On a daily basis, crowds of tourists flock to London’s major tourist attractions to ooh and aah, snap a selfie, and then proudly declare that they’ve thoroughly explored London.
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But the truth is, you can never really see it all in this amazing city, especially since some of the best things in London are often lesser-known. So why not settle into a cheap hotel in London and explore the city beyond the major sights and attractions?
Discover the Alternative Culture of Camden Town
Camden Town never makes it into any guide books. It’s grungy, raw, and unsophisticated. But that’s the best part about it! It’s the heart of alternative culture in London, known for the best live music venues, funky and bizarre fashion, and unique restaurants and pubs.
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You can spend days exploring Camden, getting lost in the maze of shops in the Camden Stables Market, people-watching on the banks of River Fleet, or stuffing your face with multi-cultural cuisine from the the pop-up stalls in the Camden Lock Village. And if you come back to Camden Town at night, you’ll discover a completely different world with an alternative music scene housed in unique bars and clubs in the area.
Wander Through London’s Secret Markets
London is home to over 100 different markets, ranging from wholesale produce to specialized small street markets. Once you’ve visited London’s famous Borough Market, Covent Garden Market, and the Portobello Road Market, wander through these lesser-known markets oozing with character and cultural charm.
- Sunday UpMarket on Brick Lane houses over 200 stalls selling a variety of vintage and handmade clothing, accessories, music, arts and crafts, and organic food.
- Chapel Market, a daily street market in Islington that boasts 224 stalls selling local food and wares.
- Church Street Market, a no-frills local Saturday market in Marylebone with 60 stalls selling antiques, fresh produce, and other household knick-knacks.
Unwind in Unexplored Parks and Gardens
There is no shortage of green spaces in England’s capital, but if you are looking for secluded spots to get away from the tourist crowds, these might tickle your fancy.
Green Park – Sitting in the shadow of Hyde Park, Green Park is the smallest and the least visited Royal Park in London. Its 40 acres of trees and greenery make it a perfect spot for a picnic or a place to sunbathe on a sunny day.
Gray’s Inn Gardens – Open only during lunchtime on weekdays, this secret London garden is true hideaway and a beautiful place to relax, unwind and enjoy a takeaway meal.
Camley Street Natural Park – An urban nature reserve visited mostly by locals, it is nestled in right beside the Regent Canal, just steps away from London’s Kings Cross. The park is home to a variety of birds, butterflies, and an abundance of plant life.
Life in London doesn’t stay still, and the longer you stay, the more you’ll discover. The undiscovered gems become the new must-see attractions, with secret hideaways and quirky bars popping up on every corner. But that’s the beauty of London. There will always be something lesser-known to discover.
What are some of your favourite lesser-known attractions in London?