You’ll never get bored of London’s eclectic range of markets – they represent of the coolest corners of this capital. Take your pick from hipster hangouts to centuries-old mainstays of London life, where you can buy a weird and wonderful array of products and sample amazing street food. From East London’s Brick Lane Market to West London’s Portobello Road stalls, you’ll get to taste dishes from all corners of the globe, discover vintage clothes and buy unique souvenirs to take home with you. No trip to London is complete without a tour of these markets – it’s a perfect weekend activity, if you ask me!
1. Borough Market
In the shadow of London’s tallest skyscraper (the Shard) lies the city’s oldest food market, Borough Market. Taking a walk through the rustic market is not your usual stroll among food stalls. Like the city itself, the world is here. Take your pick from stalls that have spanned generations to new, innovative stands that reinvent classic dishes. The air of Borough Market is thick with inviting smells, which makes deciding what to buy (and what to snack on!) one of the hardest decisions you’ll face in London – one trip is never enough! The full market is open from Wednesdays to Saturdays, from morning to late afternoon.
2. Portobello Road Market
You never know what you’ll find at Portobello Road Market – the two-mile road is a treasure trove of rare items with Saturdays hosting the main antique sale. The fashionable market cuts through the heart of Notting Hill in West London – one of London’s trendiest area. The market has been around since the 1800s, and beyond items of a bygone era, shoppers can also pick up some of the freshest fruit & veg the capital has to offer, as well as spotting what trends London’s fashionistas will be wearing next season.
[stacked_images top_left=”4098″ top_right=”4101″ bottom_left=”4094″ bottom_right=”4095″ text=”From top to top left-bottom right: the markets of Camden, Brick Lane Market, Borough Market, Columbia Road Flower Market and Portobello Road Market” bottom_left_caption=”” bottom_right_caption=”Image credits below”]
3. Columbia Road Flower Market
Add some color to your time in London with a trip to the city’s most vibrant flower market, the Columbia Road Flower Market in East London. On Sundays, you can pick up a bouquet that’s guaranteed to spruce up your room. And it’s not just flowers that attract locals and tourists alike: the market is also home to a number of independent traders selling handmade and vintage jewellery, art, and lots more.
4. Brick Lane Market
It’s eccentric, welcoming, and totally unique – everyone leaves Brick Lane Market with a different experience. Operating every Sunday, the market is home to a number of stalls and shops selling a bizarre blend of products. A trip to Brick Lane Market is always predictably unpredictable – grab a bite to eat at any of the area’s Asian restaurants and food stands before diving into the thrift shops, retro stands, and all the wonderfully strange niche stores.
5. Markets of Camden
The stalls and shops of Camden Market, Camden Lock Market and Stables Market capture the independent, creative spirit of London’s funkiest district. Camden’s markets are packed with quirky boutiques selling a range of mysterious items. If you’re looking to stand out from the crowd, a trip to Camden Market and the Stables is sure to breathe new life into your wardrobe. When you need to take a break from rummaging through the aisles, head to Camden Lock Market and treat yourself to some of the fabulous street food around.
Images by: James_London, Flickr/Creative Commons, Garry Knight, Flickr/Creative Commons, [Duncan], Flickr/Creative Commons, Linda Hartley, Flickr/Creative Commons, Garry Knight, Flickr/Creative Commons