Looking for the best things to do in Clapham? Look no further! Here’s your ultimate guide to the neighbourhood — from a Londoner!
You’ve heard of Clapham. The South West neighbourhood in London widely popular with students, young professionals, families, and oddly…a lot of Australians.
It has a huge urban park, lovely independent cafes, cool spots for a great night out, and the village-like atmosphere of its historic Old Town.
So if you think about it, it has a little bit of everything? Which means you’ve got a Clapham to-do list to get to!
Here’s the best things to do in the neighbourhood — from a Londoner.
Table of Contents
The Best Things to Do in Clapham, London
1. Walk Around Clapham Common
One of the most famous places of Clapham is the Clapham Common, a large urban park that offers several outdoor recreational activities, sports facilities, and hosts several music festivals and events throughout the year.
It’s located between Clapham, Battersea, and Balham in South London, and its 220 acres make it one of the largest parks in the city.
Simply wandering the grounds is one of the best things to do in Clapham, as it’s full of beautiful views of the ponds (one of them the largest in London), people enjoying a coffee or a picnic (depending on the season) and kids playing around.
This park is an integral part of the local life in Clapham, so make sure you don’t miss it!
2. Visit Venn Street Market
Venn Street Market is a vibrant and local community food market in Clapham that operates every Saturday.
It started in 2009 as a community initiative and has transformed since into a cherished weekend destination for families, foodies, and home chefs seeking high-quality, fresh produce, gourmet street food, artisan baked goods, and more.
There’s over 50 stalls all offering a unique selection of products, including cheese and charcuterie, arts and crafts, and even flowers and plants.
During Christmas, it also transforms into a festive-themed market, making it perfect to enjoy the Christmas in London vibe, without being in the busy Central London.
3. Embrace Your Inner Artist at Paint & Sip
Among the steadily growing trend of creative social activities in London, the Paint & Sip concept has become incredibly popular.
Clapham has embraced this blend of creativity and relaxation, offering a number of opportunities for people to enjoy a unique blend of painting while socialising over a glass of wine or a cocktail.
During these events, an artist guides participants step-by-step through the process of creating their own paintings. No prior experience is required, so it’s both friendly and accessible!
4. Visit Studio Voltaire
Studio Voltaire is a leading independent contemporary arts organization that exists to support artistic practices and create a space for thinking, experimentation, and reflection in Clapham.
Its diverse program includes exhibitions, performances, and education projects, all providing crucial opportunities for both emerging and under-represented artists.
It has been one of the UK’s leading not–for–profit arts organizations since 1994, being a big artist hub in the city. It also provides private and affordable studio spaces for over 45 artists, who work across a range of disciplines.
Paying a visit to one of their hundreds of exhibitions is a great way of contributing to the cause, and it’s great to find inspiration regardless of what you do for a living.
5. Catch a Film at Clapham Picturehouse
The Clapham Picturehouse is an iconic independent cinema located in Clapham.
It’s more than just a cinema; it’s a thriving cultural hub, bringing together film, food, and the local community, and creating a space where the art of cinema is truly celebrated.
Here you’ll find an eclectic mix of mainstream releases, independent films, and live arts events. Plus a café-bar that brings all cinema-lovers together in Clapham.
The building itself is a historic landmark, kicking it since 1910 when it was just a public meeting space known as the Temperance Hall.
6. Go Charity Shopping in Clapham
Charity shopping, a beloved thing to do in Clapham, is both a sustainable and budget-friendly option to give back to important community causes.
The diverse array of shops in the area ensures that you’ll always find something that suits your taste — and from clothing to electronics, books, and furniture, they’ve got everything you need. Here are some of my favourite:
Your retail therapy can help the local community when you shop here, with a bit of everything at very affordable prices.
You won’t regret picking this Clapham charity shop, with designer pieces, high-end high street, and glorious vintage one-offs. They specifically look for stylish, good quality donations and everything goes to defend the right to a safe home.
Located just down the road from Clapham Common, this store will catch your eye as soon as you see it. Once inside, you’ll find it hard to leave the halls full of fashion, shoes, accessories, ornaments, and books.
7. Wander Clapham’s Street Art
Photo Courtesy of This is Clapham
London is world-renowned for its vibrant street art scene and Clapham is a significant contributor to this reputation.
The streets of Clapham are filled with stunning murals, graffiti, and other forms of street art, making it a must-visit destination for art enthusiasts.
The art not only beautifies the public spaces, but it also serves as a reflection of the local culture, society, and current events.
The street art in Clapham ranges from large-scale murals by famous artists to small yet creative pieces by up-and-coming talent.
You can find some tours in the area, but if you want to do it on your own, the streets of Bedford Road, Falcon Road, Grant Road, and North Street are perfect to spot some of the best street art in Clapham.
8. Have a Sip at Clapham Bars & Pubs
Clapham locals often speak about the comfortable and cheerful vibe of the district. And if you’re a Londoner (or from any part of the UK, really) you know that those feelings are best lived in a pub or a bar.
Here’s a small list (in comparison to the large amount of places in the area) of some of the best:
Located minutes away from Clapham Junction, this quirky bar is very unique as it has a “pour your own” policy. With 48 wines and 16 beers to choose from!
If you head to Battersea Rise you’ll find this aesthetic pink cocktail bar that’ll not only bring you a good night experience, but a great Instagram post.
A tropical escape from the chill London, this bar in Clapham is perfectly located on the High Street. Here you’ll find an innovative cocktail menu and a lot of yummy exotic food.
This relatively new pub in Clapham is everything you’re expecting from your local. So if you’re in the mood for a cosy pub to enjoy a good pint and delicious food, get here immediately.
This Clapham pub takes the best of British culture and adds a unique vintage character, a delicious traditional menu, and the best beer selection to the mix. Plus, there’s music!
9. Dance Away at Clapham’s Nightlife
Clapham is one of those few areas in London that is well known for its vibrant nightlife with a variety of bars and clubs, making it a hotbed for a good night out. Here are some of my favourites!
If you want good cocktails and a great dance floor, this bar is the best option in Clapham. The upbeat playlist goes perfectly with the happy hours and weekend parties. Make sure you check their events!
Despite looking like a regular pub in Clapham, every last Saturday of the month they have an amazing party that you won’t want to miss: the Mixtape Night. With guilty pleasures for you to sing along to all night long…
This party spot with Polynesian interiors and tiki cocktails is another great option to escape London and immerse yourself in a proper good night out. And it’s one of those rare spots in London that encourages all-nighters.
10. Clapham Restaurants & Cheap Eats
One of the best things to do in Clapham is eat, and lucky for you the neighbourhood offers an impressive selection of restaurants, food stalls, and cafes.
There’s something for everyone, whether you’re looking for fine dining, international cuisine, traditional pubs, charming coffee shops, or something cheap to eat.
Here’s a list of some (but definitely not all) recommendations:
This is a Michelin Star European restaurant in the heart of Clapham Old Town. The menu constantly changes to challenge expectations, and the price is very reasonable considering the experience.
A traditional Italian joint right on the famed Northcote Road. Their pasta is heavenly!
This restaurant in Clapham serves seasonal modern European dishes. It’s right next to Clapham Common, making it the perfect stop for after your nature stroll.
The big wave ‘washed’ over Clapham with this delicious and luxurious Japanese restaurant. The options are fresh and seem straight out of the ocean, and the cocktails? Chef’s kiss…
A Mediterranean gem in Clapham, this restaurant has a good selection, amazing portions, and attentive service (also great for grabbing fresh food on the go).
This small Greek restaurant is perfect if you’re looking for delicious, fast and affordable food in Clapham. The signature Greek colors and gorgeous interiors will instantly make you feel you’ve left London.
11. Race at the Moonshine Raceway
The Moonshine Raceway is an innovative indoor racing experience that blends virtual reality with high-speed entertainment. And yes, it gets competitive.
It’s part of the infamous The Four Thieves Pub and is guaranteed to be a night of fun in the neighbourhood.
12. Explore Battersea and Brixton
Battersea, significantly redeveloped and now a highly popular and fashionable district, has a busy and modern town centre, green spaces, iconic landmarks, and beautiful riverside views.
The Battersea Power Station is now becoming the spot to be in London, with hundreds of shops, restaurants, activities, and facilities that transformed the iconic four-chimney structure (and Battersea Park nearby too….).
Brixton, on the other side, is everything you’re expecting from a diverse and colourful district. Music, international food, great street art, and an even greater nightlife are just some of the things to add to the bucket list.
And they’re both close to Clapham!
Bonus (and mandatory): Explore Northcote Road
Many of the best things to do in Clapham start and end on Northcote Road, a hub for all things shopping, eating, dining, and living in the neighbourhood.
Although you’ll end up on Northcote inevitably, make sure to soak in the atmosphere while you’re exploring!
Map of 12 Best Things to Do in Clapham
Thanks for reading my Things to Do in Clapham Guide. If you enjoyed it, let me know on Instagram!
CHECK OUT MORE LONDON GUIDES:
- Where to Brunch in Clapham & Battersea: 10 Best Breakfast Spots
- The Best Cafes in Clapham: A Londoner’s Guide
- The Best Things to Do in Battersea, London
- The Best Things To Do in Brixton: A Londoner’s Guide
- London Neighbourhood Guides