London is a melting pot of cultures, with different areas bringing to mind a wide variety of places. But one of the most beautiful and fascinating is Little Venice, which evokes its Italian namesake with its charming restaurants, cafes, bars, moored boats and waterways.
Located in the City of Westminster, near Paddington and Maida Vale, its relaxed and cosmopolitan feel has made it a magnet for the wealthy and the famous.
And with features such as the Grand Union Canal and the Regent’s Canal, it’s easy to see why it has become such a desirable and attractive location.
But Little Venice is far from just a quiet retreat for celebrities – it’s a thriving cultural hub hosting events such as music and stand-up all year round, and a great place to enjoy a good meal.
How to get to Little Venice
Visitors to London can reach Little Venice easily via the Underground network. Warwick Avenue Tube Station is just a six-minute walk away. Edgware Road and Maida Vale stations are both eight minutes away on foot.
Rail passengers should alight at Paddington or Marylebone and walk for about ten minutes to get to Little Venice.
If you’re travelling by bus, then the 6, 46, 187 and 414 bus services have drop-off points close by.
Take the boat
Of course, Little Venice is famous for its waterways, so why not use these to get here and make your trip even more memorable?
A waterbus service regularly runs along the Regent’s Canal, and while it might cost a bit more than using traditional public transport, there’s no better way to enjoy the area’s stunning canal system and beautiful surroundings. The boats link Little Venice with Regent’s Park, London Zoo and Camden Lock.
If you want to drive to Little Venice, leave your car at either Church Street Masterpark or Lanark Road NCP, both of which are a six-minute walk away from your destination.
Hotels near Little Venice
If you want to stay in luxurious accommodation close by, you won’t go far wrong at these hotels.
Park Grand London Paddington – Five minutes (1.0 mile)
Park Grand London Hyde Park – Three minutes (0.9 miles)
Park Grand Paddington Court – Five minutes (1.1 miles)
Park Grand London Kensington – 19 minutes (3.1 minutes)
Things to see and do
Take a walk
The Little Venice to Camden Circular Walk is a great way to take in the sights and sounds of the area. Starting and finishing in Little Venice, the four-and-a-half-mile stroll will take you along the gorgeous Regent’s Canal and past Primrose Hill and St John’s Wood.
You’ll get to see firsthand why this part of London has been such a crucial part of its economic and cultural development, and what drew a whole string of artists, inventors and writers to the area. Boasting a mix of the avant-garde and the sophisticated, you can take everything in at your leisure when you travel on foot.
Enjoy a show
Canal Cafe Theatre
Address: Delamere Terrace
If you head to the Bridge House Pub on Delamere Terrace, you’ll find an intimate showcase of comedy and new creative writing upstairs. The candlelit tables create an inspiring atmosphere during every show and a relaxing environment in which to take in some top talent.
If you’re a fan of satirical shows such as The News Quiz and Have I Got News For You, this show at the Canal Cafe Theatre comes highly recommended. One of the longest-running comedy events in London, it features emerging satirists and performers taking ruthless potshots at anyone who’s in the news. Just make sure you can take cutting-edge and biting satire without getting easily offended!
Grab something to eat
54 – 56 Formosa Street
This charming gastropub on the banks of the canal in Maida Vale will make you feel as if you are in Scandinavia rather than London, particularly as the menu boasts classic Swedish dishes.
Regardless of whether you’re visiting for a light snack or a three-course meal with your significant other, you’ll certainly enjoy the stunning surroundings and charming, relaxed vibe The Waterway offers.
8 Sheldon Square
This restaurant is another whether you might justifiably feel you have been transported elsewhere. It could only be a Chinese eating establishment and we’d heartily recommend the dim sum!
8 Formosa Street
If Little Venice brings to mind thoughts of Italy, then why not take the experience a step further at this wonderful Italian restaurant? Stunning pasta dishes, seafood and authentic pizza baked in a wood-burning oven are all on the menu, and rather than being flash and glamorous, the surroundings are small, cosy and inviting. You can’t help but feel relaxed.
30 Clifton Road
Treat yourself to a range of French delicacies such as coffee and croissant or a a boeuf bourguignon – and of course, an enviable selection of wines.