Historic Borough Market, with over 100 stalls, is one of the largest and oldest food markets in London. Here’s a guide to visiting.
How To Get To Borough Market
Borough Market is located in the Southwark area of central London, close to London Bridge.
London Underground is one of the easiest ways to get around London and Borough Market has a tube station very close by.
London Bridge Station is just a few minutes from Borough Market and is serviced by both the Jubilee Line and the Northern Line. (As well as being a central London railway terminus.)
Zones 1-2 contain all the central London districts, and most of the major tourist attractions. The daily cap for travelling in Zones 1-2 is £7.00 when using a contactless bank card. (Borough Market is in Zone 1.)
If you don’t have a contactless card that works in London, the best option is to purchase a 1-Day Unlimited Travel Card.
These can be used on the tubes, buses, trams and Docklands Light Railway.
Hop On Hop Off Bus
Standard buses are available within your daily travel card and there are plenty of bus stops close to Borough Market. Buses 133, 17, 21, 344, 388, and 43 will all get you there.
However, there is also of course the famous Big Bus Open-Top Hop-on, Hop-off Sightseeing Tour.
Stopping at Borough Market, this is always popular among tourists and is a great way to see many famous landmarks around the capital at ease.
All whilst travelling around on a traditional big red London bus!
For those short on time, or those that prefer everything to be organised for them, there are some awesome tours on Get Your Guide available to book in advance.
Also, for all tourists visiting London, I recommend purchasing a Go City London Pass.
These are a great way of saving money when visiting multiple tourist attractions during your stay in London.
Borough Market Entrance Fee
It is free to visit Borough Market.
Borough Market Opening Times
Tuesday – Friday: 10am to 5pm.
Saturday: 9am to 5pm.
Sunday: 10am to 4pm.
Best Time To Visit Borough Market
Weekends are a great time to visit Borough Market, especially if you’re looking for the biggest choice of stalls and the authentic, hustle/bustle market experience.
With tourists and locals all flocking to the market, especially on a Saturday and Sunday, it can get pretty crowded. However, this all adds to the vibrant atmosphere of Borough Market.
During the week, Tuesday to Friday, it’s not as crowded but there’s not always the full range of stalls.
Although, around midday during the week, it still gets pretty busy with people stopping by to grab something from the food stalls for lunch.
Borough Market operates under railway arches and is therefore mostly under cover, so suitable to visit in any weather.
There are some seating areas in Borough Market if you are looking to sit and eat your take-away food. However, they do fill up pretty quickly, especially at lunchtime, although people move on quite quickly once they have eaten.
What To Pack
Borough Market History
It’s said that a market has existed on this site since 1014 and probably even earlier.
However, the first official record is in 1276 when there was mention of a ‘market that adjoined the end of London Bridge’. The current Borough Market was established in 1756.
Todays buildings were designed in 1851, with additions in the 1860s and an entrance, designed in the Art Deco style, added in 1932. Following which there have been continued changes due to expansions of the nearby railway infrastructure.
During the 19th century, Borough Market was one of London’s most important food markets. This was undoubtedly due to its prime position close the riverside wharves and having direct access to all the produce arriving on the River Thames.
Essentially then a wholesale market, it was selling produce to greengrocers. In fact, it was the main supplier, along with Covent Garden, of fruits and vegetables to greengrocers’ shops across London.
However, by the mid 1990s the market was in decline and trustees decided to change it to a retail market rather than a wholesale market.
The present, and very successful Borough Market, is run by a charitable trust made up of volunteers who live in the area and have the local community at heart.
As well as making sure there is a wide range of high quality goods, they also focus on sustainable production and social connection, at this ever-evolving market.
What To Expect At Borough Market
Borough Market is a popular tourist attraction for good reason. Full of a vast array of delicious food, knowledgable, friendly vendors and amazing colours and smells, what’s not to like?
Stretching in a triangular shape over an area of approximately four acres, Borough Market has the following three areas to explore:
Three Crown Square
Home to larger producers and vendors.
The smaller and more specialised traders.
Borough Market Kitchen
Where all the street food stalls can be found.
With over 100 stalls, you will find lots of fresh, locally produced artisan products. Including everything from pastries and bread to fresh coffee, as well meat, fish, cheese, various street foods and much more.
Wind your way through passageways, under railway arches and into larger atmospheric areas. One such area being the spacious main hall which, with its high glass ceiling, gives off a traditional outdoor-market vibe.
Loved by locals and tourists, the mouth-watering aromas and intense colours will delight your senses before you even taste any of the delicious produce.
In addition, surrounding the market, you’ll find a great blend of restaurants, bars and shops. Making Borough Market a great place to socialise, shop, eat and enjoy the atmosphere.
So, visiting this vibrant, historic market and indulging in some of the delicacies on offer has to be a must for the bucket list of best things to do in London.
Fun fact: Borough Market and the surrounding streets have be used in some well known films including Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Bridget Jones’ Diary and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
Where To Stay In London
The London EDITION is located in central London’s Fitzrovia district, with Oxford Street, Theatreland and Piccadilly Circus all within a 10-minute walk.
Inside, there is a Michelin star restaurant, 2 cocktail bars, a 24-hour front desk, free WiFi and free use of the on-site fitness centre for all guests.
With a view of the vibrant city, each en suite room come with a flat-screen TV and air-conditioning. An iPod docking station, bathrobes and a mini-bar are also provided.
Each evening, the restaurant offers a contemporary British menu using fresh, British produce.
Set within a 20-minute walk from Royal Albert Hall and boasting a stylish, spacious piano lounge , Corus Hotel Hyde Park features modern rooms with free WiFi.
The hotel is just a 10-minute walk from Paddington Station, offering a direct train link to Heathrow Airport.
The cosy, air-conditioned bedrooms at Corus Hotel have private en-suite bathrooms and satellite TVs with on-demand movies. Rooms also feature work desks, tea/coffee facilities, iron and ironing boards.
The conservatory brasserie serves a modern European menu using seasonal produce.
Olio Bar offers light snacks and beverages, and overlooks Hyde Park.
Featuring free WiFi, The Queens Hostel offers accommodation in London, just a 2-minute walk to Queens Park Rangers football stadium.
Guests can enjoy the on-site bar. Rooms come with a shared bathroom.
You can play tennis at this hostel, and the area is popular for golfing.
For more places to stay in London, you can check the latest prices on Booking.com.