When we first moved to London, my husband and I resolved to try as many of the markets in the city that we could. The three Camden markets (Camden Passage, Camden Lock, and Camden Markets) were our third, fourth, and fifth markets (following Borough and Greenwich markets) - we found them such fun that we returned the following day! This review will focus on Camden Lock and Camden Markets, referring to them together as 'Camden Market'.
Due to its sheer size, Camden Market is able to encompass what Borough and Greenwich both purport to specialise in (Borough - food, Greenwich - arts and crafts). Camden Lock boasts loads of cafes and open food stalls, featuring cuisine from literally all around the world - Vietnamese baguettes, Argentine beef burgers, West Country roast pork sandwiches and savoury crepes, among many, many other things. In terms of more permanent purchases, the market has retained an alternative vibe throughout the years, with many stores selling incense, one-of-a-kind handmade gifts and accessories, and vintage and boutique clothing. I bought a dress from one of the boutiques - and was delighted to find that the store owner was, in fact, the designer (who gave me tips on how to wear it!).
If you're looking for a unique gift for a friend, or something exciting to do on Saturday afternoon, then I would wholeheartedly recommend catching the Northern Line to Camden Town.
N.B. Camden Town Tube is closed from 2.30pm to 5pm on Saturdays except for people alighting - so unless you're willing to walk the extra 10 minutes or so to Mornington Crescent, you might find yourself unable to make your way home until 5!