Hampstead is one of London’s most sought-after neighbourhoods, with its unique combination of history and modern city life. Whether you’re looking for a luxury property to buy or a place to spend the day visiting, this area has something for everyone. Let’s explore the charm that Hampstead and the surrounding areas offer its visitors and property buyers.
Unique Characteristics of the Area
Hampstead sits in North West London and has been a popular destination since its growth in the 17th century (with a history that predates the Domesday Book, 1086). Its idyllic parks, cobbled streets, and vibrant cafes give it an atmosphere unlike anywhere else in London. It is known as an area full of life and culture, while still providing residents with an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. Not surprisingly the area has a legacy of being home to many famous actors and artists.
There are plenty of activities to explore in Hampstead, including the historic Kenwood House, Keats House Museum, Fenton House and Admirals House. A visit to Freud Museum is also a unique experience, as it houses its founder’s personal collection. If you’re staying in Hampstead for the day make sure to walk the Hill Garden and Pergola and depending on how brave you are - don't forget to take a dip in one of Hampstead Ponds which are open year-round. Lastly, be sure not to miss the Saturday Farmer's market at Parliament Hill so that you can complete your excursion with some delicious food!
Hampstead Heath is a 791 acre woodland oasis located in the heart of London city. The park's meadows, woodland and heath are full of hidden delights and make visitors feel a million miles away from the hubbub of the city. The Heath also offers spectacular views across Kentish Town and Camden as well as Hampstead Village, Primrose Hill and Central London. This is the same park that inspired C.S Lewis to write The Chronicles of Narnia! As if that wasn't enough to entice you, there are also a variety of local pubs and restaurants dotting the Heath. Lastly, some areas at Hampstead Heath offer wide sweeping landscapes which provided inspiration for painter John Constable throughout his lifetime experience visiting Kenwood Estate at the top end of this wonderful park.
One of the charming areas within Hampstead is Belsize Park. This area is home to many luxury properties as well as upscale restaurants, boutique shops, pubs, and more. The picturesque streets are lined with trees that provide a sense of peace and tranquillity from the busyness of everyday life in London. There are also plenty of great schools in the area and parks to explore like Primrose Hill or Regent's Park - both offer spectacular views across London's skyline that are not to be missed!
Belsize Park offers locals a small community feel with plenty of independent businesses to add to the charm. Pick up your food essentials from some of the local stores such as Roni's Bakery, or meet up with a friend for a meal cooked over fire and kissed by flames at Cinder. For those who just want to hang out, enjoy outside entertainment at al fresco food and drinks served in the Belsize Village Square during the summer months. If you're looking to shop, head on over to Swiss Cottage’s farmer’s market Wednesdays from 10am - 3pm. Finish it off with an afternoon of movie-watching at Everyman Cinema. All in all, Belsize Park has plenty of fun activities to offer and is definitely worth checking out!
Hampstead truly has something special that sets it apart from other areas in London; whether you’re looking for somewhere tranquil yet close enough to enjoy all that central London has on offer or simply want somewhere peaceful yet creative and stimulating – this neighborhood should definitely be on your list! With its unique combination of history and modern city life, Hampstead offers something for everyone.
Just south/southeast of Hampstead is Primrose Hill. Primrose Hill is a beautiful, affluent district of the London Borough Camden. While it boasts some of the best views of London from Primrose Hill Park and Primrose Hill itself, the area offers much more than stunning sights. A mecca for foodies, Primrose Hill Bakery has become a staple of sorts in the area while The Cowshed Spa, part of the Soho House is a great spot to pamper yourself. Undoubtedly one of Primrose Hill's greatest attractions is its high street on Regents Park Road which is lined with independent boutiques offering everything from designer fashion to vintage furniture - sure to fulfill all your shopping needs. It is also only a short distance away from Central London so it is ideal for commuters who want easy access to all that the city has to offer but still have somewhere tranquil to come home to at night.
St John’s Wood (SJW)
Just south of Hampstead is St John's Wood (SJW). This area provides visitors with a taste of both urban living and being surrounded by nature due to its close proximity to Regent's Park – which makes it perfect for those who want easy access to one of England’s largest public open spaces. SJW also offers some great shopping opportunities as well as excellent transport links making it an ideal location for anyone looking for a property in central London without having to sacrifice their peace and quiet!
With its rural feel and easy access to Central London, St John's Wood is the perfect neighbourhood for anyone looking for the best of both worlds. Perfect for socialising and meeting new people, SJW has many different clubs and activities that bring together residents of all ages. From outdoor pursuits like the now famous SJW running moms who run together at paces suitable for everyone, to exploring nearby Regent's Park and visiting London Zoo, there are plenty of opportunities to get out and meet others in the neighbourhood. If a leisurely day is more your style, popular spots such as The Duke of York pub provide delicious Sunday roasts and the occasional pint while Panzer’s eatery has something on offer to suit every palate. All in all living in St John's Wood is a great choice if you’re looking for a vibrant yet relaxed neighbourhood close to Central London.