For those who love to shop, there's almost no place better to bag a bargain in London than at Spitalfields Market!
From Antiques to hand-crafted one-of-a-kind pieces the market has a little bit of everything.
Located in a vibrant London neighbourhood on the edge of the city, the Market is also steeped in history and is a visited location on a number of amazing London walking tours.
To plan your trip to Spitalfields, read on!
What is Old Spitalfields Market?
There has been a market in Spitalfields for over 300 years and the newest version has its origins in the 19th century.
A huge regeneration programme in 2005 expanded the market into one of London's largest markets.
It is actually made up of smaller and often temporary markets as well as permanent shops and restaurants.
The Market is entirely covered and is open 7 days a week.
Different markets and shops have different opening hours so always check the website HERE before you go.
A rough guide is as follows:
Spitalfields Market Building:
- Monday to Friday - 8:00 am - 11:00 pm
- Saturday and Sunday - 9:00 am - 11:00 pm
- Monday to Friday - 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
- Saturday - 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Sunday - 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
- Every Day - 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
- Monday to Friday - 10:00 am - 9:30 pm
- Saturday and Sunday - 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Things to Do in Spitalfields Market
This is the primary reason most people come to Spitalfields - and no wonder!
It hosts retail brands as well as independent traders that sell handcrafted goods, artwork, fashion, and jewellery as well as antique markets and public art programmes.
You'll also find permanent shops with stores built into the market as well as a barber shop, an optometrist and a nail salon!
If all that shopping makes you hungry then rest assured, Spitalfields has you covered there, too.
With a number of permanent restaurants, the market is also home to pop-up stalls and food trucks with literally dozens of options to choose from.
Enjoy the Artwork
Spitalfields self describes themself as "...proud to support artists from across the globe by helping them showcase their work."
That means at any given time, there are a number of art pieces on display in and around the Market.
There is also a pop-up art market that takes place twice a month showcasing affordable art from local artists that you can purchase yourself.
The art and popups change throughout the year so find out what's on when you're visiting HERE.
Enjoy London's Best Fish and Chips
There are dozens of places for fish and chips in London but the best, as far as we and our guides are concerned, is Poppies!
Opened by Poppie himself in 1952, there are now a handful of places to get your hands on their delicious food - and this includes Spitalfields Market!
Just a couple blocks away from Spitalfields Market are Brick Lane and the Brick Lane Market.
Home to London's Bangladeshi community, Brick Lane is absolutely full of delicious restaurants but it also hosts a few more iconic London markets.
There you'll find the Vintage Market for vintage goods and clothing, the Upmarket for fashion and food, the Backyard Market for jewellery and accessories, the Tea Rooms for antiques, and the Boiler House Food Hall for more street food options.
Find out more HERE.
One of the best ways to really get to know a neighbourhood is to go with a local guide! If you want to explore the Spitalfields area, why not let us take you? You can book all of our tours HERE. (www.freetoursbyfoot.com/london-tours/book-online)
- East End Food Tour - This tour will take you on a history of the area, as told through the food and drink of the people that have called it home. Find out more HERE.
- Graffiti & Street Art Tour - London’s East End is where to go for Street Art in London. It’s jam packed with eclectic, interesting, shocking, and beautiful street art - all waiting for you to discover. Get the stories behind the pieces, hear about the artists who created them, and find hidden gems you’d never uncover alone. Find out more HERE.
- Jack the Ripper - We were the first company to offer free Jack the Ripper tours and we love providing our guests with an in-depth look at the case. We don’t rely on cheesy props or ‘spooky’ sound effects - our top notch, expert guides are all you need for a truly engaging experience. Find out more HERE.
- Virtual Tour - Can’t make it to London in person? Don’t worry, we’ll take you there virtually! Check out our virtual tour of Spitalfields, Brick Lane and Petticoat Lane Markets on our YouTube channel HERE.
Visit the Spitalfields Goat
Titled I, Goat, this is a hand-crafted sculpture by Kenny Hunter that was put into place at the market in 2011. The goat, sitting on top of a stack of crates, is representative of the history of the Spitalfields area. According to the artist, the goat is a symbol of persecution and sacrifice, and “a symbol for the various waves of migration that have found sanctuary in Spitalfields and helped to shape it.”
Take in a Service at a Historic Church
Designed by Nicholas Hawksmoor and built between 1714 and 1729, Christ Church Spitalfields was created in the Baroque style and is just as eye-catching today as it was 300 years ago. An evangelical Anglican church, it’s open to the public for services and worship every day. As of 2020, there are also online services you can attend from the comfort of your own home! Find out more HERE.
Drink in a Traditional London Pub
The Ten Bells is often noted for its connection to two of the Jack the Ripper victims: Annie Chapman and Mary Jane Kelly. But aside from the links to a serial killer, it’s a traditional, historic London pub and a great place to sit down and have a drink. The 10 bells has existed, on one site or another, since at least the mid 1700’s and came to its current location in 1851. The name of the pub relates to the number of bells in the nearby Christ Church Spitalfields, which means the name has changed with the times, as the church routinely gained added bells. Inside you’ll find original Victorian tiling as well as a beautiful mural depicting the heritage of the area.
Go Back in Time at Dennis Severs' House
If you’ve ever wanted to travel back in time, Dennis Severs’ House makes it possible. The house itself dates from around 1724 and was purchased by a man named Dennis Severs in 1979. Dennis quickly went about bringing the house back to life, refurbishing the ten rooms inside in different, but entirely accurate, historical styles from the 18th and 19th centuries. He then opened it to the public as a “still-life drama” artistic creation.
The rooms are set up as if they are in use, and the family who lives inside have briefly stepped out of the room. You’ll hear them in the other rooms, smell the aromas of Victorian poverty downstairs, and see their half eaten meals as you explore. A truly unique experience and one that is not to be missed. Find out more HERE.
Walk in the Footsteps of Jack the Ripper
The year is 1888. A murderer known to the public as ‘Jack the Ripper’ is terrorizing London’s desperately poor East End. His target? The so-called ‘unfortunates’ - women working on the streets to earn money for life’s basics. These brutal murders shocked the world and changed the streets of London forever. The facts and fictions of the Jack the Ripper case continue to fascinate millions of people around the world - and Spitalfields is where a number of those murders were carried out.
If you want to walk in the footsteps of the Ripper, consider joining us on our guided Jack the Ripper Walking Tour which you can read about HERE. You can also take the self-guided tour on our website HERE, or download our audio guide HERE.
How to Get Here
Spitalfields Market is on the eastern edge of town, right on the border of the City of London.
Nearest London Underground Stations: Liverpool Street and Aldgate Stations
Nearest Overground Station: Shoreditch High Street
Bus Routes: 8, 11, 23, 26, 35, 42, 47, 48, 78, 100, 133, 135, 149, 205, 242, 308, 344, 388