The Get Living Edit
South London is a vast colourful metropolis of history, culture and flava. Hemmed in by the River Thames it offers up luscious green spots amidst buzzing enclaves and not to be missed nooks.
From a UNESCO world heritage centre – that’d be the Tower of London – and London’s revered, rich history to trending pop-ups and arguably the best food markets the city has to offer. Slightly sprawling you’ll never know what you might find around the next corner. It’s a delightful area to explore on a bike and with SE1 – SE17 sitting neatly in Zone 1 – walking distance of London Bridge, Waterloo and Southbank it’s super accessible.
Up for an eating extravaganza? In the market for some inspiring art? Some IRL shopping? On the hunt for a new hobby? Or fancy getting your groove on?
Whatever you’re in the mood for, South London serves up the goods. From fine dining to low key, in-the-know local faves, write-home-about chefs and world-class food markets. For the ultimate culinary journey read on – Bon Ap!
This cute restaurant makes homemade pasta – watch the artisans at work. Feast on heavenly fennel sausage ragu, accompanied with by Italian wines. There’s a piccolo subterranean cocktail bar too.
If you’re partial to a taste of the east, Dragon Castle serves up Cantonese dishes in a trad setting – queue origami napkins; the fan club recommends the house-made Dim Sum – served 12-5pm daily.
Faye Gomes has been cooking Guyana’s most popular dishes since 2003, including the ‘Pepper pot’ served with Spanish rice. Homemade food at an affordable price.
Revered Spanish Chef José Pizarro’s cult London spot – José – simple in name and nature, is the go-to for authentic tapas. Over 50 Spanish wines and “The acorn-fed Jamón Ibérico is a must” – Michelin guide.
Head chef Rayon honours his grandmother's legendary recipes at good vibes, no frills – Tasty Jerk. It does what it says in the tin – plus all the bits either side – here’s looking at you: Mac n Cheese.
Alessandro, a passionate wine aficionada aficionado runs a tight and delicious ship. Order a bottle of any of Alessandro’s handpicked Italian wines accompanied with the best sourdough pizzas this side of London. Salute!
Request a table at the front of Michelin starred (Ramsay protégé) chef Hartnett’s restaurant for the buzzing kitchen. Arancini (£6) and Chicken Milanese (£20) are firm faves. Plus her own wine *chefs kiss*
Restaurant-bar-cafe hybrid does coffee and inventive brunch plates by day - natural wines, hifi music and impressive chefs in residence by night. £12.50 taco Wednesday and DJs from 8pm on the weekend.
Short supply chains, seasonal ingredients plus all dietary requirements catered for. Tick. Grace Dent is a fan: “there’s a lot of love here” while Giles Coren rates the burger as “top class”.
Embrace and savour the very best of Latin American food, wine, spirits, cocktails, music, art, culture and hospitality in this buzzing establishment run with pure passion and open to serve all week.
Inspired by the Levant, this cosy nook serves up excellent plates cooked over charcoal. From the iconic hands-off hangover kebab, to long lunches and a sophisticated evening menu - perfect for sharing.
Exclusively serving Xi’an cuisine and taking their name from a popular hamburger spin-off, ‘Murger’ Han also dishes up hand-pulled noodles, clay pot soups and skewers with plenty of vegan and veggie choices.
An abundance of traditional Japanese Izakaya dishes, perfect for sharing accompanied with a cocktail menu from London’s leading mixologists – the Nightjar Consultancy Group make for a delicious evening.
Whether you’re after a drink spot with views, a traditional pub for pints and live sport, a cultural reckoning (no – really) or something rather swish, South has it in the bucket-loads. We’ll drink to that – bottoms up, baby!
For a top-class evening head to this highly acclaimed independent wine bar/café to experience undiscovered wines of the world – ever tasted wine from Texas, Poland, and China? Well now you can.
A loose and lovely amalgation of brewery bars and bottle shops housed in Bermondsey’s railway arches. The mile is constantly evolving which means it’s a good spot to revisit if craft-beer is your bag.
Castle Square’s new cocktail bar serving up classics and new signature creations such as the James Brown (try it!) With friendly staff who’ll soon know you by name and a vintage lounge aesthetic, it’ll soon feel like home.
The infamous rooftop haunt offers-up delectable views across the city from the top of the multi-storey car-park; enticing an exquisite mash-up of a crowd, there’s great food and events – a must-visit.
A modern take on a Bavarian Bierkeller, with an impressive bible of bier. Choose a tasty accompaniment from the sausage bar, then get down to the Oompah band in the K2 basement - lederhosen not essential.
If you’re into rooftop views, live DJs and the odd competition/group game head up to Elba for their themed bottomless brunching and dancing on into the afternoon. Attracting a young crowd there for a good time.
Don’t miss temporary project POP that’s artfully transformed disused space into a creative hub that houses local independent businesses and cool start-ups in food, design and social enterprise. Cheers to that.
Perched on the E&C roundabout is one of the areas first ever boozers, est. 1765 - which makes it a must-visit in itself. Serving food from 12pm and showing all major sporting events it’s a local haunt worth a hang in.
This eccentric riverside pub has been welcoming locals and tourists for a mind boggling 400 years. Head for sunset on ‘Fishy Fridays’ and enjoy two fish and chips for £15 – booking essential.
Savour the infamous alchemy of London’s master-mixologists at Sea Container’s plush design-lead bar. A treat for the eyes and the tastebuds, the building like the drinks is a feat of creative excellence.
This XXL beer garden is a real crowd pleaser, as is the BEER, CHICKEN, MUSIC, SPORT. There’s beer on tap from the Brixton Brewery and Five Point Brewing and the kitchen is run by White Men Can’t Jerk.
South London is many delicious things, but its offering of exemplary globally renowned food markets will throw your senses into overdrive; drawing in locals, visitors and tourists in their drones. Heavenly food incoming.
World renowned food emporium and the backdrop to many Hollywood blockbuster. It doesn’t get better than bustling Borough. From oysters to every cheese and everything else either side and in between.
Prepare for an eating frenzy at London’s sustainable community food market. Arrive ravenous so you can dive into as many of the taste-bud titillating dishes from 40 independent traders on the daily. NOM.
A South London ‘must see’ the teeny-tiny Maltby Street market still feels like a hidden treasure. Nestled off the beaten track behind Tooley street, the charming railway arches house a bustle of fine fodder.
3-mins from Borough, this eating and drinking hideaway features a taproom plus weekend DJs and events. From pizzas and burgers to Lebanese and Latin flavas, it’s a hotspot for good food and cheer.
Head to buzzing Brixton Village that houses numerous delicious bohemian food spots, chow down on: Wing & Tings, Eat of Eden, Agile Rabbit. Or by day don’t miss Paula’s Colombian Bakery for amazing for coffee and snacks.
Adventure into the night at one of South London’s iconic venues, whether you’re after world class DJs and dancing ‘til dawn or underground style hideouts with mellow beats and exceptional mixologists, South London draws an exemplary crowd.
Mix up your evening entertainment schedule with a host of banging events announced monthly. Singles should check out ‘dating quiz show’ - Q&A’s live music, art and poetry make for a hilarious eve – tickets £10.
World famous dance club, showcasing a host of globally renowned DJs all weekend long. A bucket list experience for all. Dance ‘til dawn with the 600+ strong crowd.
Just 2-minutes from E&C station is small warehouse-style club, housed in the arches. This 2-room venue lures the serious ravers, music lovers and dance all-nighters. Check out the latest event schedule on Resident Advisor.
This small multi-room venue hosts live music nights with up-and-coming artists in the intimate stage room, plus sporadic DJ sessions that roll on until dawn. The terrace bar is made for summer nights.
Nestled in a Victorian basement, this backstreet cocktail bar with its low-fi tropical vibe, killer cocktails, and soundtrack make it the perfect pitstop. Tables must be booked because it’s tiny.
The shopping experience in London’s Southerly regions is bespoke, small-scale and specialised. Passionate vendors curate first-class collections from flea-style stalls to noteworthy boutiques, there are many gems to be unearthed.
Get your ultimate shopping fix at Greenwich weekend markets for fashion, art, vintage clothes, arts, crafts, records, nik-naks and food stalls aplenty. Make a day of it.
Voted one of the most impressive boutiques this side of London – by ES, Stylist & Grazia, sister-run D.A.Y offers a curation of luxury fashion and lifestyle brands for fashion savvy men and women.
Be sure to support local businesses at the ever-evolving E&C mainstay. From fashion to phones, repair-shops, hair salons, yum food and a listing of cultural events like walking tours and cocktail tasting.
The iconic East Dulwich street is home to independent homewares – see Mrs Robinson, fashion and foodie shops, there’s a fish monger, cheese monger and a butcher that locals queue around the block for.
This heavenly green jungle sells an abundance of plants and sleek home accessories. They also run workshops on flower arranging, terrarium building urban gardening, macrame and candle making.
Drinks spot firstly, VY, next door to London Bridge station is home to a petite flea, vintage fashion, art and artisanal market great for a mini mooch on the weekend before you meet friends for a drink/bite.
Calling all vultures: London’s South is a cacophony of culture. From first class theatre and film to globally prevalent art, music and sporting grounds. There will never be a dull moment. Prepare to be artfully inspired.
The commanding, brutalist Southbank offers up a myriad of options with the South Bank Centre, Hayward Gallery, National Theatre, Royal Festival Hall, BFI and Tate Modern. At the Tate, do check out - Tate Lates.
The Young Vic is one of London’s most notable small theatres, attracting a diverse audience for high quality plays at low prices. Do also check out The Bridge, a modern riverside spot.
The globally acclaimed White Cube Gallery sits peacefully set back on quaint Bermondsey Street housing an ever-changing collection of mind-altering art from world renowned and up and coming changemakers.
This stylish yet unassuming shop front houses a store that transforms into a cultural events space at night. The basement holds an impressive gallery showcasing rotating exhibitions from local artists.
The winner of the Art Fund Museum of the Year (2022), houses over 350,000 objects to allow visitors to explore cultures, continents and history. Plus, there’s an aquarium, animal park and butterfly sanctuary – entry to main areas is free!
Film buffs will adore this museum, once a workhouse where Charlie Chaplin lived as a child, which houses unique memorabilia that dates back to the 1890s. There are guided tours plus screenings and events.
Home of Surrey Cricket since 1845, get yourself to the impressive, world-renowned stadium for a test match or walk in the steps of the great sportsmen and women that have gone before with a guided tour.
Join professional tour guide and Londoner ‘through and through’ Avril Nanton on a walking tour to discover city secrets, street art, black culture and the African Caribbean people's contribution to the UK.
Download that class-pass folks because South London is brimming with exceptional gyms – Gymbox, Ministry of Sound fitness, The Gym, PureGym, Energie, Crossfit Blackfriars, F45, Third Space. And then some…
Get strapped in and strapped on, climbing provides a full body workout, and also exercises the mind and tests your metal – what’s not to love? Get chalked up for those sweaty palm moments.
For a moment of calm, relaxation and a full body workout check out the brilliant small, personal and hard-not-to-love yoga classes at Oru Space, Dulwich and The Lodge, on the edge of Southwark park.
If you’ve been clocking-up the practice and you’re ready for the big time, take your skateboard/single liners/old school rollers to this revered skate park to show off your jumps and tricks. Kneepads essential.
If you’re smitten with the south’s Latin beat, then take things up a notch with some dance classes. Beginners can buy a 10hr class bundle for £60, which will have you dancing authentic Salsa in no time.
Acquire killer core strength, a new skill and you’ll also get to nosey at some of London’s most iconic waterside architecture in central London’s only marina – St Katherine’s Docks and the three basins close by.
Opened in 1937 this cool outdoor lido entices keen swimmers (and maniacs?) all year round! There’s swim coaching, triathlon training and synchronised swimming plus a cosy little café to warm up post work out.
Green, clean, supreme – how can one city spot serve up so much magnificent green space? From hills on high to nature-laden woods, sprawling parklands and mini neighbourhood hangouts, you’re never far from a spot of nature’s finest down south.
Carved out of a built-up inner city spot, Burgess Park is one of London’s largest coming in at 56 hectares. Home to the Burgess food project, you can play footie, fish, BMX, entertain kids... and so much more.
Take a stroll through the first ever Jurassic Park. Created to be the magnificent setting for the Crystal Palace, relocated after the 1851 Great Exhibition, this park was designed to impress and educate.
Potentially the most underrated green space this side of town, picturesque Southwark is home to the green parakeet – look up! There's also a bandstand, duck pond, cricket nets, kid’s play park and a café.
The stunning 200-acre Battersea Park est. 1858, sits on the south bank of the Thames. There’s a whole lot of green space, plus perfectly manicured gardens, all-weather sports facilities and events spaces.
This 160ft-high conservation area is prime location for a sunset picnic, a spot of tennis or one to remember on NYE - for fireworks. On Saturday there’s a farmer’s market at the lower park, from 10am - 3pm.
If you go down to Dulwich today you might be surprised to find a huge stretch of ancient Great North Wood. Lose yourself on a ramble and keep your eyes peeled for British woodpeckers.
Superbly connected with Waterloo and London Bridge Station, the South also serves up water taxis and an abundance of Santander bikes to ease your movements.
Elephant Central provides the perfect homely hub for smart inner city living. Allowing you to access all of the South (and beyond) best bits – with comfort and ease. See all our apartments in Elephant & Castle right here. Make an appointment to come check them out and be hooked on the friendly, happening vibe.
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