Located in central London, just north of Soho and King’s Cross, Camden Town was developed as a residential area in 1791. It served as an important junction for the railways and canal network.
Even though the neighbourhood has evolved a lot in the last few years since becoming a major tourist attraction, especially thanks to its famous markets, there is still evidence of its past reputation as a haven for punks, musicians, and artists such as Amy Winehouse.
Camden’s market is home to over 1,000 shops, cafés, bars and venues where rock, punk and Britpop scenes along with vintage clothing and food from around the world are easy to find.
In today’s article, we have selected our top picks of things to do during your visit to Camden.
Let’s start with the Food
When arriving in Camden’s market, this is the first thing you will notice: the place is full of delicious food stands with cuisines from across the globe. If you usually are indecisive regarding what you want to eat, the diversity of the offerings will have you hesitating even more.
Nonetheless, there are a few spots you should not miss, such as Yumchaa, a cosy tearoom overlooking Camden Lock. Not far from it, you will find Chin Chin Labs, known for its ‘nitro ice cream’, with rotating flavours and ice cream sandwiches.
If you are feeling adventurous and want to escape the crowds, pass by the statue of Amy Winehouse statue, head down the steps and discover the array of vintage boutiques and the Basement Tea Room, a true British delight hidden between an antique shop and a book-filled arcade.
Finally, let’s not forget about the numerous rock ‘n’ roll pubs, craft beer bars and abundance of spacious beer gardens in the area.
As previously mentioned, Camden is known for its vast and iconic musical history. Walking through Camden High Street, you are very likely to encounter musicians playing the guitar and singers nestled in between the market stalls. Nonetheless, the best places to enjoy music in Camden are the following venues:
London’s home of soul, jazz and disco, the Jazz Café is one of Camden’s most iconic venues. It has previously welcomed the likes of Amy Winehouse and Bobby Womack and continues to host local and international stars in an intimate setting.
For big-name headline acts, head to Koko or the Roundhouse which have welcomed stars such as Prince, Ed Sheeran and Kanye West. Alternatively, check out up-and-coming bands in one of Camden’s many pubs. We recommend the Dublin Castle and the Lock Tavern.
With live music seven nights a week, there’s never a bad time to go to Camden to dance the night away.
Did someone say shopping?
Camden is home to a variety of shops and stores where you can find almost everything you need. From alternative and vintage clothing to massive mural art – not forgetting all the accessories and souvenirs – we are sure you will find something you like. If not, the colours and vibrancy of all the stalls themselves make for amazing photography opportunities.
A mainstay of the alternative fashion scene that we would recommend is Cyberdog: with electronic music and neon lighting, it’s definitely an experience and store not to be missed
Other activities on your doorstep
The whole Camden neighbourhood is extremely lively and filled with activities until your heart’s content. Leaving the market, you could walk along the Regent’s Canal and experience the pleasures of a calmer environment. It will lead you to Regent’s Park and London Zoo which includes the reptiles in the Zoo’s famous’ reptile house’ that’s featured in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone!
Where to stay
At City Relay, we love the Camden area. Therefore, it is no surprise that we manage several properties in this neighbourhood. If you are interested in staying there, check out 3 of our amazing properties in the heart of Camden, and feel free to contact us if needed, we’ll be happy to help 🙂