Best Neighborhoods in West London: Your Useful Must-Read Guide
For decades, West London has been one of the most desirable places to live in London. Encompassing some of the most affluent neighborhoods in the capital, complete with sought-after white-stucco houses, high-end shopping streets, and some of the world’s finest Michelin-star eateries. From the well-to-do streets of Kensington and Chelsea to the leafy green suburbs of Richmond and Chiswick, there is a West London neighborhood for everyone.
As you would expect in an area that is desirable around the world, properties in the best places to live in West London come at a high price. However, if your pockets are deep enough, the vibrant streets, close-knit communities, and high quality of living you’ll be rewarded with can be more than worth it.
While some may characterize West London neighborhoods into one group, we’re here to dive deeper into what makes each area unique, from its pitfalls to its perks. So without further ado, here’s a look into the best neighborhoods in West London.
1. Notting Hill
Undoubtedly one of the most vibrant and highly desired West London neighborhoods, Notting Hill makes it top of the list for many reasons. First and foremost, it is a hub of cultural and artistic activity, home to numerous art galleries, museums, and indy cinemas, including the grand Gate Picturehouse. The eclectic Portobello Road market, which runs every day except for Sunday, is also a huge pull factor for new residents, offering an array of unique stalls selling everything from vintage clothing and jewelry to fresh vegetables and baked goods.
It is this creativity that lends itself to a community-oriented neighborhood with a strong sense of local pride and identity. Residents here come from all walks of life, but there is a shared sense of community spirit which can be seen in the many festivals that take place throughout the year, including the famous Notting Hill Carnival, held in August each year.
Slightly different from the usual white-stucco houses that are characteristic of West London neighborhoods, Notting Hill’s streets are slightly different. Here, you’ll find picturesque streets lined with colorful townhouses and hidden mews houses. Its prime location, high-quality housing, and easy transport links into Central London all contribute to its high rental prices, but it can be more than a worthwhile investment for those who can afford it.
Made even more famous by the TV series ‘Made in Chelsea,’ this West London neighborhood is home to high net-worth individuals from around the world as well as a long list of A-list celebrities. Of course, that is no surprise. With its elegant architecture at every turn, designer boutiques scattered along King’s Road, and world-renowned restaurants, including the likes of Gordon Ramsay’s three-star venue, Chelsea has become a hive of luxury and sophistication. While opulence is certainly the name of the game here, you’ll also find a glut of traditional English pubs and chic cafes for a casual bite to eat at the weekend.
All of this is heightened still by the neighborhood’s unbeatable location along the River Thames.
Some of the most sought-after properties in Chelsea offer up riverside spots and direct access to the Thames via private docking stations. What’s more, Chelsea has a number of the capital’s best green spaces right on its doorstep, with Hyde Park, Battersea Park, and Green Park, which is home to Buckingham Palace, a short walk away.
Popular amongst families, Chelsea has also built up a fierce reputation for high-quality schools, both public and private. In fact, with Marlborough Primary School, Hampshire School, and Coleville Primary within reaching distance, you’ll find that Chelsea is one of the best places to live in West London for families.
Neighboring Chelsea is the equality as prestigious and desirable West London neighborhood of Kensington. Similar to Chelsea, it offers up the perfect balance of charm, elegance, and convenience that makes it the perfect place to call home for families, young professionals, and internationals hoping to call London home. Like Chelsea, you’ll also be within walking distance of some of the best schools in the country.
One of the main draws to Kensington is its spectacular architecture. The area is home to some of London’s most iconic buildings, such as the Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Palace, and the Natural History Museum. The residential streets themselves are lined with picturesque Georgian and Victorian townhouses, all of which have been beautifully preserved and converted into spacious and stylish apartments.
Other than plenty of cultural and creative activities, Kensington has plenty of amenities to offer residents too. Kensington High Street runs through the center of the neighborhood, connecting Hyde Park to Hammersmith and beyond. Along this main artery, you’ll find everything from high-end designer stores and independent cafes to chain restaurants and well-known art galleries.
4. Holland Park
Moving slightly north of the highly-sought after Chelsea and Kensington is the green oasis of Holland Park. Not as well known as its neighboring West London neighborhoods, life here is more peaceful and can even be marginally more affordable. Despite being less popular, Holland Park is still adorned with leafy tree-lined streets, well-kept open green spaces, and an impressive array of cultural spaces. Plus, sitting in the middle of West London, it’s a great location for exploring the rest of London.
Whether you are a resident or not, Holland Park is loved for its namesake park, which has become a verdant oasis in the heart of the city. The park features winding paths, beautiful gardens, and even a Japanese garden, providing residents with a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of city life. The park is also home to a range of cultural attractions, including the Holland Park Opera, which draws crowds from across the city.
Holland Park is also known for its elegant architecture, with many of the properties in the area dating back to the Victorian and Edwardian eras. These grand townhouses and spacious apartments have been beautifully restored and renovated, providing residents with a unique blend of historic charm and modern luxury.
Nestled into a meander of the River Thames, Fulham takes riverside living in London to a whole new level. Once an abandoned industrial area, Fulham has been impressively transformed into a mainly residential area, complete with grand houses and cozy cottages from the Victorian, Edwardian, and Georgia periods.
Surrounded on three sides by the river, Fulham offers a peaceful suburban-style life for residents while still being within an easy-reaching distance of the rest of London. In fact, its transport options are arguably the best in West London, with three tube stops; Parsons Green, Putney Bridge, and Fulham Broadway, all offering a hassle-free route into every corner of London.
Along with easy access to the Thames, what makes Fulham one of the best places to live in West London is its proximity to some of London’s best parks, including Bishops Park and Fulham Palace Gardens. That’s not to mention its wide range of cultural activities, including the likes of Fulham Palace Museum and Chelsea Harbour Design Center, both fantastic options for spending a rainy Saturday afternoon.
Another of West London’s neighborhoods with the privilege of sitting along the River Thames is Chiswick. Similar to Fulham, Chiswick boasts a much more laid-back atmosphere, with traditional pubs on every corner and restaurants run by locals. If you’re hoping to discover more than just the eateries, this neighborhood is full to the brim with historical finds, including Chiswick House of Fulham Brewery.
Another of the most notable features of Chiswick is its beautiful parks and open spaces. The area is home to several parks, such as the Chiswick House and Gardens and the Dukes Meadows, which offer plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation and relaxation.
Chiswick is also known for its thriving food and drink scene, with a wide range of cafes, restaurants, and pubs to choose from. The neighborhood has a strong sense of community, and there are several annual events and festivals that take place throughout the year, such as the Chiswick Book Festival and the Chiswick Summer Fair.
Richmond is a picturesque and affluent suburb that is widely regarded as one of the best places to live in West London. It is known for its stunning natural beauty, historic architecture, and relaxed atmosphere, making it a popular choice for families and young professionals.
Richmond’s location has become a huge pulling factor when choosing where to live in London. Situated on the banks of the River Thames, it offers stunning views of the river and easy access to some of London’s best parks, including Richmond Park, known for its resident flock of deer, and Kew Gardens, adored for its Victorian Glasshouse. It is also well-connected to the rest of the city, with excellent transport links to central London and beyond.
In terms of amenities, Richmond has plenty to offer. The area is home to numerous high-end boutiques, trendy restaurants, and independent cafes, as well as a range of cultural attractions, such as the Richmond Theatre and the Museum of Richmond. Richmond is a family-friendly neighborhood with a strong sense of community spirit and a plethora of highly-regarded schools to school from. These include Grove Park Primary, Holy Trinity Church of England School, and Marshgate Primary.
9. Ealing Broadway
Ealing is a diverse and vibrant neighborhood located in West London, often referred to as the “Queen of the Suburbs.” It is situated in the borough of Ealing and is known for its excellent transport links, lively town center, and beautiful parks and open spaces.
Ealing has a population of around 130,000 people and is home to a wide range of shops, restaurants, and cultural attractions. The neighborhood is particularly popular with young professionals due to its easy access to central London and affordable housing options.
One of the most notable features of Ealing is its beautiful parks and open spaces. The area is home to several parks, such as the Ealing Common and Walpole Park, which offer plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation and relaxation. It’s also well-known for its television and cinematic history, home to Ealing Studios, which is considered one of the oldest film studios, not only in England but also in the world. Popular productions, including Doctor Who, Notting Hill, and Passport to Pimlico, were all filmed right here.
With an early history in the arts, Ealing has developed a thriving culture scene, with several other theaters, music venues, and art galleries located throughout the neighborhood. The area is also home to several annual events and festivals, such as the Ealing Jazz Festival and the Ealing Comedy Festival.
Final Thoughts on West London Neighborhoods
When it comes to choosing the right neighborhood to call home, there are many factors to consider, from the cost of living to the local community spirit. Hopefully, with our insights into some of the best places to live in West London, you will have gained a better understanding of what each area has to offer and can make an informed decision about where to live.
Ultimately, the right West London neighborhood is the one that meets your individual needs and lifestyle preferences. Whether you are a young professional or a growing family, there is a place for you in West London. We hope that this article has provided some valuable insights and inspiration for your next move! Happy house-hunting!
To know more about London neighborhoods, read our articles on London’s best neighborhoods, London’s richest neighborhoods and family-friendly neighborhoods in London. We also have a fantastic guide on the best commuter towns outside London for those who want to live in a residential area outside London