This excursion will be back soon. In the meantime we’d be happy to organise a private tour for you. Please contact us on 020 7624 3978 | privatewalks@walks.com to make a booking.

Old Hampstead Village

Hampstead Underground station, London

Guided by David or Peter G. or Richard III

London’s penthouse  This is a great walk.* They just don’t come any better than this. Our setting is London’s most picturesque neighbourhood – a perfectly preserved Georgian village crowning the top of a handsome hill and garnished with the capital’s most elegant old world promenade, a medley of cobblestone lanes, pretty cottages, surprising turnings, and unsurpassed views. As for our cast of characters… well, it’s every bit as beguiling as our setting, ranging from the highwayman Dick Turpin to the painter Constable to the poet Keats; from Freud and D.H. Lawrence to Sting and Boy George; from Elizabeth Taylor and Judy Dench and Emma Thompson to Rex Harrison, Peter O’Toole, Alan Bates, Liam Gallagher and Jeremy Irons. And for good measure, there’s London’s most villagey atmosphere, white swans on a lake, and magnificent Hampstead Heath.

*Personal note: this is my (David’s) favourite of the 57 different London Walks I’m able to guide. That’s got to be some sort of recommendation.

OLD HAMPSTEAD VILLAGE – THE PRACTICALS

The Old Hampstead Village walk takes place at 10 am every Sunday morning year round. It takes place at 2 pm every Wednesday afternoon (except in Dec. and Jan.). In our Summer programme (May 1 – Oct. 31) it takes place at 7 pm every* Saturday evening as a pub walk. The meeting point is just outside the exit of HampsteadTube Stop. N.B. the walk ends just round the corner from Hampstead Tube Stop. *N.B. the Saturday evening pub walk does NOT take place in the months of Nov., Dec., Jan., Feb. March or April.

LONDON WALKS REVIEWS

“the best walking tour operator in London”  London The AA Key Guide

“by far the most impressive series of walks that I have ever encountered are those offered by London Walks”  Travel and Enjoy

“the unfailingly fascinating London Walks… If you can’t find one [of their tours] that captures your fancy, maybe you really are tired of life”   San Francisco Chronicle

London Walks offers guided walks throughout London, but the two-hour saunter (£9) through Hampstead’s centuries of architectural and cultural history is the jewel in their crown. The New York Times

“Simply the best walking tours! I have been taking London Walks tours for years, and always manage to fit at least one into my visits to London. I’ve never been disappointed. This time I went on the Hampstead tour with David, who is actually the owner of London Walks. This tour is fantastic! David knows Hampstead inside out. He combined history, geography, art and architecture and a bit of gossip into the 2.5 hours. The tour included a walk on Hampstead Heath and a visit to a lovely, hidden pond that tourists would never find on their own. (Sometimes there are swans on the pond, but they were hiding when we visited – too bad!) I was sorry when the walk was over, and will go back to Hampstead on my own to explore further on a future visit. All the guides that I have met have been fantastic – very knowledgeable, friendly and helpful. I’ve taken walking tours all over Europe, but London Walks is the very best.” Martha 123 from Toronto

“Two of the best hours I’ve spent in London! This tour is exactly what I have been looking for. It was very well-designed, both the content and route. There was some up and down, but the ups were subtly broken with stops for those less able to negotiate the hills. The best part was David, the guide, who clearly loves Hampstead and equally clearly loves sharing it. It is a low key tour, only £10 with a 65+ discount. I took pictures of the London skyline from the Heath and was thrilled to find two watercolours of the same scene by Constable a few hours later at the British Museum. And the opportunity to visit the Holly Bush pub, even though it was closed on Sunday morning, was a nice extra. Highly recommended.” Dixie F.

“We did the Hampstead tour and wish we could have trailed after David all day! He was so interesting and it made for an enjoyable morning. He shared other tips and recommendations that we used for the rest of our trip. We have joined London Walks on a previous trip. Each guide has been top notch! Because of these tours, we have tried similar walking tours in other cities in the U.S. and Europe, but London Walks is my favorite.”  Julia N.

LONDON WALKS VIDEOS

Want a preview of the walk? Here’s a little hand-held video number David, cobbled together. It’s called The Footpaths of Leafy Hampstead. He shot it to bring to the fore and underline a point that’s often overlooked – namely that one of the things you’re paying for on a walk is the route. A lot of these places and byways you wouldn’t be able to find off your own bat. Let alone piece them together into the coherent narrative of a two-hour walk. It’s not a word that very often comes to mind in connection with a delightful stroll through, say, leafy Hampstead, but a quality walking tour is a wonderfully efficient creation. You’d have to get stuck into Hampstead many times over a period of years to discover and then piece together this route. Who – apart from a London Walks Hampstead Village guide – has the time, inclination and determination to do that?

And – an embarrassment of riches – we’ve got a second Hampstead film. This was about the 15th one we made in our lineup of London Walks videos. The ones that preceded it had all pretty much followed the same formula: shoot a few stretches of the walk, show the guide in action, show the walkers, soundtrack it, put up some credits, say “that’s a wrap.” We plumped for something entirely different with this one. We commissioned Keiko, a Japanese stills photographer. Took her over the route. And then turned her loose with that very special camera – and technique – of hers. Our in-house filmmaker Jon Klein edited it. Some musician chums of his composed and performed a piece especially for it. And here it is – unique, beautiful and mysterious. Which is just so right for Hampstead.

LONDON WALKS – STREETS AHEAD!

Don’t just take it from us or The New York Times