Portobello Market is one of the top attractions in the capital and is very popular with visitors.
It has grown significantly over the years and is now home to more than 2,000 different retailers.
The market covers the area between Portobello Road to Chepstow Villas and Elgin Crescent and buyers can pretty much buy anything they want.
There is a strong focus on antiques, with plenty of items including glass, crystal, silver objects and books. However, there is also the chance to stop at stalls that sell fresh fruit, bread, cakes, fish and cheese. It is also a great place to pick up all sorts of cuisine including local goods and spices from overseas.
The market takes on a different feel between Talbot Road and Westway, where you’ll see pretty much everything available for sale, ranging from toys to superglue, while the Westway area of the market is the ideal destination for those looking for fashion items, ranging from vintage pieces to up-and-coming designers.
Finally, the Westway to Golborne Road area is dedicated to second-hands of all kinds, including books, DVDs and electronics. It has the atmosphere of a typical British market and there are plenty of opportunities to pick up a bargain or two.
In all, Portobello Market stretches for two miles, and walking the whole length can take a whole day if you have an interest in everything on offer. It comprises hundreds of stalls and a similar number of shops and boutiques. Such is the nature of Portobello that it is never the same twice, with new traders coming in all the time. Even if you’ve been before, you’ll be treated to a very different experience to last time.
When to visit Portobello Market
The market is open from Monday to Saturday, but it’s actual opening hours differ depending on what day it is.
From Monday through to Wednesday, you’ll find traders here from 9am until 6pm, but Thursdays are half-days and traders are only open from 9am until 1pm.
Fridays and Saturdays are for late night shopping, with Portobello Market open from 9am until 7pm.
The busiest day is Saturday because the antique and bric-a-brac stalls are open – if you want to avoid the crowds it can be worth arriving before the official opening hours as some traders do sometimes open up early.
How to get to Portobello Market
If you plan to travel to the market on the London Underground then the best option is to head to Ladbroke Grove station (Hammersmith and City lines) or Notting Hill Gate (Central, Circle and District lines) station. The latter is slightly nearer and does offer a pretty walk up to the start of the end market.
Alternatively, if you prefer the mainline train network then head to Paddington Station – which is around a 25 minutes’ walk away from the market.
There are also plenty of buses that pass by the market including routes: 7,12, 23, 27, 28, 31, 52, 70, 94, 328 and 452.
There is limited parking available if you plan to drive to the area and on Saturdays Portobello Road is closed to traffic between Westbourne Grove and Cambridge Gardens.
If you do take a car, there are some few pay and display spaces on the side roads off Portobello Road and Ladbroke Grove.
Where to stay near Portobello Road
West London hotels offer a really good base for visitors to London, especially if it is the first visit to the city. They are also well-placed for a visit to Portobello Market, especially if you plan to get there early before the market gets really busy. Consider the Park Grand London Paddington is well-placed.