Holborn hopping: What are the best things to do in Holborn, London? 

Situated just a stone’s throw from the City of London, Holborn used to be a borough of its own until it joined forces with other neighbourhoods and became part of Camden in 1965. 

But its story goes way back to medieval times when it all started near a “hole-bourne” – a stream in a hollow leading to the Thames. That stream, by the way, is the River Fleet, one of central London’s largest underground rivers.

But Holborn isn’t just about streams and street names. This neighbourhood offers a lot of things for you to discover. So, what are you waiting for? Join us as we uncover the hidden gems, the must-visit spots, and the surprises that make Holborn one of London’s best-kept secrets.

Explore the British Museum

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Location: Great Russell St, London WC1B 3DG, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7323 8299

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The British Museum houses a staggering collection of over 8 million objects, spanning centuries and continents. From ancient Egyptian mummies to the Rosetta Stone (yeah, the one that helped decipher hieroglyphics), this place is a treasure trove of human history. 

But the best thing about this is that entry to the British Museum won’t cost you a single penny. In an expensive city like London, this is a golden opportunity to soak up culture without breaking the bank.

Dine at Bombay Bustle 

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Location: 29 Maddox St, London W1S 2PA, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7323 8299

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While Bombay Bustle celebrates Indian tradition, it’s not afraid to flirt with innovation. Imagine classics like butter chicken and biryani elevated to new heights with a contemporary twist. They’ve mastered the art of blending traditional recipes with a modern flair.

And once you’re inside, you’ll be enveloped in an environment that mirrors the old-world charm of Bombay. The décor exudes warmth and nostalgia, making it the perfect setting for an intimate dinner or a lively gathering with friends.

Witness the iconic Temple Church

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Location: Temple, London EC4Y 7BB, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7353 8559

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Remember that cryptic thriller “The Da Vinci Code”? Well, Temple Church played a starring role in both the book and the movie adaptation. Here, you’ll find yourself retracing the steps of Robert Langdon, uncovering mysteries and secrets.

The church’s round design is a rare architectural marvel in London, reminiscent of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. So, you can marvel at the intricately carved stone columns and the mesmerising stained glass windows that have witnessed centuries of worship.

Shop for unique books at Blackwell’s Bookshop

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Location: High Holborn, London WC1V 6EP, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7292 5100

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If books could talk, the ones at Blackwell’s would have captivating stories to tell. With shelves that stretch to the ceiling, this bookstore boasts an extensive collection, ranging from rare first editions to contemporary bestsellers. 

Located near the University of London, Blackwell’s has been a haven for students, scholars, and academics for generations. It’s the go-to place for academic texts and scholarly resources, making it an intellectual oasis in the heart of Holborn.

Explore the interior of Charles Dickens’s House

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Location: 48-49 Doughty St, London WC1N 2LX, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7405 2127

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Charles Dickens’s House is the very place where one of the greatest storytellers in history penned some of his most beloved tales. Charles Dickens lived in this house, breathed life into his iconic characters, and crafted the narratives that continue to captivate readers to this day.

The interior of Dickens’s home has been meticulously preserved to transport you back to the 19th century. You’ll find yourself immersed in the Victorian era, surrounded by the furnishings, décor, and ambience that inspired his literary masterpieces.

Savour Italian cuisine at Ciao Bella

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Location: 86-90 Lamb’s Conduit St, London WC1N 3LZ, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7242 4119

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Ciao Bella has been a beloved fixture of Holborn since 1983, and its enduring popularity speaks volumes about the quality of the dining experience. It’s seen generations of Londoners and tourists alike returning for their Italian fix, and that kind of history is hard to replicate.

Plus, their extensive wine list features an impressive selection of Italian wines, from crisp Pinot Grigios to robust Barolos. 

Indulge in a pint at Ye Olde Land

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Location: 1 Ely Ct, Ely Pl, London EC1N 6SJ, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7405 4751

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This charming establishment has been pouring pints since 1677, and every inch of it oozes history. The low ceilings, wooden beams, and worn-in furnishings tell tales of generations who’ve sought solace and camaraderie within these walls.

Now, let’s get to the good stuff – the beer! Ye Olde Land serves up some amazing brews. Whether you’re a fan of a crisp lager, a rich stout, or a hoppy ale, they’ve got it covered. 

A pint without some hearty sustenance is like London without its iconic red buses – incomplete. Luckily, Ye Olde Land serves up a menu of classic British fare. From savoury pies to platters of fish and chips, their food pairs perfectly with your chosen brew. It’s comfort food at its finest.

Attend a performance at the Peacock Theatre

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Location: Portugal St, London WC2A 2HT, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7863 8222

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This theatre has been a hub of creativity since the 17th century when it began as a music and lecture hall. Over the years, it’s witnessed the evolution of the performing arts in London, making it a cultural institution in its own right.

Now, let’s talk about what really makes the Peacock Theatre a standout attraction – its diverse repertoire. While it may be known for hosting mesmerising dance performances by the renowned Sadler’s Wells, it’s not limited to just ballet and contemporary dance. 

You can catch a wide array of shows here, from electrifying musicals to thought-provoking dramas. The Peacock’s eclectic programming ensures there’s always something for every taste.

Taste Lebanese dishes at Hiba

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Location: 113 High Holborn, London WC1V 6JQ, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7831 5171

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Lebanese cuisine is renowned for its balance of flavours – the zing of lemon, the earthiness of olive oil, the depth of spices, and the freshness of herbs.

And Hiba takes this concept to a whole new level with their mezze platters. From creamy hummus to crispy falafel, you’ll be spoiled for choice. It’s a fun, social way to eat, and it allows you to taste a little bit of everything.

Explore Sir John Soane’s Museum 

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Location: 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London WC2A 3BP, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7405 2107

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Sir John Soane was a legendary architect who designed some of London’s most iconic buildings in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. His former home at No. 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, now known as the Sir John Soane’s Museum, is a living testament to his genius. 

Imagine a place where art, architecture, and antiquities collide in a mind-boggling maze of rooms. That’s exactly what you’ll find at Soane’s Museum. From the awe-inspiring Dome Area to the amazing Picture Room, every nook and cranny of this house-turned-museum is a treasure trove of creativity and curiosity.

Experience a traditional afternoon tea at Rosewood London

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Location: 252 High Holborn, London WC1V 7EN, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7781 8888

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Lincoln’s Inn is one of the four Inns of Court in London and has been a hub of legal education and practice for centuries. It’s like Hogwarts for lawyers, minus the wands and flying broomsticks.

Aside from being a historical place, they also have an extensive tea selection that will make you feel like you’ve stepped into a tea emporium. From classic English Breakfast to exotic blends, there’s tea for every palate. 

Sip wine at Noble Rot 

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Location: 51 Lamb’s Conduit St, London WC1N 3NB, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7242 8963

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Noble Rot boasts a wine list that’ll make even the most discerning oenophile weak at the knees. From rare vintages to innovative blends, their selection spans the globe, showcasing the best of old and new-world wines. 

Wine and food are like a dynamic duo, and at Noble Rot, they’ve mastered this pairing to perfection. Their culinary creations are a delicious symphony of flavours, with dishes that complement their wine offerings flawlessly. 

Marvel at the architecture of St. Etheldreda’s Church

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Location: 14 Ely Pl, London EC1N 6RY, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7405 1061

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Dating back to the 13th century, this gem transports you to a time when knights and nobles roamed the land. It’s a rare survivor, a testament to the enduring beauty of Gothic architecture.

Behind this ancient church, a secret garden awaits. Imagine stepping into a time warp, surrounded by lush greenery and the soothing sound of a trickling fountain. 

The courtyard at St. Etheldreda’s is a peaceful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle, a hidden gem where you can catch your breath and admire the church’s architecture from a different angle.

Drink coffee at The Fleet Street Press

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Location: 3 Fleet St, Temple, London EC4Y 1AU, United Kingdom

Contact: You may contact them here

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Fleet Street, where this café resides, has a rich history as the hub of British journalism. The street was home to countless newspapers and presses, hence the café’s fitting name. 

The café’s charming interior is a delightful mix of vintage decor and contemporary design. It’s the kind of place where you can curl up in a corner nook with your favourite book or your laptop and lose yourself in the aroma of freshly roasted coffee.

And while coffee is the star of the show here, The Fleet Street Press also boasts a mouthwatering selection of pastries and sandwiches. Their freshly baked goods are the perfect accompaniment to your cup of liquid gold. 

Admire contemporary art at The October Gallery

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Location: 24 Old Gloucester St, London WC1N 3AL, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7242 7367

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One of the most intriguing aspects of The October Gallery is its commitment to showcasing art from around the world. 

You won’t just find London-centric pieces here. You’ll encounter works by artists hailing from Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and beyond. It’s a celebration of diverse voices and perspectives, making your visit a true journey through the global art landscape.

Plus, many of the artists featured here are known for their activism and their use of art to address important societal issues. So by visiting, you’re supporting a platform that amplifies voices working towards positive change.

Experience British cuisine at the Holborn Dining Room 

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Location: 252 High Holborn, London WC1V 7EN, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 3747 8633

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The Holborn Dining Room pays homage to traditional British cuisine while infusing it with a modern twist. From the classic fish and chips to the delectable shepherd’s pie, every dish is a harmonious blend of time-honoured recipes and contemporary creativity. 

If you’re in the mood for a quintessentially British experience, indulge in their afternoon tea. And of course, complement it with their delicate finger sandwiches and freshly baked scones.

Indulge in gourmet chocolates at Hotel Chocolat

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Location: Charing Cross Station, Strand, London WC2N 5HS, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7839 9369

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Did you know that the founders of Hotel Chocolat, Angus Thirlwell and Peter Harris, started their journey by planting their very own cacao trees in Saint Lucia? That’s right, they’re one of the few chocolatiers who control the entire process, from tree to truffle.

Besides their delectable chocolates, you’ll find a variety of cocoa-infused products, from body care items to chocolate-infused spirits. It’s a one-stop shop for all things chocolate, making it the perfect place to pick up unique gifts or a little treat for yourself.

Delight in the flavours of Korea at Hoga (ex Hozi)

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Location: 25 – 27 Theobalds Rd, London WC1X 8SP, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 7242 0978

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Hoga prides itself on serving authentic Korean cuisine that’s a revelation taste. Whether you’re a kimchi aficionado or a newbie to Korean fare, you’re in for a treat. 

And as you wait for your BBQ delights to cook, you’ll be treated to a colourful array of banchan – those delightful Korean side dishes. From pickled veggies to savoury pancakes, these small bites pack a big punch of flavour and perfectly complement the main course.

Groove through the night at TEN London

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Location: 29 High Holborn, London WC1V 6AZ, United Kingdom

Contact: +44 20 4568 5889

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Finding TEN Londo is a speakeasy-style experience. Located beneath the impressive Waldorf Hilton, you’ll need to keep your eyes peeled for the discreet entrance. It’s like discovering a secret world, and that element of exclusivity adds to the allure.

And once the clock strikes the right hour, the dance floor at TEN London comes alive. The DJs are masters of their craft, spinning tracks that will get your feet tapping and your body moving. 

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