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London - Around Town : Heading East (part 2) - Best of the Rest

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A Day Around the East End

Morning

Start at Old Spitalfields Market, close to Liverpool Street station, where a mixture of stalls hold sway during the week, and many more, selling clothes, food and collectibles, fill the floor on Sundays. Have a delicious English breakfast at St John Bread & Wine opposite the market at 96 Commercial Street .

Walk around the corner into Fournier Street, where the gallery at No. 5 retains the panelling of the 18th-century silk weavers’ houses. Stroll along Princelet and Elder streets, just off Fournier, for a taste of historic London.

Head into Brick Lane to browse among the saree and Bangladeshi gift shops. Stop for lunch at one of the many authentic curry houses that line the street.

Afternoon

After lunch turn right into Whitechapel Road. Notice the distinctive Art Nouveau façade of the Whitechapel Art Gallery and pop into the gallery’s stunning three-floor exhibition space to take in a contemporary art show. Have a cup of tea in the museum café and stop by the bookshop.

Finally, take a ride on the driverless Docklands Light Railway (from Tower Gateway, a short walk from Whitechapel), for some of the best views of East London. Emerge at Canary Wharf to see London’s latest architecture around Cabot Square, and finish the afternoon with a drink at Via Fosse on West India Quay.

Best of the Rest

  1. Theatre Royal Stratford East

    A local theatre with an international reputation – established by the pioneering director Joan Littlewood in 1953 – where exciting new work can still be seen. Next door is a new arts centre with a gallery and cinema.

    • Gerry Raffles Square E15

    • DLR Stratford East

    • 020 8534 0310

  2. Victoria Park

    One of East London’s largest and most pleasant parks. There are two lakes, where model boats are sailed at weekends, ornamental gardens, a children’s zoo, tennis courts and a bowling green.

    • Bow E9

    • Tube Bethnal Green

  3. Dennis Severs’ House

    This 18th-century silk-weaver’s home is kept perfectly in period and was created by the late Dennis Severs. Each room in this “still-life drama” appears as if the inhabitants have only just left it – dinner is half-eaten and cooking smells emanate from the kitchen.

    • 18 Folgate Street E1

    • Open noon–4pm Sun & Mon evenings following the 1st & 3rd Sunday of month

    • 020 7247 4013

    • Admission charge

  4. Sutton House

    This Tudor merchant’s house dates from 1535 and is one of the oldest in the East End.

    • 2–4 Homerton High Street E9

    • Tube Bethnal Green, then 253 bus

    • 020 8986 2264

    • Open Thu–Sun and Bank Holiday Mondays

  5. Three Mills Museum

    Built in 1776, this magnificent tidal mill complex was once the country’s largest. Today it has been restored as a working museum with much of its original machinery on display.

    • Three Mill Lane E3

    • Tube Bromley-by-Bow

    • 020 8980 4626

  6. Cabot Hall

    An events venue in Docklands with comedy clubs and public concerts.

    • Canary Wharf E14

    • DLR Canary Wharf

    • 020 7418 2782

  7. Docklands Sailing & Watersports Centre

    Enjoy sailing, rowing and canoeing facilities here.

    • Millwall Dock, Westferry Road E14

    • DLR Crossharbour

    • 020 7537 2626

    • www.dswc.org

  8. Mudchute Farm

    Britain’s largest city farm has a collection of livestock, plus a riding school.

    • Pier Street E14

    • Open 9am–5pm daily

    • DLR Mudchute

    • 020 7515 5901

  9. ExCeL

    An impressive new development beside the Royal Victoria Docks with shops, cafés and a vast exhibition space.

    • Victoria Dock Road E16

    • DLR Custom House

  10. Mile End Park

    For skateboarders, BMX riders and rollerbladers, this new park also has a go-kart track.

    • (Environment Trust)

    • Mile End Road E3

    • Tube Mile End

    • 020 7264 4660

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