As well as being the namesake of one of the best romcoms of all time, London’s Notting Hill is the perfect neighbourhood to visit. With a selection of vibrant market stalls, quirky cafés and beautiful backstreets, the spot is popular with Londoners looking to indulge in a bit of shopping and Instagrammable eating. Experience the very best Notting Hill has to offer with our guide to spending a day in the area.
No day out in Notting Hill would be complete without strolling past the colourful houses near Notting Hill Gate station. Some of the most popular rainbow roads in the area include Denbigh Terrace and Portobello Road itself. Have your cameras at the ready, because these candy-coloured streets are any Instagrammer’s dream and, being one of the area’s most iconic features, are not to be missed.
If you fancy a spot of brunch, why not walk over to Farm Girl, located on Portobello Road? The cute café nods to Australian brunch culture, offering a healthy yet comforting selection of food with a focus on fresh, wholesome ingredients. The menu boasts a selection of classic brunch dishes including açai bowls, avocado toast and omelettes. This is the perfect location for a not-so-heavy food stop before a big day of exploring.
Time to hit the area’s most famous weekend attraction, Portobello Road Market – the world’s largest antiques market, with a staggering 1,000-plus dealers. The market stretches for over half a mile, offering a selection of unique stalls run by some truly quirky characters. Whatever you’re looking for, chances are the market will provide. As well as antique and bric-a-brac stalls, there’s a great selection of clothes, music, flowers, books and crafts. While you’re browsing, make sure to indulge in some of the delicious street food on offer.
Nip in for a cheeky pint at The Churchill Arms. This beautiful drinking spot has abundant floral displays adorning the outside of the pub, which adds to the area’s quaint atmosphere. The quaint pub is also filled with memorabilia that are a patriotic nod to the former prime minister. The venue has all kinds of knick-knacks for punters to admire, from portraits to ceramic collector’s items. Churchill’s grandparents were regular visitors to the pub, which eventually led to it being renamed after the historical figure. The adorable venue is the ideal stop for a refreshing drink after your market shopping.
As you set off on your walk towards Kensington, don’t miss Notting Hill’s charming back streets. Make sure you check out the mews roads surrounding Notting Hill and the creative street art to be found around unexpected corners. Holland Park Mews (one of the most famous in the area) is a collection of houses that are incredibly easy on the eye, with doors, windows and balconies all arranged in near-perfect symmetry.
If you want to stretch your legs even more, take a stroll around Holland Park. This green space is located right between two of the most luxurious areas in London (Notting Hill and Kensington). Holland Park has lots to offer weekend visitors, including a woodland area, a café, sports facilities and a unique Japanese Kyoto Garden that is home to a number of peacocks.
If you head south of Holland Park, you’ll find yourself at Kensington High Street, the area’s main shopping hub. If nothing at the morning market tickled your fancy, this road will certainly satisfy your urge to shop. Or if you’ve worked up an appetite after all the walking, the area boasts a selection of food options, from lavish restaurants to smaller independent cafés.
The final stop of the day is Kensington Gardens, where you can enjoy a brisk walk around the grounds before heading home. Once part of Hyde Park, these royal gardens feature a selection of attractions including Italian Gardens, The Albert Memorial, the Serpentine Gallery and, of course, Kensington Palace. The gardens combine old and new features for guests to enjoy and the green space has fixed avenues, making it easy to navigate.
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