Camden Town is irrefutably the center of alternative culture in London. It is famous for its street markets and its uniquely bizarre storefronts which attract punks, goths, hippies and more. The markets sell everything – from street food to books to antiques to clothing and a myriad of weird items.
A guide to the markets:
Camden Market (Buck Street Market) – clothing
Camden Lock Market – stands of crafts, alternative clothing and accessories and food.
Camden Lock Village – alternative clothing and jewellery as well as many other random items
Inverness Market – fruits, clothing and accessories, and London souvenirs
Stables Market – antiques, clothing, food, household object
Electric Ballroom Market – and indoor market selling fashion items inside the Electric Ballroom, an iconic music venue use primarily by rock bands. Only open on Sundays
Aside from its markets and culture, Camden is home to many historic places in London such as The Carreras Cigarette Factory, an Art Deco Egyptian Revival building with two gigantic statues of Bastet, the cat goddess of Egypt; The Jewish Museum, dedicated to the British Jewish life; The Camden Eye, formerly used as a prison; The Camden Catacombs, an underground area below the markets that was originally used as horse stables; The Royal College Street, where important poets and writers such as Arthur Rimbaud, Pauline Verlaine and Charles Dickens called their home for a number of years; The Arlington House, a hostel for homeless people still in use where writer Brendan Francis Aidan Behan lived at one point in his life (if you’re interested in reading about these kind of places known as “Rowton Houses”, read George Orwell’s book Down and Out in Paris and London, where he describes his life in the houses);The Roundhouse Theatre remained closed since the 60’s and was reopened in the year 2006 as a theatre and music venue. Originally, it was used as a locomotive engine roundhouse for the London and Birmingham Railway, it was opened in the year 1847; St Pancras Old Church, of the oldest Christian churches in London; St Michael’s Church, an Anglican church.
If you’re feeling hungry, fear not as Camden Town is quite possibly the best place to get good and inexpensive food of any kind – from Cuban to Mexican to Morrocan to Japanese to Chinese to Italian – it is all here.
Fancy a drink? Head to The Bucks Head, located right in next to the Bucks Street Market; The Devonshire Arms (“The Dev”) is another great pub mostly frequented by the Goth-type before they head to the Electronic Ballroom – but beware! You will only be allowed in if you’re wearing black; The Hawley Arms, near the Stables Market is a somewhat quieter pub best suited for those wishing to relax or those who came to Camden Town with their families; The Good Mixer which used to be a favorite among artists such as Blur and Oasis in the best days of Britpop and to date, a favorite of the residents of The Arlington House; Worlds End, Camden’s most historical pub perfect for the lovers of history located opposite of Camden tube station, it also houses a music venue and club downstairs known as Underworld.
Tube stations: Camden and Chalk Farm