Shoreditch, London is not your typical image of a British neighborhood. Sure, the old brick buildings are still present but instead of the plain old facade, they’re decorated with art and graffiti. Found in London’s East End, the area is a melting pot for art and culture, and some would even say, is London’s creative heart. Many have described Shoreditch as a hip, weird, and energetic neighborhood and it’s no surprise why. With the many quirky museums, busy street markets, colorful pavements, cultural experiences, and lovely people, Shoreditch is surely worth your time and curiosity. With that said, here is a list of the things to do in Shoreditch, London.
1. Shop at Spitalfields Market
Looking for food, arts and crafts, vintage items, antique furniture, and pretty much everything else you can think of? Spitalfields Market probably has it. With 53 shops and 43 food and drink stalls, this daily market is a shopping haven for anyone who visits Shoreditch. Aside from the items on sale, the market also holds various cultural events within its vicinity. Best to check out what’s going on over at their website to make sure you get the full cultural experience!
Address: 16 Commercial St, Spitalfields, London E1 6EW, UK
Website: Spitalfields Market
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 9am - 5:30pm; Sat: 11am - 5pm; Sun: 9am - 5pm
2. Visit Nomadic Community Gardens
For a unique experience, Nomadic Community Gardens provides what locals call “counter culture”. Located between train tracks, the gardens used to be an empty lot that was turned into a quirky piece of land that allows the community to come together in a neutral and “nomadic” space. This space was quickly turned into something useful and creative by the locals, including bits like a vegetable garden, a skateboard area, and loads of graffiti. Visually, it would be similar to the concept of that crazy but lively planet featured in Marvel’s Thor: Ragnarok!
Nomadic Community Gardens
Address: Fleet St Hill, London E2 6EE, UK
Website: Nomadic Community Gardens
Opening hours: Tue - Thu: 9am - 6pm; Fri: 9am - 8pm; Sat - Sun: 9am - 9pm (closed on Mon)
3. Enjoy DJ nights at Cargo
Aside from the arts, Shoreditch is also known for its pubs and nightlife. One of the awesome clubs in the area is Cargo. Enjoy tunes and mixes from the DJ of the night and dance the night away with their wide selection of drinks. Cargo is efficient because they strongly recommend online booking for less hassle at the door. They also offer party and table packages fit for you and your group of friends on a night out. Be sure to check their website as well for upcoming themed parties and events, as the price varies accordingly.
Address: 83 Rivington St, Hackney, London EC2A 3AY, UK
Opening hours: Sun - Wed: 12pm - 1am; Thu - Fri: 12pm - 3am; Sat: 12pm - 12am
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4. Step back in time at Dennis Severs Museum
A visit to Dennis Severs Museum, or locally known as Dennis Severs House is a one-of-a-kind experience. It’s actually more appropriate to call it the latter because the interior is not exactly your typical museum. The late Dennis Severs designed the home in such a way that the visitors will be able to experience life in London between 1724 to 1914, with each room representing a specific period. And it’s not your typical museum with boring artifacts and images alone; as you go through the rooms, as eerie as it sounds, you’ll feel as if actual people were living there due to the addition of sounds and even smells of food and tea. It’s a crazy but unique experience one must absolutely try when visiting London in general!
Dennis Severs Museum
Address: 18 Folgate St, Spitalfields, London E1 6BX, UK
Website: Dennis Severs Museum
Opening hours: Mon: 12pm - 2pm, 5pm - 9pm; Wed, Fri: 5pm - 9pm; Sun: 12pm - 4pm (closed on Tue, Thu & Sat)
Price: From 19 USD
5. Watch live bands at Queen of Hoxton
Another great option for nightlife at Shoreditch is at Queen of Hoxton. What makes this club stand out for many is its rooftop bar, which is a perfect place to socialize in an open and spacious area. Downstairs, guests will find various rooms to dance and party, which are also available for booking of private events. Three areas are up for booking - Party Room 2, the Ground Floor, and the Basement Club (price varies). Do you have your own band and are looking for a place to debut your music? Queen of Hoxton is also open to welcoming new and local bands to play at their club!
Queen of Hoxton
Address: 1-5 Curtain Rd, Hackney, London EC2A 3JX, UK
Website: Queen of Hoxton
Opening hours: Mon - Wed: 4pm - 12am; Thu - Sat: 4pm - 2am; Sun: 2pm - 12am
6. Play some classic games at VEGA London
Bring your kids to VEGA London, a basement arcade near Shoreditch. The arcade specializes in old-school and Japanese-themed games, perfect for anyone interested in those kinds of entertainment. The Japanese games, in particular, include Street Fighter and Tekken, which are popular Japanese games. They also have rhythm games including the favorite Dance Dance Revolution. For others who prefer a chill kind of game, pool tables are easily available on site as well.
Address: 9 Islington High St, The Angel, London N1 9LQ, UK
Website: VEGA London
Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 10am - 11pm; Sun: 10am - 7pm
Price: From 6 USD
7. Relish the tastes of street food at Boxpark Shoreditch
Creatively designed from an old shipping container, Boxpark in Shoreditch is a favorite hangout of many. Boxpark is the result when you combine the concepts of street food and pop-up retail malls. It happens to be the world’s first pop-up mall too! Here at Boxpark, you will find a wide variety of delicious food and drinks, numerous retail stalls, and an open space for performers and artists to showcase their talent. When in Shoreditch, it’s a must to visit Boxpark, especially in the afternoons towards the evening for the full experience!
Address: 2-10 Bethnal Green Rd, Hackney, London E1 6GY, UK
Website: Boxpark Shoreditch
Opening hours: Mon - Tue: 11am - 10:30pm; Wed - Sat: 11am - 11pm; Sun: 12pm - 10pm
8. Catch a music show at Rich Mix
Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account
Catch your favorite blockbuster film or an amazing musical act at Rich Mix, one of Shoreditch’s premier arts centers. Their tickets are reasonably priced and for a greater purpose because their profits go to serving their cause. Rich Mix is proud to showcase the best of art and entertainment at their lovely venue. Don’t forget to pair your movie or music experience with their variety of snacks and drink selections!
Address: 35-47 Bethnal Green Rd, Shoreditch, London E1 6LA, UK
Website: Rich Mix
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 9am - 11pm; Sat - Sun: 10am - 11pm
Price: From 7 USD
9. Spend some time with the animals at Spitalfields City Farm
If you’re an animal lover like me, Spitalfields City Farm would be on the top of your itinerary list when visiting Shoreditch. Located not too far from Nomadic Community Gardens, the farm also similarly provides a community space for people to get together, this time with lots of animals. Make friends among the many farm animals including donkeys, bunnies, cats, ducks, and chickens! Alternatively, there is also a vegetable garden for those with green thumbs! The farm is very much welcome to volunteers and donations as these help them continue operation and caring for the farm animals.
Spitalfields City Farm
Address: Buxton St, London E1 5AR, UK
Website: Spitalfields City Farm
Opening hours: Tue - Sun: 10am - 4:30pm (closed on Mon)
Price: Free; donations are also appreciated
10. Have a game of table football at Bar Kick
For the sports enthusiasts, Shoreditch has a spot for you, too! Head on over to Bar Kick, one of the popular bars in the neighborhood. People have gone to Bar Kick and came out saying they had a great time! You can catch your favorite football or any sporting match in any one of their 60-inch (152.4 cm) or 80-inch (203.2 cm) TV screens. Alternatively, the bar is also famous for its table football sets where groups of friends enjoy playing. Enjoy all of these with awesome beer and cocktails paired with their delicious food selections!
Address: 127 Shoreditch High St, Hackney, London E1 6JE, UK
Website: Bar Kick
Opening hours: Mon - Wed: 11am - 11pm; Thu: 11am - 12am; Fri - Sat: 11am - 12:40am; Sun: 11am - 10pm
If Shoreditch is considered the creative heart of London, Brick Lane would probably be its main vein. As you go along this lane, you will encounter street art in all its forms and design. It features works from artists such as Banksy, D*Face, and Ben Eine but it’s also open to any budding artist who wishes to use the city as their canvass with the hope of getting appreciation from others. Enjoy this guided walking tour and marvel at the amazing works of art along this bustling street.
London East End & Street Art Guided Walking Tour - Semi-Private 8ppl Max
Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
12. Try Italian food at Popolo Shoreditch
Popolo Shoreditch is not your average Italian restaurant. With reviews from acclaimed critics like Michelin, it’s definitely worth checking out. Popolo, meaning “people” in Italian, serves a fusion of Italian cuisine with a hint of Middle Eastern touches, giving guests a unique gastronomic experience. It’s advisable to reserve a table, but be mindful that the restaurant does not accept bookings of more than five people due to limited seating space. Nevertheless, the delicious food is what keeps people raving about Popolo. It’s surely a must-try when in Shoreditch!
Address: 26 Rivington St, Hackney, London EC2A 3DU, UK
Website: Popolo Shoreditch
Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 6pm - 11pm (closed on Sun)
13. Shop for beautiful flowers at Columbia Road Flower Market
If you’re in Shoreditch on a Sunday, one of the best places to stop by is Columbia Road Flower Market. This whole stretch of retail shops and antique stores is closed to vehicles on Sundays to give way to the Flower Market. Surprisingly, the area has been a retail hub as early as 1869 when it was first established. Today, hundreds of people flock to Columbia Road for the famed Flower Market, as well as the other retail shops in the area. On their website, you will find the different owners of the stalls lined up with your favorite flowers in full bloom as well as healthy grown plants and herbs.
Columbia Road Flower Market
Address: Columbia Rd, London E2 7RG, UK
Website: Columbia Road Flower Market
Opening hours: Sun: 8am - 3pm (closed from Mon - Sat)
14. Taste delicious barbecue at Smokestak
Another noteworthy restaurant to visit in Shoreditch is Smokestak, a favorite barbecue restaurant among locals. It received reviews from the likes of Michelin and other publications so it’s not just your average restaurant. Regulars gush about the quality of their meats and barbecues, saying that even upon entering, the wwafting smell of barbecue already gets your attention. Many of the favorites include pastrami, beef brisket, ox cheek bites, and beef rib, among others. Sound mouthwatering enough yet? Try it for yourself!
Address: 35 Sclater St, Shoreditch, London E1 6LB, UK
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 12pm - 3pm, 5:30pm - 11pm; Sat: 12pm - 11pm; Sun: 12pm - 10pm
15. Relax at Shoreditch Park
After a long day of exploring the town, take some time off to relax at Shoreditch Park. This 7.1-hectare (17.5-acre) area used to be filled with homes until the air bomb raids during the Blitz in World War II almost completely wiped the area. Today it has been restored and beautified into a recreational park for the community. Among the many things to do here include football, rugby, volleyball, ping pong, and rock climbing. There’s also a playground for the little ones. Shoreditch Park proudly has a Green Flag Award, a signifier that it’s one of the best parks in the country.
Address: 188 New N Rd, Hoxton, London N1 5EP, UK
Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)
See and experience the unique culture of Shoreditch, London
Shoreditch is a unique and quite unusual spot from your traditional British neighborhood, and the things to do here prove that. Because of its arts and culture scene, Shoreditch became known as London’s creative hub. This alone should be enough reason for you to go visit this lovely neighborhood when you visit London!
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