London is a city full of culture. I have found most of my cultural shock not from visiting the landmarks like Big Ben and Parliament, or even Buckingham Palace, but more so through the numerous markets and street fairs that London has all over the city year round.
There is Borough Market, which showcases amazing food and is London’s oldest food market. The Berwick Street Market is another food market, but with my favorite twist of accompanying indie record stores. I have found records from no-name London bands circa 1965 that have desperately made me wish I brought my record player to London from America.
Then there is the infamous Camden Town that is home to Camden Market, a massive market full of artisan boutiques, and Camden Lock Market, which is a little more interesting with arts and crafts, antiques and products of cottage industries.
There are many more throughout the city but my absolute favorite market is Portobello Road. I may be a little biased because I love the Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts movie Notting Hill, which is the area in which this market is located. Regardless, Portobello Road is like the Harrod’s of London markets. It radiates a more upscale vibe and has an eclectic range of stands and shops to adhere to any individual’s taste. The best day to go is Saturday. The whole road is full of shops and stands selling food, antiques, clothing, artwork and my favorite accessories. When my sister came to visit she and I got these amazing long gold necklaces -- hers with a heart pendant and mine with a feather.
Another product of Portobello Road that I absolutely need to purchase before I return to New York is a vintage-inspired handmade leather briefcase. Every time I visit Portobello Road I ogle its beauty. I just need to work on my price negotiating strategy, and then it is mine!