CRYSTAL PALACE – SOUTH LONDON

CRYSTAL PALACE - THE BEST LONDON HAS TO OFFER

OFF THE BEATEN TRACK

WHY I LOVE

CRYSTAL PALACE

  1. The amazing view of the London skyline from the top of Westow Hill.
  2. The great variety of cuisines you can try.
  3. The huge variety of live music events that are run every week in the pubs.

24 HRS IN CRYSTAL PALACE

SEE, EAT & DO

Breakfast at Joanna’s (for affordable posh English breakfast) or at Mi cocina es Tuya for a traditional Venezuelan treat – see the top 5 best eats below. I would then go for a walk in the Crystal Palace Park, checking out the Maze, the Dinosaurs and the little farm. Alternatively I’d take them for a walk in the close-by Dulwick woods, which really makes you feel like you’re miles and miles away from London.

I’d check out the many Vintage clothing and homeware stores on the Triangle (the centre of Crystal Palace), as well as the flea market near Haynes Lane then pop to the Grape and Grain for some live music and an afternoon tipple.

 Dinner in one of the many restaurants on the Triangle, cocktails at the Cocktail Embassy  or at the Crow’s Nest and a bit of dancing at Westow House.

TOP 5 BEST

SPOTS TO EAT

Under £15 per head: great simple, homemade Venezuelan food (the breakfast is to die for!). The owners are welcoming and chatty and they occasionally organise live music nights.

Mid range – £15 – £30 for some amazing North African food (try one of the specials!) and delicious 2 for 1 cocktails in the basement bar.

Mid range – £15 – £30 practically an institution in Crystal palace. Great British food, cocktails and view of Central London.

£15 – £40 Great for a special night, you get to pick your fresh food or meat from the counter, which the chefs will then grill or sear in front of your eyes.

£15 – £25 for some great, high-quality pub food with a twist.

ESSENTIALS

You’ll want to buy everything you see (I’ve warned you!) but if you’re on a tight budget save some £ by getting a light lunch at Domali or at the food market in Haynes Lane.

Absolutely try the burgers at Beer rebellion – to die for. Pop over to Crystal Palace for the annual music & crafts festival and to the Crystal Palace international film festival.

You will see London from a very different perspective from the top of Westow Hill. Unlike all the usual shots of London here you will take in unique views.

Crystal Palace is easy to reach from central London. There are regular trains from Victoria and London Bridge, buses from/to Brixton and the overground runs from Highbury and Islington to CP every 15 minutes. Basically you can stay anywhere in central London and still be able to reach CP within an hour! Once there you will only need your legs!

A great read on the history of this area is the book by Patrick Beaver – The Crystal Palace: A Portrait of Victorian Enterprise. A detailed and interesting description of the history of the palace, which was a cast-iron and plate-glass building originally erected in Hyde Park to house the Great Exhibition of 1851. After the exhibition, the building was rebuilt in an enlarged form in the area now known as ‘Crystal Palace Park’. It was unfortunately destroyed in a fire in 1936. On its site you can now find a Museum dedicated to its history.

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