Hackney is a borough of London.
Hackney staged the main events during the 2012 London Summer Olympics - with many of the big events happening in the nearby Olympic Stadium, VeloPark, as well as the media building.
This is a very diverse and multicultural district and one which has undergone massive regeneration in recent decades. Formerly known best as an area with huge social problems and a massive crime rate, Hackney is now very fashionable with a thriving arts scene.
There are dozens of excellent independent bars, restaurants and gastropubs serving great food throughout the borough.
On Saturdays, Broadway Market hosts the all-day food and antique market with stalls offering food and drinks from around the UK and other countries.
On Sundays, people head to Columbia Flower market to explore and people watch.
In the far north of the district near Stoke Newington, Stamford Hill is the centre of the Hasidic and Adeni Jewish communities in London and the largest in Europe. A visit here certainly provides a very different cultural experience to anywhere else in Britain.
Hackney is also known for its wide open green spaces including London Fields which boasts one of London's remaining heated lido swimming pools and Hackney Marshes which is home to 88 football pitches.
Hackney is well served by buses from all over the capital, with the routes converging on Hackney Central, Dalston and Stoke Newington. Bus routes serving Hackney include the 30, 38, 48, 55, 56, 67, 76, 106, 149, 242, 243, 253, 254 276 and 277.
The London Overground network has stations at Hackney Central, Dalston Junction, Dalston Kingsland, Haggerston, Hoxton, Homerton and Hackney Wick.
National Express East Anglia  run rail services from Liverpool Street to a number of stations in Hackney, with the principal station on the line being Hackney Downs.
Although there are no tube or DLR station in the borough, Hackney is well served by two orange London Overground lines which operates the same hours.
The best way to get around the borough is to walk or get buses. The many parks and green spaces dotted around make Hackney much nicer to walk around than its inner London location would suggest.
- Hackney Town Hall, Mare Street, E8 1EA, ☎ +44 20 8356 5000. Built in the 1930s including the surrounding square and gardens. edit
- Sutton House, 2 & 4 Homerton High St, E9 6JQ, ☎ +44 20 8986 2264, . Th-Su 12:30-16:30. Tudor House in Homerton, owned by the National Trust. £0.80-2.90. edit
- Victoria Park commonly called the People's Park, its huge and hosts summer festivals.
- Clissold Park, Greenway Cl, N4 2EY (tube: Manor House), ([email protected]), . Park with a rich history. It is a former country house and estate and was first opened to the public in 1889. edit
- Hackney City Farm, 1 Goldsmiths Row, E2 8QA, ☎ +44 20 7729 6381, . Tu-Su 10:00-16:30. Farm dating back to the early 1800s. It is now open to the public and is home to domestic animals. Also houses a café. edit
- Hackney Downs, near Clapton Ponds, has free tennis courts and is nice for cycle, though a bit plain and sqaurish
- London Fields, Richmond Rd, Hackney, E8, ☎ +44 20 8356 8428, 8356 8429 ([email protected]), . There are records of a public park at this site going back to the 16th century. Every Saturday, there is a farmers' market selling here, complemented by many others selling hand-made jewellery, gifts, childrenswear and vintage clothing. edit
- Stoke Newington Reservoirs, 1 Newnton Cl, N4 2RH (tube: Manor House), ☎ +44 20 8802 4573, . Two former Thames Water reservoirs which are now managed as a nature reserve in urban Hackney by the London Wildlife Trust. Has a small visitor centre. edit
- The Clowns Archive, Holy Trinity Church, Beechwood Rd, E8 3DY, ☎ +44 0870 128 4336, . Museum of clowning, unique collection of faces on eggs. Open only first Friday of every month from noon-5PM. LOL Free. edit
- Geffrye Museum, 136 Kingsland Rd, E2 8EA (tube: Old St), ☎ +44 20 7739 9893 ([email protected]), . Tu-Sa 10:00-17:00, Su noon-17:00, closed M. Furniture museum which charts the evolution of London urban interior design and furnishing since 1600. Free. edit
- Hackney Museum, Technology & Learning Centre, 1 Reading Ln, E8 1GQ, ☎ +44 20 8356 3500 ([email protected], fax: +44 20 8356 2563), . Tu W, F 09:30-17:30, Th 09:30-20:00, Sa 10:00-17:00. Providing a history of Hackney as well as periodic exhibitions. edit
- 291 Gallery, 291 Hackney Rd, E2 8NA, ☎ +44 20 7613 5676. Contemporary art within visual art, digital art, live performances, video and music events. edit
- The Residence, The Verger's Cottage, Eastway, E9 5JA (train: Hackney Wick), ☎ +44 20 8986 2324 ([email protected]), . By appointment. Avant-gard gallery with up and coming as well as newly established artists. edit
- Space Gallery, 129-131 Mare St, E8 3RH, ☎ +44 20 8525 4330. edit
- Elevator Gallery and the Chocolate Factory both near Hackney Downs on Stoke Newington Rd.
The River Lea at Hackney Marshes
- Hackney Empire, 291 Mare St, E8 1EJ (London Overground to Hackney Central; Rail to Hackney Downs; tube: Bethnal Green then 10 min by bus no 106 or 154), ☎ +44 20 8985 2424, . Historic theatre and music hall, offering an eclectic mix of entertainment. edit
- East London Art Walks (Comment Art Walks), ☎ +44 20 7739 1743, +44 7799 776016. A friendly, qualified art guide will take you around a selection of the most interesting exhibitions on at the moment and also talk about the history of contemporary art in East London. call for times and meeting points. edit
- London Fields Lido, London Fields Westside E8 3EU (London Fields Rail Stn), ☎ +44 20 7254 9038, . Lovely old-fashioned outdoor swimming Lido run by Hackney Council. £2.45-4.10. edit
- Rio Cinema, 107 Kingsland High St, E8 (London Overground to Dalston Kingsland or Dalston Jct), ☎ +44 20 7241 9410 ([email protected]), . A splendid old cinema dating back to the 1900s. Specialises in foreign language films, offbeat arthouse productions and children's programming. edit
- Walk Hackney Marshes. Lovely walk along the River Lea and canal which stretches across much of East London and further. A surprisingly rural experience in an otherwise densely built district of London. edit
- Broadway Market. Victorian street market on the edge of Haggerton. Visit on a Saturday. Has a variety of gastropubs and trendy clothes! edit
- Ridley Road Market. Mix of traditional East-end fruit and veg alongside Afro-Caribbean delicacies, imported films, clothes and household items. Little of interest for the tourist to buy, but a great experience. Watch your pockets in the crowded pavements behind the stalls. There are also market stalls on the side streets surrounding Dalston Kingsland station. edit
- The Kingsland Centre, (Opposite Dalston Kingsland Stn). The main shopping mall in the borough, located in Dalston. Tchibo has new stock every week and there is a recently opened Matalan. edit
- Stamford Hill. The centre of the Hassidic Jewish community and has many kosher bakeries, delis and supermarkets. edit
- Stoke Newington Church Street. Many small bookshops and antique stores. edit
- London Fields Brewery, 365 - 366 Warburton street (Come out of London Fields station in Hackney, on the Mare Street side and turn right for 200m its at the end of the road.), ☎ +44 20 7254 7174, . Every Saturday London Fields Brewery are running Brewery tours. Come down and have a guided tour of the brewery and learn how they are making their superbly tasty beers. Additionally included in the price are tasting of the beers in the BrewHouse, London Fields Brewery very own pop up bar. £10 - £25. edit
- Beyond Retro, 92 -100 Stoke Newington Road (Come out of Dalston Kingsland station, turn left and walk straight. Cross the road when you reach Princess May Road), ☎ +44 207 729 9001, . With over 8000 vintage one-of-a-kind gems, the Beyond Retro Dalston store is a huge retro haven in between Dalston and Stoke Newington. With rails of incredible one-off wonders, customers can browse through fashion from the 30s to the 90s. edit
Stoke Newington (Church Street), South Hackney (around the junction of Victoria Park Road and Lauriston Road), Broadway market and, more recently, Hackney Central, have a variety of gastropubs. There are many great Turkish and Asian restaurants on Kingsland Road. To the south of Mare Street there are a great number of very reasonable Vietnamese restaurants. Some also have the bonus of being able to bring your own alcohol, which brings down cost considerably.
- Green Papaya, 191 Mare St, E8 3QT, ☎ +44 20 8985 5486, . Tu-Su 17:00-23:00. Offering great Vietnamese food for veggies and meat eaters alike. Mains from £5. edit
- Mess Cafe, Amhurst Rd. Great quality caff breakfasts. £4. edit
- Song Que Cafe, 134 Kingsland Rd, E2 8DY, ☎ +44 20 7613 3222. Rated by Zagat's as the best Vietnamese on Kingsland Rd. edit
- Viet Hoa, 70-72 Kingsland Rd, E2 8DP, ☎ +44 20 7729 8293, . Tu-Su noon-15:30, 17:30-23:30. You must try the salted prawns! Mains from £5.30. edit
- Au Lac, 104 Kingsland Rd, N5 2XE, ☎ +44 20 7033 0588. Sa-W 17:30-23:00, Th F noon-14:30, 17:30-23:00. BYO. The pancakes are recommended as a starter (this was a batter parcel containing chicken and beansprouts, rolled into lettuce leaves), also the steamed sea bass, which has a delicious sauce. More of a restaurant for a group of friends, rather than a romantic meal. edit
- Buen Ayre, 50 Broadway Market, E8 4QJ, ☎ +44 20 7275 9900 ([email protected]), . M-F 18:00-22:30, Sa Su noon-17:00, 18:00-22:30. Argentine Grill restaurant. Mains £8-22.50. edit
- The Empress of India, 130 Lauriston Rd, E9 7LH, ☎ +44 20 8533 5123 ([email protected]), . 09:00-23:00. Indian cuisine. Mains from £12.50. edit
- LMNT, 316 Queensbridge Rd, E8 3NH, ☎ +44 20 7249 6727, . M-Sa noon-23:00, Su noon-22:30. European cuisine. Mains £9.95. edit
- Su Sazzagoni, 136 Lauriston Rd, E9 7LH, ☎ +44 20 8985 8448. Sardinian cuisine. Mains from £9.90. edit
- Biddle Bros, 88 Lower Clapton Rd, E5 0QR, ☎ +44 20 8985 7052. Lively pub with a good local following. Often have a live band or DJ in the evenings, edit
- The Russet Cafe, Amhurst Ter, E8 2BT. Cool, hippy-vibe bar, its a bit of a run-down alley but the amazing atmosphere and brilliant eclectic live acts make it unmissable. Serves nice mulled wine. Make sure you got cash with you, as an ATM can be a bit of a trek.
- The Birdcage, 58 Stamford Hill, N16 6XS, ☎ +44 20 8806 6740 ([email protected]), . Friendly Stoke Newington pub that often hs live bands playing. edit
- The Cat and Mutton, 76 Broadway Market, E8 4QJ, ☎ +44 20 7254 5599, . Beers £3-3.80. edit
- The Cock Tavern, 315 Mare St, E8 1EJ, ☎ +44 20 7248 2918, . M–Th 06:00–23:00, F 06:00–02:00, Sa 17:30–02:00. Beer £2.90-3.50. edit
- The Wishing Well, 418 Mare St, E8 1HP, ☎ +44 20 8533 0372. Popular local pub especially during major sports events which are shown on the large screens. edit
- Amhurst Hotel, 45 - 47 Amhurst Pk, N16 5DL (tube: Manor House), ☎ +44 20 8800 7587, . checkin: 13:00; checkout: 11:00. Budget hotel in north London with self-catering facilities £35. edit
- City Inn Express, 144 A Mare St, Tudor Rd (tube: Bethnal Green), ☎ +44 20 8533 0846, . checkin: 14:00; checkout: Noon. A quality bed & breakfast good for budget travelers. £46. edit
- The RE Hotel London Shoreditch, 419-437 Hackney Rd, E2 8PP (tube: Bethnal Green), ☎ +44 20 7613 6500, . checkin: 14:00; checkout: 11:00. edit
Despite its previous reputation as a dangerous place, it is now a relatively safe, gentrified and popular area. As with all major cities, take additional care at night and in less busy areas.
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