Crossrail Place Roof Garden has beauty and deliciousness in equal measure.
Peace and quiet in the heart of London’s financial hub? It’s not impossible, particularly if you make a beeline for Crossrail Place. There, away from the hordes of stressed-out workers, you find the oasis of calm known as Crossrail Place Roof Garden – a rooftop garden with its own street food market. (See our full list of free things to do in London.)
It’s a beautiful little spot, where funky geometric windows offer great views back over Canary Wharf. To be honest, it was expected given that the architects responsible also count the Gherkin, City Hall, and the British Museum‘s swanky roof amongst their creations. The plants are just as pretty, too, encompassing trees, shrubs, and flowers from all over the world.
Crossrail Place Roof Garden is divided into hemispheres, with east and west represented on different sides of the park. Australasian ferns and American sweetgums give way to Chinese bamboo and Japanese maples, meaning you can literally (sort of) walk across the globe. Perfect for a sunny lunchtime stroll.
Although having said that, it does look rather nice when the sun goes down.
The garden also features a sixty-seat performance space, which can be hired should you fancy giving your one-man show a run out. In summer, the owners put on a programme of music and drama, turning Crossrail Place Roof Garden into London’s leafiest theatre. It would also be a nice spot for your lunchtime Pret, but this rooftop has a final ace up its sleeve, one that makes Pret irrelevant (gasp!).
The rooftop plays host to Giant Robot, another street food palace from the team at Street Feast. Why plump for a dull old sandwich when dumplings from Yum Bun, chicken wings from Thunderbird, or hand-pressed burgers from Burger & Beyond are on offer? Giant Robot also has a pretty nifty roof terrace, where the sunset views will take those post-work drinks to another level.
At Crossrail Place Roof Garden, it’s a case of “come for the precisely organised horticulture, stay for the bevs.”
Location: Crossrail Place, Canary Wharf, E14 5AB. Nearest station is Canary Wharf. See it on Google Maps.
Opening hours: 6am to 9pm everyday, although in summer, the park closes at sunset.
Price: Crossrail Place Roof Garden is free to enter. Giant Robot is free too, but groups larger than 10 need to book in advance.
More information: from the Canary Wharf Group website.
Featured Image: @nabiawada