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Markets in Central London

An introductory guide to the main markets for visitors to London

Market stall: Portobello Road  London

Market stall: Portobello Road 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.


As said before Saturday is THE day visit Portobello Road Market. 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.

Underground Stations: Notting Hill, Ladbroke Grove.


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. It is very, very busy and very, very crowded and has become one of the most popular visitor attractions in London. The people here tend to be younger here than other markets and it has a trendier feel, (but it's slowly becoming more and more commercialised).

Camden Lock Market London

Camden Lock Market

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.


The 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.

Underground Station: Camden Town


Borough Market London

Borough Market

Borough Market

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. Borough Market is also known for its Harry Potter connections.


Between Borough High Street, Bedale Street, Stoney Street and Winchester Walk nearest Underground is Borough or London Bridge, both a 5 minute walk away.

Underground Station: London Bridge


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.

Underground Station: Hoxton

Spitalfields market

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

Underground station: Aldgate East

Discover great value at:

London Eye - Amazing panoramic flight on the world's highest observation wheel (fast track tickets available).

The Shard - Tallest building in Western Europe with viewing of London from the top.

St Paul's Cathedral - Cathedral of the Diocese of London famous dome & venue for royal weddings.

Westminster Abbey - Along with St Paul's, England's main religious building.

Tower of London - Home of the Crown Jewels and a rich thousand year history.

Madame Tussauds - See wax statues of the most famous people in the world (fast track tickets available).

London Dungeon - The creepiest attraction in town, the London Dungeon (fast track tickets available).

Hampton Court Palace - Henry VIII Medieval Palace set in vast grounds.

The London Zoo - World class zoo in the centre of London (fast track tickets available).

Original London Tour hop-on, hop-off sightseeing buses

Original London Tour Open Top Sightseeing Bus

For the vast majority of visitors to London, the way you get about town on a day to day basis is by the London Underground, perhaps supplemented by the occasional red London bus using an Oyster or Travelcard.


But, especially for the first time visitor to London, the popular hop on, hop off sightseeing buses are a great orientation to the city of London getting you up to speed on the layout and spotting new places of interest you were not aware of.


You will have invested a lot of time and money in getting to London so you will want to use your time as efficiently as possible.


The hop on, hop off sightseeing buses are perhaps unrivalled in their ability to give you a speedy informed orientation to the layout of London. They also help you identify new locations that appeal to you, perhaps pointed out by the on-board guide and also give the once over those attractions you had always planned on visiting.


These buses offer comprehensive coverage covering nearly all the main sights in London. The popularity of the buses means there is one along every few minutes and you get a grandstand view perched up on the top deck of the bus.


In addition to the bus tour a river cruise and some free walking tours are all part of the deal.

Key Points of Original London Tour:

  • Tickets valid for 24/48/72 hours
  • Three major bus tour routes supplemented by feeder services
  • FREE walking tours! (three of them)
  • FREE Thames River Cruise
  • FREE Wi-Fi on buses
  • Hop-on and hop-off service with stops at all the attractions
  • Kids' Club activity pack and commentary - currently the only London tour company to offer this
  • English live guides + audio guides (English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Japanese, Portuguese, Mandarin, Arabic & Brazilian Portuguese.)

Original London Tour Tickets

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