We love to discover new places, but if there’s one thing we’re guilty of, it’s not exploring our own backyard enough. To remedy this, a few of the team at Zipcar have decided to share their secret spots and local knowledge to create a set of guides for the ultimate day out in London, borough by borough.
We’re beginning with Hackney, one of London’s most vibrant boroughs. It includes visits to our favourite spots, locally owned businesses and the best part is that it’s completely walkable.
11AM: Urban Farm
Start your day with brunch at Urban Farm, a fully sustainable and innovative city farm. The in-house aquaponics system allows for growing plants in water without the need for soil, alongside fish that produce waste, which in turn provides nutrients for the plants. The Farm café serves fresh city grown food at great prices, so enjoying a meal is a great way to support this local initiative.
We recommend the BLT, it’s one of the best in London!
No walking tour of Hackney is complete without taking some time to wander the Dalston Eastern Curve Garden. This community garden has been created on the old Eastern Curve railway line, and is maintained by volunteers from the community.
If you fancy a snack, the Garden Café has a good selection of baked treats and drinks. Wander around and escape the city for half an hour, make sure you check out the veggie patches, they’re all grown by Hackney locals. Keep an eye out for Stanley, the gardens’ resident cat!
1PM: Rio Cinema
A film at the Rio Cinema is a must for any leisurely day out in Hackney. This independent Art Deco picture house is run as a charity, and shows a mixture of arthouse and mainstream films, as well as community talks, theatre and live music. The building is over 100 years old, and has remained almost unchanged since 1937. A Saturday afternoon is the perfect time to experience the traditional cinema experience offered by the Rio, you’ll love the plush velvet seats and the sweeping red curtain!
What would a day out be without a spot of shopping in a local boutique? Here Today Here Tomorrow is a locally owned collaborative fair-trade fashion label, and all the brands you’ll find stocked are carefully chosen for their sustainability and celebration of diversity. The store is filled with unique and beautiful pieces, and has a unique set up – both studio and shop. Pop in and see the materials used and meet the people behind the brand, and you’ll feel great knowing that anything you buy supports local designers and the community.
5PM: The Scolt Head
The only way to finish a busy day of leisure (it’s a thing, we promise!) is with a pint in the local pub! We love The Scolt Head, owned by local brother and sister Rich and Rosie. If you’re feeling peckish, they have a fantastic gastropub menu, the Scolt Head is a neighbourhood favourite.