Currently undergoing a multi-billion pound regeneration program set to continue until 2020, Nine Elms has been earmarked as the one to watch - and the place to be - by those in the know. Situated on the edge of Central London between Battersea and Vauxhall, Nine Elms spent years as a blighted industrial zone before work began on the Battersea Power Station, kicking of a huge development programme that will see it become one of the major residential and commercial zones in the capital. Chic restaurants, cool bars and stylish modern apartments are already appearing on a daily basis in the new Circus West Village area, and with the recent addition of the US Embassy, you’ll certainly be in impressive company here.
Eating & Drinking
Alongside some well-loved local establishments, a wide array of restaurants have already started flocking to the area amidst the renovations. These offer a very promising sign for a diverse dining scene to come with international cuisines, traditional gastropubs, and innovative new eateries.
Housed in a faded Georgian mansion, prepare to dine on a tasty, seasonal British menu amid plenty of quirky antiques.
Address: 30 Wandsworth Rd, London SW8 2LG
The Power Station
Spread over two floors, this charming, casual restaurant and wine bar is known for it’s traditional Greek and Mediterranean food and relaxed ambience.
Address: 161 Battersea Park Rd, London SW8 4BU
The brothers with a knack for affordable seafood have finally brought their oysters to Nine Elms, with a riverside restaurant featuring a charming outdoor terrace.
Address: Battersea Power Station, 26 Circus West Village, London SW11 8NN
A recent addition to the area, they’ve quickly made a name for themselves serving high-end Rajasthani cuisine with a French twist in a stunning, opulent dining room.
Address: Riverlight Quay, 2 Nine Elms Ln, London SW11 8AW
Don’t let the exterior fool you - a local institution, San Gennaro have been serving up authentic Italian dishes to delighted residents since 1998.
Address: 22 Battersea Park Rd, Battersea, London SW11 4HY
The bar scene in Nine Elms tends to be relaxed and sophisticated, with wine bars, cocktail bars and stylish pubs dominating the area. Even with new bars opening regularly it’s unlikely to become a very late night destination, but there are plenty of venues and clubs just across the river on the King’s Road for those looking to dance into the small hours.
Boasting a fully operational winery as well as 100 wines available by the glass, the Nine Elms branch of this popular wine bar is already causing a stir.
Address: Unit 12, Circus Village West, Circus Road West, Phase 1 Battersea Power Station, London SW11 8EZ
The Battersea Barge
Prefer your bars with a nautical twist? This floating pub may have a limited selection, but the regular events and unique setting more than make up for it.
Address: Nine Elms Ln, London SW8 5BP
The Vauxhall Griffin
An independent, old-school pub, you can expect to find plenty of real ales and squishy leather sofas at this local favourite.
Address: 8 Wyvil Rd, London SW8 2TH
No.29 Power Station West
Another new arrival to Circus West Village, this hip wine bar and restaurant serves up classic cocktails in a contemporary setting.
Address: No 29 Power Station West 29 Circus West Village, London SW11 8NN
Nine Elms Tavern
A popular after-work spot, this buzzing gastropub has a stylish decor and an extensive drinks list.
Address: Riverlight Quay, Nine Elms Ln, London SW8 5BP
Located between Battersea Park Station and Vauxhall train and underground stations, Nine Elms is already well-connected for commuters with a 5 minute train journey to Waterloo and a speedy 9 minute journey to Oxford Circus on the Victoria Line. Meanwhile in 2020, a new station on the Northern Line will open at Battersea Power Station, offering even better connections to the rest of the city.
Shopping in the Nine Elms area is currently limited as developments on the future power station shopping centre are still underway, but by 2020 it’s set to be the third largest shopping destination in the capital with swathes of international and independent brands. For now, foodies are already well covered with Waitrose, the high-end Battersea General Store (offering delicacies from around the world), and the famous New Covent Garden Market - though you’ll have to get up pretty early to make the most of it! For all other shopping needs, Chelsea is a short distance away across the river and has a wide range of options for every shopper.
Nine Elms residents are well placed when it comes to green spaces, with the 200 acre expanse of historic Battersea Park just next door with a boating lake, small children’s zoo, tennis courts and regular festivals. Looking for a change of scene? Clapham Common is around two miles south, and there’s always the pretty embankment for an evening stroll too.
Located between Battersea Park Station and Vauxhall train and underground stations, Nine Elms is already well-connected for commuters with a 5 minute train journey to Waterloo and a speedy 9 minute journey to Oxford Circus on the Victoria Line. Meanwhile in 2020, a new station on the Northern Line will open at Battersea Power Station, offering even better connections to the rest of the city.
Nestled into the River Thames just south-west of Fulham, picturesque Putney in the borough of Wandsworth has a tendency to feel more like a country village than a busy London suburb. Popular with affluent Londoners during the nineteenth century, Putney has developed into a one of the hottest spots for young professionals in the capital, who come here to enjoy the leafy streets, riverside pubs, and expansive green spaces. Properties tend to be a mix of Victorian terraces and sophisticated modern apartment blocks, while residents also benefit from one of the lowest council tax rates in London - leaving you that bit more to spend in one of Putney’s gourmet independent restaurants.
Alongside popular chains such as Carluccio’s, Gail’s Bakery and Bill’s, Putney has become somewhat of a dining destination with an underrated selection of excellent independent and family-run restaurants.
Ground Coffee Society
Get your artisan coffee fix and more at this trendy cafe, where the weekend brunch is as good as the daily brew.
Address: 79 Lower Richmond Rd, London SW15 1ET
With only the best pure-bred, grass-fed Aberdeen Angus beef on offer, Roxies has a well-earned reputation for incredible steaks in a relaxed setting.
Address: 136 Upper Richmond Road, Putney, SW15 2SP
A beloved local spot since 1993, you’d be hard pressed to find a better place in Putney for top-quality Indian cuisine.
Address: 244 Upper Richmond Rd, Putney, London SW15 6TG
Al Forno Putney
Craving pasta? Authentic Italian and Sicilian dishes are on the menu at this friendly, traditional Italian restaurant.
Address: 349 Upper Richmond Rd, London SW15 5QJ
With a changing weekly menu, embrace your inner Parisian at this chic French brasserie with a retro feel.
Address: 147 Upper Richmond Rd, Putney, London SW15 2TX
Mostly home to cosy pubs and stylish bars rather than late-night clubs, Putney’s nightlife reflects its calm, village feel, with residents tending to travel to Clapham or Soho for big nights out. However, there is always Fez Club if you’re looking for a boogie closer to home.
The Dukes Head
A riverside terrace and good gastropub grub make this pub one of Putney’s best.
Address: 8 Lower Richmond Rd, London SW15 1JN
Aside from the excellent name, this quirky bar is known for its creative cocktails and cool ambience.
Address: 12 Putney High St, London SW15 1SL
The Half Moon
A renowned music venue as well as a charming pub, you’ll find live concerts and events here nearly every night of the week.
Address: 93 Lower Richmond Rd, London SW15 1EU
With cosy open fires in the winter and a large, sun-filled terrace in the summer, it’s no surprise this historic pub is popular all year round.
Address: 41 Jews Row, Wandsworth, London SW18 1TB
Dance the night away to chart hits at this Morrocan-themed club close to the station.
Address: 200b Upper Richmond Rd, London SW15 2SH
With two tube stations and a train station, Putney is an easy starting point for commutes all over London, with Putney Bridge and East Putney, both on the District line, offering journey times of just over 20 minutes to Piccadilly Circus via Earls Court. Putney Station connects with Clapham Junction in 6 minutes and Waterloo in 15 minutes, while for those seeking a more scenic route, there’s always the River Bus from Putney Pier directly to Canary Wharf - though be prepared for it to take around an hour!
Rarely praised for it’s shopping prowess, Putney has a surprisingly good selection of lovely independent boutiques, as well as all the high street stores you could need. Waitrose, H&M and more can all be found in the modern Putney Exchange Shopping Centre, while avid readers will love the charming Hurlingham Books. Local foodies (and wine lovers) are well-served by delicatessens Artisan & Vine and Glug Wine & Cheese, while Talad Thai Supermarket is the top choice for exotic ingredients.
With an impressive 1,700 acres of greenery in the Wandsworth borough, you’re never far from a natural haven in Putney. Putney Heath and Putney Common are among the most popular green spaces for locals looking to promenade, picnic, and play tennis, while the Grade II listed Bishops Park is also just across the river.
Aside from greenery and amenities, many families are drawn to Putney as a result of its impressive school selection, with a range of good options in both the state and private sector. The local primary schools have been voted among the best in the UK, with the likes of Sheringdale, Gatton, Hillbrook and others rated outstanding by Ofsted. For older children, leading secondary schools include Putney High (girls, independent), Ibstock Place School (mixed, independent) and Lady Margaret School (girls, academy).
Just north of Shepherds Bush, West London’s compact White City neighbourhood has spent years being overlooked in favour of Notting Hill, Hammersmith, and other notable neighbours. But following an epic £8 billion regeneration scheme that has involved the transformation of the former BBC Television Centre buildings, as well as the recent arrival of chic membership club Soho House’s latest outpost White City House, it’s clear that White City is rapidly becoming West London’s latest sought-after spot for young professionals in the capital.
What’s more, the addition of a Royal College of Art campus is bringing some much-needed creativity to the area, while the short distance to Westfield Shopping Centre and White City Place means you’re never far from a shopping fix or a myriad of dining options. Throw in great transport connections, good schools and the sports facilities of Wormwood Scrubs, and you’ve got everything you need for the ultimate in city living.
As well as all the big brands you could want including Wahaca, Franco Manca and Five Guys, White City has also become somewhat of a dining destination with brilliant new restaurants arriving regularly.
Run by the trendy Soho House group, this relaxed restaurant-lounge has a large terrace for sunny afternoons, as well as a branch of Electric Cinema for catching a post-dinner film.
Address: 101 Wood Ln, Shepherd's Bush, London W12 7EE
Homeslice White City
The epic pizzas of Homeslice have finally made it to West London with this cool industrial venue. Grab a slice to go, or try one of the giant pizzas to share among friends.
Address: Television Centre, 2, 101 Wood Ln, London W12 7FR
Tuck into authentic Greek dishes at this modern restaurant, where you’ll find mouthwatering souvlaki, mezze dishes and more.
Address: Unit 5, White City Place, 191 Wood Ln, London W12 7TU
Balans Soho Society
With an epic brunch menu, all-day brasserie options and quirky cocktails in the evening, this stylish restaurant has you covered any time of day.
Address: 1034, Westfield Shopping Centre Ariel Way London W12 7GA GB, Ariel Way, London W12 7SL
A recent addition to the White City scene, this colourful Peruvian-Japanese cafe has quickly become the go-to lunch spot for many locals.
Address: White City Place, 191 Wood Ln, London W12 7FP
Offering a range of elegant wine bars and upmarket pubs, there’s plenty of choice for evening drinks and weekend fun in White City.
Craft beers are on the menu at this branch of the popular Scottish brewery brand, with both old favourites and regularly new brews to try.
Address: 15 Goldhawk Rd, Hammersmith, London W12 8QQ
The Queen Adelaide
With an elegant Victorian interior (complete with panelled walls and chandeliers), good wine list and gourmet menu, this charming gastropub is always busy with locals.
Address: 412 Uxbridge Rd, White City, London W12 0NR
A former gin palace, this award-winning pub is faithful to its past with over 100 gins on offer, best enjoyed on the lovely courtyard terrace.
Address: 217 Uxbridge Rd, White City, London W12 9DH
Albertine Wine Bar
Cosy and romantic, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better date spot in the neighbourhood than this wine bar lined with wooden church pews.
Address: 1 Wood Ln, Shepherd's Bush, London W12 7DP
Enjoy an al-fresco evening at this laid-back bar and grill, known for its epic garden where you can enjoy treats from the BBQ with your drinks.
Address: 41 Bramley Rd, London W10 6SZ
Located in Zone 2, White City is extremely well connected when it comes to commuting across London. The two main underground stations in the area, Wood Lane and White City, offer access to the Central, Circle and Hammersmith & City lines, with a direct journey time of just 13 minutes to Oxford Circus. For Overground and rail services Shepherds Bush Station is a short distance away, and the area is also served by numerous bus routes. Shopping
As the home of Westfield Shopping Centre, shopping opportunities in White City are among the best in the capital - this vast venue hosts over 450 shops and services, ranging from designers such as Louis Vuitton to a flagship branch of John Lewis. Meanwhile at the new White City Place development, various boutiques and brands such as Oliver Bonas are currently opening. On the other hand, if you’re looking for independent shops and vintage finds, Notting Hill and Portobello Road are just a short walk away.
Alongside its commercial prowess, White City is also well-positioned when it comes to green spaces - the area is dotted with small parks, including Wormholt Park and Hammersmith Park, while to the north Wormwood Scrubs is one of the largest areas of common in London with around 200 acres of space. Here you’ll find football pitches, sports venues, and even a pony centre providing riding therapy for disabled children.
White City offers a good selection of schools at both primary and secondary level, with Ark Swift Primary Academy, Greenside Primary School and St John XXIII Catholic Primary School all rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, while Hammersmith Academy (mixed) and Ark Burlington Danes Academy (mixed) are popular choices for parents of older pupils.
Nestled alongside Richmond in leafy South-West London, Twickenham is often mentioned as a short-hand for rugby, due to the famous rugby union stadium. Sporting prowess aside, there’s plenty of other attractions to be found in this affluent suburb, ranging from wide open green spaces and good local schools to cosy, historic pubs. The area is far enough from the centre to offer a sense of peace and quiet, but close enough for a straightforward daily commute - particularly if you work near Waterloo. When it comes to property, there’s everything from historic mansion blocks and modern apartments with river views to Victorian and Edwardian family homes on pretty, quiet streets. For those seeking something different, there’s always Eel Pie island too - though you’re unlikely to bump into The Rolling Stones these days!
Alongside the occasional well-known high street restaurant such as Ask Italian and Loch Fyne, Twickenham is full of excellent independent restaurants, many of which have been in the area for years.
A local institution, this simple, elegant restaurant is known for its authentic Northern Italian menu - think pan fried sea bass and cacio e pepe spaghetti.
Address: 418 Richmond Rd, Twickenham TW1 2EB
Brad and Angelina were rumoured to have regularly ordered from this award-winning Indian restaurant while in London, so it’s even got A-list approval!
Address: 406 Richmond Rd, Twickenham TW1 2EB
Another brilliant Italian eatery, this unassuming, affordable spot focuses on traditional dishes from the Neapolitan region.
Address: 22 Church St, Town Centre, Twickenham TW1 3NJ
Gorge on delicious Mediterranean tapas such as jamon croquetas, lamb meatballs and marinated octopus in this pretty Spanish dining room, or on the spacious terrace if the sun’s out.
Address: 55 Church St, Twickenham TW1 3NR
Forget high street sushi chains - Ke Sushi is beloved among local fans of Japanese food for its fresh fish, classic donmono dishes and relaxed ambience.
Address: 36 London Rd, Twickenham TW1 3RR
Although cocktail bars and late-night venues are somewhat limited, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better area than Twickenham if you’re looking for a good selection of classic pubs.
The Shack 68
Live music, generous cocktails and Southern BBQ dishes are all on the menu at this popular bar and nightspot.
Address: 68 London Rd, Twickenham TW1 3QS
With squishy leather sofas and an extensive wine list, it’s not hard to see why locals often spend hours in this pretty Georgian pub.
Address: 174 Richmond Rd, Twickenham TW1 2NH
The Bloomsbury Pub
Popular with the rugby crowd for the live game screenings, this relaxed pub also has an open fire and a summer garden - ideal for any weather.
Address: Staines Rd, Twickenham TW2 5BB
The Sussex Arms
Known for its range of real ales and ciders as well as regular acoustic music nights, this traditional pub has been a local favourite for years.
Address: 15 Staines Rd, Twickenham TW2 5BG
M Bar & Grill Twickenham
Offering a curated wine list, plenty of cocktails and chic interiors, it’s clear why this stylish bar and grill is always packed with residents on the weekends.
Address: 1 Brewery Lane, Twickenham TW1 1AA
Twickenham is well-connected to central London on National Rail lines, with a direct journey from Twickenham Station to Waterloo taking just over thirty minutes. There’s no underground station in Twickenham, although nearby Richmond Station is on the District line with a journey time of 20 minutes to Earls Court.
Shopping in Twickenham is somewhat limited, although there are a few gems to be found if you know where to look. Rugby fans can stock up on all sorts of souvenirs at the England Rugby Store, while Moores Cycles is perfect for finding some two-wheeled transport to explore the neighbourhood with. If you’re looking for an unusual present, Mojo has an epic range packed into a seemly tiny shop, and Corto Italian Deli keeps locals stocked with pesto, pasta and more. Meanwhile for a wider range, head just across the river to Richmond where you’ll find House of Fraser, Waterstones, and women’s fashion from the likes Topshop, H&M, and Whistles, as well as a selection of brilliant independent boutiques.
One of the benefits of being further out of central London is the vast array of green spaces on offer, and Twickenham is no exception. From Twickenham Green and Radnor Gardens to the riverside expanse of Marble Hill Gardens, you’ll never been far from a patch of nature here. Looking to really get lost in the wilderness? The 2,500 acre Richmond Park is beautifully rugged and is also home to hundreds of wild deer.
Twickenham’s family-friendly reputation is partly based on the good selection of schools, so you can expect a range of highly-recommended options here. For younger children, Orleans Primary School, St James RC Primary School and Bishop Perrin CofE Primary School are among those rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, while for secondary options Orleans Park Comprehensive (mixed, academy) and Newline House School (mixed, private) are both popular choices.
Famous for its Royal Botanical Gardens, the quaint suburb of Kew in South-West London was traditionally dominated by families and the occasional celebrity hiding from paparazzi. But as modern residential developments along the river begin to spring up, young professionals are starting to take notice of Kew’s many charms. From historic pubs and concerts in the gardens to independent restaurants with the seal of approval from local foodies, Kew is packed with things to see and do. Add streets of honey-coloured terraced houses, highly-rated schools and good transport connections, and it’s hard to see why you’d ever leave.
Alongside popular chains such as Ask Italian, Pizza Express and Cafe Rouge, Kew Bridge has a reasonable variety of good, independent restaurants, including cosy bistros and a stellar steak spot run by a celerity chef.
The Orangery in Kew Gardens
Located in the heart of Kew Gardens, this beautiful 18th century building is a popular spot for a relaxed lunch or a well-earned afternoon tea after exploring the gardens.
Address: Kew Gardens, Broad Walk, Richmond TW9 3AB
A refined restaurant perfect for special occasions, their Modern European menu is highly regarded by local food fans.
Address: 14 Station Parade, Richmond TW9 3PZ
Tucked away just by the river, charming restaurant Annie’s offers everything from romantic candlelit dinners to award-winning brunches.
Address: 162 Thames Rd, Chiswick, London W4 3QS
Meaning ‘my kitchen’ in French, this traditional bistro has all the usual favourites to keep resident Francophiles happy, including coq au vin and fresh oysters.
Address: 7 Station Approach, Richmond TW9 3QB
Craving a steak? Run by the famous Anthony Worrall Thompson, Kew Grill is known for having some of the best beef in the area, with a vast array of cuts to choose from.
Address: 10B Kew Green, Richmond TW9 3BH
Sleepy Kew Bridge is home to a wide selection of pubs, from old-school boozers to sleek riverside establishments, and the occasional relaxed cocktail bar. For late-night venues and a little more variety, locals tend to travel to nearby Richmond, or into central London.
Overlooking the picturesque Kew Green, come to this historic pub for craft beers and an international wine list in a charming setting.
Address: 3-5 Kew Green, Richmond TW9 3AA
The Tap on the Line
Enjoy real ales and vintage artwork at an old-school station pub just off the platform at Kew Gardens station.
Address: Kew Garden Station, Station Approach, Richmond TW9 3PZ
Rock & Rose
With an eclectic, flamboyant decor, this cocktail bar and restaurant near Richmond is packed with young professionals coming to enjoy signature drinks on the weekends.
Address: 106 - 108 Kew Rd, Richmond TW9 2PQ
The Coach & Horses
Soak up the countryside ambience in a quaint gastropub and hotel, where there’s always the boutique rooms upstairs if you can’t bring yourself to leave.
Address: 8 Kew Green, Richmond TW9 3BH
The Bell & Crown
Enjoy sunny afternoons in the riverside garden at this 18th century pub tucked away on the towpath.
Address: 11-13 Thames Rd, Chiswick, London W4 3PL
Despite being on the edge of Zones 3 and 4, Kew Bridge is relatively well connected when it comes to transport for commuters, although journey times can sometimes be a little long. There are two stations, Kew Bridge and Kew Gardens, which between them offer connections on the District Line of the Underground, the Overground, and the National Rail. A journey to Earl’s Court takes around 17 minutes on the Underground, while Waterloo can be reached by train in 30 minutes.
Opportunities for shopping are a little limited in Kew Bridge, although the area does have all the usual necessities along side a few stellar independent shops. Kew Retail Park is home to brands such as M&S, Next and Gap, while close to Kew Gardens station The Good Wine Shop is beloved by local oenophiles. Kew Bookshop and Olivers Wholefood Store keep the neighbourhood stocked with paperbacks and healthy produce, while for designer brands the shops of Richmond are around two miles away.
Combining the city with a taste of the country, Kew Bridge is surrounded by vast green spaces and parks, including Gunnersbury Park to the north and the famous Botanical Gardens. Lovely riverside walks on both sides of the bank are also an option (with plenty of pubs for refreshment along the way), and Richmond Park is a short journey away if you’re in the mood for rugged landscapes and wild deer.
Once known for its less than salubrious reputation, South West London’s Streatham has undergone a huge amount of regeneration and transformation since it hit the headlines in the early 2000s, and has since developed into a lively, bustling area with an increasingly large population of young professionals looking for a diverse and vibrant place to live. Six miles from Central London and bordered by Clapham and Brixton, Streatham is now known for its wide range of independent dining options, quirky independent boutiques and great community spirit - there are numerous festivals though out the year, including the annual Streatham Festival and the Streatham Food Festival every summer.
Property is more affordable than you’d expect in South West London, and there’s plenty of different styles available, from contemporary apartment blocks in the heart of the action to period houses on quiet, leafy streets. Throw in good schools and plenty of greenery, and it’s not hard to see why Streatham is suddenly on everyone’ s radar.
Just like neighbouring Brixton, Streatham has developed a reputation for amazing international dining, with plenty of hidden gems serving up Vietnamese, Indian and Modern European food, trendy brunch spots and good gastropubs to choose from.
The Mere Scribbler
A recent addition to the Streatham scene, this friendly gastropub has quickly become the go-to spot for comforting pub grub and long weekend brunches.
Address: 426 Streatham High Rd, London SW16 3PX
Simple, authentic and affordable, this Vietnamese cafe on the High Road serves up delicious, traditional dishes and offers BYO alongside a good wine selection.
Address: 133 Streatham High Rd, London SW16 1HJ
Catch up with friends over crumpets and poached eggs at brunch or tuck into Modern British dishes at dinnertime at this underrated neighbourhood restaurant.
Address: 67 Streatham Hill, London SW2 4TX
Batch & Co Coffee
With coffee from the famous Caravan Coffee Roasters, you can expect an excellent cup of joe here alongside simple lunch dishes including prosecution toasties and smoked salmon bagels.
Address: 54 Streatham Hill, London SW2 4RD
Top quality all day dining is on the menu at this Modern European restaurant, where you’ll find some of the best steaks in South West London.
Address: 8-9, Streatleigh Parade, London SW16 1EQ
From traditional pubs to sophisticated wine bars, Streatham has a wide range of drinking spots to choose from - and there’s always nearby Clapham or Brixton if you’re looking for a big night out.
Pratts & Payne
Filled with retro cool furniture, this low-key pub is perfect for a Friday night among friends - make sure to try their curated selection of real ales.
Address: 103 Streatham High Rd, London SW16 1HJ
There’s never a dull moment at this award-winning jazz club, where the bill is packed with live music, performances and stand up comedy every night of the week.
Address: 2 Empire Mews, Stanthorpe Road, London SW16 2BF
The Manor Arms
A modern pub with an extensive wine list and a lovely outdoor patio with heating in the winter, this spot covers all bases (and the food is pretty good too).
Address: 2A Mitcham Ln, London SW16 6LQ
Streatham Wine House
Cosy and charming, this modest wine bar is the best place in the neighbourhood to try intriguing wines by the class while sharing a cheese plate, or a pizza from one of the nearby independent Italian restaurants.
Address: 53A Streatham Hill, London SW2 4TS
Right next to Streatham Hill station, this vintage-style cocktail bar has an impressive cocktail list and a buzzing atmosphere on weekend evenings.
Address: 10 Streatham High Rd, London SW16 1DB
Despite the lack of underground station, Streatham still manages to offer speedy connections across the capital with three train stations: Streatham Hill, Streatham, and Streatham Common. Between them, you’ll find direct trains to key destinations including Victoria in less than 20 minutes and London Bridge in less than 30 minutes. The area is also served by numerous buses.
Once voted Britain’s worst high street, Streatham’s transformation into a buzzing, metropolitan hub has had a huge impact on the range of shops available. Alongside numerous charity shops and high street brands such as New Look, Argos and Holland & Barrett, the area is now packed with great independent boutiques too. Try Blackbird Bakery for homemade cakes, tarts and pastries, Xanadu Vintage for second-hand treasures, and Indigo Tree for unique, quirky gifts that are sure to put a smile on your face.
Streatham is surrounded by greenery, so you’re in the perfect position here if you’re looking for an area with plenty of outdoor space to stretch those legs on the weekend. As well as Streatham Common, which is home to a nature reserve and a historic formal garden among other attractions, Tooting Bec Common is a short distance away and offers a charming hundred-year-old outdoor lido for an al-fresco swim on summer days.
Streatham is home to four secondary schools and nine primary schools, giving parents a good selection of eduction options. Sunnyhill Primary School, Streatham Wells Primary School and St Andrew’s RC Primary School are among those rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, while for older children, Streatham and Clapham High School (girls, independent), Bishop Thomas Grant Catholic School (mixed) and Chestnut Grove School (mixed, academy) all come highly recommended.
Across the river from Fulham and pressed between Battersea and Putney in South West London, Wandsworth is another charming neighbourhood with a truly village feel - from the cosy local restaurants to the wide open space of Wandsworth Common, you’d be forgiven for thinking you’d left London on occasion. Once voted as one of the best places to live as a young professional, Wandsworth is beloved for its pretty period houses, modern riverside apartment blocks, and low crime rate for a relatively central area.
Alongside the swathes of young professionals, the area is extremely popular with families - so much so that it’s been nicknamed ‘Nappy Valley’ by some. There’s also a reasonably large French community here, so you can expect only the best croissants at your local bakery.
Alongside popular chain restaurants such as Nandos, Wagamamas, and Pizza Express, Wandsworth offers everything from underrated independent cafes to Michelin-starred dining.
Enjoy authentic French dishes such as pork belly, foie gras terrine and sautéed scallops in a beautiful setting in this former greenhouse close to the common.
Address: The Bonner Bldg, 218 Trinity Rd, London SW17 7HP
We hope you’re hungry - from jerk chicken to plantain crisps, this delicious Caribbean restaurant is known for its big dishes and friendly atmosphere.
Address: The Dutch Yard, 177A Wandsworth High St, Wandsworth, London SW18 4JE
Perfect for a special occasion, this luxurious, Michelin-starred French restaurant has been a local institution for over two decades.
Address: 2 Bellevue Rd, London SW17 7EG
With sunny yellow walls and a menu full of pizza, pasta and authentic Italian dishes, this rustic neighbourhood restaurant is one of the best independents in the area.
Address: 189 Garratt Ln, London SW18 4DR
Inspired by Thai street food dishes, let this cool, modern restaurant expand your culinary horizons with spicy coconut soup, aubergine chips, roast duck salad and more.
Address: 140 Wandsworth Bridge Rd, Fulham, London SW6 2UL
Although you’ll find the odd cool cocktail bar, Wandsworth is mostly known for its range of excellent, traditional gastropubs, with extensive drinks menus and welcoming atmospheres.
Dating back to the 1700s, this traditional pub has seen plenty of history over the years, but has adapted well to the times - it’s now home to a large, sunny terrace and an outdoor BBQ for mouthwatering weekend lunches.
Blending the best of French drinking and and dining with a classing British pub, L’Affaire boasts an imaginative bar menu, bright dining room and authentic Gallic brasserie dishes too.
Address: 134 Wandsworth High St, London SW18 4JP
Live music, expertly mixed cocktails and wood-fired pizzas in a sophisticated, low-lit setting? It’s not hard to see why Dutch Courage is so popular with locals (and even those further afield).
Address: 26 Upper Richmond Rd, London SW15 2RX
Graffiti Cocktail Bar
One of Wandsworth’s leading late-night spots, this cocktail bar has a relaxed, fun vibe with a good happy hour offers and even a small dance floor.
Address: 561 Garratt Ln, London SW18 4SR
The Cat’s Back
Not far from the river, this striking green-tiled pub has resisted the gastropub trend and is still as traditional as ever, with quality food and plenty of real ales too.
Address: 86-88 Point Pleasant, London SW18 1NN
Wandsworth may not have an underground station, but with two rail stations the area is still reasonably well connected when it comes to travelling around London and beyond. From Wandsworth Town you’ll find direct trains to Waterloo with an average journey time of around 14 minutes, while Wandsworth Common offers similar times directly to Victoria.
With the bustling Southside Shopping Centre in the heart of Wandsworth Town and an array of brilliant independent boutiques, residents are well served when it comes to shopping in the area - be that picking up daily essentials, or looking for something more special. The shopping centre is home to nearly 100 big brands including Topshop, Uniqlo , Waitrose and H&M, while on the high street and in the surrounding areas there are plenty of boutiques to explore. Check out Anthologie Boutique for stylish designer womenswear, The Beer Boutique for craft bottles, and The Village Butchers for award-winning free-range meat and poultry that’s perfect for Sunday lunch.
As well as a smattering of small, pretty parks, squares and allotments and a long stretch of river bank perfect for weekend walks, Wandsworth is also home to the expansive Wandsworth Common, which offers 170 acres of greenery, sports facilities, and even a lake. Meanwhile if you’re looking to explore further afield, Clapham Common, Tooting Bec Common and Wimbledon Common are all a short distance away.
Not surprising due to its popularity among families, Wandsworth offers a great selection of schools for all ages. Some popular schools for younger children include Allfarthing Primary School, Brandlehow Primary School, and St Joseph’s RC Primary School, all of which are rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted. At senior level, Ashcroft Technology Academy is also rated ‘outstanding’, while Southfields Academy and Emanuel School (mixed, private) come highly recommended.
South of West Kensington and west of Chelsea, the charming, petite neighbourhood of Fulham sits in a bend of the river Thames across from Putney. Once the lesser- known neighbour of flashy Chelsea, Fulham has boomed in recent years, with young professionals and families flocking here for tidy, leafy streets of Victorian and Edwardian terraces, the abundance of excellent restaurants and the close community feeling. Aside from top-quality dining and weekend afternoons spent in quaint pub gardens, sports play a key role in Fulham life, with both Fulham FC and Chelsea FC based here for football fans, as well as historic luxury sports clubs such as the Hurlingham Club and Queen’s Club. Don’t forget to stop off for a smoothie at Funky Juice afterwards for a true taste of the healthy, wholesome Fulham lifestyle.
Small but mighty, the Fulham dining scene ranges from Michelin stars to healthy brunch spots, with relaxed coffee shops and little gourmet gems in between. Alongside the independent restaurants you’ll also find plenty of chain favourites here, including Nando’s, Byron and Côte Brasserie for fine French dining.
Home to some of the best steaks in SW6 as well as an impressive wine selection, Roxie Steak is a failsafe option for cosy dinners and romantic dates.
Address: 803 Fulham Rd, Fulham, London SW6 5HE
The Harwood Arms
Treat yourself to signature scotch eggs, venison steaks and a life-changing Sunday roast at this Michelin-starred gastropub.
Address: Walham Grove, Fulham, London SW6 1QP
Hidden above Amuse Bouche champagne bar, this stylish, sustainable restaurant serves up creative dishes with a changing weekly menu.
Address: 51 Parsons Green Ln, Fulham, London SW6 4JA
Modern and sophisticated, Japanese restaurant Koji offers sushi, sashimi and innovative sharing plates for discerning diners.
Address: 58 New King's Rd, Fulham, London SW6 4LS
Chairs & Coffee
This iconic brunch spot is a top choice among locals looking for eggs, avocado and more on the weekends, as well as delicious home-roasted coffee.
Address: 512 Fulham Rd, Fulham, London SW6 5NJ
Nights out in Fulham tend to be a low-key affair, with relaxed pubs, elegant wine bars and the occasional cocktail spot dominating the bar scene. For busier bars and late-night dancing, locals tend to head into nearby Chelsea.
An epic selection of wines by the glass, tasty bar snacks and a cool ambience make this wine bar a hit with young locals.
Bubbles dominate the menu at this surprisingly affordable Parson’s Green champagne bar, with around forty different bottles on offer.
Address: 18-22 Vanston Pl, Fulham, London SW6 1AX
The White Horse
Affectionally known as the ‘Sloaney Pony’, the international beer selection and quaint interiors help this Victorian gastropub stand out from the crowd.
Address: 1-3 Parsons Green, Fulham, London SW6 4UL
With quirky cocktails, a generous happy hour and colourful, vintage-inspired interiors, you’re practically guaranteed a good night out at Simmons.
Address: 374 North End Rd, Fulham, London SW6 1LY
The Little Blue Door
From the team behind the famous Little Yellow Door in Notting Hill, this hidden bar is like stepping into a cool house party (with a professional mixologist).
Address: 871-873, Fulham Rd, Fulham, London SW6 5HP
There are three underground stations in Fulham, Fulham Broadway, Parsons Green and Putney Bridge, all of which are on the Wimbledon branch of the District line. With a journey time of around 20 minutes to central London (Piccadilly Circus) via Earls Court, Fulham is a popular spot for commuters travelling to the heart of the city. The area also benefits from Overground services at Imperial Wharf, for speedy journeys to South East and East London.
Much like the dining scene, Fulham has a compact but well-curated selection of shops, including major high-street brands such as Boot’s, Paperchase and Accessorise all found in the Fulham Broadway Shopping Centre, as well as a Vue cinema for checking out the latest blockbusters. For stylish womenswear from international designers make sure to check out Katie + Jo, while independent toyshop Little Heroes is a extremely popular among the area’s youngest residents. Bit of a bookworm? Nomad Books has a brilliant selection (and a charming cafe too), and Lea & Sandeman Wine Merchants is the go-to shop for local wine buffs.
As well as plenty of opportunities for riverside walks, Fulham is packed with verdant parks and squares if you’re looking for some green space to stretch out in. The Grade II listed Bishop’s Park is home to tennis courts and a weekly farmers market, while pretty Parson’s Green and Eel Brook Common are popular spots for summer picnics.
Fulham benefits from a range of excellent state and independent schools, Some of the most popular primary schools in the area include Saint Augustine’s RC and All Saints CofE, while for older children Lady Margaret School (girls, state), London Oratory School (boys with mixed sixth form, state) and Queen’s Gate School (girls, independent) are all highly ranked.
Of all the Surrey towns within commuting distance of London, historic Staines-upon-Thames must be one of the most underrated. While Virginia Water, Windsor and Egham often get the lion's share of attention, Staines manages to fly under the radar despite the affordable properties, relaxed riverside pubs, and thriving local community. What's more, the town has been undergoing an impressive amount of regeneration over the last decade, with investment in sleek contemporary housing, new shops and restaurants, children's play facilities and future plans for a new leisure centre. The parks, good schools and well-stocked town centre make it a popular choice for families looking to settle down, while young professionals are increasingly drawn here for the easy London commute and opportunities to invest in property. The close proximity to Royal Holloway in nearby Egham adds a young, student ambience to the town too, with many choosing to live and socialise in Staines during their studies.
Staines-upon-Thames residents are well-served when it comes to dining out, with a great selection of gastropubs, international and independent eateries, as well as chain favourites such as Wagamama, Prezzo and GBK.
Take a trip to the tropics at this colourful cafe specialising in Caribbean street food, including jerk chicken and curried goat.
Address: 24-26 High Street, Staines-upon-Thames, TW18 4EE
Gourmet food takes centre-stage at Cafee Gondola, an independent favourite serving up authentic Italian dishes to delighted locals.
Address: 168 High Stree, Egham, TW20 9HP
The stylish dining room, sun-filled garden and traditional British fare make this gastropub one of the highest-rated in the area. Just remember to book ahead for Sunday lunch!
Address: 25 Shepperton Road, Laleham, Staines-upon-Thames, TW18 1SE
Treat yourself to an All-American brunch at Limeyard with everything from blueberry pancakes to maple-bacon waffles on offer.
Address: Two Rivers Retail Park, Norris Road, Staines-upon-Thames, TW18 4UP
Simple and unpretentious, this local institution is known for its generous English breakfast, affordable menu and friendly service.
Address: 169 High Street, Staines-upon-Thames, TW18 4PA
When it comes to nightlife Staines tends to be more sleepy than spirited, but there are still a good range of pubs and bars where you can enjoy a cosy pint or a classy cocktail.
Comfy sofas, elegant lighting and a vibrant atmosphere make this bar-restaurant a much-loved local hotspot for drinks and tapas on a Friday night.
Address: 55 High Street, Staines-upon-Thames, TW18 4QH
The London Stone Craft Ale Bar
Love your craft beers? This cool venue has an impressive range of local and international beers, best enjoyed while watching one of their regular live music performances.
Address: 14 Church Street, Staines-upon-Thames, TW18 4EP
Located in nearby Wraysbury, this charming 17th century pub is the perfect place to settle in with a glass of wine by the open fire.
Address: 2 High Street, Wraysbury, Staines-upon-Thames, TW19 5DB
Slug and Lettuce
Treat yourself to cocktails with a riverside view at this lively bar, where you can even sharpen your bar skills with a professional cocktail-making masterclass.
Address: Thames Edge, Units 2-4, Staines-upon-Thames, TW18 4SU
The Beehive Inn
If you like your pubs traditional, there's nothing better than this welcoming, old-school establishment tucked away on a side street near the station.
Address: 35 Edgell Road, Staines-upon-Thames, TW18 2EP
Located just 17 miles south-west of the capital, Staines-upon-Thames is extremely well connected by road and rail. It’s close to the M3 and M25, while regular trains from Staines-upon-Thames Station to Reading, Windsor and London (up to four per hour) make it easy to travel for work and pleasure. Direct trains into Waterloo take just 35-40 minutes, making Staines-upon-Thames particularly popular as a commuter town for residents working in London. As for international travel, Heathrow Airport is only 5 miles away and easily accessed by train, bus or road.
With over 200 shops, there’s plenty of variety when it comes to both retail therapy and everyday essentials in Staines-upon-Thames. Two centrally-located shopping centres, Elmsleigh and the Two Rivers, offer a wide range of high street stores including TK Maxx, Topshop and Waterstones alongside popular restaurants, and a multi-screen Vue cinema too. There’s also a bustling market that takes place on the high street three days a week, as well as some brilliant independent retailers dotted around the town.
As well as an enviable position on the River Thames, Staines-upon-Thames is surrounded by picturesque green spaces and parks. These include the National Trust-run Runnymede, a historic meadow where the Magna Carta was signed and the natural beauty of Staines Moor. Conveniently located in the heart of the town, Hythe Park is a popular spot for runners and dog-walkers, as well as families enjoying the children’s playground. Meanwhile, if you’re looking for something more rugged, the vast expanse of Windsor Great Park is just a few miles away, as is Langley Country Park.
Staines-upon-Thames offers a wide range of well-regarded schools for both primary and secondary school-aged children, as well as independent options. For younger children, Riverbridge Primary School, Hythe Community School and Laleham C of E Primary School are among those rated ‘good’ by Ofsted, as are the Matthew Arnold School and the Magna Carta School at secondary level. For parents interested in independent schooling, Staines Preparatory school is located in the town and Surrey is home to a number of renowned boarding schools, including Epsom College and Charterhouse School.