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London’s Hidden Gems: 4 Amazing Must-See Spots that Tourists Miss

Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, London Eye, The Shard – everyone, even the people who have never visited London know at least 2 out of these 4 London tourist destinations. During peak seasons, they are packed with tourists from all over the world, over 21 million of them! And this usually means fighting for the best views with other tourists during peak travel seasons. 


Despite being the die-hard Francophile that I am, I love London! I have been blessed to have jobs that allowed me to do lots of international trips, and while I was running social media at Dolby I made several trips to the London office. Each time I extended my trip so I could enjoy some of the city. I have eaten my way through quintessentially British dishes with meals at great foodie locations, including some very memorable fish and chips, and I've done an amazing walking tour as well.

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But you know what I didn't do? Any of the first 4 things in the opening of this post! If you are looking for a more local experience, some less well-known destinations within the city will keep you in awe. So are you ready to see a different side of London? If yes, then here are 4 unique locations you must visit.

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The Waterloo Vaults

The Waterloo Vaults, photo credit: Maureen Barlin

Also known as The Vaults, this hidden gem is an ideal place to visit, especially for art and alternative lifestyle lovers. Even though it is located under the Waterloo Station on Leake Street, there is more to it than you think. You can find The Vaults in a graffiti tunnel, but don't worry; it is entirely safe. Be sure to check it out anytime you visit London because the artwork is always changing. Feeling inspired? You can grab some painting essentials and leave your mark there. This destination is open to the public at all times.

Pop Brixton

Pop Brixton, photo credit: Fred Romero

You know me, I am all about food and Pop Brixton has some of the best and tastiest food stands in London, but they also have pop-up clothing stores, hipster bars, art galleries, and unconventional exercise classes; it is the best destination for eccentric visitors. Pop Brixton aims to provide support to small businesses; therefore, there is a lot of creativity, and you might find something new anytime you visit.

Spitalfields and Brick Lane

Brick Lane Food Stand, photo credit: Garry Knight

If you are a fan of history and mysteries (I am!), this location is perfect for you, as that was Jack the Ripper's territory during the 1800s. You can even take a tour and walk in the footsteps of one of England's famous serial killers. There are also other attractions, such as the location where Braveheart was tortured.

But, it is not all gruesome. (More food!) Brick Lane has some of London's most delicious curry houses, as well as the best-salted beef bagels from the numerous Jewish delis on the street. Round up your visit by stopping at Spitalfields to purchase stunning handcrafted artifacts and wares.

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Little Venice

Little Venice in London, photo credit: James Stringer

This destination is perfect for tourists looking for a slice of Venice while in London and allows you to kill two birds with one stone. Dubbed Little Venice, this location consists of tree-lined canals that span from Hyde Park to Warwick Avenue.

When you take a walk along the canal, you will see brightly-colored boats dotted along the waterway, as well as popular cafes and tearooms. There are even some cafe boats available. Imagine sipping tea or having lunch on a canal boat. Sounds incredible, right? You can also find boats that offer accommodations, sleeping on a boat in the middle of London. Yes, please!

Are you planning a trip to London someday? If so, head on over to these local spots for a more adventurous and unique experience. Save room in your suitcase for souvenirs too!

Before your trip, check CDC and State Department advisories, as well as UK Entry guidance for travel to London.  You might also ensure that you have the required documents for travel. If not, do not hesitate to contact an immigration solicitors (lawyer for the Americans!) as they would say on the other side of the pond, to advise and assist with any tricky visa issues.

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London's Hidden Gems: 4 Amazing Must-See Spots that Tourists MissLondon's Hidden Gems: 4 Amazing Must-See Spots that Tourists MissLondon's Hidden Gems: 4 Amazing Must-See Spots that Tourists Miss

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  1. This is amazing! I can’t believe that I lived in London last year and only visited Waterloo vaults at the beginning of this year while visiting a friend, and BY ACCIDENT! It is a perfect hidden spot that even locals can miss, brilliant! I loves Spitalfields and Brick Lane market, so different 😀

  2. Nancy Hann says:

    Cool spots. I can’t wait to get to London to check them out. Thanks for sharing these.