Writing: Nahla Samaha
Travel Experience & Photography: Hoda El-Sherif & Sherif Tamim
From a 1000 year-old market, to the birthplace of Punk, the sensory offerings of London are more than just visual. Now one of the top 5 food capitals of the world, London is a favorite destination for curious as well as discerning taste buds, history geeks, and photographers alike.
Borough market is where our London adventure begins, and a place we keep coming back to, each time discovering something new. This 1000 year-old market place is a foodie and photographer paradise. It is dynamic, exciting, constantly buzzing and always changing. London’s oldest food market is an extravaganza of smells, colors, tastes, accents, and more.
A true melting pot of cultures, and cuisines.
Perusing the food stalls while delighting our taste buds on some of the best food in the world is what we live for! Indulging in the powerful and seductive smells wafting from the food stalls, our olfactory capabilities are on constant high alert.
We love to accompany our food tasting with a bit of conversation: traders have immense culinary knowledge that they gladly share with market visitors.
Another favorite London spot for us is Camden Town. There is no place like Camden. Vibrant, fascinating, a cultural explosion of music and fashion; Camden is the birthplace of Punk, and haven of counter-culture.
Camden is home to the Camden market where cultures and colors clash, and cool is the name of the game. With its own architectural and cultural identity, Camden continues to fascinate us on every visit. The costume shops, the old buildings, the tattoo parlors, the entirely “Camden” fashion sense is something you won’t see anywhere in London. Anti-establishment is still the reigning theme here.
Notting Hill is home to the famous Portobello Market where you can hunt for cool antique finds and munch on something gorgeously delicious from one of its food stalls or trucks.
The charming colored doors of Notting Hill captivate us as we snap away at the explosion of edgy, modern color amid the neutral, classic buildings. Painted so to offer contrast against the normally gray weather in London, offering a visual awakening and sensory respite on cold rainy days.
Perhaps one of London’s many hidden gems, Neale’s Yard has a lot to offer in the way of food. Take Neal’s Yard Dairy, a magical place where all kinds of cheese live! The cheese is exposed (as opposed to refrigerated) and temperature is controlled in an old-school manner where water is sprayed at set intervals to calibrate the humidity in the shop.
One of the most striking things you’ll notice walking around anywhere in London are the shop signs. Incredibly original fonts used to create a shop identity with no images or logos serve as great conversation starters with any of the shop-owners.
A true cosmopolitan city where different cultures come to thrive, and not to blend in, bringing with them their food, music, and more; London is a photographer’s Panodra’s Box.
Rich in every sense of the word with plenty of culinary exploration already under our belt, we cannot wait for our next London visit, guaranteed to give us a whole new set of tastes, sights, and smells!