The Very Best Things To Do in Marylebone

By Matthew Wears

The Marylebone neighbourhood in central London is one of the city’s most vibrant areas, where there is always something fantastic to discover, seemingly just around every corner. I love this district because you can find everything that I like about the city in one small space - it really is like a smaller version of London itself - complete with beautiful green spaces such as Regents Park, some of the very best museums and a shopping experience that stands alongside anywhere else in the city. I’m always looking for things to do in London that feel like no one else knows they’re there and that’s certainly the case with Marylebone, which seems hugely underappreciated in comparison to other districts like the fashionable and flashy Kensington, but I suppose that’s no bad thing, it just means that it’s our little secret! So, get ready to dive into London’s best kept secret, I’m going to be sharing my insider’s knowledge with you to provide you with the ultimate list of the best things to do in Marylebone.

Get lost in Daunt Bookshop

Yes, you might think of somewhere like the famous literary district of Bloomsbury when it comes to beautiful bookshops, but Marylebone might just have the most beautiful of all. Daunt Bookshop is located amongst the Marylebone High-street shops, and from the outside looks nothing more than your average independent bookshop. However if you’re to go inside you will discover an interior of elegant, striking beauty. It’s two-tiered travel section feels as though you’ve walked into a drawing room from long ago, with dark wood and leather seats that add to its old-world charm. Interestingly, each individual bookcase belongs to a certain country, so if you’re thinking about traveling somewhere in the future then there’s no better place to grab the perfect guide! The Marylebone neighbourhood is full of hidden gems, and this is definitely one of my all-time favourites.

Get lost in Daunt Bookshop

Yes, you might think of somewhere like the famous literary district of Bloomsbury when it comes to beautiful bookshops, but Marylebone might just have the most beautiful of all. Daunt Bookshop is located amongst the Marylebone High-street shops, and from the outside looks nothing more than your average independent bookshop. However if you’re to go inside you will discover an interior of elegant, striking beauty. It’s two-tiered travel section feels as though you’ve walked into a drawing room from long ago, with dark wood and leather seats that add to its old-world charm. Interestingly, each individual bookcase belongs to a certain country, so if you’re thinking about traveling somewhere in the future then there’s no better place to grab the perfect guide! The Marylebone neighbourhood is full of hidden gems, and this is definitely one of my all-time favourites.

Shop Chiltern Street

Whilst many visitors will simply go to the Marylebone High-street shops, there are definitely some other places that are worth checking out for amazing shopping opportunities! Chiltern Street is a small but nevertheless stunning street that is home to a selection on interesting fashion retailers and independent specialist shops, all of which share a similar boutique aesthetic that make it a great place to go for a spot of window shopping. If you’re in need of some stylish new menswear then make sure to head to Trunk Clothiers, or if you’re searching for that perfect single malt then Cadenhead’s Whiskey Shop is the best anywhere in London. Some of the best coffee Marylebone has to offer can be found in cool, stylish cafes such as Blandfords or The Monacle Café, and who knows, you might just be sitting next to one of the A-list celebrities who often frequent the area!

Have a Drink in the Masons Arms

Not only is this one of the best pubs in Marylebone, but it’s also one of the best in the entire city! The Masons Arms is an absolute icon of London drinking dens and is everything you could want from an authentic English pub, complete with dark wooden furniture, bright red leather seating and of course a hanging basket display that makes you wonder how much money they spend on flowers each year. It’s got a rich and detailed history which dates all the way back to the mid 1800’s and it looks as though the only thing to have changed in that time is the ale casks! Also, if you want to try some of England’s famous comforting cuisine then where better than at a pub? At the Masons Arms you’ll find a menu with all of the favourites such as pie and mash, fish and chips and of course the humble Sunday roast. There’s nothing better, trust me.

Visit the Sherlock Holmes Museum

The Marylebone neighbourhood is hardly without its fair share of spectacular museums but one of my favourites is the Sherlock Holmes Museum, which I think is just one of those things to do in London that everyone who wants to understand a little bit about British heritage should check out. Step into one of the most widely recognised addresses in the entire world (albeit a couple of houses down), 221B Baker Street, where Holmes and Watson were said to have lived according to the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle classics. The museum is perhaps better described as an attraction, where visitors can walk through painstakingly authentic Victorian-era rooms filled with Sherlockian themed props such as case documents, smoking pipes and of course, a good number of deerstalkers too.

Eat at St. Christopher’s Place

One of my favourite things to do in London just so happens to be one of the Marylebone neighbourhoods best kept secrets; St. Christopher’s Place, a tiny pedestrianised area that celebrates London’s ultra-diverse food scene. The entrance is tucked just off Oxford Street, noticeable only by a large purple clock that hangs over the entrance, you’ll fashion boutiques, ultra-cool hidden coffee shops and some truly spectacular Marylebone restaurants. Grab some exquisite sushi at Sushiology, or have an authentic Italian experience at Homeslice, just know that wherever you go, the food’s going to be great! It’s central location just next to Selfridges makes it the perfect hub to socialize after a busy day of shopping, so why not stop for a quick drink at either Harry’s Bar or Social Wine and Tapas, both of which serve quality drinks until late in the evening.

Meet the Stars at Madame Tussauds

Madame Tussauds London is perhaps the main reason that people come to the Marylebone district, which seems like a bit of a shame considering how much there is to do, but that’s not to say that it’s still not a lot of fun, I mean where else can you come face to face with Will Smith? It is true that Madame Tussauds does waxworks like you’ve never seen before, sometimes it can feel like you’re actually standing in front of the person in question which is cool, if a little bit unsettling - especially when it’s Donald Trump. Everyone who’s anyone is here somewhere, from historic figures all the way to present day celebrities, so make sure to bring your camera to get some photos standing next to your favourite icons. I know it’s on pretty much every travel itinerary, but I couldn’t make a list of the best things to do in Marylebone without mentioning it! 

Check out the Wallace Collection

Another one or Marylebone’s top-notch museums, the Wallace Collection cements itself as being one of the most unique things to do in London for those interested in its rich history, with a selection on 18th to 19th century artworks that span all around the globe. Sculptures from Ghana sit alongside Imperial Wine Cups from China in this astonishing assortment of art, which even includes a stunning portrait by the Dutch master; Rembrandt. The Jewel of them all has to be the Laughing Cavalier, a painting by Frans Hal that even someone with the most basic knowledge of the art world would recognise! Personally, I’d say the Wallace Collection is perfect for someone that’s already visited the likes of the Tate galleries or the national Gallery, you’re going to find a specific style of art here but if that interests you then you won’t find anywhere like it!

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