Portobello Market

In a nutshell

Portobello Market in Notting Hill draws visitors from far and wide with over 1,000 dealers selling every kind of antique and collectible; but while it might be famous for its antiques, it’s also a great spot to discover some incredible tastes from around the world.

Easily accessible from Notting Hill Gate, Westbourne Park and Ladbroke Grove tube stations, Portobello Road has been the location of a market since the 1800s. In the 1950s, the market became particularly well-known for its huge range of collectibles, and is now the world’s largest antiques market.

With main market days on Fridays and Saturdays and with a smaller market running Monday to Thursday, it now boasts stalls offering everything from clothes and ceramics to some truly incredible street food.

about the market

On Fridays and Saturdays the market stalls stretch a mile along Portobello Road and round the corner onto Golborne Road. With so many stalls and all sorts on offer, there’s sure to be something to pique the interest of every visitor.

The food stalls are run by a mix of established and lesser known independent traders and producers offering fresh, home cooked food from around the world. If paella is your thing then head to Jamon Jamon just south of Westbourne Park Road, where you can see paellas prepared in traditional style and served up to snaking lines of hungry locals and tourists.

If perfectly seasoned double fried chips are your thing, served with cheese and an array of delicious toppings, head to Poptata. Yes, these are fries, but not as you know them. Poptata began when Marco and Luca set up a temporary gazebo at Portobello Market to share their passion for fries. The duo’s signature dish is the devilishly tasty Lucifer Fries, which they describe as “Hand-cut British potatoes cooked to order in sunflower oil, dusted with garlic, rosemary and thyme, loaded with grated Cheddar and Red Leicester and finished with our hot paprika sauce.”

Samantha Stewart, seasoned blogger at Food Expectations, is a big fan of the Swedish bakery Fabrique: "They have fantastic cinnamon and cardamom buns served with Swedish style and tasty coffee." She also gives a deserved shout-out to nearby Nama and Ottolenghi, both well worth a mention for their fantastic raw foods and pastry respectively.

THINGS TO DO IN WEST LONDON

You might know Notting Hill as the setting for Richard Curtis’ famous romcom film, but there’s definitely a lot more to this area than that. As well as playing host to Europe’s biggest street carnival, the aptly named Notting Hill Carnival, the area is also brimming with fashionable restaurants, bars and shops.

Notting Hill is a relatively small area within London, so you might want to set your sights a little further afield and take in some of the top attractions in West London. Kensington Palace – now home to the Cambridges – is a working palace and a historic royal palace that has housed seven monarchs over the years. There’s also an excellent exhibition about Queen Victoria and the obligatory café serving refreshments.

Strawberry Hill, a castle that looks more like a wedding cake, is Britain’s finest example of Georgian Gothic revival architecture. Here you can have a tour of the unique building and enjoy a relaxed lunch in the grounds.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a more modern way to spend the day, why not take in the Warner Bros. Studio Tour of London – The Making of Harry Potter. This self-guided walking tour will see you stroll through the Great Hall and even Dumbledore’s office, as well as learning more about the props, animatronics and special effects used in filming.

And if one day is simply not enough time to take in all the things to do in West London and beyond, why not stay in one of the many hotels near Notting Hill to give yourself a little more time to explore?