If you’re thinking of living in Whitechapel, there's never been a better time, thanks to the Whitechapel Vision. The scheme is a project from Tower Hamlets that will see 3,500 new homes, seven public squares and open spaces constructed by 2025.

A stop on the Elizabeth Line (Crossrail) only increases the area’s appeal. The E1 postcode has come a long way from its roots as Jack the Ripper’s stomping ground. Today, it sits alongside areas like Aldgate and the City as a London hotspot.

So to prepare you for living in Whitechapel, here are the best things to do and see in the area.

Whitechapel Gallery

Living in Whitechapel: A Neighbourhood With a Vision | Essential Living

Firstly, there's the Whitechapel Gallery. Billed as “the artists’ gallery for everyone”, it's a place where you can view fine contemporary art. First opened in 1901, it’s a popular destination for locals and tourists alike with its exhibitions, commissions and historic galleries.

Artists featured include Pablo Picasso, Lucian Freud, Paul Noble and Sarah Lucas, to name (but) a few. The Gallery is the primary viewing area and, what's more, it's free to enter and open all year. The Independent recently offered glowing praise, saying, “If anywhere, Whitechapel Gallery is a place to promote a new belief in the good of art”.

Find at 77-82 Whitechapel High St London E1 7QX
Phone no: 020 7522 7888
Email:  [email protected]
Follow @whitechapelgallery

Whitechapel Road Street Market

Living in Whitechapel: A Neighbourhood With a Vision | Essential Living

Whitechapel Road Street Market has been going strong for more than 100 years and provides a variety of goods. Visitors can expect bargains galore, whether it’s ingredients for curries from the Bangladeshi community or electrical products from local traders.

The market hasn’t fallen to the same level of gentrification as nearby Brick Lane. And if you fancy yourself as a haggler, you’ll spend hours bartering with local traders for the jewellery, fashion and art, and other general goods on sale.

Find at 203A Whitechapel Rd, Shadwell, London E1 1DE
Follow #WhitechapelMarket


Living in Whitechapel: A Neighbourhood With a Vision | Essential Living

Kolapata, which means banana leaf, offers authentic Bangladeshi cooking and is favourite for those living in Whitechapel. The restaurant settings are simple yet welcoming, with long wood tables and green-cushioned seating.

All the food is freshly cooked from a menu that features a range of grilled dishes and popular curries. Make sure you try the Kolapata Biryani specials. From Morogh Polao to Special Brunha Khechuri, you won’t be short of options for a mouthwatering dish.

Find at 222 Whitechapel Rd, Whitechapel, London E1 1BJ
Phone no: 020 7377 1200
Email: [email protected]
Follow @lovekolapata

Brick Lane

Living in Whitechapel: A Neighbourhood With a Vision | Essential Living

Brick Lane is one of London’s favourite tourist spots and is a stone’s throw away from Whitechapel. Just a 10-minute walk away, there are markets, restaurants and galleries to explore once you arrive at Brick Lane.

Sample some South Asian food, admire the amazing street art and wander the many local galleries. Then dance the night away at 93 Feet East, an East London institution known for its live music and intimate atmosphere.

Find at Shoreditch, E1 6QL
Follow @BrickLaneLDN

Chicken Shop

Living in Whitechapel: A Neighbourhood With a Vision | Essential Living

Experience an upmarket chicken shop at the Chicken Shop, which is the brainchild from the people behind Soho House. It brings delectable delights for those living in E1 and is located just a short walk from Whitechapel station and serves food all day.

The interiors are what you would come to expect from a Soho House project. Funky benches and tables line the restaurant, and there’s an open-plan kitchen area where you can see the chefs cook up a treat. You can even bring your own vinyl records to spin on the decks while you chow down on chicken.

Find at 27a Mile End Rd, Bethnal Green, London E1 4TP
Phone no: 020 3727 6165
Follow @chickenshopuk

The Blind Beggar

Living in Whitechapel: A Neighbourhood With a Vision | Essential Living

If you’re living in Whitechapel and looking for a local boozer, look no further than the Blind Beggar. The pub is steeped in history and is well-known as a favourite watering hole for infamous East End gangsters the Kray twins.

Today, it hosts tours that detail the history of the Kray twins. There’s also good food and booze, namely in the form of traditional pub grub and a range of beers. What's more, during the warmer months, you can head to the award-winning beer garden to quench your thirst.

Find at 337 Whitechapel Rd, Shadwell, London E1 1BU
Phone no: 020 7247 6195
Follow #theblindbeggar

Old Spitalfields Market

Living in Whitechapel: A Neighbourhood With a Vision | Essential Living

You may have guessed by now but living in Whitechapel gives you access to a range of markets. Old Spitalfields Market might just be the best one yet. There has been a market on the site for more than 350 years, so you can expect plenty of culture during your visit.

Open seven days a week, Old Spitalfields Market is one of the busiest shopping areas in East London. Expect to find boutiques and eateries from independent traders that feature the latest fashion trends and some of the best street food around.

Find at 16 Commercial St, Spitalfields, London E1 6EW
Follow @ spitalfieldse1

Discount Suit Company

Living in Whitechapel: A Neighbourhood With a Vision | Essential Living

If you’re expecting a range of affordable suits at the Discount Suit Company, you might be left disappointed. However, if you’re after a few classy cocktails, then get yourself down to Discount Suit Company if you’re living in Whitechapel.

The cocktail bar is hidden inside an old suit shop. The cosy settings include interior decorations with everything from mannequins to sewing equipment. Sofas kit out the rest of the bar, so you can enjoy world-class cocktails in comfort. Just don’t expect them the mixologists to tailor your suit.

Find at 29A Wentworth St, Spitalfields, London E1 7TB
Phone no: 020 7247 8755
Email: [email protected]
Follow @discountsuitco

Living in Whitechapel

So if you’re looking for an area that keeps its community roots and offers a diverse mix of cultures, Whitechapel has a lot to offer. From worldwide cuisines to an array of markets to explore, living in Whitechapel offers the quintessential East End vibes with a touch of international flavour.

Have we missed any of your favourite Whitechapel hangouts? Tweet us @essliving.

Mark Flint


Mark is a regular contributor to the Essential Living blog and shares all the latest news and sourcing the very best content for our customers.