London has so many famous areas that often it can be easy to overlook the hidden gems of the other fab regions of the capital.
While everyone knows Paddington for its railway station, there are actually plenty of things to do before heading to the other London hotspots.
A bear named Paddington
Paddington Bear is named after this area of London and for fans of the Peruvian traveler, there is the chance to have your photo taking with a life-size replica of the furry fellow.
There is also a brilliant shop selling everything connected to the Paddington books and films. Ideal if you need a souvenir or two for little ones back home.
Head to Baker Street
Continuing with the theme of famous characters, Paddington is very close to the home of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes.
221B Baker Street is also now a special museum dedicated to everything connected to the detective and his sidekick Dr Watson. One of the highlights is the famous study of Holmes, where he solved many a case.
The super sleuth is enjoying a period of popularity at the moment following the success of the BBC version featuring Benedict Cumberbatch.
To reach the museum, you can take a quick tube ride along the Bakerloo Line and get off at the Baker Street stop.
Pick up an antique
If you fancy doing some shopping during your trip to Paddington, then one of the highlights if the Alfies Antiques Market – offering a real alternative to the usual High Street brands.
Opened in 1976, the market is on the site of a former department store and in a fabulous art deco building. There is a whole range of quirky items on sale and it is an ideal place to pick up a memento of your London trip.
You’ll find Alfies Antiques Market on Church Street – which is a short walk from Paddington Station.
Join in a debate
Speakers’ Corner is a unique attraction in London and is a must for anyone who loves a good debate – and is about 15 minutes’ walk from Paddington – opposite Marble Arch tube station.
Once a week people gather in the area to hear and give talks about a whole host of issues that they feel passionately about. This can lead to some very ‘interesting’ speeches and heated debates.
The quality of the speakers can vary greatly, but it is a great experience – you could even have a go yourself if you are feeling brave!
Get a bite to eat
Finally, if you want to finish up with some food after all that exploring, then Paddington has plenty to offer.
One of the highlights is The Frontline Club, which can be found on Edgware Road and offers a great choice of British classic dishes.
It has a seasonal menu and the majority of the restaurant’s ingredients come from its own farm that is located in Norfolk, with an aim of supporting local and sustainable producers.
All of the profits go towards funding London’s top press club and events programme – the Frontline Club.