If you’re looking for something different, more modern and alternative, to do in London… Camden Town is definitely one of the best spots I’ve ever been to and got my creative and shopping side all excited! It’s known for its alternative music and fashion scene from the 70’s up until today.
I call it ‘random’ as there are so many things you would see in this ‘vibey’ town that you wouldn’t really see anywhere else in London. Camden has become one of the best tourist destinations and is known for its markets. It combines so many cultures, yet still sticks to its British roots.
Everything from alternative and vintage clothing and music, crystal shops, paraphernalia stores*, international food stalls, book stalls, antiques and futuristic fashion, exists in Camden Market, which I fell in love with! Anything considered ‘different’ excites and intrigues me 🙂
It is really easy to get to Camden (PCODE NW1 8AF) via underground tube. Use the Camden Town Tube Station, Camden Road or Chalk Farm Tube stations to get there and hop on a bus (King’s Cross 214, Victoria 24, West End 274, East London 393) to get around anywhere.
Open 10am – Late, including Bank Holidays! You’ll definitely need the whole day to explore aaaand you might need a map getting around.
I would definitely invest in an Oyster Card when traveling around in London. It’s more convenient. Purchase one and top it up with your debit/credit card or cash at any station and just ‘tap’ it when going into a bus or underground station. You can also have one delivered to your home.
There is also a ferry on Regent Canal in Camden.
Some ‘did you know?’ facts about Camden:
- Named after Charles Pratt, 1st Earl Camden (some dude who was a lawyer, judge and politician).
- Originally a residential area built in 1791. The markets started in 1973 with 16 stalls and have grown ever since to over 1000 shops.
- Today, Israeli billionaire, Teddy Sagi has been buying property in the area and owns 4/6 sections of the market. He plans to invest £300 million in developing the market by 2018.
- There are 6 markets to visit: Buck Street Market, Stables Market, Camden Lock Village, Inverness Street Market and the Electric Ballroom.
- Before Camden Market was born, Gin was traded internationally from Regent Canal until the 1970’s when Camden’s industrial heritage ended.
- We can thank music bands such as The Clash, The Sex Pistols and Blondie for putting Punk and Rock music on the map in Camden. It all began at The Dingwalls Dance Hall (previously a packaging warehouse) now known as Camden Lock Market and is still there today hosting some of the biggest live music acts attracting famous musicians from all over the world such as Dave Gilmore (Pink Floyd) and Dave Watts (The Rolling Stones), The Foo Fighters, Mumford & Sons and The Strokes.
- Camden Market has been ranked as London’s fourth largest attraction with 100 000 people visiting each weekend generating £1.2 billion and providing two job opportunities for every resident of working age!
- Stable Market used to be known as the Pickford Horse Stables as well as a horse hospital who served animals that pulled Pickford vans. This is also the largest section of the market where no chain stores are allowed.
- The first food stall was started by Olympic sprinter, June Carroll [Foulds], in 1974. Simply named ‘The Stall’.
- A statue was sculpted in 2014 in memory of Amy Winehouse near the Stables Market to represent her personality and love for Camden as she lived in Camden Square, started her music career there and worked in Camden Market selling clothes.
Until next time Camden Town…