Discovering the Best Pubs in London

Discovering the Best Pubs in London

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Best Pubs in London

London is renowned for its vibrant pub culture, attracting locals and tourists alike. With its rich history and diverse atmosphere, the city offers an array of charming and inviting pubs to explore. From traditional taverns to modern gastropubs, there is something to suit every taste. Whether you’re looking for a cozy spot to enjoy a pint of ale or a lively pub with live music, this article will guide you through the finest pubs London has to offer. So, grab a drink, settle in, and let’s embark on a delightful journey of discovering the hidden gems that await you in this bustling city.
Best Pubs in London

Historic Pubs

Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese

145 Fleet St, London EC4A 2BP, UK
+44 20 7353 6170

If you’re looking for a taste of London’s rich history, a visit to Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese is a must. Located in Fleet Street, this pub dates back to the 17th century and has been a favorite haunt for many famous writers, including Charles Dickens and Mark Twain. As you step inside, you’ll be transported back in time with its low ceilings, ancient wooden beams, and cozy nooks and crannies. The traditional English fare and wide selection of ales and ciders will ensure a truly authentic experience.

The Spaniards Inn

Spaniards Rd, London NW3 7JJ, UK
+44 20 8731 8406

Nestled in the picturesque Hampstead Heath, The Spaniards Inn is steeped in history and charm. Dating back to the 16th century, this pub has welcomed many notable figures, from Keats to Dickens. The rustic interior and beautiful beer garden make it a perfect spot to unwind with a pint after a long walk in the nearby park. With delicious traditional English food and a friendly atmosphere, The Spaniards Inn is a true gem in the heart of London.

The George Inn

75 Borough High St, London SE1 1NH, UK
+44 20 7407 2056

Located near London Bridge, The George Inn is a pub with a fascinating past. Dating back to the 17th century, it has survived the Great Fire of London and has even been mentioned in Charles Dickens’ novels. The pub’s courtyard, with its beautiful timber-framed buildings, is a peaceful oasis in the bustling city. Step inside, and you’ll find a cozy interior that perfectly captures the charm of old London. With a wide selection of beers and spirits, The George Inn is a beloved spot for locals and tourists alike.

Gastro Pubs

The Harwood Arms

Harewood Arms, 101 Kirkgate, Wakefield WF1 1JG, UK
For a fine dining experience in a pub setting, The Harwood Arms is the place to be. This Michelin-starred gastropub in Fulham offers a menu that showcases the best of British cuisine, with a focus on seasonal and locally sourced ingredients. From traditional favorites like roast beef to more adventurous dishes, every bite is a delight. Accompanied by an impressive selection of beers and wines, The Harwood Arms is a haven for food lovers.

The Anchor & Hope

36 The Cut, London SE1 8LP, UK
+44 20 7928 9898

Situated in the vibrant Borough Market, The Anchor & Hope is a gastro pub that offers a warm and inviting atmosphere. With its rustic interior and open kitchen, you can watch as the talented chefs prepare delicious dishes using the finest ingredients. The menu changes daily, but you can always expect an array of mouthwatering options, from hearty roasts to fresh seafood. Combined with a wide selection of craft beers and ales, The Anchor & Hope is a food lover’s paradise.

The Fat Duck

High St, Bray, Maidenhead SL6 2AQ, UK
+44 1628 580333

While not technically a pub, The Fat Duck deserves a mention for its culinary prowess. Located in Bray, just outside London, this three Michelin-starred restaurant offers a dining experience like no other. Chef Heston Blumenthal’s innovative dishes take you on a gastronomic journey, combining flavors and textures in ways you’ve never imagined. This is not just a meal; it’s a theatrical experience that will leave you in awe.
london, pub, england

Cocktail Bars


129 City Rd, London EC1V 1JB, UK

Step into the world of speakeasies at Nightjar, a hidden gem in the heart of Shoreditch. This stylish cocktail bar takes you back to the Prohibition era with its vintage decor and live jazz music. The talented mixologists create unique and delicious cocktails using an array of spirits, from classic recipes to their own innovative creations. With its intimate atmosphere and impeccable service, Nightjar is the perfect place to enjoy a night out with friends.

The Connaught Bar

Connaught, The Connaught, 16 Carlos Pl, London W1K 2AL, UK
+44 20 7314 3419

If sophistication and elegance are what you seek, look no further than The Connaught Bar. Located in the iconic Connaught Hotel, this award-winning cocktail bar is a true masterpiece. The bar’s art deco-inspired interior exudes glamour, while the expert mixologists create impeccable cocktails that are as beautiful as they are delicious. Whether you’re in the mood for a classic martini or a bespoke creation, The Connaught Bar will exceed your expectations.


20 Upper Ground, London SE1 9PD, UK
+44 20 3747 1000

Nestled in the Mondrian London hotel, Dandelyan offers a unique cocktail experience with its botanical-inspired menu. This award-winning bar, helmed by renowned mixologist Ryan Chetiyawardana, pushes the boundaries of what a cocktail can be. The innovative flavors and stunning presentations make each drink a work of art. With its stunning views of the Thames and chic decor, Dandelyan is a must-visit for cocktail enthusiasts.

Rooftop Pubs


Tobacco Dock, London E1W 2SF, UK

Located in Tobacco Dock, Skylight is a rooftop pub that offers stunning views of the London skyline. This spacious venue is home to multiple bars, serving a variety of drinks, from craft beers to refreshing cocktails. In addition to the impressive drink selection, Skylight also features activities such as croquet and petanque, making it the perfect place to unwind and enjoy the company of friends.

Queen of Hoxton

1 Curtain Rd, London EC2A 3JX, UK
+44 20 7422 0958

In the heart of Shoreditch, you’ll find the Queen of Hoxton, a rooftop pub with a vibrant and eclectic atmosphere. The rooftop terrace offers breathtaking views of the city, while the interior boasts a quirky and artistic design. Enjoy a wide selection of craft beers and signature cocktails as you take in the stunning surroundings. With regular live music and events, Queen of Hoxton is a lively destination for a memorable night out.

Frank’s Cafe

Bold Tendencies, 7th-10th Floor Multi Storey Car Park, 95A Rye Ln, London SE15 4ST, UK

Perched on top of a car park in Peckham, Frank’s Cafe is a hidden gem that offers panoramic views of the London skyline. This seasonal rooftop bar is known for its refreshing cocktails and relaxed atmosphere. With its open-air setting and vibrant decor, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a warm summer evening. Whether you’re sipping on a cocktail or indulging in delicious food from the bar’s street food vendors, Frank’s Cafe offers a truly unique rooftop experience.
pub, beer, bar

Beer Gardens

The Garden Gate

14 S End Rd, Greater, London NW3 2QE, UK
+44 20 7435 4938

Tucked away in the heart of Hampstead Heath, The Garden Gate is a tranquil oasis with a beautiful beer garden. Surrounded by lush greenery, this pub offers a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of city life. Enjoy a refreshing pint of beer or cider as you soak in the natural beauty of the surroundings. With its relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff, The Garden Gate is the perfect spot for a lazy afternoon.

The Rye

31 Peckham Rye, London SE15 3NX, UK
+44 20 7639 5397

Located in the vibrant neighborhood of Peckham, The Rye boasts a spacious beer garden that is perfect for soaking up the sun. Whether you’re enjoying a pint of beer or indulging in some delicious pub grub, the garden provides a welcoming and laid-back atmosphere. With regular live music events and a diverse crowd, The Rye is a popular destination for locals and visitors alike.

The Flask

77 Highgate W Hill, London N6 6BU, UK
+44 20 8348 7346

Nestled in the charming neighborhood of Highgate, The Flask is a historic pub with a delightful beer garden. Surrounded by trees and flowers, this hidden gem offers a peaceful setting to enjoy a pint or two. The pub’s extensive selection of beers and ales, along with its hearty British food, make it a favorite among locals. Whether you’re relaxing in the garden or cozying up by the fireplace, The Flask is a true haven for beer enthusiasts.

Whisky Bars

Milroy’s of Soho

3 Greek St, London W1D 4NX, UK
+44 20 8106 0630

For whisky lovers, Milroy’s of Soho is a destination not to be missed. Tucked away on Greek Street, this whisky bar offers an extensive selection of over 250 whiskies from around the world. Whether you’re a connoisseur or a novice, the knowledgeable staff is always on hand to guide you through the options. With its intimate atmosphere and impressive range of drams, Milroy’s of Soho is a whisky lover’s paradise.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society

19 Greville St, London EC1N 8SQ, UK
+44 20 7831 4447

Located near Farringdon Station, the Scotch Malt Whisky Society is a private member’s club that welcomes non-members to enjoy its impressive collection of whiskies. With over 500 single malts to choose from, this bar offers a truly immersive whisky experience. The knowledgeable staff can recommend the perfect dram to suit your taste, whether you prefer a smoky Islay or a smooth Speyside. With its cozy and inviting atmosphere, the Scotch Malt Whisky Society is a must-visit for whisky enthusiasts.

Boisdale of Belgravia

15 Eccleston St, London SW1W 9LX, UK
+44 20 7730 6922

Situated in the heart of Belgravia, Boisdale is a whisky bar that exudes elegance and sophistication. With its impressive selection of over 1,000 whiskies, it’s a haven for whisky lovers. Whether you’re sipping on a rare single malt or enjoying a whisky cocktail, the bar’s luxurious surroundings make for a memorable experience. Combine your whisky tasting with a mouthwatering meal from the Scottish-inspired menu, and you’re in for a truly indulgent evening.
Discovering the Finest Pubs in London

Live Music Pubs

The Troubadour

265-267 Old Brompton Rd, London SW5 9JA, UK
+44 20 7341 6333

Located in Earls Court, The Troubadour is a legendary pub that has played host to some of the biggest names in music. From Bob Dylan to Jimi Hendrix, this intimate venue has seen it all. With regular live performances spanning a range of genres, from folk to jazz, The Troubadour offers a unique and unforgettable music experience. Enjoy a pint of your favorite drink as you soak in the atmosphere and listen to the sounds of talented musicians.

The Half Moon

93 Lower Richmond Rd., London SW15 1EU, UK
+44 20 8780 9383

Nestled in the vibrant neighborhood of Putney, The Half Moon is a historic pub with a rich musical heritage. Dating back to the 18th century, this iconic venue has welcomed some of the most famous names in music, including The Rolling Stones and U2. With live performances almost every night, ranging from rock to blues, The Half Moon continues to be a beloved destination for music lovers. Grab a pint, find a spot near the stage, and let the music transport you.

The Water Rats

328 Grays Inn Rd, London WC1X 8BZ, UK
+44 20 7833 3312

Located near King’s Cross, The Water Rats is a pub that has long been associated with emerging talent. With its intimate and cozy setting, it offers the perfect platform for up-and-coming artists to showcase their skills. From live bands to stand-up comedy, there’s always something happening at The Water Rats. Enjoy a drink, soak in the atmosphere, and discover the next big thing in music.

Literary Pubs

The Lamb & Flag

33 Rose St, London WC2E 9EB, UK
+44 20 7497 9504

Tucked away in Covent Garden, The Lamb & Flag is a historic pub with strong literary connections. It was a favorite haunt of famous writers like Charles Dickens and Thomas Hardy, who found inspiration in its cozy corners. Today, the pub retains its charm and offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Pull up a chair, order a pint, and immerse yourself in the literary history of this iconic pub.

The Fitzroy Tavern

The Fitzroy Tavern, 16A Charlotte St., London W1T 2LY, UK
Located in Fitzrovia, The Fitzroy Tavern has a rich literary heritage that dates back to the early 20th century. It was a popular meeting place for writers, artists, and intellectuals, including George Orwell and Dylan Thomas. The pub’s interior is adorned with photographs and memorabilia from its heyday, creating a nostalgic atmosphere that pays homage to its literary past. Whether you’re a fan of history or simply looking for a relaxed pub setting, The Fitzroy Tavern is a must-visit.

The Eagle

159 Farringdon Rd, London EC1R 3AL, UK
+44 20 7837 1353

Situated in Farringdon, The Eagle is a pub with a fascinating literary history. It was here that the iconic phrase “publish and be damned” was coined by Arthur Wellesley, the Duke of Wellington. The pub’s interior has a rustic charm, with wooden beams and cozy corners, providing the perfect setting for a quiet drink or lively conversation. Step inside, and you’ll feel a connection to the past, as you raise a glass to the literary greats who once graced these walls.
pub, bar, drink

Hidden Gems

The Blackfriars

Blackfriars, London EC4V 6BJ, UK
Tucked away in the heart of the City of London, The Blackfriars is a hidden gem that offers a peaceful retreat from the bustling streets. This historic pub, with its courtyard garden, is the perfect spot to enjoy a pint or two. With a cozy interior and a selection of traditional ales, The Blackfriars provides a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Whether you’re looking for a quiet drink or a meal with friends, this hidden gem is worth seeking out.

The Black Swan

Old Ln, Cobham KT11 1NG, UK
+44 1932 862364

Nestled in the picturesque neighborhood of Covent Garden, The Black Swan is a charming pub that offers a respite from the crowds. Dating back to the 17th century, this hidden gem exudes character and charm. With its original wooden beams and traditional decor, it transports you back in time. The pub’s friendly staff and extensive drink selection ensure a memorable visit. Whether you’re stopping by for a quick pint or settling in for a leisurely evening, The Black Swan is a delightful discovery.

The Swan Inn

Swan St, Isleworth TW7 6RJ, UK
+44 20 8847 4805

Located in the vibrant neighborhood of Bloomsbury, The Swan Inn is a hidden gem that feels like a well-kept secret. With its cozy interior and inviting atmosphere, it’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. The pub offers a diverse selection of beers, ciders, and wines, as well as a tempting menu of British classics. Whether you’re seeking a quiet corner to read a book or a lively conversation with friends, The Swan Inn is a true hidden gem.

Modern Pubs

The Draft House

206-208 Tower Bridge Rd, London SE1 2LL, UK
+44 20 7378 9995

With multiple locations across London, The Draft House is a modern pub that caters to beer enthusiasts. Known for its extensive selection of craft beers, this pub offers something for every palate. From IPAs to stouts, you’ll find a wide range of flavors to explore. The Draft House also prides itself on its food menu, with delicious dishes that pair perfectly with your chosen brew. Whether you’re a beer connoisseur or just looking for a relaxed pub atmosphere, The Draft House is a worthy destination.

The Craft Beer Co.

168 High Holborn, London WC1V 7AA, UK

As the name suggests, The Craft Beer Co. is a pub dedicated to showcasing the best of craft beer. With multiple locations in London, this pub offers a rotating selection of beers from independent breweries. The knowledgeable staff can help you navigate the vast array of options, ensuring you find the perfect pint. Whether you prefer hoppy IPAs or smooth porters, The Craft Beer Co. is a haven for beer lovers.

Euston Tap

190 Euston Rd., London NW1 2EF, UK
+44 20 3137 8837

Located near Euston Station, Euston Tap is a modern pub that combines a wide selection of beers with a unique setting. Housed in a Grade II listed building, this pub offers a diverse range of beers from around the world. With its quirky interior and outdoor seating area, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a pint with friends or meet fellow beer enthusiasts. Whether you’re a seasoned beer drinker or a curious newbie, Euston Tap is sure to impress.
By exploring these pubs, you’ll not only discover the rich history and culture of London but also have the opportunity to indulge in delicious food and drinks. So grab a pint, raise your glass, and toast to the vibrant pub scene that makes London truly special.


Can I make a reservation at these pubs?

While some of the more popular pubs may accept reservations, many operate on a first-come, first-served basis. It’s always best to check with the pub directly or arrive early to secure a table.

Can I bring my own food to these pubs?

Most pubs offer their own food menu, so bringing your own food may not be necessary. However, if you have dietary restrictions or preferences, it’s best to check with the pub beforehand.

Are these pubs family-friendly?

While some pubs may have age restrictions or limited seating for families, many welcome children during certain hours. It’s recommended to check with the pub beforehand to ensure a family-friendly environment.

Do these pubs offer vegetarian or vegan options?

Most pubs offer vegetarian options on their menus, and many have expanded their offerings to include vegan dishes as well. However, it’s always best to check with the pub or ask the staff for more information on their vegetarian and vegan options.

Can I host private events or parties at these pubs?

Some pubs may have private event spaces or areas that can be reserved for parties or special occasions. It’s best to contact the pub directly to inquire about their event hosting capabilities and any associated fees.

Are these pubs accessible to disabled individuals?

While every effort is made to ensure accessibility, not all pubs may be fully accessible for individuals with mobility challenges. It’s recommended to contact the pub beforehand to inquire about their accessibility features and accommodations.

Are these pubs dog-friendly?

Many pubs in London are dog-friendly, but it can vary from establishment to establishment. It’s always best to check with the pub beforehand to confirm their policy on allowing dogs.

Do these pubs organize any special events or live performances?

Some pubs may host special events, live music performances, or themed nights. It’s recommended to check the pub’s website or social media pages for updates on upcoming events or performances.

Can I pay with a credit card at these pubs?

Most pubs in London accept credit card payments, but it’s always a good idea to carry some cash as a backup, especially in smaller establishments.

Are these pubs tourist-friendly?

Absolutely! These pubs are popular among both locals and tourists alike, providing a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. Whether you’re a visitor or a resident, you’ll find these pubs to be a great place to socialize and immerse yourself in the local culture.

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