Find out there’s more to Notting Hill than just the movie

The name Notting Hill is famous across the globe thanks to the 1999 movie starring Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts, but there’s so much more to this London suburb than just a film.

It could be the ideal place to visit that’s out of the hubbub of the capital, yet still packed enough with things to do to entertain even the most discerning traveller.

Notting Hill is situated north of Kensington and is within the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea. It has always had a reputation as a haven for artists and alternative types and is well-known for being a fashionable and affluent area.

If you take a stroll around, you’ll see beautiful examples of Victorian townhouses, plenty of high-end shops and restaurants galore. Here are just a few things you might want to check out if you’re planning on exploring Notting Hill from your hotel base.

How to get there

It’s easy to get to Notting Hill from almost anywhere in London, as it is extremely well served by public transport. Notting Hill Gate is the main tube station and trains from the Central, District and Circle line all visit it.

Westbourne Park and Ladbroke Grove stations are also within walking distance if you need the Hammersmith and City line.

You won’t be left out if you’re going by road either, as Notting Hill is on a number of London bus routes.

Sights to see

Perhaps the most famous attraction in Notting Hill is the Portobello Market, which runs the length of Portobello Road and is on all week. However, the main days are Friday and Saturday and that’s when the biggest bargains and most interesting purchases can be had. You’re sure to find an interesting souvenir to take home!

For those who like anything quirky, the Museum of Brands, Packaging and Advertising will be ideal, as it houses a host of promotional material from across the 20th century and beyond.

There are also several art galleries for people who like to browse creative pieces, including Salon Contemporary, Graffik and Temple, the latter of which specialises in religious art and iconography.

Meanwhile, there’s bound to be something fun and entertaining on at the Gate Theatre or the Print Room that will pass a rainy afternoon or evening.

Finally, you could always take the Notting Hill film tour if you look up a few of the most famous scenes before you go – and don’t forget the world-famous Notting Hill Carnival if you happen to be visiting ¬†over August bank holiday weekend.

Where to eat

There are lots of great places to eat in or take-out in this fashionable area, starting with the Hummingbird Bakery for scrumptious cakes.

Food
You could also sample Italian fare at Essenza; boast about the Michelin-starred food at The Ledbury; try out Portuguese at the Notting Hill Kitchen; and enjoy Asian tapas at E&O.

Where to shop

For a little retail therapy during your trip, Notting Hill is ideal. You’ll find a host of different stores offering everything from clothes to homewares and baby items that will make ideal gifts or treats for yourself.

Don’t miss Le Creuset, which is renowned for its high-quality cookware and is sure to have you lusting after its new ranges.

There is also Fiorentini + Baker London for shoes, which is the first dedicated store for the brand outside Italy. Celebrity fans include Sarah Jessica Parker and Jennifer Aniston, so you’ll be in good company if you decide to get out your credit card.

Last but not least, there’s the Notting Hill Bookshop, which is the location for the famous shop in the film. Sadly, it’s not the original travel bookstore which closed in 2011, but it does now offer a range of general books so is great for a browse as well as a photo opportunity.

Where to stay

If you’re on the lookout for a hotel near Notting Hill as a base to explore, you can’t go far wrong with the Park Grand London Paddington, which is just a few minutes’ walk from Lancaster Gate station.

This boutique property offers both style and comfort and its rooms are equipped with state-of-the-art amenities including complimentary broadband, Wi-Fi and satellite TV that will make it feel like a home away from home.

Don’t miss this exciting and vibrant part of London when you next visit for a weekend away or a longer holiday.

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