For those visiting London, Camden market has become an incredibly popular attraction and has been a secure part of the city’s history since 1974. Originally, it only housed 16 stalls and was only open on Sundays but now, Camden market is home to over 1,000 stalls with a diverse offering of food, creative stalls and independent traders. It’s now London’s largest market and should definitely be on your ‘must-visit’ list if you’re looking to take a trip to the centre of the UK’s capital city, whether you’re visiting for the day, a short weekend or perhaps you’re lucky enough to be staying a little longer.
But when you think of Camden Market, what’s the first thing that pops into your head? If you’re anything like me, it’ll be the famous street food on offer and of course, the iconic Camden Lock bridge which has become a popular feature on the ‘Gram. I paid my first visit here at the end of summer 2018, so the weather was absolutely perfect for a day of eating and drinking (aside from the odd rain shower – but we’re in Britain so we’re used to that). Much of the market is very much open space, with little shelter, so if you’re thinking of visiting maybe check the weather beforehand. But it’s a very recognisable landmark, welcoming thousands of visitors each day and it’s impossible to walk past. On my visit, I was on the hunt for some memorable food and drinks experiences and here are a few of my favourites.
If you’re looking for something a little different and packed with a punch, this Levantine food stop is great particularly if you’re in the mood for grilled pita bread and a hearty serving of grilled meat. I opted for the Jerusalem Chicken Pita, which cost just £7, having initially been lured to the stall with a small sample that left me craving more. Be prepared to queue for this food stall as it was busy throughout the whole of our visit, which might also be thanks to its prime location. But it’s not hard to see why visitors flock here as it was worth the wait. Jam-packed with freshly cooked, flavoursome chicken and fresh salad, this is a very tasty, filling dish, reminding me of a much classier (and better) take on a kebab.
Whenever I visit any food venue or street food event, I’m always on the hunt for my new favourite burger. Heartbreaker Burger is award-winning, having previously been recognised by Time Out London, The British Street Food awards and BBC Food & Farming awards so of course, it grabbed my attention. I opted for the Cheeseburger, which cost £7, constructed of a typical beef burger patty, cheddar cheese, pickles, mustard, ketchup and lettuce. It sounds incredibly simple but it’s so effective. The burger was tender, flavour packed, very juicy and above all, memorable. So if you stop at Camden Market, you have to visit this stall.
This was one of my last stops on my visit and was very much my dessert for the day. Naked Dough is raw, edible cookie dough and as an additional bonus, it has vegan flavours on offer. I chose the vegan cookie monster because I decided that if you’re going to indulge, you might as well do it right. This is a very deep flavour and incredibly rich, so I think you could easily share this small portion without feeling like you’ve missed out or find yourself craving more (unless you have a very sweet tooth). It’s certainly one for chocolate fans.
If you’re planning a trip in advance, it would be worth checking out the Camden app to pre-order food, especially if you’re in a rush or don’t feel like battling the queues, particularly on the busier stalls. Plus, if you’re very prepared, you can order a Camden card which offers a discount of up to 25% on food stalls and other businesses in the market. But there are a few terms and conditions to this (obviously), including the fact that only UK residents can apply for one.
Of course, you’ll find your own favourites in the market, maybe you’ll be on the hunt for the cereal cafe or the best pizza in Camden – there are so many wonderful places on offer so you won’t be short of options. Yet there are some stalls which didn’t match up the high standard of those around them, not specifically in terms of food but in terms of customer service (I’m looking at you, Only Jerkin’). But here’s just a few of the good ones to get you started. Plus, don’t forget to peruse the other key points around the market, including the iconic Amy Winehouse statue or some fantastic second-hand bookstores – you never know what you’ll find in there. What’s your favourite thing about Camden Market?