There’s never been a better time to experience London’s idyllic canals, particularly in the East, where the pathways have been extensively restored in recent years. The area now has some of the finest stretches of waterway in the capital, as well as some of the best places to stop off for a drink or bite to eat.
One of the first eateries to open directly on the canal in East London, the Towpath Cafe, offers simple, tasty food throughout the day. Now expanded across four converted storage units. It has no phone number or even major signage; most people either stumble by or hear of it through enthusiastic friends.
Ribeira, Regent’s canal
Sitting mere metres from the Towpath Cafe, Ribeira, is a great place to stop by after dark. A modern bar and bistro, it offers hearty South American style food alongside a strong selection of wine and cocktails.
The Proud Archivist
An inviting gallery space and cafe in Dalston with huge windows looking straight onto the water, this is the perfect place to enjoy the scenery and a coffee during the day or a couple of glasses of wine in the evening.
The Counter Cafe, Olympic Stadium
The Counter Cafe is a lovely spot away from the busier corners of East London, offering a fine and varied breakfast menu. It sits on the canal, behind a block of artist studios on one side and the Olympic Stadium directly in front of it on the other side of the water.
Filling Station, King’s Place
A stone’s throw out of East London, The Filling Station – situated in, you guessed it, a converted filling station – is a novel place to grab a coffee or some food. Head there in the summer months to enjoy the Shrimpy’s outside grill featuring their trademark crab burgers.