum punch. It’s the kind of scene that captures everything brilliant about London – even when it’s raining. Eat this A fresh spinach-and-feta-filled flatbread from the gözleme stall. A ‘Wannabe’ pizza from the Slice Girls residency outside Market Bar. A bag of samosas, bhajis and other fried treats at Kashmir Kebabish. Jerk chicken with rice and peas at Jerkmaican café and stall. A fresh, hot cheese roll from local hole-in-the-wall

16 awesome things to do on Hoxton Street, N1
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16 awesome things to do on Hoxton Street, N1

This funny old stretch of shops, cafés and pubs, which starts down by Old Street and ends up almost at the Regent’s Canal, doesn’t look so glamorous at the outset. Compared with its glitzier neighbours at the Shoreditch end, Hoxton Street even seems a bit unkempt. But in a part of London that’s changed beyond recognition in the past decade, this rough-round-the-edges vibe is to be welcomed. Though a few new brunch places and the like have popped up, the old local haunts remain. The pie-and-mash shop is still thriving and residents of the Arden and New Era estates continue to buy their fruit and veg from the many market stalls lining the street. There’s even a Poundland. This is where trendy east London collides with its Cockney roots – and if you want a visual metaphor for that, watch Richard Ashcroft of The Verve knocking over locals as he swaggers down the street in the ‘Bittersweet Symphony’ video. Plenty has changed around here since the Britpop era, and there are a fair few trendy spots edging in. But follow (carefully) in Ashcroft’s footsteps and you’ll discover a street that’s authentic and special, with an enticing mixture of old and new London. Eat this Pie and mash from F Cooke. The recipe hasn’t changed since 1862. An epic reuben sandwich from the Jewish-inspired menu at Monty’s Deli. Whatever’s on the no-choice menu at low-waste/high-concept Cub, one of the capital’s best new restaurants. Slow-roasted pork belly at The Ginger Pig Café. Drink this Super Ly

14 glorious things to do on Great Eastern Street, Shoreditch
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14 glorious things to do on Great Eastern Street, Shoreditch

You don’t need us to tell you that Shoreditch’s reputation has taken a battering in recent years. An affordable refuge for trendy types at the turn of the millennium, it has seen its art-school cool plummet as those types increasingly favour less central parts of the city. In time-honoured tradition, the area has in many ways priced itself out of what originally made it great. And this isn’t just us mouthing off: last month, in our global City Life Index survey, 3,000 Londoners named Shoreditch the capital’s most overrated neighbourhood. The dream is over. Or is it? If you dodge around the hordes of weekend tourists coming off the Friday night train from Essex into Liverpool Street station, there’s still shedloads of good stuff to be found here. Coming from the City towards Shoreditch, Great Eastern Street is a left turn that heralds a wealth of delights. To the casual observer it’s just a big through-road with a Pret, an Eat and a Subway like everywhere else. Look a little closer, however, and you’ll find treasures set back from every corner, down side roads and in basements. And if cannily hiding your gems away from the lamestream masses isn’t in the original ’00s spirit of the area, we don’t know what is. Shoreditch is dead – long live Shoreditch! Drink this A beer at The Book Club, round the corner on Leonard Street, where you can also get stuck into speed dating, arty talks or hip hop and soul club nights. ‘Alice in Wonderland’-level curious cocktails served in

19 banging things to do on Broadway Market
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19 banging things to do on Broadway Market

For a small street, Broadway Market’s got a big reputation. Neatly connecting London Fields to Regent’s Canal, it was home to a busy fruit and veg market from the 1890s until trade petered out in the early ’00s. On May 8 2004 the market was relaunched by the local community, and has since grown into a booming Saturday spectacle that’s famous across London. Each weekend people flock to buy fresh produce, vintage clothes, flowers, coffee, books, groceries, street food and handmade goodies – and to generally hang out. On a sunny Saturday, the market can be almost too busy to walk through. But the rest of the week, despite the coffee shops, restaurants and chic boutiques, it still feels like a local high street complete with a kebab shop, post office (the best place to get cash), Costcutter, old-school barber shop and excellent hardware store. Even off market day, you’ll find it buzzing with people pottering about, nattering over coffee and doing their weekly shop. On summer evenings, the pubs overflow on to the pavement and throngs of Londoners grab takeaway pizzas to scoff in the park. But make sure to visit in the colder months for Christmas trees, steamy café windows, quirky presents and as cosy a festive vibe as you’ll find anywhere in the city. Drink this A post shared by Jimmy Mikaoui (@jimmmmik) on Dec 14, 2017 at 1:24pm PST A glass of wine upstairs at The Cat & Mutton, a classic East End boozer overlooking London Fields. A few pints of craft beer in The Dove p

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West London’s best bits

13 reasons to go to North End Road, West Kensington, W14 and SW6
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13 reasons to go to North End Road, West Kensington, W14 and SW6

Stretching from Kensington Olympia in the north to Fulham Broadway in the south, North End Road might run through the middle of posh west London but it’s a beguiling place nonetheless. Bookies, boozers and chicken shops sit side-by-side with vegan cafés, outrageous gay bars and contemporary art galleries. And North End Road Market is one of London’s busiest – the kind of place where you can buy a phone charger, a toothbrush, some cheap sunglasses and a bowl of 12 wonky carrots. Here’s one good reason to visit: the food. North End Road is fussy-mate-proof, with Chinese, Indian, steak, Korean, cor-blimey British, North African, Mediterranean and Italian grub all on offer. And here’s another: there are loads of places to grab a drink, from cocktail bars and smart jazz joints to no-shame happy hours and no-nonsense boozers. Chuck in dog walkers’ paradise Eel Brook Common, less than five minutes’ walk from the bottom of North End Road, and you can see why locals feel no need to leave their manor at the weekend. South Ken might have a museum or two more, but how many times have you taken visiting friends to the V&A? Too many times, that’s how many. Mix it up and head to West Ken for a different slice of west London life.       Drink this A classic New York sour from Below the Cut, the smart, ’20s-themed cocktail bar beneath excellent steakhouse Hanger SW6. A strong double espresso from compact café Bonjour Brioche, which also does excellent pastries. A pint of Camden Hel

18 champion things to do on Chiswick High Road
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18 champion things to do on Chiswick High Road

Once upon a time, Chiswick wasn’t a fancy west London suburb known for Bugaboos, media types and shifty‑looking celebrities in sunglasses. It was a riverside village that got its name, rather unglamorously, from the Old English for ‘cheese farm’ because of an association with an annual cheese fair. Funnily enough, that’s also the kind of event you can expect to stumble across in modern-day Chiswick. The area around Chiswick High Road is an undeniably posh but very friendly bubble, mostly in Zone 3. It champions creativity and community spirit. Street parties aren’t out of place and it’s home to a lovely literary festival each autumn. And then there’s the High Road itself. Running straight through the centre of the area’s rambling residential sprawl, it’s a hub of activity dotted with leafy green spaces, laidback pubs and the fancier high-street chains. There are plenty of independent ventures too, and countless cafés. On a sunny day, tables and chairs spill out onto the pavement, making the vibe almost European. All in all, this long and bustling road has enough charms to tempt any visitor westward. And there’s a reason the locals look so happy to call W4 home. Drink this A post shared by Lin Zi (@linztoa) on Aug 10, 2017 at 3:10pm PDT A Sipsmith gin and tonic (distilled in Chiswick) in The Roebuck’s garden. A cherry-spiked old fashioned at No197 Chiswick Fire Station, a busy bar full of squishy sofas and succulents. Liver-cleansing fresh juice

12 great things to do on Portobello Road
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12 great things to do on Portobello Road

Even if you’d never been to London before, the barrows, bars and famous blue doors of Portobello Road would be immediately familiar. You’ll have seen its market playing host to Hugh Grant, Paddington Bear and the cast of the 1971 Disney classic ‘Bedknobs and Broomsticks’, in which the street even got its own theme song. Portobello Road retains much of that magic, mystery and romance today. Most famous for its half-mile-long antiques market (the largest in the world), the street is transformed every Saturday into a glittering treasure arcade. Admittedly there’s quite a lot of trash too, and the crowds can be overwhelming during the summer. But there’s something here for everyone, from pearl-handled Edwardian opera glasses – a snip at £3,000 – at the fancier Notting Hill end, to more interesting bargains and bric-à-brac towards Ladbroke Grove. And despite having been heavily, heavily gentrified, the area still has plenty of character. Weirdos and eccentrics seem drawn here. Step into one of the many excellent pubs and you’ll probably find some once-famous punk rocker propping up the bar. At the very least, you’ll spot the walnut-faced dog man, a local icon who regularly walks the length of the street with his aged terrier perched, parrot-like, on his shoulder. Eat this A post shared by @hhagooos on May 6, 2017 at 8:58am PDT A greasy, messy ‘Mad Boom’ burger and plantain fries at Boom Burger, a little piece of Jamaica in W10. A nasi goreng fro

14 things to do on West End Lane, West Hampstead
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14 things to do on West End Lane, West Hampstead

West Hampstead: just the bit of Hampstead that isn’t near the heath, right? Wrong. History lesson: WH started life as West End, a village that grew up in the eighteenth century when merchants started building massive gaffs on what was then largely rural land occupied only by a few isolated monastic estates. The name lives on in West End Lane, which is named not for its proximity to Theatreland, silly, but for its former function as the western boundary of Kilburn Priory. History lesson over. While it’s still an upmarket residential area, thankfully West Hampstead’s focal point has loads more going on than farming and fasting. There are bagels, cool gig venues, cocktail bars and coffee shops, but it’s also home to those token signifiers of deep-set London gentrification: a farmers’ market, a cigar shop and an achingly posh, award-winning butchers. In fact, it’s probably how Shoreditch will feel in 50 years, but with lovely old terraced houses and blokes in tweed instead of glass balconies and creased M&S suits. If you want to feel like an Edwardian gent on a jolly good day out, be brave and carry on a little further west than Hampstead Heath. Drink this   A post shared by Mikhael Agafonov (@mikeymoscow) on Feb 6, 2017 at 4:41am PST A frothy cappuccino in elegant art deco café and bistro The Wet Fish. A bottle of craft in The Railway pub, which in a former life hosted gigs by Hendrix, The Rolling Stones and Cream. Cocktails at The Gallery. Anywh

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