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East End: London Neighborhood Walk

Trendsetting artists, chefs, and hoteliers have energized this historic (and historically hardscrabble) neighborhood.

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Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Easy
Duration: Full day

Overview :  In the past decade gentrification has rolled inexorably east, powered by the freak money being made and spent in this world financial ... more »

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Points of Interest

1. Aesop

Upon entering this simple shop, designed in green hues with reclaimed wood, patrons are awed by row after row of dark glass apothecary jars filled with cutting-edge beauty potions. The third London branch of the now-global Australian brand, this Shoreditch shop provides a welcomed option to Aesop addicts and newbies alike. The products, made with ... More

Patrons willing to search for this unmarked eatery, tucked away in a converted East London factory, will likely find it's well worth the extra effort. Part restaurant, part bar, and part cabaret theater, Bistrotheque offers a trendy, industrial-chic atmosphere with exposed pipes, gleaming cement floors, and sleek marble-top tables softened by... More

Situated between the Regent’s Canal and London Fields, this Hackney market sells everything from fresh organic produce to vintage clothing. With a history dating back to the 1890’s, the marketplace was revived in 2004 and quickly became one of the most celebrated markets in the city. More than 100 stalls line the streets every ... More

4. Café Columbia

Every Sunday morning, historic Columbia Road becomes a colorful, fragrant collage of flower stalls, and in the midst of all the lovely blooms, an equally ambrosial treat awaits: the fresh, blissful bagels of Café Columbia. Only open during flower market hours, this charming family-owned café has been delighting market-goers with delicious fare for... More

5. Climpson & Sons

Smooth, creamy bliss in a cup warms even the dreariest of London mornings at this coffee shop in East London’s Broadway Market. Opened in 2005, the shop is run by passionate baristas who hand-roast their own beans and top each expertly-made cup with a cheerful heart design. In addition to silky flat whites and bold cappuccinos, Climpson &... More

6. Dove Freehouse

Rich wood paneling, cozy hidden nooks, occasional live music, and stacks of board games all cultivate a uniquely welcoming vibe at this landmark pub in Borough Market. Established over two decades ago, Dove Freehouse offers a timeless combination of tasty homemade comfort food and beer galore, including approximately 100 Belgian bottles, an array ... More

7. F. Cooke

Open for more than a century, this authentic mash and pie shop was established in 1900 to serve traveling shepherds. Today, the family-run eatery remains largely unchanged, still situated in Hackney on the border of Broadway Market. Behind a Victorian glass-and-marble façade, the interior has original yellow and blue tiled walls, marble benches, a... More

8. Glitterati

The shop keeps hours more or less according to the whims of its owners, a couple who are specialists, respectively, in vintage watches and Miriam Haskell costume jewelry.

148 Columbia Rd.
London, England
United Kingdom

44 20 7739-4151

9. Hostem

The most fashion-forward men in London are raving about this Shoreditch style house established in 2010 by native fashion guru James Brown. Created by innovative design team JamesPlumb, Hostem's three-room interior is strikingly shabby-chic, incorporating an antique church pew, hand-painted hessian walls, reclaimed Victorian floorboards and caged ... More

10. L’Eau a la Bouche

This Borough Market deli, whose name means "mouthwatering" in French, lives up to its alluring appellation with a smorgasbord of foodie-approved treats. Elaborate displays offer typical deli finds, including quality meats, artisan cheeses, freshly baked bread, and rare olives. You'll also find already-prepared homemade goodies ranging from fluffy ... More

11. Labour & Wait

Although its name is actually derived from a Longfellow poem, this charming Shoreditch shop inspires patrons to "labour away" with its enticing selection of everyday home goods, ranging from sleek metal dustpans to hand-knitted dishcloths. Established in 2000 by former menswear designers Rachel Wythe-Moran and Simon Watkins, who had become... More

Old Truman Brewery here takes its name from a family who started making ales in the late 1600’s. Today, the brewery building is home to almost 200 independent creative companies. It’s connected to Brick Lane by a small pedestrian alley called Dray Walk, over which the brewery towers, and along which the best of Brick Lane’s energy can be... More

Fresh clams, cherry tomatoes, garlic, and pecorino; veal meatballs, cream, parsley and lemon; San Daniele ham, buffalo ricotta, hazelnut pesto and baby chard: although such unique topping combos speak for themselves, there’s plenty more to say about this Shoreditch pizzeria. Housed in an old tea factory, Pizza East executes industrial-chic style... More

14. Rochelle Canteen

Hidden behind the soaring walls of an old Victorian school playground in residential Shoreditch lies a small converted bike shed housing Rochelle Canteen, a cafe made all the more magical by its secretive location and almost imperceptible buzzer entrance. Run by Melanie Arnold and Margot Henderson of Arnold & Henderson catering, the canteen... More

15. Royal Oak, London

Although this pub becomes exceptionally busy during the Columbia Road flower market held every Sunday, the Royal Oak is also bustling every other day of the week thanks to its perfectly poured pints and classic comfort foods ranging from steak and ale pie to succulent Sunday roast. The downstairs pub is wood-paneled with haphazard seating... More

16. Shoreditch Rooms

The latest offering from the Soho House group. The hotel’s 26 rooms are small, wood-paneled, and gratifyingly affordable; the Cowshed Spa downstairs proffers pedicures to customers in sleek white leather armchairs.

Ebor St.
London, England
United Kingdom


London’s oldest market, Spitalfields has a history dating back to 1666. Today, the sprawling marketplace includes both the old market and a newer traders market, which features up to 110 stalls each day. Spitalfields is open Tuesday through Friday as well as Sunday, with Sunday being the most popular day to visit. Shoppers may find everything from... More

Opened in 2003 across from Spitalfields Market, Bread & Wine is a more casual offshoot of Fergus Henderson and Trevor Gulliver’s St. John Bar & Restaurant. The high-ceilinged dining room, housed in a former bank, has white walls, simple wooden furniture, and a bustling open kitchen. Incorporating fresh seasonal ingredients, dishes from the... More

19. The Boundary

Designer Terence Conran’s new six-story Boundary complex is making waves in the gritty-glam neighborhood of Shoreditch. Within the converted Victorian printing house: Albion, a perfectly curated high-end food shop and laid-back streetside café; a 17-room hotel inspired by design movements from Shaker to Bauhaus; and a subterranean French... More

Singaporean hotelier Peng Loh made his European debut by transforming an Edwardian town hall into a fine-dining restaurant, 98 rooms and apartments, and public spaces that exhibit work by up-and-coming East End artists. The room rates—which are, on average, $250 less than those at other pedigreed hotels in London—are cause for celebration, too.... More

At this experimental East End eatery, adventurous foodies savor a surprise-stocked trip across the globe courtesy of fearlessly creative Portuguese chef Nuno Mendes. Housed in a majestic former town hall, the restaurant comprises two simply chic dining rooms and an open kitchen that offers mesmerizing views of the culinary theatrics. Seasonal prix... More