Markets in Central London
An Introductory Guide To The Main Markets For Visitors To London
|Portobello Road Market London|
There are many markets in London, many small neighbourhood fruit and vegetable markets you might stumble across at any time.
Markets also go into and out of favour and fashion and of course once a market becomes popular with tourists it tends to start to be filled with tourist tat killing the original appeal.
Currently the big 3 for visitors to London in terms of popularity are Portobello Road, Camden Lock and Borough Market.
Portobello Road Market
Portobello is a street market occupying Portobello Road north of Notting Hill.
The South end of the street is mainly antiques, the middle is vegetables, and the north end bric-a-brac. Best day by far to go is on a Saturday when the full market especially at the southern end comes out.
You can walk to the market (just follow the crowds) from Notting Hill Underground in about 5/10 minutes and at the northern (less interesting end) of the market is Ladbroke Grove Underground. If you're staying in Bayswater you can easily walk it.
On Saturday, Portobello is huge, with over 2,000 stalls, selling everything from books to bric-a-brac to lace. Thousands of people mill around browsing second-hand clothing stalls or choosing outlandish material.
For those who have the patience to search and have some knowledge, there are some fantastic bargains.
Camden Lock Market
Camden Lock Market, by the canal, was originally a craft market but now has a much wider spectrum of goods on sale. Its very, very busy and very, very crowded and has become one of the most popular visitor attractions in London.
|Camden Lock Market|
The people here tend to be younger here than other markets and it has a trendier feel, (but its slowly becoming more and more commercialised).
The main market is by Regents Canal, you cannot miss it with the words Camden Market emblazoned over a railway bridge that crosses the main road outside.
Nearest underground is Camden Town. The number 24 bus stops outside and is one of may bus routes, the 24 goes very frequently connecting Camden Lock with the heart of Central London.
It is at the weekend that the market scene jumps fully into life with all stalls and shops fully trading and the lively Camden Lock Village opening Friday to Sunday.
The indoor fashion market at the Electric Ballroom opens on Sunday only.
There's a wide array of goods to view ranging from antiques to clothes (vintage and new) crafts, accessories and furnishings. Indeed just about everything and anything you could conceivably want, but probably not need. Sundays, in particular, tend to be mega-crowded.
Borough Market is London's oldest food market. It was established on the south bank of the Thames when the Romans built the first London Bridge. It has occupied its present site for 250 years.
This gourmets delight boasts a mouth-watering range of fresh food stalls under its Dickensian wrought-iron roof. Accent here is on quality, not cheapness.
Between Borough High Street, Bedale Street, Stoney Street and Winchester Walk nearest Underground is Borough or London Bridge, both a 5 minute walk away.
Other Markets In London Of Note
Columbia Road Flower Market
Every Sunday this historic street fills with a bright patchwork of hundreds of flower stalls. Columbia Road is the capital's most colourful and sweet-smelling market.
Everything from bedding plants to 10-foot banana trees are up for grabs. A lot of the flower sellers grow their own plants.
Spitalfields Market marries market stalls with modern shops and restaurants. Best day to come is Sunday by far the busiest day, with over 150 stalls operating. Organic vegetables, art, books, ethnic, vintage cars - a whole rag tag of merchants. Many leading contemporary artists and sculptors have their studios there
|Oxford Street Department Store|
Self Guided London Shopping Walk
Join us on our step by step self guided walking tour of London's shopping districts.
Besides the department stores of Oxford Street we visit the specialist shopping districts, Saville Row, China Town, Bond Street, Charing Cross Road .. before ending in Knightsbridge for Harrods and Harvey Nichols Department Stores.
Simple to follow instructions and street map and best of all its FREE!
|Original London Tour Bus|
Hop On Hop Off Sightseeing Buses
An alternative to the classic guided coach tours are the HOHO (hop on, hop off) buses.
During your visit to London, one of the recurring sights are the hop on, hop off tour buses.
Especially in the summer months there seems to be one coming along every couple of minutes, each jam packed with visitors.
These buses offer comprehensive coverage covering nearly all the main sights in London.
In addition to the bus tour a river cruise and free walking tours are part of the deal.
Tickets last for 24 hour periods.