37 Greatest Hidden Gems in London (with map of places)


Whenever you go to London for the primary time, it may be all about ticking off the massive London landmarks. The River Thames, Westminster, Huge Ben, St Paul’s, Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, Trafalgar Sq.… the record goes on. And on.  

However on a repeat go to – or when you merely prefer to see the choice facet to a metropolis – you may be extra within the hidden gems of London. These secret locations in London have extra of an undiscovered air, making you are feeling as when you’ve stumbled upon one thing actually particular. 

Such hidden locations in London are precisely what this text is all about. From secret issues to do in London that will provide you with an actual thrill to hidden spots in London that you just didn’t know existed, these are the perfect hidden locations in London that each vacationer doesn’t learn about.

For those who actually prefer to get below the pores and skin of a metropolis and stay like a neighborhood, listed here are 37 of the highest hidden issues to do in London. Which would be the greatest hidden gems in London for you? Learn on to search out out!

37 of the perfect hidden gems in London

1. Shad Thames

Shad Thames in one of the best hidden gems in London.

Closest tube: Tower Hill 

The primary of our secret gems in London is actually hidden in plain sight. Shad Thames is definitely the identify of a avenue, however this has since been adopted to cowl a wider vary. This zone is a historic, cobblestoned space to the south of the Thames.

You’ll find Shad Thames in Bermondsey. The realm is lined with vibrant, riverside bars and eating places. Previous Victorian warehouses listed here are joined overhead by little walkways, and the entire place is an Instagrammer’s dream. 

2. St Dunstans within the East 

St Dunstan's in the East.

Closest tube: Monument or Tower Hill

One other of our hidden treasures in London can be discovered not removed from Tower Hill tube station. St Dunstans within the East was bombed and thus destroyed throughout World Battle II, however the stays have now been repurposed as a reasonably public backyard. 

The unique church was by Christopher Wren, who designed St Paul’s Cathedral. Plus over 50 different London church buildings. Draping greenery, a tumbling fountain and enticing wood seating makes this the perfect place for a lunch break within the metropolis.

3. Coal Drops Yard + canal stroll to Camden

Closest tube: King’s Cross or St Pancras

This purchasing and leisure area near King’s Cross is a type of London hidden sights that’s near main routes. Tucked away by the huge King’s Cross and St Pancras stations, the event has been well-liked since its 2018 opening. 

Victorian structure, quirky boutiques and foodie delights mix right here, so there’s one thing to go well with everybody. The transformed warehouses have been used in the course of the nineteenth century for coal storage, therefore the identify. For Kings Cross hidden gems hid in plain sight, head to Coal Drops Yard. 

4. Painted Corridor

Royal Naval Hall Greenwich.

Closest tube: Cutty Sark (DLR) or North Greenwich

Among the finest secret issues to do in London provides you but one more reason to go to Greenwich whereas within the metropolis. The Painted Corridor may be discovered on the Previous Royal Naval Faculty, and boasts greater than 40,000 sq. toes of wall and ceiling murals. Attractive arched home windows make the room an much more breathtaking sight. 

The Corridor was the work of Sir James Thornhill in the course of the early 18th century, and the work embody over 200 figures, similar to royalty and legendary creatures. A two 12 months renovation venture accomplished in 2019 implies that immediately you possibly can see the corridor at its best. 

5. Tulip Stairs

Tulip stairs in Greenwich.

Closest tube: Greenwich or Maze Hill Stations (mainline) or Cutty Sark (DLR)

One other of the cool hidden locations in London can be present in Greenwich. The Tulip Stairs may be discovered at The Queen’s Home. It’s a spiralling and really photogenic staircase.

The Tulip Stairs are literally adorned with fleur de lys moderately than tulips. This was the UK’s first cantilevered, spiralling staircase, and it has no central supportive column. Like the home itself, the staircase was the brainchild of Inigo Jones, a celebrated British architect of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. 

6. Greenwich foot tunnel

Greenwich foot tunnel.

Closest tube: Island Gardens (DLR)

One more of the hidden secrets and techniques of London is Greenwich Foot Tunnel. This has been open since 1902, and connects Greenwich with Millwall. Maybe surprisingly, about 1.2 million individuals use the tunnel yearly.

The tunnel is just for pedestrians, not scooters or bikes. It’s open 24 hours and there are lifts, although these may be vulnerable to intermittent service points.

7. Historic pubs (together with Ye Olde Mitre, Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese and The Churchill Arms)

One of the hidden gems in London that is very popular with visitors is the pub Ye Olde Cheshire cheese.
One of many hidden gems in London that may be very well-liked with guests

Taking a stroll to discover London’s most historic pubs generally is a fascinating method to uncover the capital’s previous. Ye Olde Mitre in Holborn is a typical instance, and this wood panelled hostelry dates from 1587. There’s a great assortment of previous photographs inside too. Alternatively, head to the photogenic and flower-bedecked Churchill Arms in Notting Hill. 

Among the greatest excursions of London’s previous pubs embody:

8. Leake Road Arches

Leake Street tunnels.

Closest tube: Waterloo

Among the finest stored secrets and techniques of London is Leake Road Arches. This can be a subterranean artwork gallery hid beneath Waterloo station. You may even take part with the capital’s avenue artwork scene right here, as graffiti inside the authorised space is definitely inspired. 

Go to Leake Road Arches and you’ll embellish the tunnel partitions, eat, store, drink and play on the number of venues discovered right here. 

9. Temple of Mithraeum

London Mithraeum.

Closest tube: Financial institution

The Roman temple of Mithras was found in the midst of development work in 1954. This massive website was then excavated, and visiting takes you again to London because it was in AD 240. 

The unique smash has now been recreated, so you possibly can think about the way it was used again then. PLus how the secretive Roman cult of Mithras met on this exact spot in Wallbrook, Metropolis of London.  Of all of the hidden London gems, this is likely one of the most vital archeological finds ever. 

10. Metropolis of London dragons

One of the city of London dragons.

Closest tube: Financial institution

Additionally within the metropolis’s monetary district are the Metropolis of London dragons. These silver dragons with purple accents characteristic the cross of St George, the coat of arms of town and references to St Paul and the story of St George and the Dragon. 

The dragons mark town boundaries, and there are 14 in whole dotted across the space. A pair of the unique Coal Change statues are situated on Victoria Embankment, and these hidden London secrets and techniques have been Grade II listed since 1972. 

11. Leadenhall Market

Leadenhall Market.

Closest tube: Monument

Although lesser recognized than Borough Market to the south of the river, Leadenhall is positioned on Gracechurch Road within the East Finish. It’s a lightweight and ethereal lined market providing distinctive boutiques, foodie haunts and extra. 

This enticing market dates again to the 1300s, and was used for filming some Harry Potter film scenes. It’s a cool place to eat, drink and store, and you’ll drop in 24/7 because it’s open all day and night time lengthy. Among the finest East London hidden gems for positive. 

12. Cross Bones Burial Floor

Ribbons tied on a gate at Cross Bones Burial ground London.

Closest tube: London Bridge

In case you have a penchant for the gorier facet of life – and loss of life – then head for Cross Bones in Southwark. That is the ultimate resting place for as much as 15,000 paupers who labored on this lawless neighbourhood as prostitutes – and among the many hidden gems of south London. 

On the time, these girls of the road have been often called “Winchester Geese”. The burial floor closed in 1853, and now acts merely as a memorial to a grittier London lifestyle. 

13. The Silver Vaults

Closest tube: Chancery Lane

The Silver Vaults are a big subterranean market beneath Chancery Lane. These vaults are actually dwelling to silver jewellers and retailers, so you should buy all kinds of silverware right here. 

Silver objects relationship from the seventeenth century to the current day may be bought at London’s Silver Vaults. It’s not solely jewelry on supply – it’s also possible to purchase high-quality cutlery, tableware, collector’s and ornamental objects and nice jewelry. 

14. Sir John Soane’s Museum

John Soane's Museum London.
Picture courtesy of Catherine Grenfell

Closest tube: Holborn

Sir John Soane’s is likely one of the capital’s lesser recognized museums, and can be one of many true hidden treasures in London. It’s named for the neo-classical architect whose dwelling it as soon as was, and may be discovered at Lincoln’s Inn Fields in Holborn.

This London museum is all in regards to the eccentric, the colorful and the weird. The objects housed right here cowl many centuries of artwork and design. 

15. Chelsea Physic Backyard

Chelsea Physic Garden.
Chelsea Physic Garden.
Images courtesy of Catherine Grenfell

Closest tube: Sloane Sq.

The doorway to Chelsea Physic Backyard may be discovered at 66 Hospital Highway, in one in every of London’s most upmarket neighbourhoods. This out of doors area is a really nice place to be, particularly on a sunny summer time’s day. 

The backyard was established in 1673 for the aim of rising crops to make use of in medicines. Arrange by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries, it was previously often called the Apothecaries’ Backyard. If doable, that is a type of London hidden sights to avoid wasting for good climate. 

16. Columbia Highway Flower Market

Columbia Road flower market.

Closest tube: Hoxton (mainline) or Bethnal Inexperienced, Liverpool Road, Previous Road or Shoreditch

Columbia Highway flower market is one for the early risers. You should buy flowers and crops a-plenty right here, or just wander at will to take in the sights and smells if buying isn’t sensible whilst you’re travelling.

Visiting this flower market provides you a real perception into East Finish life, full with eccentric characters, native banter and good-natured bartering. 

17. Benjamin Franklin Home

Closest tube: Charing Cross or Embankment

Benjamin Franklin Home is devoted to Benjamin Franklin, a former president and one of many Founding Fathers of america of America. The Georgian terraced home dates from round 1730, and Franklin labored and lived right here for greater than 15 years.

This place is particular because it’s the one former dwelling of the US president that’s nonetheless standing – wherever on earth. 

18. Little Venice

Little Venice canals.

Closest tube: Warwick Avenue

Little Venice is the place London’s waterways meet – Regent’s Canal, the Grand Union Canal and the Paddington Basin entrance. The ensuing triangular formed physique of water is the center of Little Venice. It’s a peaceable, well-heeled a part of city, and the canals listed here are among the many greatest hidden locations in London. 

Issues to do on this space embody visiting the waterside pubs, cafes and eating places. You can even enterprise to London Zoo and Regent’s Park, or take a wander or waterbus boat journey to Camden City

19. Primrose Hill

View over London from Primrose Hill.

Closest tube: Chalk Farm

Primrose Hill is a nice a part of London favoured by celebrities – and native canine walkers. Additionally near Regent’s Canal and Camden City, the realm provides pretty properties and unparalleled views from the highest. 

Chalk Farm tube station is below 10 minutes’ stroll from the well-known hill and metropolis viewpoint. 

20. Battersea Park Kids’s Zoo

Closest tube: Sloane Sq.

London Zoo may be greater and higher recognized, however Battersea Park Kids’s Zoo is likely one of the greatest hidden spots in London. Set south of the river inside Battersea Park, it has a spread of smaller creatures to see plus a enjoyable interactive journey playground. 

If you wish to discover hidden gems for household holidays in London, head right here. In addition to the zoo, the park itself provides round 200 acres of play area. 

21. POP Brixton 

Love Brixton sign.
Picture courtesy of Catherine Grenfell

Closest tube: Brixton

One more reason to go south of the Thames is to go to POP Brixton. Brightly adorned delivery containers await at this place, one of many hidden gems of south London. 

The containers are full of enjoyable locations to eat, store and drink. Whether or not to pattern avenue meals, store or attend a particular occasion, this a part of city is at all times buzzing. 

22. Sky Backyard

Sky Garden in London.

Closest tube: Monument

London’s Sky Backyard is the very best backyard in the entire of the UK. It’s free to enter, however you do have to ebook a ticket on-line, as much as three weeks previous to your go to. There are a number of bars and eating places right here, and reserving for these can be suggested. 

Whether or not it’s to select up distinctive presents on the store, get pleasure from Italian or nice eating at one of many eating places, sip a late-night drink on the bar or just gaze on the magnificent views, dropping into the Sky Backyard is likely one of the greatest hidden issues to do in London. 

23. Eltham Palace

Eltham Palace interior.
Eltham Palace interior.
Images courtesy of Catherine Grenfell

Closest tube: Mottingham (mainline)

Eltham Palace and Gardens occupies a website of virtually 20 acres outdoors central London. Hidden gems close to London don’t come a lot better than this artwork deco delight. You may attain it by travelling to Mottingham station, which is a ten-minute stroll from the palace. 

The palace has a assorted and fascinating historical past. It’s been a royal residence throughout Tudor occasions, a mediaeval palace and residential to a pair of offbeat millionaires, the Courtaulds. Highlights embody the mediaeval nice corridor, a number of interval costumes, rose and rock gardens and the glasshouse cafe.  

24. Alexandra Palace

Closest tube: Alexandra Palace (mainline) or Wooden Inexperienced

Fondly often called Ally Pally, Alexandra Palace is likely one of the locals’ north London hidden gems to learn about. The Grade II listed constructing is used as a venue for all kinds of leisure, from sports activities to musical and theatrical performances. 

There’s at all times one thing occurring, from an enormous identify live performance or winter ice skating to theatre excursions and DJ units. 

25. Kyoto Backyard

Kyoto Garden London.

Closest tube: Holland Park

Kyoto Backyard is an oasis of oriental out of doors model in Holland Park, near Kensington and Notting Hill. The backyard was really gifted to the UK capital by town of Kyoto in Japan, and has been open since 1991.

Which different London secret locations to go to include koi carp stocked ponds, the possibility of recognizing peacocks strutting round, tiered waterfalls and naturally vibrant Japanese acer or maple bushes?

26. Brick Lane

Closest tube: Aldgate East

Hidden meals gems in London don’t come any finer than Brick Lane. There are few locations on earth the place you possibly can pattern so many Indian eating places in a single stretch. The realm can be firmly planted on London’s avenue artwork scene.

Include a completely charged digicam, a watch for wall murals and an empty stomach, and also you’ll be in heaven in Brick Lane. 

27. Nomadic Group Gardens

Closest tube: Aldgate East

For those who’re within the Brick Lane space, don’t miss one of many Shoreditch hidden gems on this a part of city. It’s the Nomadic Group Gardens, a blinding spot in East London crammed with avenue artwork and sculptures.

The gardens have been based for rising recent meals, and there are many pop up cafes right here the place you possibly can choose up a espresso. 

28. Neal’s Yard

Neals Yard London.

Closest tube: Covent Backyard

If it’s Covent Backyard hidden gems you need to uncover, then head for Neal’s Yard. Only a stone’s throw from the tube station, this charming neighbourhood is awash with color and character. 

Quirky, impartial companies make this enticing space what it’s, and don’t miss the unique Neal’s Yard Treatments retailer. It additionally has a residential really feel, as individuals really stay right here within the flats above the stunning outlets and eateries. 

29. The Royal Change

The Royal Exchange London.

Closest tube: Financial institution or Cannon Road

The sixteenth century, Grade I listed Royal Change is one other of town’s architectural and cultural secrets and techniques. Like different hidden gems in central London, it could be simple to overlook. However when you’re within the Metropolis of London space, do drop in!

Right here you possibly can look forward to finding a spread of interesting locations to eat, drink and dine, together with The Fortnum’s Bar and Restaurant. This comes from the distinguished Piccadilly retailer of the identical identify. 

30. SIS Constructing

SIS Building London.

Closest tube: Vauxhall

Skyfall is likely one of the most iconic James Bond motion pictures. For those who’re a fan of the franchise, you can’t miss the SIS constructing in London, aka the MI6 HQ in Skyfall. 

Although a replica was constructed at Pinewood Studios, you possibly can see the unique when you head to the Vauxhall space. You’ll find it at 85 Albert Embankment, and it’s the real-life HQ of the UK’s Secret Intelligence Service. 

31. The Postal Museum and Mail Rail

Mail rail in London.
Postal Museum in London.
Images courtesy of Catherine Grenfell

Closest tube: Chancery Lane

For essentially the most surprising and greatest secret issues to do in London, how about hopping onto the Put up Workplace Railway? This underground, slim gauge railway was used to switch mail between sorting places of work, and is driverless. 

The Postal Museum and Mail Rail are throughout the road from each other, so it’s also possible to pop in there to be taught extra. As for the prepare service, it was suspended in 2003 for financial causes, however a journey on it’s now included within the Postal Museum’s ticket worth. 

32. Postman’s Park

Postman's Park London.

Closest tube: St Paul’s

For those who’re within the neighborhood of the Metropolis of London or St Paul’s Cathedral, don’t miss Postman’s Park. It’s so known as because it was used at lunchtime by workers from the previous Basic Put up Workplace shut by. 

The Watts memorial, relationship from 1900, can be discovered right here. This contains a wall of memorial plaques devoted to bizarre individuals who tragically misplaced their very own lives whereas making an attempt to avoid wasting the lives of others. 

33. Hampstead Heath

Hampstead Health London.

Closest tube: Hampstead

Hampstead Heath is each well-known and notorious. The park is the place British pop star George Michael was as soon as caught cruising. It additionally provides over 300 hectares of inexperienced area between Hampstead and Highgate. 

Although the traditional heath is simply 4 miles from the centre of town, it feels a lot additional away. With woodland, meadows and 18 ponds, there’s at all times a quiet nook right here to name your very personal.

34. Canbury Gardens

Closest tube: Kingston (mainline)

For hidden gems in Kingston upon Thames, Canbury Gardens matches the invoice. That is additionally a stunning area by which to flee town. The sights of the gardens embody tennis courts, a children’ play park, a bandstand and The Boaters Inn pub.

The pub is a gem in itself, with a riverside place, a microbrewery and stay jazz on Sundays. 

35. The Musical Museum

Closest tube: South Ealing

Situated close to Kew Bridge in Brentford, The Musical Museum is likely one of the hidden gems within the Ealing space. It’s dwelling to a tremendous assortment of musical devices. Within the live performance corridor, you possibly can see the Mighty Wurlitzer theatre organ.

Additionally discovered at The Musical Museum are interactive shows sharing how music is made and recorded. Excursions happen right here a number of occasions per day. 

36. Clapham South Deep Stage Shelter

Closest tube: Clapham South

Clapham South Deep Stage Shelter was used throughout World Battle II, and is situated greater than 10 storeys under the floor of town. Greater than a mile of underground passages connects the shelters. 

It’s a captivating place to go to, although restricted to over-14s solely. Excursions may be booked through the London Transport Museum. 

37. The Photographer’s Gallery

Closest tube: Oxford Circus

And eventually, this record attracts to an in depth with one of many hidden gems of Soho. It’s moderately laborious to consider that The Photographers’ Gallery was the very first devoted pictures gallery within the UK, however so it’s. It opened in 1971.

This gallery options works by native and worldwide photographers, unfold over six flooring. There may be additionally a restaurant and bookshop on website. 

Which hidden gems in London will you go to?

We hope this record of hidden locations in London to see has impressed your journey itinerary. From hidden gems in Covent Backyard, proper within the thick of issues, to unknown locations to go to in London which can be situated slightly outdoors town, there are many interesting indoor and out of doors areas so as to add to your hit-list. 

Whether or not you’re within the space anyway or need to make a day of it, a go to to any of those tremendous cool secrets and techniques of London is at all times worthwhile. It’s positive to provide you a lot of pictures and recollections to share along with your envious family and friends again dwelling, too!

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