What Sunday mornings are made for; taking a little stroll down East London’s most Instagram-able thoroughfare, Columbia Road.
The weekly flower market that pops up here on a Sunday is a real east end institution, its history rooted in Victorian London and with many of its family-run stalls having traded here for generations. Open from 8am, you will find an array of blooms and foliage from British-grown house plants and fresh herbs, to beautiful cut flowers and young orchard trees.
The market is open all year round, and is constantly changing from season to season. Take a wander down in early spring and you’re likely to find tulips in abundance, as well as cherry blossoms and, if you’re lucky, the first of the year’s peonies. Arrive early to avoid the crowds (especially drawn in good weather!).
As well as the flower stalls, Columbia Road is also lined with independent boutiques selling vintage goods, homewares, handmade items, decorative accessories, and local artworks. You’re sure to find something truly unique.
Ezra Street, that tails around the Northern end of Columbia Road, is also worth a wander. The courtyard here is where you’ll find famed bakery, Lily Vanilli, to satisfy a sweet tooth and escape the crowds, coffee in hand. Be sure to sample one of its yummy bakes that vary week to week, and include delicious raw and vegan options. Like the market, it also opens on Sundays only.
London’s east end offers plenty to do once you’ve exhausted the flower markets. Blooms in hand, it’s a short walk to Shoreditch High Street and about 20 minutes on foot to Liverpool Street – a route which can take you via the speciality shops and market stalls of Spitalfields and Brick Lane – Dark Sugars on Brick Lane is sheer chocolate bliss.
Fresh blooms for a fresh start to the week.
© All photography and views expressed in this blog are my own. For more information, and for details of my editorial policy, please see my blog disclaimer.