If you’ve ever been tempted to take a jaunt to a city with more heritage than you can shake a stick at, stunning architecture and oodles of culture, then London should be high up on your list of potential destinations. While the red double deckers are iconic, Buckingham Palace is a must-see, and the Tower of London cannot be missed, there is a lot more to see than just the typical tourist sites. Sure, you can hop on and off a sightseeing bus, but what about the underbelly of the city. Like with any tourist hotspot, you want to see the authentic side of a city. Take a look at these parts of London that are well worth exploring.
Venture south of the river away from the hustle and bustle of central London, and you could stumble across this little gem; East Dulwich. You could choose to stay in one of the many short term lets here and base yourself a little further away from the tourist crowds. East Dulwich has a cute little village atmosphere. You wouldn’t have a clue you were in a capital city. Rows of Victorian terraces adorn the streets, and the main drag of Lordship Lane has an abundance of delis, restaurants, and bars for you to savour. East Dulwich is more chilled out, a tad more bohemian and infinitely more friendly than the centre of town.
If you love a good Banksy or adore going on street art hunts, then the eastern suburb of Shoreditch in London could be for you. At every turn, you’ll spot the typical hipster. Guys with handlebar moustaches, impressive beards, checked shirts and skinny jeans frequent the niche bars and micropubs. Large murals grace the brick facades of buildings, and there is a kooky music scene in the area. Venture into a boutique furniture shop and explore the ubiquitous range of vintage Scandinavian teak pieces for sale. You might want to sample the delights of the Clove Club, a unique eatery that serves up the finest British ingredients in the most weird and wonderful ways.
While Brick Lane doesn’t have the shine or gloss of the city centre, the nightlife is immense, and the cuisine is tasty. Head to the glorious Beigel Bake for a homemade bagel filled with salt beef, pastrami, and pickles, made the same way for decades. And who could miss a Brick Lane curry? You will have your pick of curry houses. Simply follow the crowds to the busiest one. For a shopping experience like no other, you can hot foot it to Brick Lane’s vintage market. You might pick up a one of a kind piece of upcycled furniture, a quirky antique or a collectable.
While the centre of London cannot be missed, there are plenty of other suburbs worthy of your attention. Why not mix up your days with a spot of St Paul’s Cathedral, a trip to Shoreditch, a visit to Madame Tussauds, an outing to East Dulwich and a trip to the Shard or the world famous aquarium. Hunt out these hidden gems and your trip to London will be a more authentic and richer travel experience.
Header image by Thomas Kelley.
This post is a contribution to HandZaround.com
DID YOU LIKE IT?
SHARE IT WITH OTHERS!