Balham

Find relief from the crowds in Balham's relaxed atmosphere and easygoing citizenry.

Simple Victorian townhomes and casual taverns compose Balham, a southwest London neighborhood with a friendly atmosphere and suburban amenities. Getting to Balham’s town center is easy—the neighborhood has its own tube station. Away from Balham’s commercial core and its mix of independent bookstores, boutiques, and big-name chains, the neighborhood leads a quiet life punctuated by brief interjections of music and comedy from landmark venues like The Bedford.

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On the Map

Balham is bordered by Tooting Bec, Earlsfield, Clapham, Brixton, Upper Tooting, Streatham, Battersea, LB of Lambeth, and LB of Wandsworth

The London Eye: 26 minutes on the tube
The Tower of London: 35 minutes on the tube
Heathrow Airport: 100 minutes on the tube
Gatwick Airport: 45 minutes by tube and train
Kings Cross: 35 minutes on the tube
National Gallery: 35 minutes on the tube

  • Public transit is Easy
  • Having a car is Easy

Balham's Casual Pace and Relaxed Space

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Unassuming Art Deco flats and well-lit shops compose Balham's casual atmosphere. It's the kind of neighborhood where window-shopping isn't frowned upon. Go ahead, take a look. When you can resist no more, step inside.

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And when you're recharged, step outside. Balham's commons are perfect for mid-day runs or weekend picnics.

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Hand-written chalkboards and storefront conversations are typical in Balham.

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At the pub so late yesterday that it's already tomorrow?

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Good news. The most important meal of the day is served all day.

Clapham South is a lively, trendy part of London (although the street itself is very quiet). The area is popular with young professionals and young families. Its central location means it only takes 15 minutes on the tube to reach Central London."

Town Life: Splitting Time Between the Pub and the Cafe

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Live music, local comedy, and long pours are central to Balham's identity. Landmark clubs like The Bedford keep Balham true to its pub-culture roots.

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Independent-minded behavior isn't limited to local icons. The cafes and shops that line Balham's High Street infuse their surroundings with friendly activity.

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Saturdays bring with them their own kind of surprises.

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Every Saturday, the Hildreth Street Market sets up shop and attracts visitors to sample produce and select fresh blooms.

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Besides fresh produce and simple lifestyles, Balham's about comfort.

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The Exhibit cinema invites movie-goers to kick up their feet–it even replaces typical theatre-seats with sofas and recliners.

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Balham is a vibrant, trendy area of London ... The nearby Bedford Pub/Banana Cabaret venue has regular live music and comedy attracting visitors from all over London, and is well worth a visit."

All Aboard to Balham

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Getting to London's core is easy from Balham. The neighborhood claims its own tube stop and train station. The nearby districts of Victoria and Waterloo are easily accessible from Balham, too.

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Getting to the neighborhood tube is easy. Park your bike and be on your way.

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Photography

Airbnb works with local photographers to capture the spirit of neighborhoods all around the world. The photography on this page includes work by:

Chris Snook

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Chris has worked as a London-based photographer for seven years. He specializes in architectural, interior, and real estate photography, and his various commissions include global magazines and websites across the globe. This project for Airbnb has given Chris the chance to explore and discover London's deep diversity.