Things to do in Edgware Road area
Enjoy the Middle Eastern vibe
To get a good feel for Edware Road, you only need to leave the station and take a walk down the road. Dip into local grocery shops for exotic finds. Celebrity chef Yotam Ottolenghi named Green Valley as one of his favourite shops, and with vats of pickles, freshly baked bread and baklava, there’s a lot of reason to visit. If cooking is not on the cards, there are many restaurants to choose from, smells of grilled meat wafting out onto the street. Finish your evening relaxing at a shisha cafe. You should feel the scent of apple tobacco before you even see the place itself. In the cold season, there will be lamp heaters and blankets, so you can choose to sit outside (although the air in the area is quite polluted, so I wouldn’t recommend that).
Have a stroll by the water
If the noise and pollution of Edgware Road has tired you out, you can find something approaching calm nearby. Weave your way through the office buildings to arrive at Paddington Basin. Then continue your walk along the water. There you can observe a different kind of life: narrowboat owners rummaging on their decks, large tour or restaurant boats standing majestically, office workers out for a sandwich. You can walk along the water for as long as you like, it goes on for miles. While in the vicinity of Edgware Road, look out for interesting modern sculpture, table tennis and miniature bridges. If visiting at 12pm on Wednesday or Friday, or 2pm on Saturday, you can observe a unique piece of engineering – the Rolling Bridge – in operation.
Contemplate modern art
Lisson Gallery is an influential art space, with its sister sites in New York and Shanghai, and yet many Londoners overlook it. Marina Abramovic, Ai Wei Wei and Anish Kapoor exhibit here, along with many other famous names. So why not take a five minute walk from the Edgware Road station and kill an hour at this small, but excellent gallery? More often than not, it’s empty enough to allow you to contemplate sculpture, photography, collage and painting in peace and quiet. Furthermore, the pristine white spaces bathed in natural light are wonderful in themselves. The gallery comprises two separate spaces (on Lisson and Bell streets). Admission is free.