Croydon is a vibrant, diverse corner of South London that needs to be on your radar. Every corner you turn has something exciting to discover: from the best mural street art, you’ll ever see to sublime eateries you simply won’t find anywhere else.
Bohemian, vintage-filled boutiques, brutalist architecture, picturesque woodland and sensational markets are all part of Croydon’s fabric.
But when it comes to truly experiencing how eclectic Croydon is, there are a few unbeatable activities that should be on your list! Here, we’ve rounded up 7 of our favourites to help you on your way:
Have a wander down the UK’s oldest street market
Surrey Street Market has been a bustling promenade of fresh, global ingredients, locally made produce, crafts and more since it was granted a royal charter in 1276. And trading has likely been going on for even longer than that, with records indicating as early as 1236!
Whether you know it as the Shambles, the Flesh Market, the Butcherie or Butcher Row, Surrey Street Market is well worth a visit. While the delicacies and products have changed over the centuries, one thing has remained: diversity.
Today, you can soak up the atmosphere of the iconic street market. With regular events throughout the year, including live music events and interactive street theatre performances, there is something for everyone to enjoy at this historical site.
Sit back with a locally brewed pint
It doesn’t get more local than this! Formed in 2012 by two local lads, Cronx Brewery set up shop on Vulcan Way and is now one of the most sought-after news in the land. Regularly featuring in the Good Beer Guide and approved by no other than HRH Prince Charles himself, there are plenty of reasons to pop by and have a tipple yourself!
If you can’t squeeze in a visit to the brewery, pop down to The Cronx Bar in BOXPARK and enjoy all the festivities!
Sample worldwide cuisine at its best
A visit to Croydon isn’t complete without swinging by BOXPARK. From the outside, it looks like an assortment of carefully laid shipping containers popping with interior colour! But step on in, and you’re in for a real treat.
BOXPARK is responsible for the foodie revolution sweeping the streets of South London. Imagine almost every cuisine under one roof, and you’ve hit the button! Discover mouthwatering authentic Argentinian steak, tuck into sumptuous Caribbean chicken at Big Mike’s or treat yourself to amazing Filipino street food at Spoon & Rice.
No matter where your tastebuds take you, the sheer variety of exceptional dishes, desserts and drinks will show you how great fresh food can really be!
The fun doesn’t stop there. BOXPARK hosts regular live music events in its 2,000-capacity events space. Previously, bestselling artists such as Stormzy, JME and Wrench 32 have graced the stage.
Check out BOXPARK’s vibrant and diverse itinerary of events so you don’t miss the latest creative workshops, art installations, live music, movie screenings and more.
Test all your senses and make your escape!
Life is busy. You have to balance finances, work, family life and play. If you feel like you’re stuck in Groundhog Day, we’ve found the perfect unbeatable activity to shake up your day!
Croydon’s top-rated escape room, Exciting Escapes, is perhaps the most unique, one-of-a-kind experience you can have in town. Once you step over the game master’s threshold and into your chosen game, the race is on to find all the clues, solve puzzles, crack codes and make your escape before time runs out!
Uncover hidden secrets from the Cold War-based adventure, A Hidden Past. Discover the terrifying mystery from the creepy story, The Voices We Hear. Or go head to head with another team in Change the Record and thwart a dastardly plot.
Whatever game you choose, you’re in for a thrilling ride that you won’t forget!
Discover jaw-dropping street art
Croydon is well known for its art scene. Take a stroll down St George’s Walk (Croydon’s Art Corner), and you’ll spot some of the most elaborate and awe-inspiring street art murals around.
RISE Gallery owner Kevin Zuchowski-Morrison initially kicked off the movement years ago, and artwork has continued to spread throughout the town centre ever since. But don’t just wander the streets! RISE regularly features work from world-renowned artists, including Andy Warhol, Banksy and Damien Hurst.
As you wander around town, check out notable pieces such as Gnasher’s Marvel-inspired Black Panther and Baby Groot, Roo’s Dog & Girl and Alec Saunder’s image of American rapper Nas on Park Street.
Reach for the skies
The fantastic Croydon Airport Visitor Centre is one of the town’s quirkier attractions.
Home to the UK’s first major international airport, the once great aviation hub also played a significant role in developing post-World War One air travel. And between WWI and WWII, it was Britain’s busiest airport.
First opening its doors to the public in 2000, the micro-museum serves as a glimpse into the golden age of aviation. Within its walls, you’ll get a unique glimpse into the Battle of Britain, discover record-breaking flights and more supported by the museum’s award-winning interactive displays and storyboards.
While the museum is open every 1st Sunday of the month, make sure you check out the museum’s website for the latest special open days and events.
A tipple and a game
The Ludoquist is a haven to everyone from the Dungeon & Dragons master to heroic settlers from Catan! A perfect place to battle your friends or have a relaxed head-to-head, this is a board game lovers’ paradise.
Home to over 1,000 board games, from classic Monopoly to the groundbreaking King of Tokyo, this gem of a place invites you to enter the world of myth, legend and role-play.
But it’s not all fun and games. The Ludoquist serves up some of the best hand-stretched stone-baked pizza in town, delicious craft beer, incredible cocktails and a damn fine cup of coffee!
Wherever your next Croydon adventure takes you, these 7 unbeatable activities are not to be missed!