Hackney is also called 'Hipster Hackney', it's been one of the upcoming neighbourhoods in East London for the last couple of years. It had been for many years one of the city’s poorest boroughs and has a varied range of people from many different nations living within its borders. In the last couple of years, rent prices have sky-rocketed and it's now home to many artists, writers, stylists, photographers and pop stars and any other creative niche there is. Food, drink, pubs and bars are amazing in this place, as is the nightlife and exceptional evenings of all kinds. Many residents choose cycling to move around and it has become very popular. It is really an restless community.
What to Do
Hackney's largest park is Victoria Park, covering the Regent's Canal along with Limehouse Cut, right up to the Olympic Park, south in to nearly Bethnal Green and East into Bow. Like Victoria Park, there are also many other green areas in Hackney. Clissold Park has a gorgeous, very old house to explore and other fun activities for children to enjoy. Springfield Park, Hackney Downs, Hackney Marshes, Haggerston Park and London Fields are some other large parks to discover in Hackney too. A lot of them are linked by beautiful and peaceful road routes. The Olympic Park site, since the Olympics are finished it is a new green space for Hackney and the other neighbouring district with recreation areas for all.
Every food you can and can’t think of, Hackney has it. From Vietnamese food, Vegetarian and Vegan, to traditional Fish and Chips.
Some Caribbean bakeries and a lot of take aways abound around Kingsland Road too, as do Turkish eateries further up the Kingsland Road near Stoke Newington. A rich of community schemes and organic cafe and shops let you feel good and enjoy yourself as much as you like. Hackney's markets are amazing for coffee and food too, and an 24 hour bagel bakery and many late night coffee-shops offer livelihood if you're burning the midnight oil.
The Hackney Empire
is an old music hall and theatre. It has a vibrant programme of different shows, which reflects the local communities which it serves. One night they might have English touring opera, the next Hamlet with Ralph Fiennes, and at Christmas they always have a pantomime which brings in a lot of folk tales from around the world and some great music and songs written just for that stage. They host classical and other music, comedy nights, opera, theatre and big events. Friendly staff and good prices make this place a fun night out at any time of year, and the old ornate theatre with its crimson curtains, and gold inlay is a site to behold even before the show starts.
Hackney wasn’t a very popular location for hotels and accommodation until a few years ago. At this time, from when the Hipsters started moving in, many developers are realising that there's a lot of money to be made in this location for those wishing to stay where the locals do, in a somewhat cheaper part of the town but it’s still a respectable walking / busing or cycling distance from the city. There's even a new boutique hotel on Dalston Lane, Avo Boutique Hotel, in the place of an old post office, and run by the same people who used to run the post office. For those who are visiting their friends and family in Hackney or those who need to be near the City, Stratford and the Olympic site is the ideal location to stay and be sure you will find many interesting things see and do every single day form the moment you wake up until you go back to bed.
There are a handful of restaurants, great bars, popular pubs, high-class food, coffee bars, Turkish restaurants, vegetarian and vegan food, street artists, antique shops, booksellers and jewellery all waiting for you in one of the smallest streets. When the weekend comes, this tiny street gets really crowded, but the visit to grab some organic hand-picked delicates from a country you may just arrived, is totally worth it. It hosts many farmers markets and is an amazing place for shopping and presents as well as to get to know new people and culture. Some of the main shops, restaurants, pubs and bars are also open in the evenings and on weekdays, and this is a ideal cut through to Bethnal Green from Hackney.