Hampstead has long been one of London’s most desirable neighbourhoods. It first became popular back in the 17th century when it was advertised as a spa town, before expanding further in the 19th and early 20th centuries with the arrival of the railways. All that remains of the spa now is a water fountain, but the area’s beautiful architecture is a telling reflection of its rich and idyllic history: elegant tree-lined streets feature picture perfect 18th century cottages; large Victorian terraces are popular with families today; and the world-famous Hampstead Garden Suburb, designed by Lutyens, is Arts & Crafts splendour. The Bishops Avenue is one of the most expensive streets in the world, characterised by its vast mansions.
Average price Guide for the Area:
Families are drawn to Hampstead for the exceptional range of private schools, such as the King Alfred School, Devonshire House (featured) and South Hampstead High School for Girls.
Much of the action in Hampstead is centred on and around the High Street. Ginger & White (featured) is a hip neighbourhood café serving artisan espresso; 28 Church Row, housed in the cellar of a beautiful Georgian building, serves a sharing-plate menu, inspired by Spanish and Italian cuisines; and La Creperie of Hampstead is a much-loved and bustling window-serve fixture doling out a variety of sweet and savoury crêpes. Gaucho and Cote Brasserie are two much loved chains restaurants in the area.
Hampstead has more of a pub culture than a nightclub scene and is home to a number of popular gastropubs. Highly recommended ones include Freemason’s Yard, the Flask and the Wells which has a lovely outside terrace. The Stag has a roof terrace with private cabanas.
Hampstead Heath (featured) is one of the largest open green spaces in London and enjoys expanses of both grassland and woodland, and a wealth of recreational facilities, such as swimming ponds, a lido and sports pitches.
The area is served by the Northern Line at Hampstead and Belsize Park, by the Metropolitan and Jubilee Lines at Finchley Road, and by the London Overground at Hampstead Heath. Access to the M1 and M25 is a short distance away.