Why you will love South London!
When I first moved to London in 2004, I lived in South London because it was the cheapest place I could find. Living in Camberwell, right next to Peckham, suited me so well because it was an incredibly affordable area - especially the films that were £3 at the Peckham Plex then. I moved North the following year and then East in 2006 (where I've stayed for the last decade) but I'm so glad I had the chance to get to know this part of London. Mainly because it has barely changed. Ok, so it has become a whole load cooler in the last 12 years (there was nothing like Franks or the Bussey Building then, let alone Peddler or Lido Cafe) but compared to the rest of the city, it is still very much the same. This has a lot to do with the people who live here I feel: South London knows who it is and if you want to see the "real" London, I would go here.
Watch out for:
- Its areas aren't that showy: so you have to hunt for the good places. Use this guide to help you.
- Some transport options aren't great: it's so much better now the Overland runs from North/East London to the South now, but if that line isn't running, you may have to catch a few different tube lines or buses. Areas like New Cross can be quite hard to get to and Brixton can feel like a long way away if the Victoria line is down. Make sure you check out your route in advance.
- Peckham: the Bussey Building and Franks are probably the first places people will recommend you go for a good night out. Franks is only open in the summer, whilst the Bussey parties all through the year. Worth coming here during the daytime to check out Rye Wax and Feastival food market. If you want to hang at a real local boozer, head to The Gowlett.
- Brixton: take a wander around the amazing little restaurants and bars are hidden inside Brixton Village, grab a burger from the original Honest Burger, cake from Sponge & Cream and then head to Stansfield Rd to see the house where David Bowie was born.
- Brockwell: the perfect sunny Sunday spot for lazing around, either in the park or by the pool after a leisurely brunch at the Lido Cafe.
- Vauxhall: fun times at Horse Meat Disco and the RVT.
- Camberwell: skip across from Peckham to check out the contemporary art at the South London Gallery and have brunch at great cafe/restaurant, No67.
- Greenwich: catch the ferry all the way along the Thames to Greenwich and spend an afternoon exploring the area, including the Painted Hall.
- The South Bank: take a long walk along here, starting at Borough Market and stop off along the way at Shakespeare's Globe, Tate Modern, Dandelyan, National Theatre, British Film Institute, Royal Festival Hall and Queen Elizabeth Hall.