Company Logo - Home Link

Portobello Road Market Visitor Tips

Updated: April 30, 2024
 By Margaret

Portobello Road – which runs straight through the Notting Hill area – is home to one of the best-loved street markets in London.

In actuality, it's a collection of 5 markets, divided up by their locations and the specific goods they sell.

As local London tour guides, who lead weekly tours here, we know a thing or two about how to visit the area.

And, in the video below, Sinead, a tour guide with Free Tours by Foot London, as she takes you on a walk through Notting Hill, specifically along Portobello Road through the Portobello Road Market

So, we've used our experiences and insider knowledge to craft this visitor's guide.

This post provides information about when you can visit, how to get there, and the history of the marketplace.

We'll also include helpful tips and advice from locals and travelers who use our London Travel Tips group on Facebook, if only to give you a sense for what most people think about the market.


Portobello Road Market Opening Times and Hours

The Portobello Road Market is open every day of the week, so you can visit just about any time you wish.

However, it should be noted that some shops such as the antiques and bric-a-brac stalls are only open on Saturdays.

The fruit and veg market is only open Monday to Wednesday.

Saturday is arguably the best day of the week to visit as the market is in full swing.

The rest of the Portobello Road Market is open during the following hours in the summer and winter months:


Summer Months

  • 8 am - 9 am to 5 pm - 6 pm

Winter Months

  • 9 am - 10 am to 4 pm - 5 pm

Thurs:

  • 9 am to 1 pm

Fri and Sat:

  • 8 am - 9 am to 6 pm - 7 pm
Painted buildings on Portobello Road. Source: Pixabay.com.

Occasionally antique dealers will open earlier on Saturdays, as this is typically the busiest day of the week for Portobello Road Market.

Friday is the second busiest day, so keep that in mind if you're trying to avoid large crowds.

For more information about when to come, check the Visit Portobello Road website.


Where Is The Portobello Road Market?

This popular marketplace is located in Notting Hill, West London about 1 mile west of Kensington Gardens, on Portobello Rd.

There are many easy ways to get here using either the tube or the bus.

Map of Portobello Road Market from Google Maps.
  • Underground Stations:
    • The nearest station is Ladbroke Grove
    • Notting Hill tube station (known as Notting Hill Gate) is walkable
    • And so is Westbourne Park
  • Bus Routes:
    • 7, 12, 23, 27, 28, 21, 52, 70, 94, 328, 452
  • Address:

If you are planning on visiting Notting Hill and the Portobello Road markets on a weekend, then consider visiting with us on a guided tour.

Our tour is free to book and operates on a pay-what-you-like basis.

Searching Availability...

We offer dozens of pay-what-you-wish walking tours of London.

Free Tours by FootExcellentFree Tours by Foot4.9 Based on 733 reviews fromSee all reviews review us onNarelle D.Narelle D. ★★★★★ Did the All in One Tour by Margaret and it was absolutely brilliant. Margaret is passionate, fun and a brilliant historian!Just loved it, will be going on more of these!Thankyou!diana P.diana P. ★★★★★ Philip was an excelent guide in our Jack the Ripper tour on 2nd of May 24.Loved the passsion,the knowledge and how he entertained us with his jokes.Fully reccomend Philip!Danielle W.Danielle W. ★★★★★ This was my third tour through Free Tours by Foot London and I love this company. Highly recommend the WWII tour, even if you are only kind-of interested in WWII, as you’ll get lots of extra information about the City of London too.I took the tour with Canice and he was awesome! He did a great job engaging everyone on the tour and knew so many facts. His impressions were great - he had a pretty good American accent (I’m American) and a spot-on Winston Churchill impression. We all asked several questions and he was able to answer all of them and give great context, even for the non-WWII related questions. There were a few folks on the tour who seemed to know a lot about WWII already and Canice was able tailor his content for those advanced folks as well as the beginner audience. That’s very hard to do!I also love that Free Tours by Foot provides a “pay what you like” model, making walking tours and learning accessible to everyone. If you have the means, I recommend paying your tour guide the same price you’d have on a “pay for a ticket” tour. These guides are incredibly knowledgeable and entertaining and do a fantastic job. For reference, I saw another WWII tour going for £35. Canice’s tour was well worth that price!Andrea H.Andrea H. ★★★★★ Just completed one of the Jack the Ripper tours with Ash. What a fantastic evening tour - thank you for humanizing the victims in this story and not glorifying the serial killer! I appreciated your story telling so much!Patrick H.Patrick H. ★★★★★ Absolutely loved the Westminster tour with Maggie! Starting in Green Park, to the Changing of the Guard, St James Palace, Buckingham Palace, Horse Guard Parade, Big Ben, Parliament. Along the way Maggie explained the history and had great stories to make the whole thing entertaining and educational. Would highly recommend, a great way to spend the morning in London.Marie G.Marie G. ★★★★★ Just returned from another fabulous trip to London. Booked a tour with Sinead O Leary with Free Tours by Foot London. It was absolutely amazing as usual. Sinead is a gem! So knowledgeable, entertaining and compassionate. My daughter uses a wheelchair for mobility and Sinead arranged a tour to Windsor for us. She arranged the cab and accompanied us to Windsor for the most amazing tour. Spending the day at the castle with Sinead was the best. We learned so much about the history of the castle, the art work, and its long list of past residents. She was so helpful with assisting my daughter around the castle. To fully appreciate Windsor, a private tour with Sinead is a must. If you or a member of your party has special needs or mobility issues she will take care of you and assure you have a great visit! I can’t say enough about what an amazing tour guide she is‼️Kristin H.Kristin H. ★★★★★ Loved Sinead! She kept us moving without feeling rushed. We saw it all, but more importantly we laughed and enjoyed the stories behind the stories.Gizzy05Gizzy05 ★★★★★ I booked the City of London Tour and it was exceptional! It turned out that I was the only one. My „personal guide“, Matt, was very knowledgeable and the tour was both entertaining and fun. Highly recommended!Kimberley P.Kimberley P. ★★★★★ A great way to explore London and see some areas that you wouldn't see otherwise, and you pay what you can afford. The guides are very knowledgeable and happy to answer questions.Tessa B.Tessa B. ★★★★★ We hebben de bermondsey beer mile expierence gedaan met Dan. Dan was super enthousiast en wist veel over bier, de omgeving en de stad te vertellen. We waren met een klein groepje, 5 in totaal. 2 gezelschappen en de gids. Het was een super leuke ervaring waarbij we ook tijd hadden om elkaar te leren kennen en over culturen te praten, omdat de groep zo klein was. Heerlijke biertjes geproefd en toffe plekken gezien. Echt een aanrader!Carine C.Carine C. ★★★★★ Great tour full of great information. Margaret was brilliant and very friendly. We really enjoyed it.jefferson lord (.jefferson lord (. ★★★★★ (Jack The Ripper)Absolutely fantastic tour, Sinead (our guide ) really seduces you into a brutally descriptive immersion of 1888 white chapel and each of the canonical 5 murders. Would certainly book more tours with her.Brenda C.Brenda C. ★★★★★ Candice was out your guide and he was fabulous! Loved this tour and we learned so much about the city!Jill K.Jill K. ★★★★★ It was perfect in every way! Sinead is a treasure and such a welcoming ambassador for London. We will be talking about the tour for years to come. We are already thinking about our next trip and booking another walking tour!PM J.PM J. ★★★★★ Jack-the-Ripper-Tour mit Sinead war großartig. Sie hat ein großes, dramatisches Talent und schafft es, die Athmospäre des alten Eastend heraufzubeschwören… gleichzeitig ist sie unheimlich freundlich und hat sich um alle Teilnehmer sehr gut gekümmert 🙂 Wir waren begeistert!Damien C.Damien C. ★★★★★ Tanja H.Tanja H. ★★★★★ Eine hervorragende Stadtführung mit erfahrenen Guides die einen auch an verborgene Ecken führen, die man selber nie gefunden hätte. Ich habe zwei Führungen in London mitgemacht, eine Geisterführung und eine Führung in der City of London, also dem alten Teil der Stadt. Es werden aber noch andere Führungen angeboten. Das schöne ist, dass man zwar einen Platz reservieren muss (geht manchmal noch sm selben Morgen) aber bezahlt wird erst nach der Führung und nur das, was es einem Wert war. Es gibt auch etliche Videos auf Youtube, die man sich als Vorgeschmack anschauen kann. Die meisten Führungen werden zwar ausschließlich in Englisch angeboten aber es gibt wohl auch manchmal Führungen auf Deutsch. Ich kann diese Firma wärmstens empfehlen.Christie Sears T.Christie Sears T. ★★★★★ I took two different tours with this company and both were fantastic! Both Sinead and Alan are great guides!Alba B.Alba B. ★★★★★ We booked two different tours in London and had a great experience. The Ghost tour and the Street art tour were very interesting and the guides were great. I will definitely book tours with them next time I am around.Christopher O.Christopher O. ★★★★★ Brilliant tour. Really interesting and informative. Our guide Nelly was so knowledgeable, clear and friendly. Highly recommended.AmélieAmélie ★★★★★ The tour was amazing! Our guide was Margaret, a really nice woman who knew the answer to every possible question we had - even regarding sights we didn't tour but were curious about. We booked the "London in one day" tour and visited the popular sights as well as little streets we would have never seen if it wasn't for the tour. We learned a lot of stuff, mostly really fun facts, anecdotes and the history behind the places. Margaret made the tour so much fun with her way of explaining things so it really didn't feel like six hours. She gave us many recommendations for other places to visit or to get some food. I'd recommend this tour to everyone!janet A.janet A. ★★★★★ Margaret Stockton-Davies was very personable, knowledgeable, good at keeping tour group together, answered all questions, easy to hear, nice sense of humor. Fun tour.S KS K ★★★★★ Margaret led our tour and did a great job. Please be aware of pick pockets targeting these tours.Wanda B.Wanda B. ★★★★★ Most enjoyable walking tour with Margaret, she was very knowledgeable about the history of London, royalty and landmarks. Margaret told stories in a delightful manner, including silly trivia.I would recommend her tour without any hesitation.LindsayLindsay ★★★★★ I did the World War II walking tour with Canice. I really enjoyed it and I was happy that a lot of details and images were shown throughout the tour in addition to physical sites. All of the information was comprehensible even if you, like me, know about WWII but are not an expert. I really enjoyed seeing the sites of the London Blitz and learning a lot about its history. I highly recommend!tali B.tali B. ★★★★★ המדריך ששמו canice היה מצוין! נתן הרבה מידע מתובל בהומור, בעל ידע רב. נהננו ולמדו רבות!SRIDHAR R.SRIDHAR R. ★★★★★ Execellent and cheapest way to explore if you are first time visitingJennifer I.Jennifer I. ★★★★★ The Grand Central Terminal tour with John on 05/28/32 was brilliant. Highly recommended.Lauren U.Lauren U. ★★★★★ We did Shakespeare’s London with Canice, and had a blast. He made southwark history extremely accessible and had an abundance of fabulous quips and anecdotes. The time flew by, I’d highly recommend!!Sandra R.Sandra R. ★★★★★ Gregory did a fantastic job guiding us in Birmingham. We had no idea of what we could expect from this city, and we were strongly surprised. Thank you Greg!R S.R S. ★★★★★ We have been to many walking tours, but Margaret's tour was a cut above the rest. She was funny, knowledgeable and kept the momentum going. There was not one boring or tiring moment in the trip.Reader of M.Reader of M. ★★★★★ Elizabeth H.Elizabeth H. ★★★★★ Thanks for the lovely tour - really appreciated the stories and details you layered into our conversation!Jandy H.Jandy H. ★★★★★ My walking tour with Margaret was amazing. She’s not only knowledgeable but her energy made the tour so much fun and enjoyable.perry W.perry W. ★★★★★ Like watching 👀Daria P.Daria P. ★★★★★ The tour London all in one with Margaret was really well prepared, organised and full of information. I enjoyed it even though weather wasn;t the best! It seems quite long, but thank to to Margaret's charisma and coffee break surely doable! Margarte was also caring about your safety, needs and more than happy to chat between stops and give useful recommendations!Jude M.Jude M. ★★★★★ While researching an upcoming trip to the UK from Australia I stumbled across the Free Tours by Foot YouTube channel and have been captivated ever since. Sinead is a brilliant guide who, with just a camera and herself, has given me an amazing insight into London even before I’ve actually arrived! Thank you Sinead. I will thank you in person in September 😊Anke van den B.Anke van den B. ★★★★★ Greg was the best tourguide you could wish! Thank you for aswering all our questions!Ines KInes K ★★★★★ I really enjoyed their tours.James D.James D. ★★★★★ Great tour of Westminster, Sinead was most definitely entertaining your guide and most importantly knowledgeable about Westminster!mark O.mark O. ★★★★★ Gregory opened our eyes to the fascinating history of Birmingham. It was a total pleasure throughout the tour. We would strongly recommend to everyone who comes to this city, to take advantage of the opportunity to learn about BirminghamKalina A.Kalina A. ★★★★★ ExcellentGreat tour with Margaret in London. She is very knowledgeable. The tour was so interesting. I highly recommend to everyone.Sankalp K.Sankalp K. ★★★★★ Margaret makes the mood all jolly while she gives us tour of London. Loved the experience.Gaveriela T.Gaveriela T. ★★★★★ Outstanding tour by Maciek (Polish origin) of Soho and Piccadilly on Thursday Feb 23, 2023.Outstanding tour by (do not remember) of Notting Hill on Saturday Feb 25, 2023.Both were professional, gentle, eloquent – real joy. Highly recommendedיואב בן א.יואב בן א. ★★★★★ shruti M.shruti M. ★★★★★ js_loader

Market Layout

Much like Camden Market, Portobello Market is many markets in one, divided up by their locations and the specific goods they sell.

Here you'll find antique stalls, ceramics, jewellery, second-hand and vintage clothes, hot food, fresh pastries, bric-a-brac, and more!


Chepstow Villas – Elgin Crescent

Antiques & Bric-A-Brac: This is the main attraction at Portobello Market, filled with antiques and 100’s stalls, shops, and arcades to explore.

This part of the Market is closest to Notting Hill Underground Station.


Elgin Crescent – Talbot Road

Fruit and Veg – Just past the antiques come the edible goods!

Fruit and vegetables are on display, but so are cakes, bread, and other fresh edible delights. Oh, and keep an eye out for our favourite: the cheese stall!


Talbot Road – Westway

New Goods – Here you will find stalls typical of other London market locations; clothing, cheap jewelry, books, and the like.


Westway Area

Fashion – Here are the vintage clothing shops, fashion accessories for sale, scarves, and bags as well as more tourist-oriented goods – think ‘I Love London’ shirts, etc.


Westway to Golborne Road

Second-Hand Items – This section of the market is dedicated entirely to secondhand.

Clothes, yes, but also household goods, old photographs, signs, and various decor.


History of Portobello Market

Portobello Road itself can be traced back to the 16th century when it was known as Green’s Lane.

In 1740 a nearby farm was built, known as Portobello Farm (named after the Spanish-ruled, now Panamanian, town of Puerto Bello which was captured by Admiral Edward Vernon).

Portobello Farm was primarily open hayfields and orchards and by the second half of the 19th century residential areas were growing up on either side of the farm.

These areas are now Notting Hill and Paddington.

As the residential developments grew, the wealthy homeowners turned to Portobello Farm to provide agricultural goods.

Portobello Market came into existence around this time, initially selling fresh foods.

The working-class residents of the area turned to Portobello Farm, and the surrounding area, for work and soon the area was rapidly expanding and booming with trade.

As the urban developments grew, Portobello Farm was swallowed up by concrete and buildings.

The last vestige of the original farm was finally paved over in 1864 and Ladbroke Grove Underground Station was built on top.

The fresh food market still persisted, however. By the mid-20th century, the market expanded and became known for its antique dealers, many of whom are still based here today.

Today the market is visited by locals and tourists alike.


What to Expect At Portobello Road Market

Today, Portobello Road thrives both financially and with tourist trade as home to one of the most famous markets in Europe.

It is the largest antique market in the entire United Kingdom, with over 1,000 dealers based here, and is one of the busiest tourist spots in London.

Portobello Road Market is primarily known for its second-hand clothes and antiques but is also a browsers paradise with shop after shop, corridors, and hallways absolutely choc-full of goods for sale and plenty of places to bag a bargain.

Along with the shops are delicious food stalls, street performers, and musicians, all coming together in this mile-long explosion of colour, crowds, and goods.

In addition to drawing crowds who wish to shop, the market also draws in those who are fans of the 1999 movie Notting Hill.

Starring Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant, the film is primarily based around Portobello Road. However, the famous blue door of the film no longer exists here.


Tips From Locals and Travelers

Okay, so you know our thoughts about Portobello Road Market, but what about the opinions of locals and other travelers?

It seems like a week doesn't go by on our London Travel Tips Facebook group without someone asking about where to shop for the best antiques and other secondhand goods.

With that in mind, we've chosen several excellent suggestions made by members of this group to give you a better sense of what to expect when you arrive.

As you can see, whenever someone asks about the best place to find antiques or vintage clothes, there's usually at least a few locals recommending Portobello Road Market.

Trudy notes that you can find interesting car-related antiques here, and when it comes to that kind of item, this market might be better than Camden.

According to locals, vintage clothing is arguably the main item that is easier to find at Portobello Road Market than other locations.

They do note that the price for these items is a bit high, but if you're looking for a unique or interesting shirt, this could be the best place to look.

As Susie notes, it's best to bring cash with you, because most places don't take credit cards.

This is also a popular spot for food, as you'll find a lot of great local options here. Whether you're in need of a snack or a quick lunch, this is an excellent place to grab a bite!

Jonathan isn't the only one who recommends visiting on weekends. Actually, you'll find a lot of locals who use our group suggest visiting on either a Saturday or Sunday.

For even more useful advice, consider asking the members of our London Travel Tips group on Facebook.


Related Posts

About The Author

Margaret

An American simply by accident of birth, Margaret moved to London over 16 years ago and hasn’t looked back since! With a keen interest in History – and a BA degree to match – Margaret prides herself on her knowledge of the amazing city she calls home and she's been guiding here now for nearly a decade. Social history is her real expertise, with sound understanding of the day-to-day lives of Londoners over the past centuries. Read More...
Updated: April 30th, 2024
Back to Top
cross