Today I want to share my guide to the best London villages with you. People always ask me about the prettiest neighborhoods in London, and there are a lot of good ones. From north to south, east to west, I’ll show you urban villages that will make you feel like you’ve escaped to the English countryside without leaving the city. I’ve included a map, too.

London villages

London Villages

One of my favorite things about London is that the city feels like a collection of villages. Each neighborhood has its own personality and style, from fashionable Chelsea to hip Hackney and colorful Notting Hill.

In reality, some parts of London really were villages before the UK capital expanded to incorporate them. From leafy Hampstead to dreamy Dulwich, these places still retain their intimate feel and charm.

Whether you’re looking to explore a new-to-you part of the city, choose where to stay on an upcoming visit, or decide where to live in London, this post will give you an idea of what the best London villages have to offer.

Hampstead museum in London

1. Hampstead

Since it was the first place I lived in London and it’s still my favorite part of the city, I’ll start my list of London villages with Hampstead. This north London neighborhood is a true gem, and it’s often considered the most beautiful part of the UK capital.

Hampstead village is known for its historic streets, elegant houses, hidden pubs, and the sprawling expanse of Hampstead Heath. They make it one of the most charming places to see in London.

From Hampstead High Street to Heath Street, Flask Walk to Church Row, this part of London is full of picturesque shops, heritage houses, and great details.

Hampstead pub in London

Hidden spaces like the Hill Garden and Pergola add great greenery to the neighborhood, too. With its raised walkway and wisteria-laden pergola, this place feels like it’s straight out of a fairy tale.

There are great small museums in Hampstead, too. From the National Trust’s Fenton House with its beautiful garden to Burgh House, Keats House, and 2 Willow Road, there are a lot of good ones to discover.

If you want to see the highlights of this part of north west London, my self-guided Hampstead walk and Hampstead Heath walks can help.

Hampstead house

If you want to live like a local, you can stay in the area. There are lots of options in Hampstead. La Gaffe is conveniently located on Heath Street. It’s my favorite local hotel in the area. I love its cozy ambiance and delicious cappuccinos. You can book a room here.

If you prefer your own place, the Mirabilis Apartments in Wells Court on Oriel Place are perfect. These elegant flats are right in the heart of the village between Hampstead High Street and Heath Street. You can book one here.

You can see a range of other accommodation options and hotels in Hampstead here. You’re sure to find a place in the area that fits your style.

Street in Hampstead, London

2. Dulwich

Next on my list of the best London villages is Dulwich. This leafy enclave in the south of the city is one of the prettiest London neighborhoods to live in, and there are a lot of great things to do in Dulwich.

With a world-class picture gallery, a famous boys’ school, pretty houses, a high street full of pubs and cafes, loads of parks, and unique wooden street signs with fingers pointing in every direction, there’s a lot to love about Dulwich.

East Dulwich is right next to Dulwich village, and it’s known for having one of the best high streets in London, the vibrant North Cross Road market, street art, and pretty parks and squares.

From the independent shops on Lordship Lane to the adorable dogs on Goose Green and abundance of local pubs, East Dulwich has a lot going for it as well.

Dulwich village house

If you want to see more of the area, you can follow the route of my free self-guided walk in Dulwich. It will show you everything from the high street to the parks and hidden lanes.

If this part of the city appeals, you can stay here. There are plenty of good places in Dulwich. My top pick is The Crown & Greyhound. A charming pub with rooms, it’s in a great location on the high street. You can book a room here.

If you’re looking for a different kind of place, you can see a range of other options and find accommodation that suits your preferences here. There are lots of good choices.

South London Pub in Dulwich

3. Marylebone

In the center of the city, Marylebone is another of my favorite London villages. The restaurants and shops here are some of the best in the UK capital.

Marylebone High Street alone could keep me busy all day. Not only is it beautiful, but it’s also packed with stylish boutiques and cafes. It’s one of the best shopping streets in London.

Elsewhere in the neighborhood, Chiltern Street is full of heritage buildings, and Marylebone Lane and St Christopher’s Place are packed with gems.

Marylebone street

Add to that museums like the Wallace Collection, fun weekly markets, charming side streets, and the area’s proximity to Regent’s Park, and Marylebone is hard to beat.

If you want to see more of the neighborhood, you can follow the route of my free self-guided walk in Marylebone. It will show you everything from the high street to the gardens, markets, and hidden mews.

If this part of the city appeals, you can stay in it. There are plenty of good places in Marylebone. My top pick is The Langham. A landmark hotel in the heart of London, it’s a great place to call home-away-from-home. You can book a room here.

If you’re looking for something different, you can see a range of other options and find accommodation that fits your style here. There are lots of good choices.

Marylebone restaurant

4. Little Venice

Next on my guide to London villages is Little Venice. This area near Maida Vale and Paddington is famous for its canals, but there are pretty streets and houses galore, too.

Little Venice is great if you love Canal walks in London and being by the water. It’s a residential area, so it offers a nice break from the bustle of the city center without being too far from it.

If you want to see the best of the neighborhood, you can follow the route of my free self-guided Little Venice walk. It will show you everything from the canal to the gardens, local pubs, and side streets.

Little Venice cafe in London

If this part of the city appeals, you can stay here. There are plenty of places to choose from in Little Venice. My top pick is Boutique Barges. A unique canal boat property, it’s a fun place to stay on the water. You can book it here.

If you’re looking for something different, you can see a range of other options and find accommodation that fits your style here. There are lots of good choices.

Restaurant on the Grand Union Canal in Little Venice, London

5. Richmond

My guide to London villages continues with Richmond. Out in the south west, this affluent area is known for its scenic riverfront, huge park, buzzing high street, and pretty side streets.

Stately homes like Ham House add a nice cultural element to the area, and historic alleys like Brewers Lane are charming. That’s to say nothing of Petersham Nurseries, which is a destination in its own right.

Richmond Green has fun pubs, and it’s the perfect place catch a glimpse of a local cricket match. It’s also a filming location for Ted Lasso, so you can walk around and see if you can spot your favorite places from the TV show.

Richmond Pub from Ted Lasso

If you want to see the best of the area, you can follow the route of my free self-guided Richmond walk. It will show you everything from the river to the gardens, filming locations, parks, and side streets. It’s a great thing to do on a day out in Richmond.

If that all appeals, you can stay locally. There are plenty of places to choose from in Richmond. My top pick is The Petersham. A local hotel with a good afternoon tea, it’s in a great location near the Thames. You can book a room here.

If you’re looking for something a bit different, you can see a number of other options and find accommodation that suits your style here. There are lots of good choices.

Boats on the Thames in Richmond

6. Highgate

My guide to the best London villages continues with Highgate. Home of the famous Highgate Cemetery and lots of charming streets and squares, this is one of the most beautiful parts of north London.

There are loads of green spaces, including Highgate Wood, Waterlow Park, and Hampstead Heath. The shops around the high street have colorful facades, and Holly Village is a true London gem.

Highgate is blessed with beautiful houses and great views, too. The hilly side streets are atmospheric, and it’s worth getting off the beaten path and exploring the little lanes while you’re here.

Highgate Holly Village arch

If you want to explore the best of this part of London, my free self-guided Highgate walk will take you around and show you the highlights.

If this part of the city appeals, you can stay here. There are plenty of good places in Highgate. My top pick is The Bull & Last. A charming pub with rooms, it’s in a great location right by Hampstead Heath. You can book a room here.

If you’re looking for a different kind of place, you can see a range of other options and find accommodation that suits your preferences here. There are lots of good choices.

Highgate pub

7. Stoke Newington

Stoke Newington is next on my list of London villages. This area in east London has a great local feel.

Stoke Newington is famous for its high street. It features a variety of independent restaurants, cafes, and shops. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite or some retail therapy, it has something for you.

The neighborhood is also home to two beautiful green spaces. Walking through them is one of the many exciting things to do in Stoke Newington.

Restaurant in Stoke Newington, London

Clissold Park is a classic green space packed with everything from expansive lawns to a small zoo with fallow deer, goats, and and birds. Between them lie flower beds, fountains, lakes, tennis courts, and views of the steeple of St Mary’s Church.

Abney Park dates back to the early 18th century. A former graveyard, it was one of the Magnificent Seven garden cemeteries in London. Today this place is a woodland memorial park and peaceful local nature reserve.

If this part of the city appeals, you can stay locally. There are plenty of good places in Stoke Newington. My top pick is The Brownswood. A beautiful pub with boutique rooms, it’s in a great location near Clissold Park. You can book a room here.

If you’re looking for a different kind of place, you can see a range of other options and find accommodation that suits your preferences here. There are lots of good choices.

Stoke Newington Church Street, London

8. Primrose Hill

Next on my list of the best London villages is Primrose Hill. This is one of the sweetest neighborhoods in the city, not least because of its pastel houses and pretty shops.

Primrose Hill is known for its colorful Regency townhouses, local pubs, and famous green space with a view of Regent’s Park and the city skyline.

There are food markets and fun shops on Regent’s Park Road, the Victorian terraces are picture-pretty, and the stretch of Regent’s Canal that runs through the area is beautiful. Which is to say nothing of the view from the top of Primrose Hill itself.

Most people visit this part of London to take in the view from the top of Primrose Hill, but it’s worth spending time exploring side streets like Chalcot Crescent and Chalcot Square. Their pastel facades are stunning.

Square in Primrose Hill, London

If you want to discover this part of London, my free self-guided Primrose Hill walk will take you around and show you the highlights.

If you’d like to live like a local, you can stay here. There are plenty of good options in Primrose Hill. My top pick is this studio apartment. Cozy and quiet, it’s in a great location right by the high street. You can book a stay here.

If you want something different, you can see a range of other options and find a place that fits your style here. There are plenty of choices.

Primrose Hill View

9. Greenwich

Greenwich is another of the best London villages. This part of south east London is known for its historic architecture, world-class museums, park, observatory, and maritime history.

From the Queen’s House to the Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich Park, and the Royal Observatory, Greenwich has heritage galore. Add to that pretty streets and a vibrant market, and there are lots of exciting things to do in Greenwich.

If you’re feeling adventurous, it’s fun to take a day trip to Greenwich on a boat from central London. You can book tickets here.

Pub in Greenwich, London

If you want to see the best of this part of the UK capital, my free self-guided walk in Greenwich will take you around and show you both the historic highlights and the local ones.

If you want to stay for more than just a day, there are plenty of good options for accommodation in Greenwich. My top pick is the Admiral Hardy. A stylish local pub, it’s in a great location right in the historic heart of the area. You can book a stay here.

If you’re after something a bit different, you can see a range of other options and find a place that fits your style here. There are lots of good choices.

Greenwich House, London

10. Wimbledon

Wimbledon is next on my list of my favorite London villages. While it’s best known for the annual Wimbledon Tennis Championships, the village is worth visiting outside the sporting event.

Wimbledon village has a high street with pubs, independent boutiques, cafes, and restaurants. It’s a fun place to wander around, window shop, have tea, or enjoy lunch.

Wimbledon Common is a huge green space that’s great for getting into nature in the city, too. Whether you want to take a walk, play a round of golf, or ride a horse, there’s something for everyone here.

Cannizaro Park, Wimbledon

It’s fun to explore the side streets and gardens, too. From Cannizaro Park to the elegant homes leading to the famous All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (AELTC), there’s a lot to see in the area.

If you’d like to stay a night or two, there are plenty of good options in Wimbledon. My top pick is the Dog & Fox. A fun local pub, it’s in an ideal location right on the village high street. You can book a room here.

If you’re looking for something different, you can see a range of additional options and find a place that suits your preferences here. There are lots of good choices.

Wimbledon village buildings

11. Clapham Old Town

Next on my guide to the best London villages is Clapham Old Town. With its pretty historic heart, expansive common, and independent shops, it’s no wonder so many people like to call this part of south London home.

Clapham Old Town is full of charming side streets and houses, and there are great restaurants and cafes in the area. The bars and pubs on and around the high street are lively every night, too.

If you want a leg stretch, Clapham Common is a great place to walk. This expansive green space is home to everything from a historic bandstand to sports fields and wooded areas.

Venn Street Market, Clapham, London

Local markets like Venn Street Market round out the scene. Taking place every Saturday, it’s a great produce and artisan market with a variety of street food vendors. It’s one of my favorite south London markets.

There are places to call home-away-from home here, too. Clapham Old Town has a number of good options, and my top pick is the The Windmill on the Common. A local pub and hotel, it’s in an ideal location right on the park. You can book a room here.

If you’re after something different, you can take a look at a range of options and find a place that fits your preferences here. There are lots of good ones to choose from.

Clapham Common, London

12. Chiswick

Chiswick is another London village that’s worthy of a spot on my list. This residential area on the Thames in west London is packed with beautiful streets and historic houses.

The high street in Chiswick has great restaurants and shops, and I love browsing the treasure troves full of antiques. There are fun bookshops and clothing stores along the road as well.

It’s fun to spend an afternoon taking in the stunning houses and gardens along the Thames Path between Hammersmith and Chiswick, too.

Chiswick High Road, London

Add to that Chiswick House, Hogarth’s House, and the Fuller’s Brewery, and there are a lot of unique attractions in the area as well.

If that appeals, there are great places to stay for a night or two in Chiswick. My top pick is the room2 Chiswick Hometel. Located in the heart of the area, it has modern studios and a cafe cocktail bar. You can book one here.

If you’re after something different, you can take a look at a range of options and find a place that fits your preferences here. There are lots of good ones to choose from.

Chiswick House folly

13. Barnes

Right on the Thames opposite Fulham and next to Putney, Barnes is another London village that’s worth a special trip. This local area fills a bend in the river, and it’s known for its pretty green spaces, elegant buildings, and good pubs.

The London Wetland Centre is here, too. Comprised of four disused Victorian reservoirs, this place focuses on the restoration and preservation of wetland nature areas. It’s a popular place with visitors, especially families with children.

Barnes is home to cultural attractions as well. Local galleries offer rotating displays of contemporary fine art, and The OSO Centre is the perfect place to check out exhibitions and plays.

Barnes Pond

There are great pubs here, too. The Sun Inn is a fun spot to have lunch or a drink. It’s right on Barnes Green, a pretty park with a pond.

If that sounds good, there are lots of places to stay in Barnes. My top pick is the The Bridge Pub & Rooms. Located near the Thames, this local pub has a handful of classically designed guest rooms. You can book one here.

If you’re looking for something a bit different, you can view a number of other options and find a place that fits your style here. There are plenty of good ones to choose from.

House in Barnes, London

Map of Villages in London

As promised, I’ve created an interactive map of all the London villages on my list. You can see it here. If you click on the pins, you can find my blog posts about each one.

If you want to see everything in one place, my map of London neighborhoods can help.

Hampstead pub

Best London Villages

I hope you’ve enjoyed this overview of London villages and that it’s inspired you get out and discover more of the UK capital. Happy exploring!

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London villages

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