The Handbook
The Handbook

Say ‘ta but no ta’ to tarmac, it’s all about cobbles. Cobbles, they’re a constant trip hazard, they’re noisy to drive over and they hurt your bum if you cycle. And yet, they look great!

There’s nothing more olde-worlde than a good cobbled streets. Whether it’s the opening credits of Coronation Street or the majestic cloisters around Oxford’s Radcliffe Camera, we’re suckers for cobbles. What’s more, they light up your Insta-feed! So here are a few London #cobbles, anything else is a pain in the asphalt…

Wapping High Street

A Wapping great number of cobbles combine to create Wapping High Street. Well, until it turns into a standard tarmac road. But they’re probably still there, under the silky grey highway.

They’re a constant trip hazard, they’re noisy to drive over and they hurt your bum if you cycle. And yet, they look great!

A stroll down the more-or-less picturesque street, a good portion of which remains traditionally cobbled and you can find plenty of Insta-friendly spots. This shot, taken of Pheonix Wharf, where Wapping High Street meets Brewhouse Lane, is particularly picturesque.

Keynance Mews

All the cool cats love London’s mews. The capital boasts some of the most beautiful mews about, the little back streets that run parallel to the grand Belgravian townhouse mansions. But in their way, the former stables, garages and workshops, tend to be far more beautiful and idiosyncratic than their more handsome and grand neighbours.

All the cool cats love London's mews

Check out Keynance Mews, in South Kensington, has two ornate arches at either entrance, leading from the grandeur of South Ken’s stucco architecture and perfectly laid out squares to something rather more humble (well, they’re still multi-million pound houses, so the term is very much relative!).

Shad Thames

Firstly what on earth even is a ‘shad’? *Does a quick Google…* Okay, so apparently there are two competing theories, firstly that it’s a kind of fish found in the Thames, or secondly that it’s a corruption of St John-at-Thames. Consider yourself educated.

Firstly what on earth even is a ‘shad’?

Either way, what it really is is cobbled Insta gold, with its nineteenth century warehouses and walkways, now all converted into incredibly fashionable (read expensive) flats. But walking down the historic street is, at least, free! Maybe while you’re there visit restaurant Le Pont de la Tour, just off Shad Thames, on your way to pap Tower Bridge?

Middle Temple

One of the four ancient Inns of Court, where London’s top barristers (not the people who work in Costa) ply their trade. The others, also chokka with Insta opportunities, are Grays Inn, Inner Temple and Lincoln’s Inn.

Where London’s top barristers (not the people who work in Costa) ply their trade.

Seeped in history, this is where part of Dan Brown’s DaVinci Code was set (it’s got an ancient church, founded by the Knights Templar) and more excitingly than ancient conspiracy theories, it’s brimming with cobbles-a-plenty.

Covent Garden

Unleash your inner Eliza Doolittle and make your way to Covent Garden. Basically an ancient typo of ‘Convent Garden’, the cobbled piazza is the epicentre of London shopping and it’s crawling in cobbles.

Basically an ancient typo of ‘Convent Garden’

Famously home to London’s biggest flower market until the 1970s when it decided to get up and ‘leaf’, heading to New Covent Garden in Vauxhall, they thankfully (and obviously) they left all the cobbles, leaving you to just choose the hashtags…

Royal Naval College, Greenwich

It’s tricky to know where the definition of cobbles end and flagstones start, but let’s not get too hung up on that, because the, um, flag-cobbles at the Royal Naval College in Greenwich are eminently Insta-friendly.

It’s tricky to know where cobbles end and flagstones start

The Royal Naval College’s stunning neo-classical architecture is some of the most impressive in London, and given all the sailors left in the 1980s, the public are very much welcome to wander around.

While you’re there, enjoy Greenwich’s village-within-a-city vibe, find a place to eat out or check out the Cutty Sark.

The Royal Academy

The Summer Exhibition at The Royal Academy is one of London’s must-sees, and all year round there are some of London’s best exhibitions and shows. But let’s not miss the wood for the trees here, look instead at the cobble stones!

Let’s not miss the wood for the trees here, look instead at the cobble stones!

Leave the real art to those displaying on the sacred walls inside, for the Insta-crowd the floor outside provides just as much fascination and enjoyment. Strike a pose!

The Treasury

Poor Liz Truss kicked off her ill-fated Tory leadership bid with a photocell outside HM Treasury. While clearly not many got behind her as a result, it’s what’s behind her that we’re most interested in; a sea of cobbles.

Undeniably one classy cobbled carpark

The Insta-friendly spot is only accessible via a security gate, which means that unless you’ve got urgent Treasury business you’re unlikely to manage a Truss-shot, but you should be able to get a half-decent pic through the railings of what is undeniably one classy cobbled carpark.