So you have 24 hours and you fancy spending them in buzzy and beautiful Brentford but you don’t know where to start?
Don’t worry – we’ve got the inside scoop on how to fill those hours, and we bet that by the time you’re finished you’ll want to spend a few more.
Firstly, a bit about Brentford. Located in West London (TW8) on the River Brent, this pocket of London encompasses green spaces, beautiful locks and walkways, great places to eat and drink and of course is the next door neighbour to the stunning expanse of emerald that is Kew Gardens.
Being located right on the banks of the River Brent means you will never be lost for sunny weekend walks ever again. Follow the river using the abundance of canal paths and explore London from a completely different angle.
The creative community is strong in Brentford with artists, painters, sculptors and an abundance of other creatives flocking to the area to get inspired. You’ll never be short of new and intriguing pop ups to visit, with plenty of exciting home made things to buy and enjoy.
Despite alluding to a small town feel outside of central London, Brentford is surprisingly easy to get to. A varied and well connected collection of 14 different bus routes means over 68 stops connecting Brentford to several London universities, Trafalgar Square, Chessington World of Adventures, Heathrow, Hounslow and Kingston.
Not a fan of riding the red buses? Don’t fear, Brentford has an impressive connection of Underground and National Rail Links. Whilst it doesn’t have an official Underground Station, it’s only a 20-minute walk from Northfields Underground Station (Piccadilly Line, 24hr Night Tube). Northfields to Leicester Square takes only 29-minutes, so even with a short walk you can be in the heart of central London in under an hour. From Northfields, it’s only two stops to Acton Town for the District Line for Wimbledon, Chelsea, Victoria and Westminster.
Brentford National Rail Station links Brentford to Clapham Junction, Vauxhall and Waterloo using South Western Railway. Trains run every half an hour and take 19-minutes to Clapham Junction (for Overground, Gatwick Airport and Brighton), 25-minutes to Vauxhall (for Victoria Line) and Waterloo in 32-minutes for the Jubilee and Northern Lines and other National Rail services.
Without further ado, let’s get started with your first stop of the day – breakfast! You head to Rye By The Water, an independent boulangerie nestled on the heart of the river. The sparkling water, streaming sunshine and gentle breeze entice you to take a seat at one of the al fresco tables. You order a flaky, buttery croissant made onsite and immediately regret only buying one. Heading back in you grab a marmite and cheese scroll (for later of course) and a Caravan coffee to fuel your day. After an hour by the water, you reluctantly leave your chair and start to explore the high street on foot.
Walking past the intriguing Duke of London you admire the many classic and luxury super cars on display and instantly think to yourself ‘would I look good in a classic car?’ And make a mental note to come back another day for a slice of pizza from the delectable Santa Maria. You also notice they host drive in cinema nights (something fun to do in the summer evenings).
Your tummy rumbles (one croissant truly is never enough) and you are immediately glad of the marmite and cheese scroll from earlier.
Time to explore the canal paths you have read about. The Canal and River trust highlights Brentford as a great place for a walk or cycle, and in only 10-minutes you find yourself at the Thames Lock (the final lock on the Grand Union canal and the gateway to the River Thames). Soaking up the sunshine you find yourself at one of London’s smallest museums, The Toll House. Here you learn all about the fascinating history of how the Brentford Lock played such a crucial role in London’s waterways and how they impacted the cargo and shipping of the rest of the world. The Toll House dates back to the 1900s, where it would have contained ledgers that recorded the weight and size of the cargo passing through the dock. The ships would then pay the ‘toll’ on these items.
After a while soaking in the history of TW8’s waterways, you head back down the canal path towards the high street.
Checking your watch, you realise it’s time for a bite to eat. It’s hard to choose from all the different options that the high street has to offer, but you have heard about the Brentford hotspot The Weir. This gastropub has been serving the local community since 2002 and has a focus on creating hearty and delicious food with a sophisticated edge. You mentally book mark that The Weir has Valentine’s Day, Easter, St Patrick’s Day and summer BBQs and parties.
But you are here for now for one thing only, something delicious and filling. Scanning the menu, you spy fresh rock oysters, bubbly champagne cocktails, roasted sea bream, catch of the day, chateaubriand and more. You decide on several small plates as the choice is too tempting and finish off with an indulgently sticky and delicious sticky toffee pudding and ice cream. Time for some more exploring!
One of the huge benefits of Brentford is that it’s location means easy access into the City, but at the same time has vast swathes of green space and waterways. A lot of the green space is down to the mesmerising Kew Gardens. You decide that seeing as it’s such a lovely day, Kew Gardens would be the perfect place to spend a few hours.
Open 10am-5pm every day, Kew Gardens is only a short stroll (around 30-minutes) from Brentford and features over 50,000 different kinds of plants, 14,000 trees, lakes, landscaped gardens, indoor greenhouses with cacti and succulents and wildlife. In fact, their living plant collections are some of the largest in the world.
Throughout the year they also host incredible sessions with artists, authors, family friendly events and of course festive light shows and experiences.
You stroll through the greenery and soak in all of the beautiful sounds, smells and sensory experiences that nature provides. Grabbing a quick, locally sourced, seasonal snack at the Kew restaurant, you stop for a moment to pause and reflect on how beautiful the verdant surroundings are. You realise you are within 30-minutes of central London, and yet with the river and trees you could be in the middle of the countryside.
Reluctantly you realise Kew is closing and you tear yourself away ready to wind down the day with a bite to eat and a cocktail.
As the sun slowly starts to set, you take a seat at Siracusa, an Italian restaurant in the heart of the Brentford Lock. Your mouth starts to water smelling the rich Italian aromas. Sipping a rich and full-bodied chianti, you decide on the prawns to start, then the tempting calzone and to finish with an indulgent tiramisu and an espresso.
Post-dinner you stroll to Time Cocktail Bar, the only one of its kind in Brentford. Heading to the bar you go for a Time classic Kentucky Mule and sip whilst looking out over the Brentford lock. Reflecting on your day you realise you’ve seen so much of Brentford but you yearn to see more, to experience more of what TW8 has to offer. One day in Brentford is just not enough.
If you’re interested in making Brentford your home, contact us here. We’ve recently opened our eighth London office in Brentford and we can’t wait to find people their dream homes in this exciting pocket of West London. We’re also offering 0% for anyone selling or letting their home, so get in touch now!