Columbia Road Flower Market: A perfect Sunday in London’s East End

airtransat By airtransat / 25 May 2018

Columbia Road Flower Market: A perfect Sunday in London’s East End

airtransat By airtransat

London is impressively green, with almost 50% of the land qualified as green space, and the British are known for their love and skill at gardening. It should be no surprise, therefore, that the Columbia Road Flower Market is one of the liveliest ways to spend a Sunday in the capital.

For Emanuel, a Transat Sales and Services Supervisor and our host to a series of quirky London adventures, the flower market has long been one of his favourite ways to spend a lazy day shopping, eating and soaking in the atmosphere.

Emanuel, Sales & Services Supervisor at Transat, spends a perfect Sunday at the Columbia Road Flower Market

Columbia Road Flower Market in London

From humble roots

Like many things in London, the history of the East End market is fascinating. In 1869, Angela Burdett-Coutts, a philanthropist known as the “richest heiress in England,” turned the area into a covered food market and was a pioneer in her attempt to create social housing in the downtrodden area.

To accommodate the local Jewish population, the market eventually switched from Saturday to Sunday and, though the trading portion died off, the flower market continued to flourish.

Columbia Road Flower Market

Bustling blocks of bulbs

The market is open every Sundays from 8 am until about 3 pm, but come early if you want to get the very best the place has to offer or if you’re pressed for time: The area, which is only several blocks long, can easily take an hour to get through. Between the lush greens of potted plants, herbs and shrubs and the rainbow colours of the flowers, the road is packed with people and vendors who sell their wares in the loudest and thickest of Cockney accents.

Vendor at the Columbia Road Flower Market in London

Tulips at the Columbia Road Flower Market in London

And if the flowers aren’t enough, there are over sixty stalls that line the street, offering everything from art to cupcakes, vintage clothing and antiques, delis, cafes and a pub called The Birdcage, so named because of the caged songbirds that used to be one of the market’s most popular wares. Even you don’t buy anything, you’ll truly feel like you’ve left with a real slice of London.Tulips at the Columbia Road Flower Market in London

Columbia Road Flower Market, off of Hackney Road in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, Every Sunday from 8 am until about 3 pm

The comments and contributions expressed are assumed only by the author. The recommendations, intentions or opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Transat AT Inc. or its affiliates. See terms of use of the Air Transat website.

You might also like

Activities Discoveries

100% nature – Costa Rica

By Marie-Julie Gagnon

Article by Marie-Julie Gagnon originally published in the June-October 2017 edition of the Atmosphere magazine. Read the latest edition here. Sloths and monkeys...

#Activities, #CostaRica, #Discoveries, #SustainableTourism

Discoveries

San Juan, Puerto Rico: A Short Stopover

By Jennifer Doré Dallas

With its rainbow casas and its lively terraces, San Juan shows off to cruise passengers and visitors who come to visit. Halfway between Caribbean charms...

#Discoveries, #PuertoRico, #South

Activities Discoveries Family

Where to Golf in Orlando

By Dian Emery

Picking a great golf course in Orlando is like trying to pick the best amusement park in the city, there are so many and they...

#Activities, #Discoveries, #Family, #UnitedStates

Activities Discoveries

Guadeloupe Islands

By Ayngelina Brogan

One of the bucket list destinations for any scuba diver is a visit to Guadeloupe. Not to be confused with Guadalupe in Mexico, where you...

#Activities, #Discoveries, #Guadeloupe

Activities Family

4 Things Kids Love to Do in Paris

By Ayngelina Brogan

The City of Lights is often referred to as a dream honeymoon destination or the city for lovers. But Paris is also a great destination...

#Activities, #Europe, #Family, #France

Activities Arts and culture Discoveries

One Day in Havana

By Dian Emery

You only have one short day in Havana and there is so much to see, taste and discover. We will take you on a daylong...

#Activities, #Artsandculture, #Cuba, #Discoveries, #South

Our travellers’ most unforgettable moments.

Loading