Although a settlement in the area dates back to Roman times, Chiswick — or "Cheese Farm" in Old English and pronounced with a silent "w" (i.e. Chis'ick) — was founded in 1590 as its own village. By the 18th century, it had become a country retreat for London's well-to-do.
In fact, the district's most remarkable attraction — the Chiswick House and Gardens — is considered one of the best examples of 18th-century British architecture, albeit one that is heavily inspired by Rome. It's marketed as a "day out" for London residents rather than an attraction for out-of-town tourists per se, but travelgasm.com would suggest that the neighbourhood itself is worth seeing and Chiswick House and Gardens is a nice bonus if you have time. If you're a fan of Art Deco architecture, the drum-shaped Chiswick Park Underground station — designed by famed English architect Charles Holden in 1931 — is another bonus.
These days, Chiswick is no longer a country retreat, but it is an upper-middle class suburb of London that mostly attracts families looking for a safe, clean, and fairly affordable area to live with less noise and chaos but with a quick train commute to the core. It has a leafy high street that is a nice stroll, although Acton Lane that connects it to the Underground could be better. Chiswick's high street boasts a number of classic pubs, perhaps most notably The Old Pack Horse and The George IV, owned by Chiswick's own award-winning Fuller's Brewery.
The high street isn't limited to just booze, though. There is a range of indie shopping options like Foster's Books — the oldest shop on the High Road dating from the 1790s — and the Lemongrove Art Gallery — one of the UK's leading independent galleries — in addition to lots of chain stores. There also are plenty of restaurants offering a range of inexpensive eats like The Roebuck with affordable British lunch specials as well as the pricey, but Michelin-starred Hedone. For dessert, the Chateau Dessert bakery is a great option, as well.
Whether it is just for a day out, a dinner jaunt, or a place to live, Chiswick is a pleasant place. Take the time to see it as a visitor, also.
We've mapped out a couple of our favourite routes through Chiswick below. One connects two Underground stations to the high street and is most suitable for a trek to grab lunch or an evening out and another that connects the Chiswick House and Gardens in the most pleasant and convenient way possible.
How to Get Here: Take the District Line (Green, Zone 3) line to Chiswick Park Station. Our suggested walks have you either leaving via Turnham Green Station (also on the District Line) or via Chiswick National Rail Station.
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