Boroughs are not only for rabbits!!
London has just turned into 2023’s best city to live in. Travelling through the city in its iconic red buses should be one thing you should not miss to cross your London to-do checklist. So, while doing that, why not explore the best Boroughs in London? Students from across the world rush to the capital city of the United Kingdom to pursue their undergraduate degrees, postgraduate degrees and PhDs at some of the best universities in the world. With the rising demand for London student accommodation, students require budget-friendly housing options near the top universities in the city. With multiple accommodation options and amenities, amber has a lot to offer. So, without any further ado, here are the best Boroughs in London.
What Are Boroughs & Why Are Boroughs Important To A City?
London Boroughs play a major role in the city. You can think of a borough as a slice of administrative territory found in different English-speaking countries. Originally, the word “borough” referred to a self-governing town with walls around it, but in reality, how it’s used officially can be quite different from place to place.
The city of London is divided into 32 districts known as boroughs. These boroughs were established on April 1, 1965. A separate council administers each Borough. Each Borough has distinctiveness, so knowing the different locations is crucial to making a more appropriate decision about where you wish to live and study. For example, Islington is frequently considered one of the best London boroughs. Thus, looking for accommodation in Islington while relocating to London would be prudent. Here are a few reasons why boroughs are important to a city:
- Local Governance: Think of boroughs as having their own mini-governments or councils. These local authorities handle issues specific to their area, which means decisions and solutions are more in tune with what’s happening on the ground.
- Service Delivery: When it comes to services like safety, education, sanitation, and healthcare, boroughs make sure everything runs smoothly. They can customise services to suit the unique needs of each area.
- Community Representation: Boroughs give folks a voice right in their backyard. Residents can express their concerns and opinions at a local level, making sure that what makes their neighbourhoods special is taken into account.
- Urban Planning: Boroughs are like the architects of a city. They’re essential for planning and developing different parts of the city. This means they can create unique plans to accommodate growth, manage resources, and improve infrastructure for each area.
- Cultural and Historical Significance: Many boroughs have their own distinct culture and history, adding to the tapestry of a city’s rich diversity.
- Efficient Resource Allocation: By breaking a city into smaller units, boroughs make it easier to manage resources and budgets more efficiently. This means problems can be addressed with a sharper focus.
Best Boroughs in London for Student Accommodation
Students can find fully furnished and pocket-friendly London student accommodation options in the best London boroughs. It has something for everybody. Student accommodation is further divided into halls of residence, rooms and private housing with comfortable, luxurious yet budget-friendly ensuites, studio apartments, and shared apartments in London for rent, including various amenities. It is much easier to book short-term London student accommodation than in any other city in England with amber. You must be wondering which is the best borough in London. We’ve curated a list of the 15 best boroughs in London. From the trendy vibes of Shoreditch to the historic landmarks of Westminster, there’s something for everyone on this list. Get ready to discover some of the most exciting neighbourhoods in this incredible city.
Best Inner London Boroughs
Inner Borough refers to a group of the best boroughs in London that are situated in the central part of the city. They are more densely populated and have more commercial, cultural, and historic landmarks. They are known for their vibrant energy, busy streets, and diverse communities. The Houses of Parliament, the Tower of London, and St. Paul’s Cathedral are situated in the inner boroughs. The outer boroughs are residential and suburban, while the inner boroughs have an urban excitement and historical charm that draws millions of visitors worldwide each year. The inner boroughs are a must-visit destination for people wanting to experience the best that London has to offer.
1. City of Westminster
Avg score: 4.60
Avg cost of living: £4,940-£5500
Student Accommodation options: Wellington Lodge, Scape Mile End Canalside
Top Universities: University of Westminster (Regent Campus) and University of Westminster (Cavendish Campus)
Best at: Exploring iconic landmarks and Indulging in fine dining experiences
Worst at: Finding quiet and peaceful spots
Best suited for History enthusiasts, Food connoisseurs and Culture seekers
The City of Westminster, like the City of London, was established in 1965 and now has both city and best london boroughs status. It is located in the west of the City of London and north of the River Thames, and it is part of the Inner London boroughs and the majority of the core area of London. It encompasses most of the famous West End theatre district and a portion of Camden. Visit two renowned restaurants, Gordon Ramsay’s Petrus and Duck & Waffle. This Borough has plenty to offer, including Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament, as well as some of London’s top shopping districts, including Covent Garden, Soho, and Carnaby Street. Students can enjoy street shopping, musicals and plays and also visit palaces.
Pros of staying in the London Borough of Westminster
- The Borough of Westminster is home to some classic London landmarks like Trafalgar Square, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, and Buckingham Palace
- The area is surrounded by many lovely neighbourhoods.
Cons of staying in London Borough of Westminster
- The Westminster area is a relatively very crowded area; there is a lot of in and out of people during the day and night time.
Avg score: 4.50
Avg cost of living: £1,100-£1,800
Student Accommodation options: Mile End Canalside-Go Britanya and IQ East Court, Mile End
Top Universities in Southwark: King’s College London – Guy’s Campus, London School of Commerce and Kaplan International College
Best at: Experiencing vibrant street life and sampling diverse cuisines
Worst at: Finding expansive green spaces
Best suited for: Art and culture enthusiasts, Food lovers and Nightlife seekers
The London Borough of Southwark is situated in southern London and is connected to the best London Boroughs of Tower Hamlets and the City of London by bridges across the River Thames. Southwark London Borough Council manages it. The Shard is located in the Borough of Southwark. Southwark is home to numerous well-known sites, including Shakespeare’s Globe, Borough Market, Tate Modern, and the Imperial War Museum. The Shard and Borough Market offers a delightful gastronomic journey with their diverse culinary offerings Students must visit the world-famous Tower Bridge. This inner-best London borough is surely one of the best in the city.
Pros of staying in the London Borough of Southwark
- Southwark hosts some of the best tourist attractions of London like the Shards, London Bridge, Tower Bridge, Shakespeare Globe, etc.
- Amongst all the boroughs in London, Southwark has one of the best and buzzing views of London
Cons of staying in London Borough of Southwark
- Just like Camden, Southwark is also a very noisy neighborhood because of the constant traffic in the area.
Avg cost of living: £1,300-£1500
Student Accommodation options: Canada Water, IQ Will Wyatt Court and Chapter Kings Cross
Top Universities in Hackney: Loughborough University (London campus), Queen Mary University of London(Mile End) and Queen Mary University (Whitechapel)Glasgow
Best at: Embracing creativity and innovation and Discovering hidden gems
Worst at: Providing easy access to major tourist attractions
Best suited for: Artists and creatives, Hipsters and trendsetters and Alternative fashion enthusiasts
The London Borough of Hackney, named for its most prominent area, is divided into two parts of London, with the northwest half of the best borough in London falling under the jurisdiction of North London and the southern and eastern parts falling under the jurisdiction of East London. It is one of the inner London boroughs. The previous metropolitan, best boroughs in London of Stoke Newington and Shoreditch are also included in Hackney.
The Columbia Road Flower Market is well-known in Hackney. Students can walk along Regents Canal in Hackney and enjoy tranquil parks such as London Fields. Pidgin and Climpson’s Arch are some of the famous restaurants out there. They may enjoy a stunning perspective of the city from St. Augustine’s Tower. Visit Sutton House to discover more about the history of London.
Pros of staying in the London Borough of Hackney
- Hackney is one of the boroughs in London that has a lot of hangout spots. You can chill at a coffee shop, vegan restaurants, or craft beer bars on weekends.
- If you are looking for a good shopping adventure, then Hackney is the best place for you. With a lot of thrift and designer shops lined up the streets, you will have many shopping options available.
Cons of staying in the London Borough of Hackney
- Despite being one of the best boroughs in London for shopping and hangout spots. Hackey does not have a good transport connection. Most of the borough is not covered by the tube, making it a bit inconvenient for travel.
Avg score: 4
Avg cost of living: £1,900-£2100
Student Accommodation options: Goldsmiths House, The Stay Club Camden and AXO Camden
Top Universities in Camden: Royal Veterinary College, European Business School and University of London
Best at: Experiencing alternative music and culture and Shopping for quirky and unique items
Worst at: Providing tranquil and serene spaces
Best suited for: Music lovers, Vintage fashion enthusiasts and alternative lifestyle seekers
The London Borough of Camden, where the London Zoo is located, was given its name in honour of Charles Pratt, 1st Earl Camden in 1795. It is the seventh-smallest Borough in London, with an 11% student population. It is an inner borough of London. This area is well-known for its colourful street art and large market. It was once more well-known for being Gothic.
Camden markets- delicacies, souvenirs, jewellery, apparel, and many more are fantastic places to visit in Camden. Visit Gilgamesh and The Blues Kitchen for an unforgettable dining experience. Amy Winehouse, a musician who resided in Camden and was one of its renowned residents, has a statue in the city. Camden borough has tremendous nightlife with excellent bars and clubs.
Pros of staying in Camden
- If you enjoy the bustling nightlife of London, Camden is a place to unleash your party animal spirit. It is known as one of the best boroughs in London for nightclub activities, with more than 200+ chic clubs around the area.
- Camden is an attraction and magnet for many young people because of its young, bustling energy and environment. From live performances to entertainment attractions, this area has it all.
Cons of staying in Camden
- Even though Camden is one of the best boroughs in London, it wouldn’t be the best place to stay if you like living in quieter areas.
Avg score: 4.31
Avg cost of living: £1100-£1800
Student Accommodation options: The Cube Greenwich, IQ Flinders House and Greenwich Residence-Go Britanya
Top Universities in Greenwich : University of Greenwich, University of Sunderland and Goldsmiths (University of London)
Best at: Discovering maritime history and Enjoying panoramic views of London
Worst at: Providing a bustling nightlife scene
Best suited for: History buffs, Nature lovers and Families seeking a peaceful retreat
The Royal Greenwich Borough in London, formed by combining the two metropolitan municipalities of Greenwich and Woolwich, is notable for the Greenwich Prime Meridian and the origin of the name Greenwich Mean Time. London Borough of Greenwich was designated a Royal Borough in 2012 to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee. It is an inner London borough located in the southeast of Greater London.
The residents in the Borough are kind and of many races. It is the 13th largest Borough, with several housing alternatives and world-renowned universities. The Old Brewery and Craft London gives you delectable cuisine and stunning views of the river. It is situated on the southern bank of the River Thames and is rich in maritime history and architectural heritage. Students can visit the Greenwich Observatory, museums, architecture and beautiful streets.
Pros of staying in Greenwich
- Compared to other parts of the city, Greenwich is one of the best boroughs in London for students who want to experience the urban and rural lifestyle.
- Greenwich has no shortage of attractions; there are many beautiful and popular places like the Royal Observatory Greenwich, Royal Greenwich Park, the National Maritime Museum, etc. There are many entertaining and unique places to visit in Greenwich.
Cons of staying in Greenwich
- One con of staying in Greenwich would be that the Docklands Light Railway aren’t as good as the London Tube.
6. Hammersmith and Fulham
Avg score: 4.11
Avg cost of living: £1700 – £2400
Student Accommodation options: Fulham Palace Studios and Vita Student Lewisham Exchange
Top Universities: BIMM and South Thames College
Best at: Enjoying riverside walks and Attending live performances
Worst at: Providing a vibrant shopping scene
Best suited for: Nature enthusiasts, Theater and music lovers and Peaceful retreat seekers
London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham is an inner London borough located in both southwest and western London. It is the only Borough in London with three football clubs: Queens Park Rangers, Fulham, and Chelsea. Hammersmith and Fulham are well-known central London transport hubs and boroughs. It is West London’s most important business and employment district and is famous for the Hammersmith Bridge over the River Thames. River Cafe and The River House restaurants offer a perfect blend of excellent food and a pleasant ambience. Some of the student attractions in the Borough are King Street, Hammersmith Broadway, Shopping Centres, Ravenscourt Park, Fulham Market Hall, and Fulham Palace Museum.
Pros of staying in London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham
- When you live in Hammersmith and Fulham, you have a lot of options for shopping. It is also renowned as a shopping district, similar to Hackney, with numerous designer and department stores.
- If you are a football fanatic, then living in this borough can get you closer to your favorite clubs like Chelsea and Fulham etc.
Cons of staying in London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham
- The London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham is close to the airport. This would be a major concern in terms of noise pollution.
Avg score: 4.41
Avg cost of living: £2,000-2250
Student Accommodation options: Chapter Islington, Scape Shoreditch and IQ Shoreditch
Top Universities: Université Paris-Dauphine (London campus), City University of London and London Metropolitan University
Best at: Exploring trendy bars and restaurants and Enjoying cultural performances
Worst at: Offering extensive green spaces
Best suited for: Food enthusiasts, Theater and dance lovers and Fashion-forward individuals
Islington is the second-smallest inner London Borough, but it encompasses a significant portion of the city centre. The Islington Borough of London is a hub of Arsenal Football Club, one of England’s most successful clubs, and the Emirates Stadium, the country’s largest. In the heart of Kings Cross, enjoy and see the famous Emirates Stadium, Emirates Museum, Charterhouse, and London Canal Museum. Visit Ottolenghi and The Gate which has established innovative vegetarian and vegan dishes to cater for your diverse tastes. At White Cross Street Market, you may eat street food.
Performances at Sadler’s Wells Theatre, the Almeida Theatre, and the Union Chapel Church. With over 70 market stalls and an international array of food to taste, the Cally Festival provides a picture of London’s most diverse. Surely it is one of the best Boroughs in London.
Pros of staying in the London Borough of Islington
- Islington is one of the best boroughs in London for its culinary scene; this area has all sorts of restaurants like Turkish, Thai, Mediterranean, etc.
- London Borough of Islington has a sorted art scene
Cons of staying in London Borough of Islington
- The rents in Islington are skyrocketing high as compared to other boroughs in London.
8. Kensington and Chelsea
Avg score: 4.73
Avg cost of living: £3000 – £3,300
Student Accommodation options: Louise House, The Curve and Vauxhall Bridge Rd
Top Universities: Richmond University (Kensington Campus), Royal College of Art, Royal College of Music and Imperial College London
Best at: Experiencing luxury and sophistication and Immerse yourself in art and culture
Worst at: Catering to budget-conscious travellers
Best suited for: Luxury seekers, Art and design enthusiasts and Upscale shoppers
The London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is the 2nd smallest inner London Borough, yet it is well-known for its vibrant atmosphere and strategic location. It is one of the overpopulated locations in the United Kingdom. Notting Hill, one of London’s most famous and picturesque neighborhoods, is located in the Borough’s southwest corner and is home to Portobello Road and the Notting Hill Carnival. Dishoom and The Ivy Chelsea Garden restaurants offer a luxurious dining experience in stylish settings. The Borough is located to the west of the City of Westminster, in the heart of modern London and is home to several city-center facilities such as prominent museums and colleges.
Pros of staying in the London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
- Kensington and Chelsea is a green neighborhood. There are numerous gardens in the surrounding neighborhood, including the well-known Hyde Park.
- This area is also known to be one of the safest areas to live in London.
Cons of staying in the London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
- Kensington and Chelsea isn’t the best borough in London in terms of air quality. The area is prone to a lot of air pollution due to increasing road traffic.
Best Outer London Boroughs
Outer borough refers to the boroughs located on the outskirts of the city. They are located away from the city centre and have a residential feel, with larger houses, more green spaces, and a quieter pace of life. They are affordable compared to the inner boroughs, making them popular with families and young professionals looking for space and better value for their money. They have excellent transport links, with regular trains, buses, and underground services connecting them to the rest of the city.
9. Barking and Dagenham
Avg score: 3.88
Avg cost of living: £1,200 – £1400
Student Accommodation options: The Valentine – London and London Stratford
Top Universities in: Newham College (East Ham Campus)
Best at: Embracing community spirit and Exploring local heritage
Worst at: Offering a wide range of entertainment options
Best suited for: Families seeking a friendly environment, History enthusiasts and Outdoor enthusiasts
Barking and Dagenham were formed by combining the two old municipal boroughs of Barking and Dagenham. Chadwell Heath is also included in the best London boroughs. It is located to the east of Central London as an outlying of best London boroughs. The London borough of Barking and Dagenham was one of six best borough in London to host the 2012 Summer Olympics. Visit The Boat House Cafe and The Pipe Major for a delightful dining experience. The southern part of the Borough is part of the Thames Gateway’s London Riverside sector. Students can find many prestigious educational institutions, restaurants, green spaces, and historical museums in the Borough to spend their leisure time.
Pros of staying in London Borough of Barking and Dagenham
- Barking and Dagenham are said to have one of the most affordable homes to rent in London City.
- The culture of Barking and Dagenham is vibrant, filled with thriving nightlife, and lots of things to do in the area.
Cons of staying in London Borough of Barking and Dagenham
- As Barking is a mid-suburban area, it might not be the best place to live if you want to live around the central area.
Avg score: 4.40
Avg cost of living: £1,000 – £1200
Student Accommodations options: Chancery Lane and Lincoln’s Inn
Top Universities in Croydon: BPP University
Best at: Experiencing a thriving street culture and Discovering local history
Worst at: Providing a centralized shopping district
Best suited for: Street art enthusiasts, History buffs and Nature lovers
The historic town of Croydon, which the Anglo-Saxons referred to as Crogdene or Croindone in the eighth century, is the inspiration for the best borough in London of Croydon. The site has been occupied since prehistoric times, according to evidence. It is the fifth-largest Borough in London.
Croydon Airport, London’s major airport, was previously located in the Borough but was closed in 1959 due to a shortage of area in the surrounding region. Boxpark and Bagattis venues offer a variety of food options and a lively atmosphere. Heathrow Airport in London has taken its position. Croydon Airport’s original facility is now a part office, half a tourist attraction.
Pros of staying in Croydon
- Croydon is a place that has a lot of greenery and good places to relax.
- The London Borough of Croydon has a good range of shops, restaurants, and other leisure activity spots.
Cons of staying in Croydon
- Croydon is unfortunately a bit far away from London, even though it is a part of the best boroughs in London.
Avg score: 4.24
Avg cost of living: £1,400 – £1700
Student Accommodation options: The Cube Ealing, Chapter Ealing and Regents Park
Top Universities in Ealing: University of West London and University of West London (Ealing Campus)
Best at: Enjoying green spaces and Exploring local community events
Worst at: Providing a vibrant nightlife scene
Best suited for: Nature enthusiasts, Families seeking a peaceful environment and Community-oriented individuals
The London Borough of Ealing is situated in West London and includes seven towns: Acton, Ealing, Greenford, Hanwell, Northolt, Perivale, and Southall. Ealing is London’s third-largest and third-most and the best borough in London. The Drayton Court and Charlotte’s Place restaurants offer a warm and welcoming atmosphere and delicious cuisine. Due to its parks and tree-lined streets, Ealing has long been renowned as the Queen of the Suburbs. The Japanese School in London is an Acton, Ealing-based Japanese international school.
Pros of staying in the London Borough of Ealing
- If you are looking for a comfortable and laid-back lifestyle, then the Borough of Ealing is your place.
- Ealing is a socializing spot! You will find a lot of places like a bar, restaurant, and a string of cafes to hang out and meet with your friends
Cons of staying in London Borough of Ealing
- As Ealing is in Zone 3, going to central London can indeed be a difficult task.
Avg score: 4.40Avg cost of living: £1,200-£1,700
Student Accommodation options: Wood Green Hall, Wood Green, Luna, Hatfield and IQ The Pad
Top Universities: University of Westminster Harrow Campus and London School of Theology
Best at: Enjoying scenic views and Experiencing traditional English pubs
Worst at: Offering a bustling city atmosphere
Best suited for: Nature lovers, Pub enthusiasts and Students and academics
Harrow is London’s 12th largest outer Borough and Middlesex’s largest local government area. Harrow is the only London borough whose boundaries did not change as it transitioned from a municipal borough to a borough. It has a residential feel, with some countryside on the northern outskirts. When visiting Harrow, dine at famous The White Horse and The Old Etonian restaurants. The best borough in London of Harrow was traditionally in the heart of “Metro-land,” As a result, it is exceptionally well served by the London Underground compared to other boroughs in Outer London.
Pros of staying in London Borough of Harrow
- The London Borough of Harrow has a good set of amenities
- Central London is easier to access
Cons of staying in London Borough of Harrow
- The air quality isn’t that great if you are living in the London Borough of Harrow
Avg score: 4.56
Avg cost of living: £1300-£1400
Student Accommodation options: IQ Podium, Guilden Village, Stoke Park and Straits Garden
Top Universities: St Mary’s University and Richmond University
Best at: Sampling diverse cuisines and Exploring cultural diversity
Worst at: Providing extensive recreational spaces
Best suited for: Food enthusiasts, Shoppers seeking a multicultural experience and Business travelers
London Borough of Hounslow is a West London borough founded in 1965 and encompassed three former Middlesex council areas. Hounslow is a borough in Western London that is part of the outer zones of London. Chiswick, Brentford, Isleworth, Hounslow, and Feltham are the five principal towns in the London Borough of Hounslow. Patiala Peg and Osterley Park Hotel gives the perfect culinary dining experience. The London Museum of Water and Steam and other attractions are located in the Borough. The River Thames runs through Hounslow and Richmond-upon-Thames, forming a natural barrier. Beautiful parks, country regions, and riverbank walks abound in the Borough.
Pros of staying in London Borough of Hounslow
- Hounslow is one of the most well-connected boroughs in London
- Hounslow is also known to have one of the cheapest rental spaces all over London.
Cons of staying in London Borough of Hounslow
- Hounslow can have a issue of a bit overcrowding, so if you are not a big fan of crowded area then Hounslow isn’t for you
14. Kingston upon Thames
Avg score: 4.54
Avg cost of living: £1,150-£1500
Student Accommodation options: Emily Bowes Court and Drapery Place
Top Universities: Kingston University and Kingston Business School
Best at: Enjoying riverside walks and Exploring local markets
Worst at: Providing a bustling nightlife scene
Best suited for: Nature lovers, History buffs and Families seeking a relaxed atmosphere
It is the oldest royal Borough in southwest London, formerly known as the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames. It’s one of the outer London boroughs. The location was previously used for Anglo-Saxon monarch coronations, and there is evidence of a church in the region that was destroyed by Vikings in 1009 AD. The local education authority is responsible for education in the Borough. Don’t miss out on dining at The Boaters Inn and Côte Brasserie. These restaurants offer picturesque views and delectable dishes. There are numerous attractions in and around Kingston, ranging from natural and historical sites to entertainment parks. Undoubtedly one of the best outer london boroughs
Pros of staying in London Borough of Kingston upon Thames
- It is one of the most sort of boroughs in London and has many things to offer
- You will be around a lot of restaurants, attractions, and shops that will make your living comfortable in London.
Cons of staying in London Borough of Kingston upon Thames
- The rent can be a little more expensive as compared to other Boroughs in London.
15. Richmond upon Thames
Avg score: 4.48
Avg cost of living: £2000- £2200
Student Accommodation options: Chapter Portobello, Mannequin House and IQ Tufnell House
Top Universities: Richmond University, University of West London (Brentford Campus) and Richmond University (Kensington Campus)
Best at: Enjoying scenic landscapes and Immerse yourself in history and heritage
Worst at: Offering a bustling city atmospher
Best suited for: Nature enthusiasts, History and architecture lovers and High-end shoppers
Richmond upon Thames is the only Borough in London located on both banks of the River Thames and is considered an outer London Borough. In terms of area, it stands as the 8th largest Borough in London. Be sure to visit The Bingham Restaurant and Gaucho Richmond for a memorable dining experience. Richmond upon Thames is home to several well-known attractions, including Hampton Court Palace and Kew Gardens. It’s worth noting that half of the Borough is covered in gorgeous parkland! Richmond Park, Bushy Park, and Old Deer Park are all large parks.
Pros of staying in London Borough of Richmond upon Thames
- The London Borough of Richmond upon Thames is an ideal place to live with thriving high end streets, extensive transportation connectivity, and ample of green spaces
- It is sort to have one of the best housing options in London
Cons of staying in London Borough of Richmond upon Thames
- The area does not have a lot of inclusivity and diversity in its community.
Before relocating to a new city, it is common to conduct an extensive study. In this article, we’ve attempted to cover the basics of living in London boroughs to make moving less overwhelming. We hope this blog has helped you better understand living in London. London is a fantastic city and location; therefore, no matter how frightening it may appear, moving to London will undoubtedly be worthwhile. This borough area guide provides students with many options with amber, so there is no need to worry about student accommodation in London. Besides boroughs, students may find the best localities in London to help them choose suitable accommodation.