Hackney staged some of the events during the 2012 London Summer Olympics such as hockey in the Lea Valley Arena as well as hosting the world's media with many of the big events happening in the nearby Olympic Stadium and VeloPark. This was a hot spot for tourists and locals during the action.
Hackney has a diverse population and the area has undergone massive regeneration in recent decades. Hackney is now very fashionable with a thriving arts scene in the south of the district for example.
In the far north of the district near Stoke Newington, Stamford Hill is the centre of the Hassidic and Adeni Jewish communities in London and the largest in Europe. A visit here certainly provides a very different cultural experience to anywhere else in Britain.
Hackney is also known for its wide open green spaces such as Hackney Marshes, (home of 88 football pitches) being the most notable and known as the spiritual home of grass roots soccer in the UK.
Hackney is well served by buses from all over the capital, with the routes converging on Hackney Central, Dalston and Stoke Newington. Bus routes serving Hackney include the 30, 38, 48, 55, 56, 67, 76, 106, 149, 242, 243, 253, 254, 277, 488 and D6
The London Overground network has stations at:
- Hackney Central (Zone 2)
- Dalston Junction (Zone 2)
- Dalston Kingsland (Zone 2)
- Haggerston (Zone 2)
- Hoxton (Zone 1 & Zone 2)
- Homerton (Zone 2)
- Hackney Wick (Zone 2)
- Clapton (Zone 2 + 3)
- Stoke Newington (Zone 2)
- Hackney Downs (Zone 2)
- Stamford Hill (Zone 3)
There are no stations in the district but northern parts can be easily reached from Manor House and Finsbury Park stations (both Piccadily line).
The best way to get around the borough is to walk or get buses. The many parks and green spaces dotted around make Hackney much nicer to walk around than its inner London location would suggest.
- 1 Hackney Town Hall, Mare Street, E8 1EA (rail: Hackney Central), ☏ . Built in the 1930s including the surrounding square and gardens.
- 2 Sutton House, 2 & 4 Homerton High St, E9 6JQ (rail: Hackney Central), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Th-Su 12:30PM-4:30PM. Tudor House in Homerton, owned by the National Trust. £0.80-2.90.
- 3 St John-at-Hackney Community Space Centre, Lower Clapton Rd, E5 0PD (rail: Hackney Central), ☏ . This tower of St John-at-Hackney Church is the oldest building in Hackney and a famous landmark of the borough.
- 4 Victoria Park. Commonly called the People's Park, it's huge and hosts summer festivals. On an island in the park is a Chinese pagoda, a reconstruction of a pagoda built in 1842. On Sundays the park hosts a popular street food market.
- 5 Clissold Park, Greenway Cl, N4 2EY (tube: Manor House), ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Park with a rich history. It is a former country house and estate and was first opened to the public in 1889.
- 6 Hackney City Farm, 1 Goldsmiths Row, E2 8QA, ☏ . Tu-Su 10AM-4:30PM. Farm dating back to the early 1800s. It is now open to the public and is home to domestic animals. Also houses a café.
- 7 Hackney Downs. Near Clapton Ponds, has free tennis courts and is nice for cycle, though a bit plain and squarish.
- 8 Haggerston Park, Audrey St, off Goldsmith's Row, E2 8QH, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com.
- 9 London Fields, Richmond Rd, Hackney, E8, ☏ , , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. There are records of a public park at this site going back to the 16th century. Every Saturday, there is a farmers' market selling here, complemented by many others selling hand-made jewellery, gifts, childrenswear and vintage clothing.
- 10 Woodberry Wetlands (Stoke Newington Reservoirs), 1 Newnton Cl, N4 2RH (tube: Manor House), ☏ . Two former Thames Water reservoirs which are now managed as a nature reserve in urban Hackney by the London Wildlife Trust. Has a small visitor centre.
- 11 The Clowns Archive, Holy Trinity Church, Beechwood Rd, E8 3DY, ☏ . Museum of clowning, unique collection of faces on eggs. Open only first Friday of every month from noon-5PM. Free.
- 12 Museum of the Home (Geffrye Museum), 136 Kingsland Rd, E2 8EA (tube: Old St), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Tu-Sa 10AM-5PM, Su noon-5PM. Furniture museum which charts the evolution of London urban interior design and furnishing since 1600. Main museum closed until 2021 for refurbishment. One of the houses open for tours. Free.
- 13 Hackney Museum, Technology & Learning Centre, 1 Reading Ln, E8 1GQ, ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Tu W F 9:30AM-5:30PM; Th 9:30AM-8PM; Sa 10AM-5PM. Providing a history of Hackney and periodic exhibitions.
- 14 Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, 11 Mare St, E8 4RP, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. W–F 5-10PM, Sa noon-10PM, Su 3-10PM. A macabre museum modelled on a 17th-century cabinet of curiosities. The museum has no particular theme connecting its exhibits, which are seemingly the most unusual and unnerving objects the owner could find: taxidermy, skulls (human or otherwise), bizarre photographs, strange sex manuals, idols from faraway lands, and similarly eccentric oddities. Upstairs is a bar (free entry) with an emphasis on cocktails and absinthe, and the museum itself is down a gilded spiral staircase beside the counter. The owner has an excellent collection of Leonora Carrington paintings. The space is small, so try to come when it's not too busy (avoid Saturdays). Children are only allowed before 7PM. Museum entry is £10, £6 if you visit the bar too, £2.50 on Thursday evenings.
- 15 The Residence Gallery, 229 Victoria Park Road, E9 7HD (train: Hackney Wick), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. By appointment. Avant garde gallery with up-and-coming and newly established artists.
- 16 Space Gallery, 129-131 Mare St, E8 3RH, ☏ .
- Elevator Gallery and the Chocolate Factory both near Hackney Downs on Stoke Newington Rd.
- 1 Hackney Empire, 291 Mare St, E8 1EJ (London Overground to Hackney Central; Rail to Hackney Downs; tube: Bethnal Green then 10 min by bus no 106 or 154), ☏ . Historic theatre and music hall, offering an eclectic mix of entertainment.
- East London Art Walks (Comment Art Walks), ☏ , . A friendly, qualified art guide will take you around a selection of the most interesting exhibitions on at the moment and also talk about the history of contemporary art in East London. call for times and meeting points.
- London Fields Lido, London Fields Westside E8 3EU (London Fields Rail Stn), ☏ . Lovely old-fashioned outdoor swimming Lido run by Hackney Council. £2.45-4.10.
- 2 Rio Cinema, 107 Kingsland High St, E8 (London Overground to Dalston Kingsland or Dalston Jct), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. A splendid old cinema dating back to the 1900s. Specialises in foreign language films, offbeat arthouse productions and children's programming.
- Walk Hackney Marshes. Lovely walk along the River Lea and canal which stretches across much of East London and further. A surprisingly rural experience in an otherwise densely built district of London.
- London Fields Brewery, 365–366 Warburton St, E8 3RR (Come out of London Fields station on the Mare Street side, turn right, and continue on for 200m; it's at the end of the road.), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. M–Sa 9AM–6PM. Every Saturday, London Fields Brewery run brewery tours. Come down and have a guided tour of the brewery and learn how they are making their superbly tasty beers. Also included in the price are tastings of the beers in the BrewHouse, the brewery's very own pop-up bar. £10–£25.
- 1 Ümit & Son Store, 35 Lower Clapton Rd, E5 0NS (rail: Hackney Central or Hackney Downs), ☏ . M–Sa 10AM–7PM. DVD, VHS, Videodiscs, 8mm film reels and more are all sold here. Projectors and equipment for some of the less standard formats are available for hire and the shop also offers a video-to-digital transfer service.
Shopping centres & markets
- Broadway Market. Visit on a Saturday. Has a variety of gastropubs and trendy clothes!
- Ridley Road Market. Mix of traditional East-end fruit and veg alongside Afro-Caribbean delicacies, imported films, clothes and household items. Little of interest for the tourist to buy, but a great experience. Watch your pockets in the crowded pavements behind the stalls. There are also market stalls on the side streets surrounding Dalston Kingsland station.
- The Kingsland Shopping Centre (Opposite Dalston Kingsland Stn). The main shopping mall in the borough.
- Stamford Hill. The centre of the Hassidic Jewish community and has many kosher bakeries, delis and supermarkets.
- Stoke Newington Church St. Many small bookshops and antique stores.
Stoke Newington (Church Street), Broadway market and, more recently, Hackney Central, have a variety of gastropubs and restaurants. There are many great Turkish and Asian restaurants on Kingsland Road. To the south of Mare Street there are a great number of very reasonable Vietnamese restaurants. Some also have the bonus of being able to bring your own alcohol, which brings down cost considerably.
- 1 Green Papaya Xi'Viet, 191 Mare St, E8 3QE, ☏ . Tu–F noon–3PM & 5–11PM, Sa 1–11PM, Su 1–10:30PM, closed M. Offering great Vietnamese food for vegetarians and meat eaters alike. Mains from £5.
- 2 Mess Cafe, 38 Amhurst Rd, E8 1JN, ☏ . Great quality caf breakfasts. £4.
- 3 Sông Quê Café, 134 Kingsland Rd, E2 8DY, ☏ . M–F noon–3PM & 5:30–11PM, Sa noon–11PM, Su & holidays noon–10:30PM. Rated by Zagat as the best Vietnamese on Kingsland Rd.
- 4 Viet Hoa, 70-72 Kingsland Rd, E2 8DP, ☏ . M–F noon–3:30PM & 5:30–11:30PM, Sa Su 12:30–11:30PM. You must try the salted prawns! Mains from £5.30.
- 5 Lele's, 50 Lower Clapton Road, E5 0RN. Tu Th Sa Su 9AM–2PM. Vegan cafe and bakery with filling sandwiches and tasty cakes.
- 6 Victoria Park Market, Bonner Gate W2 9JW. Sundays 10AM–4PM. Lots of street food from around the world at a weekly outdoor market.
- 7 Buen Ayre, 50 Broadway Market, E8 4QJ, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. M–Th 5–11PM, F–Su noon–11PM. Argentine Grill restaurant. Mains £8-22.50.
- 8 The Empress (formerly The Empress of India), 130 Lauriston Rd, E9 7LH, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Su M-F noon–10PM, Sa 11AM–10PM. Modern British gastropub in 19th-century surroundings. Mains from £12.50.
- 9 Il Bacio Express, 90 Stoke Newington Church St, N16 0AP, ☏ , ✉ Ilbacioexpress90@gmail.com. M–Th noon–10:30PM, F–Su noon–11PM. A small Sardinian pizza place that has been open since 2000, which serves a variety of pizza and pasta dishes, and has beautiful art on its walls.
- 10 Lekki, 323 Kingsland Rd, ☏ . Nigerian restaurant with generous servings. £12–25.
- Biddle Bros, 88 Lower Clapton Rd, E5 0QR, ☏ . Lively pub with a good local following. Often have a live band or DJ in the evenings,
- The Birdcage, 58 Stamford Hill, N16 6XS, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Friendly Stoke Newington pub that often has live bands playing.
- The Cat and Mutton, 76 Broadway Market, E8 4QJ, ☏ . Beers £3-3.80.
- The Cock Tavern, 315 Mare St, E8 1EJ, ☏ . M–Th 6AM–11PM; F 6AM–2AM; Sa 5:30PM–2AM. Beer £2.90-3.50.
- Crate, Unit 7, Queens Yard, Hackney Wick, London, E9 5EN. Beer and pizza focused bar on the canal, close to the Olympic Park.
- 1 Amhurst Hotel, 45 - 47 Amhurst Pk, N16 5DL (train: ), ☏ . Check-in: 1PM, check-out: 11AM. Budget hotel in north London with self-catering facilities. £35.
- 2 City Inn Express, 144 A Mare St, Tudor Rd (train: ), ☏ . Check-in: 2PM, check-out: noon. A quality bed & breakfast good for budget travellers. £46.
Hackney is safe provided you're careful. Most violent crime occurs amongst the gangs in the rougher parts of the borough, which you'll be unlikely to encounter, especially if you stick to the areas where the main entertainment establishments are based. Avoid walking alone at night around Hackney Wick, housing estates and anywhere that looks rough.
|Routes through Hackney|
|END ← Islington ← East London Line ←||N S||→ East London Line → East End → South London|
|Camden ← Islington ← North London Line ←||W E||→ North London Line → East London → END|
|Routes through Hackney|
|Hertford ← North London ←||N S||→ The City|
|Chelmsford ← Romford ←||NE S||→ Docklands → Blackwall Tunnel and|