London – a city full of history and culture. Theatres and galleries celebrate beloved treasures from around the world within their walls, renaissance masterpieces and Shakespearean classics.
However, curated exhibitions and rehearsed verse is not all London has to offer when it comes to the arts. Here we have our suggestions for the best London street art tours.
Street art (a 90’s phenomenon that grew from the graffiti style of the 80’s) holds a proud place as one of London’s more unique offerings. One of the most ‘pro-graffiti’ cities in the world, the “open-air” galleries of London’s East End and surrounds have become as much of an attraction as their more conventional brothers and sisters, such as the Tate or National Gallery.
Why should you do a street art tour in London?
An art form that reaches out directly to the public, the London street art scene is ever-changing and evolving with many loyal supporters.
When travelling to London, a street art tour offers you the opportunity to connect with the creative heartbeat of the city and the minds of the locals. Not only visually appealing, London’s street art tours provides a window into the moral, social and economic issues of the city – often expressed with a good dose of humour or irony.
London tour providers offer many free and paid tour options; so with so much to see and often little time to see it in we’ve hand picked our favourites.
Here’s our pick of the best London street art tour providers:
The team from Street Art London work closely with active artists to keep up to date with the ever changing artworks that pop up citywide. Offering tours to the home of London Street Art–Shoreditch- as well as to the emerging areas of Hackney Wick and Dulwich, Street Art London runs tours every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
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To celebrate the relaunch of our East End Jogging Tours, the first 6 places booked on our website for Saturday 12th go FREE! . . . Running at a relaxed pace we'll take in some of the area's best street art, one of London's oldest cemeteries, secret spots and loads more! . . . More info on our website, link in bio…
One of our personal favourites, Alternative London operates out of a reclaimed double-decker bus in the heart of Shoreditch. By using actual artists and creative professionals as guides, Alternative London offers the traveller an inside scoop on the street art scene, while also providing a historical look at the East End.
Ranging from their original walking tour through to bike tours and street art workshops, they have something a little different to suit all tastes. Alternative London also caters for private groups if you wanted to take your friends. Tours run every day – to book have a look at their online schedule.
Offered on a pay-what-you-like basis, the Free Tours by Foot London East End Graffiti and Street Art tour is great for the budget conscious. Through exploring Shoreditch and Whitechapel, find yourself face to face with works by Banksy, while learning about the East End.
It’s part street art and part history. The whole tour takes about two and a half hours and runs every day except Wednesday; check their online schedule to find the next available date.
Cost: Whatever you like! click here to book
Guided by London street art experts and acclaimed street art photographers, these vibrant Shoreditch walking tours are one of the most highly rated London activities on Tripadvisor.
Offering walking London street art tours, photography workshops and night time tours/workshops, Shoreditch Street Art Tours is a great option for the photography lovers amongst us. The daily tours offer special group rates for 5 or more booking together, and discounts for children under 16.
Clink recommends: avoid the crowds and opt for a morning London street art tour, then grab some lunch at one of London’s street food markets
Create your own!
If you’ve decided to go it alone, why not skip the organised tours and use this handy street art guide, collated and published by TimeOut London – the experience may not be as in depth, but as you will inevitably find yourself lost at least once you may stumble upon something as yet unseen.
Alternatively, see below for our street art London map, detailing where to find the best street art in the city – and how far you need to wander from Clink261 and Clink78!