London's Street Markets
In London, spending Sunday at the street markets has become a
pleasant pastime. Many travelers get an early start, visit one
market, have brunch and head for another. Each market has something
unique to offer in addition to the goods for sale. Their
neighborhoods are interesting and you might find the cuisine a
little less expensive than in central London.
Street market shopping is not for everyone, but if it's for
you, these markets are a great place to snag something to brag
about back home.
We focus on the Portobello Road Markets and the Camden Market,
although we provide coverage of six other markets that may be of
Hill Gate, Ladbroke Grove
The Portobello Road Market, one of London’s famous outdoor flea markets, has
become fairly commercialized and real bargains are hard to find. On
weekends, it has the feel of 70’s “head shop” with boodles of things you
would never buy on any other occasion.
Wander both the outdoor stands and the permanent indoor
arcades and you will find something you just demands to be
purchased and taken home with you. You will find fascinating ,
custom jewelry and unique crafts. In reality, most of us the
Portobello Market because it is just plain good fun. Mix with
the crowds, scan the amazing diversity of goods and strike up
some conversations. You will be glad you did.
Fans of the movie "Notting Hill" may notice that many of the
storefronts seen on a visit to Portobello Road were captured in
various scenes of the movie.
If you are interested in the Portobello Road Antiques Market,
snoop around the website of the
Portobello Antiques Dealers Association . Other
information is available from the
official website of the Royal Borough of
Kensington and Chelsea which describes the markets, opening
hours and how to get there.
Camden Town, Chalk Farm
There are six markets including: the Camden Stables, Camden Lock,
Camden Canal, Camden Buck Street, Inverness Street and the main
street itself (along Camden High Street and Chalk Farm Road).
focus varies by market but most of what you will find can be
categorized as antiques, clothes, furniture, collectables, jewelry
and accessories. You will find numerous snack shops, several pubs
and a number of restaurants in the area. The Electric Ballroom (near
the Tube station on High Street) has an interesting clothing market
on Sundays only.
Camden town, which hosts the Camden Markets, is an
interesting stop by itself, but the area has been overwhelmed by
the success of its flea markets. The best (and most crowded)
time to visit is on Saturday when all of the markets are at
their peaks. Many but not all of the markets are open during the
week and numerous shops are now open seven days a week. The
crowds peak on the weekend and build up to the weekend crescendo
starting on Thursday.
People watching is probably the greatest sport here, but if
you like to search for bargains, this is the place. The market's
neighborhood is "edgy" and not for the tame of heart. You will
see an amazing cross section of society and some segments of
civilization that you may have not yet seen! Many feel that the
"mix" is part of the attraction of these markets.
website for more detail on the various markets and for
helpful information on transportation to the Camden Markets.
East or Liverpool Street
Spitalfields Market has a variety of specializations, but is most
often classified as a good old "flea-market". Sunday (0900 to 1400)
is the most active day and also the most fun. See the\ websites for
Spitalfields Market and the
Spitalfields Market for more information on visiting and the
variety of shops available..
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Although the street Petticoat Lane has not survived, its market continues to
exist along Wentworth, Middlesex and Goulston. Known for fashion for the
whole family it is open limited hours during the week and on Sunday (its
biggest day) from 09AM until 2PM.
Primarily a food market, the Borough Market spreads over several blocks.
We find it enjoyable and even more so when we have a flat with a kitchen.
Open only on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Hours vary but the
market is always open between 1100 to 1600 . See this
website for more detail
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Street, Aldgate East
The Brick Lane Market is focused along the north end of Brick Lane
extending along Cheshire Street and others, so you may have to do a bit of
wandering to see it all. This is a classic flea market and runs on
Sunday from 0800 to 1400. You will find a lot of junk, some fashion and a
few attractive trinkets. Remember, this is the East End, so if you are
in the mood for Indian food, you may have found a new home. A smaller
market runs during the week. See the
Brick Lane website for more details on
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Columbia road is primarily a "garden" market selling cut-flowers, plants,
bulbs and shrubs. Also, you can find all sorts of gardening
accessories and gifts for the gardeners on your list. It runs Sunday
only, from 0800 to 1400. This
Not very close to any Tube station but Bermondsey, Elephant & Castle and
Borough are the nearest.
Known for antiques and silver, the Bermondsey is a market in flux. The
area around it is being redeveloped and the markets status is unclear.
The market is open on Friday from 4am to 1300, rain or shine. One piece of advice -
get there early if you hope to find a bargain. Click for the website of the
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