Despite the name, Clapham Junction is actually located in nearby Battersea as opposed to Clapham, which causes endless confusion for tourists looking for Clapham Common (the north side of the common is close to Clapham Junction but the station is a 30 minute walk away).
Nestled between the leafy, affluent areas of Wandsworth and Battersea, Clapham Junction is known for having a buzzing, bustling atmosphere, with plenty of bars and clubs and the busiest train station in the UK. While families tend to stick to the quieter areas of Clapham Old Town and Clapham South, Clapham Junction is hugely popular with young professionals and Australians, who flock here for the (relatively) affordable rent and entertainment.
Although this area isn’t really known for being creative and cool in the way that places like Peckham and Shoreditch are, it does have a great sense of community that can be hard to find. Close-by Clapham was badly affected by the riots in 2011, but the locals came together to clean the area up and images of residents holding their brooms aloft showed many how close-knit the neighbourhood really is.
There's plenty to do here too, whether it's shopping, bar hopping or going to restaurants. Here's our pick of the best things to do in Clapham Junction.
Restaurants in Clapham Junction
This hidden gem certainly has the 'Wow' factor - tucked away in a beautiful historic building in the heart of Wandsworth Common, it's perfect for a special dinner or private event. The restaurant serves French bistro-style cuisine, and there's a stunning wine bar and courtyard too. Perfect for drinking al-fresco on a sunny afternoon.
Address: The Royal Victoria Patriotic Building, John Archer Way, London SW18 3SX Phone: 020 8870 6567
This branch of popular pizza place Franco Manca (which started as a street food van just a few years ago!) has been hailed as the best pizza spot in London. These circles of deliciousness are made with sourdough flour and cooked in a wood-fired oven for an authentic Italian flavour. The prices are low, and all the booze is organic so you can off-set any pizza guilt with ease.
Address: 74 Northcote Rd, London, SW11 6QL Phone:020 7924 3110
This cool cafe is packed with regulars on the weekends who come for the top-notch Climpson and Sons coffee, the tasty cakes and the fresh sandwiches. The style is retro-casual, with grey walls and bright artwork - the perfect setting for an afternoon with coffee, cake and a good book.
Address: 123 St John's Hill, Battersea, London SW11 1SZ Phone: 020 7228 6663
You'd be hard pressed to find a better brunch spot in Clapham Junction than the Breakfast Club, an eclectic 50s-style cafe with a mouthwatering morning menu that's served until 5pm everyday. Our favourites include the moreish chorizo hash browns, the American pancakes and the classic Eggs Benedict. They also do a dinner menu and host cool weekly events too, so you've no reason not to stay from dawn 'til dusk!Address: 5-9 Battersea Rise, London SW11 1HG Phone: 020 7078 9630
A cosy bistro with exposed walls (and a very memorable name), Fish in a Tie serves good value Mediterranean fish and meat to hungry locals, many of whom are dedicated regulars.
Address: 105 Falcon Rd, London SW11 2PF Phone:020 7924 1913
For more restaurants near Clapham Junction, check out our post dedicated to the best eateries in the area here!
Shopping in Clapham Junction
No glamorous gym bunny would be seen exercising in anything other than cult label Sweaty Betty. Although pricey, their exercise clothes are beautifully designed, well-made and fashionable enough to wear for a post-workout coffee at a nearby cafe.
Address: 136 Northcote Road, Clapham, London, SW11 6QZ
Tel: 0207 978 5444
This French deli, bakery and cafe is so popular, is now has two branches in Clapham to deal with the local demand for fantastic French food. They have a lovely garden if you've got time to spare after perusing the deli, and also offer catering for events if you don't feel like cooking.
Address: 157 St John's Hill, London SW11 1TQ Phone: 020 7223 9863
Packed to the rafters with vintage clothing, furniture and accessories, Living Vintage is the perfect place to come to find something unique. The patterned fabric and child-sized bookcases are particularly lovely.
Address: 113C-113D Northcote Rd, London SW11 6PW Phone: 020 7223 4440
Technically a supermarket, but in reality so much more - Whole Foods sells high quality produce, artisan products and those hard-to-get ingredients that you just can't find at your local branch of Tesco. While it's a little too pricey for the weekly shop, it's a great place to stock up on treats.
Address: 305-311 Lavender Hill, London, SW11 1LN Phone: 02075851488
Attractions near Clapham Junction
With 200 acres of green space, ponds and even a Victorian bandstand, there's a slice of the countryside in Clapham. The perfect place for a indulging in a relaxing picnic, or even something more energetic at the skate park, basketball court or running track. Clapham Common is also brilliant to have nearby if you have a dog - check out our Guide to Dog-Friendly London for more info.
Brixton Village Market
Located in nearby Brixton, this eclectic covered street market is best known for the amazing international food on offer, particularly African and Caribbean. Offering both produce and street food stalls, it has become a popular haunt on Thursday and Friday nights for those who want a few drinks and something a bit different to eat. Check out seven of the best food markets in London if food markets are your thing!
Update: We've added an extra attraction in due to its popularity.
Escape rooms have become all the rage over the last few years, and Lady Chastity's Reserve at The Four Thieves Pub near Clapham Junction is one of the best ones. Play in a group and solve mysteries while actors add to the authenticity of the experience.
An annual music festival held on Clapham Common during the August Bank Holiday weekend, fans travel here from all over London (and the rest of the UK) to see some of the world's best dance, house, electro and drum & bass artists.
Battersea Arts Centre is actually located in a beautiful Grade II listed building in Clapham Junction. A performance space specialising in music, theatre and dance events, it's hosted everything from local productions to big names such as Punchdrunk and Michael Macintyre over the years.
Address: Lavender Hill, Battersea, London, SW11 5TN
Not keen on any of the blockbusters at the Odeon? Try the Clapham Picture House instead, an independent arthouse cinema which shows a great selection of classic films and cult favourites. They even have their own bar so you can enjoy a glass of wine as you watch a film - heaven!
Address: 76 Venn St, London SW4 0AT
Cost of renting in Clapham Junction
Due to the gentrification, the cost of renting in Clapham Junction has risen steadily over the last few years. However, depending on which part you choose it’s still possible to find a bargain.
Cheapest rent for a two-bed flat: £1300 pcm
Most expensive rent for a two-bed flat: £6933 pcm
Average council tax: £700/year
Travelling from Clapham Junction
Home to the busiest train station in the UK, you technically couldn’t be better connected transport-wise in Clapham Junction. If you’re looking to get out of London or to the other side of Britain, you’re in the best spot to take a trip.
However, although you also have the Overground here, there is no tube station in Clapham Junction – your nearest option is two miles away at Clapham Common, on the Northern Line. There are still plenty of buses, but if you commute via tube you might be better living closer to Clapham High Street.