Due to the pandemic, more Brits have been heading for the capital rather than jetting off for holidays abroad. Whether you’re looking for a quiet getaway, a creative jaunt or a taste of vibrant culture and buzzing nightlife, London has it all. They say that ‘when you’re tired of London, you’re tired of life’, but which areas of the city are best for a British staycation?
Richmond – Easily accessible from Central London by train, Richmond is an affluent, leafy suburb that’s home to attractions including Kew Gardens, Richmond Bridge, Richmond Riverside and Richmond Green. Providing a greener backdrop than other London boroughs, the area is best known for the stunning Richmond Park, one of the 8 royal parks in the city and a top location to spot roaming wildlife (including deer) and have an old-fashioned English picnic. A great choice if you’re looking to get away from it all.
Notting Hill – Notting Hill is best known for its vibrant Carnival and as the setting for the Hugh Grant rom-com vehicle, but there’s more to this area than jerk chicken and bumbling bookshop owners. Situated in West London, Notting Hill is home to countless cafes and restaurants, a strong Caribbean community and Portobello Road Market, one of the most sought-after open-air clothing markets in the world – if you want to pick up a unique item of clothing as a souvenir of your trip, this could be the perfect place. Notting Hill is easily accessible by tube and is served by three stations: Notting Hill Gate, Westbourne Park and Ladbroke Grove.
Kensington – Located in West-Central London, Kensington epitomises the stereotypically ‘posh’ image of the capital. Aside from wealth, Kensington is home to an array of international embassies and consulates, as well as three of London’s best museums on one street: The V&A, the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum. Other notable attractions in the area include Holland Park, Kensington Palace, Kensington Gardens and the world-famous Royal Albert Hall.
Hampstead- Home to the iconic green space Hampstead Heath (where you can soak up incredible views of the city skyline), Hampstead is yet another popular choice with day-trippers and ‘staycationers’. Located around 4 miles from Charing Cross, the most popular attractions in Hampstead include Kenwood House, Keats House and the Freud Museum, plus a range of top pubs and restaurants such as Gaucho Grill and The Spaniards Inn. If the summer heat gets too much, you can take a dip in the famous open-air Hampstead Swimming Pools to cool off.
Camden Town – As a flagship area of London’s punk and alternative scene, Camden Town remains a tourist hotspot and a great location for Brits on a London staycation. If you’re not content with browsing the versatile Camden Lock market, soak up the buzzing nightlife of the area and wet your whistle in one of the area’s many historic pubs, such as The Dublin Castle, The Good Mixer (both frequent haunts of Amy Winehouse) and The Edinboro Castle.