Walk & Brunch: Highgate, LondonCommune with Marx, take a stroll before brunch, and finish with a little-known, spectacular view of London's skyline
Start at the corner of Highgate Road and Swain's Lane next to the Parliament Hill Fields entrance to Hampstead Heath. You could of course spend a whole day strolling about the Heath (London's greatest park) but this short morning journey will see you take an alternative walk along the short stretch of quaint shopfronts on Swain's Lane and follow the road past the spooky Gothic houses of Holly Village and up the steepish hill to Highgate Cemetery, which is to London what Père Lachaise is to Paris. Here, if you've booked a guided tour in advance, proceed to the West Cemetery, and if not hit the East Cemetery. Overgrown with fascinating gravestones and tombs, and countless celebrated residents – Karl Marx anyone? – the cemetery will have you instantly engaged by its history and mesmerised by its beauty. Once done, head back down Swain's Lane, turn left into Chester Road and follow the road round to the right where architectural fans of Brutalist social housing will enjoy looking at the Peter Tabori-designed 1970s Stoneleigh Terrace. Follow Chester Road past Highgate Library, the Star Pub (both listed buildings) and at the top turn left onto Dartmouth Park Hill where you'll see the pretty Crick's Corner café at the junction of Bickerton Road, your spot for brunch and coffee. Appetite sated, stroll a (very) little way down Bickerton Road and you'll notice Dartmouth Park itself , a small patch of green that houses one of London's reservoirs (being on a hill). Cross over, enter and climb to the top where you'll enjoy one of the best views of London's skyline the city has to offer.
Suggested Timeframe: 3 hours
Physical Effort: Easy
Need To Know:
George Michael is buried in the West Cemetery but visitors are not permitted to see his grave.
Richard Madden's character in The Bodyguard, David Budd, lived in Stoneleigh Terrace and escaped into Highgate Cemetery after police finally disarmed his suicide vest in the final episode.
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