Getting a tattoo is an exciting prospect, but it’s important to take your time and research the best tattoo parlours in your area before getting inked. Lucky for Londoners, the UK capital is teeming with excellent choices, and Culture Trip has narrowed it down to the 10 very best.
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2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
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1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
This acclaimed tattoo shop in the trendy Bethnal Green area has won awards worldwide for its quality designs. Founder Jose Lopez, who launched the first Lowrider branch in Los Angeles, is known for his black and grey fine-line tattoos, which are inspired by designs from the streets and prisons of California. With a reputation as one of the top tattoo parlours in the world, you’ll need to book ahead for a slot at Lowrider, which has four house artists, plus guest tattooists on its roster.
Good Times Tattoo
This East London tattoo parlour is home to some of London’s top tattoo artists, including Nikole Lowe, known for London Ink – plus, it features a rotating roster of guest artists. Walking through the doors of Good Times Tattoo, you’ll find Buddhas on the walls and big windows that cast a lot of light around the space, which help create a relaxed atmosphere before getting inked.
Hell to Pay
Hell to Pay is right at home in the heart of eclectic Camden Town, with black wooden floors, tiling and leather tattoo chairs. Established in 2004 by Reka, a professional piercer from Hungary, the shop has become a local favourite. Come for quality custom-made tattoos, specialised in traditional, sailor-type designs, as well as new-school and neo-traditional options. Hell to Pay also offers a range of piercings and quality jewellery and prides itself on providing a bespoke service.
Frith Street Tattoo
This Soho-based tattoo parlour opened in 2004 and has enjoyed incredible success in the industry ever since. With excellent resident tattooists, as well as famous artists such as Frank Carter making guest appearances, you’ll leave the studio with a stunning piece of custom artwork for life. Their designs can be as small as a hand tat or as large as a Japanese bodysuit.
At first glance, Vagabond is far from your average tattoo parlour. Set on Hackney Road, the shop has a bright, gallery-style feel, which was put together by co-owners Paul and graphic designer Rebecca. The Vagabond Tattoo team specialises in different design techniques, from blackwork to colour Japanese tattoos, fine-line and neo-oriental designs. Slots are in demand since the studio has won awards for excellence from Time Out and Conde Nast Traveller.
New Wave Tattoo
New Wave Tattoo, in the suburb of Muswell Hill, is a London institution. It was founded by tattooing heavyweight Lal Hardy in the late 70s and has inked everyone, from celebrity footballers and pop stars to punks and mods. This studio has six talented artists, who are well-versed in all styles of tattooing. It may look modest from the front, but New Wave Tattoo has become one of the most dependable places to get inked in the city.
Love Hate Social Club
Love Hate Social Club, just a stone’s throw away from the bustling Portobello Market, was co-founded by Ami James of Miami Ink and NY Ink. It’s home to some of the very best tattoo artists from the US and Europe, who all have their own unique styles, such as 90s cartoons or skulls and roses. You’ll also find a studio of the same name in Cork, Ireland.
Flamin’ Eight tattoo parlour, in Kentish Town in North London, has been inking people since 1998. Its founder Naresh Bhana set out to create a studio that allowed his artists to have freedom of expression while maintaining quality – and that he has done. This place is full of inspiration for those needing a helping hand, but the resident artists also have their own specialities (including realism, portraiture and fine-line tattoos) if you’re after something a little more specific.
Cloak and Dagger
The artists at Cloak and Dagger, just off Brick Lane in East London, are specialists in Japanese-style tattoos – think colourful, intricate sleeves. But that’s not to say they’re not skilled in other areas, such as script and geometric designs, too. You’ll find 12 friendly tattooists at this parlour just waiting to offer advice.
Evil From the Needle
Evil From the Needle, which set up shop in 1986, is the longest-running studio in Camden. This studio was opened by world-famous artist Pascal “Bugs” Jarrion but has since been handed over to the esteemed Jeff Ortega, a tattooer from New York. The artists here specialise in a number of styles, and the parlour has been ranked as one of the top five in London by Skin & Ink Magazine.
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