Top 10 coolest things to do near campus

Date published

Friday 20 August 2021

With so much to do in the capital, we’ve picked our top 10 things to do near campus to get you started.

It’s easy to see why London has consistently been rated the world's best city to be a student1. With over 18,000 restaurants2, 3,000 parks3 and close to 40,000 pubs and bars4, you’ll never find yourself short of things to do. With so many activities to choose from, we’ve picked our top 10 things to do near campus to get you started. All of these attractions take less than 35 minutes to travel to from our City of London campus*.

1. Sky Garden

13-minute walk from campus

The Sky Garden, situated on the 43rd Floor of the ‘Walkie Talkie’ skyscraper, offers lush greenery with 360-degree views of the London skyline. Watching the sun set over the city from London’s highest public garden5 will cost you absolutely nothing – as the Sky Garden is free of charge (provided you book a free ticket in advance)!

Sky Garden

Photograph: Sky Garden

2. Borough Market

15 minutes from campus by bus

Over its 1,000 years of operation, Borough Market has transformed from a wholesale market for London’s greengrocers, to a favourite dining spot among London’s foodies. Made up of more than 100 stalls, restaurants, bars, and shops, it’s home to some of the city’s trendiest food retailers, who serve up everything from artisan cheeses and authentic Spanish tapas, to Indian, Iraqi and Thai street food.

A stall at Borough Market

3. Columbia Road Flower Market

24-minute walk from campus

Columbia Road’s Sunday market is a haven for plant-lovers, stocked with a colourful range of flowers, houseplants and herbs. Head down to take in the sights, scents and to snap some awesome floral photos.

A view of Columbia Road with flower market stalls set up and crowds

Photograph: Flickr/Magnus D

4. Ballie Ballerson

14-minute walk from campus

This cocktail bar allows you to connect with your inner child by jumping into one of its two massive ball pits. With a packed schedule of events and loads of mid-week deals on food and drinks, it’s definitely one to check off your London bucket list.

One of the ball pits at Ballie Ballerson

Photograph: Ballie Ballerson

5. ArcelorMittal Orbit slide

25 minutes from campus by train

The ArcelorMittal Orbit structure is a distinctive part of the London skyline and the tallest sculpture in the UK. Designed by renowned sculptor Anish Kapoor for the London 2012 Olympic Games, it’s also home to the world’s longest tunnel slide. Visiting the slide gives you the opportunity to experience breathtaking views from the sculpture’s observation platforms, before completing a hair-raising descent down the tower’s 114 metres in just 40 seconds!

The Arcelor Mittal Orbit

6. Victoria Park

22 minutes from campus by train

Victoria Park provides East Londoners with an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. Inside the park’s 861,800 square metres, you’ll find two lakes, a boating pond and two cafes, as well as football, cricket and tennis facilities. It’s also a great place to go for a bit of dog-spotting.

A boat and sculptures in the lake at at Victoria Park

Photograph: Flickr/Sludge G

7. Emirates Air Line cable cars

33 minutes from campus by train/walking

Experience unique views of the city by taking a ride over the Thames on Transport for London’s cable cars, which reach heights of 90 metres. Landmarks that can be seen on the journey include Canary Wharf, St Paul’s Cathedral, the Shard, The O2 and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Cable car crossing the Thames with views to the city and the O2

8. London Fields Lido

15 minutes from campus by train

Take a dip in this Olympic-size, heated outdoor swimming pool for only £5.25. There’s also a large sunbathing area where you can soak up some rays.

People swimming lengths in the lido

Photograph: Hackney Council

9. Spitalfields City Farm

15-minute walk from campus

See donkeys, sheep, goats, bunnies and a pig at this free community farm and gardens. Make sure to check the website for additional events, such as craft workshops and animal meet-and-greets.

The vegetable garden at Spitalfields City Farm

Photograph: Spitalfields City Farm

10. Curry Mile

10-minute walk from campus

Brick Lane’s wealth of curry houses, set up by Bangladeshi migrants to the area in the 1970s, have seen it named as London’s curry mile. Although numbers of curry houses have declined since their heyday in the mid-2000s, there are still plenty of places to grab a tasty and affordable meal, with the added bonus of supporting a local business.

Brick Lane street sign

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