Where Are The Best Places To Live In West London?
From Fabulous Department Stores To Incredible Riverside Homes, West London Is Beautiful But, Which Are The Best Spots To Live In?
West London is quite easily one of the most desirable parts of the city of London to live in. Across the area, you’ll find some of the most beautiful neighbourhoods in the entire city. Gorgeous and glorious gardens and parks, fantastic local architecture and homes that are amongst the very best in the WORLD, not just the city of London.
West London is quite rightly associated with the lifestyles of the rich and famous, however, there is far more to West London than that. Yes, areas like Chelsea and Kensington are all fabulously wealthy and celebrated for it but, there is more to these areas than just being expensive places to live. Shopping in West London is exceptional, there are fantastic schools throughout the area which makes it ideal for family living and there are a great many things to do, from museums and art galleries to concert halls and football, in this part of London.
There are dozens of smaller and larger neighbourhoods to live in West London but we can only talk about the ones we think are the best. We are going to guide you through some of the most popular neighbourhoods to live in West London that is accessible for everyone! Here are our picks for the very best areas to live in West London for any who are thinking about moving here!
The Best Areas To Live In West London
Distance to city centre: 7 miles
Main Train Stations: Acton
Area description: West London Suburbs
Notable features: Large, well-connected, suburban haven in West London. Fantastic area to live for commuters with plenty of more affordable accommodation options.
Acton is one of the most affordable places to live in West London. Between the charm of Ealing’s pretty Victorian heritage and the busy streets of Hammersmith, Acton offers typical suburban living in a part of the city to make living in West London a reality for anyone. There are beautiful green spaces and parks around the area such as the beautiful Gunnersbury Park and Kew Gardens – perfectly fitting for any neighbourhood in West London!
You may not be able to find many Victorian townhouses, although, Acton is going through a major period of redevelopment with lots of newer apartment blocks currently under construction. Away from the main high street of Acton, you’ll find plenty of quieter side streets, with good-sized terraced houses for more spacious accommodation.
One of the biggest selling points to living in Acton is how well-connected the area is. There are five separate stations in Acton for standard rail, underground and overground services to other parts of the city. Acton is a commuter’s dream, easy to get around from and far more affordable to live in than the rest of West London!
You’ll find plenty to see and do living in Acton bordering areas like Fulham, Shepherd’s Bush and, Hammersmith. For families, Acton is ideally placed to make the most of access to some of the best schools in the city. Schools such as Twyford school (often ranked as one of the best in the country), as well as others in nearby Chiswick and Fulham. Moving to Acton is perfect for anyone wanting to live close to the glamour of West London and the city centre whilst living in a more affordable area.
Distance to city centre: 2.5 miles
Main Train Stations: Sloane Square/Imperial Wharf
Area description: Riverside – city centre
Notable features: Incredible luxury accommodation, beautiful gardens and streets,
Chelsea is one of the most easily recognised and attractive neighbourhoods to live in the whole of London. It also happens to be one of the wealthiest with incredible houses from both the Regency and Victorian periods. Shopping for designer clothes and accessories in this area along King’s Road is ideal for those who desire luxury brands and the work of some of the world’s leading designers.
But, a sometimes overlooked fact about Chelsea is that it does not only cater to the tastes of the super-rich, remaining accessible to all people. Neighbourhoods like Sloane are great places to live for everyone, with the square and main road having more typical high-street stores and restaurants (think Gap and McDonalds rather than Chanel and Ferrari!) which as a result, means some parts of Chelsea are far more affordable to live in!
Chelsea does have its fair share of green spaces as well. There are many beautiful and ornate gardens and parks, such as at Albert Bridge and the Chelsea Embankment, as well as the grounds of the much-loved Royal Chelsea Hospital; the site of the annual Chelsea Flower Show. Contrary to popular belief, Chelsea is not the site of Chelsea Football Club, which is somewhat controversially found in neighbouring Fulham!
Living in Chelsea can be a dream for anyone. There are plenty of gorgeous apartments and townhouses for anyone to live in with their family (whilst benefiting from access to some of the best schools in London in this area as well as Kensington and Fulham) and commuting for work from Chelsea into central London is easy. Major stations like Victoria are never far away from connecting to other parts of the city and overall; Chelsea is quite easily one of the best neighbourhoods to live in the whole of London.
Distance to city centre: 8.4 miles
Main Train Stations: Ealing Broadway
Area description: West London historic town
Notable features: prominent west London community, beautiful parks and green spaces, gorgeous period townhouses.
In terms of living in West London, it’s hard to get any further west than living in Ealing. Although it is some way out from the more central areas of the city, the abundance of green space and well, living space, are more than enough to make up for any extra commuting time you might experience on your way to work!
Ealing is a very large and pretty area to live in. There’s a very good quality of life around Ealing which makes it incredibly welcoming to all-comers, especially families, with the collective of beautiful parks and green lawns which are incredibly popular for picnickers and sunbathers in the summer! There are a lot of independent restaurants and boutique stores to dine and shop in around the common and high-street. Perfect for anyone looking to escape the more commercial feel of other parts of the city!
As a former Victorian suburban paradise, there’s no shortage of marvellous architecture from townhouses, schools and colleges and of course, pubs! Looking around Ealing, there is very little question as to why Ealing received the enviable moniker of “Queen of The Suburbs” at the beginning of the 20th century and is still, one of the most attractive areas to live in the whole of London as a result. Additionally, living in Ealing is significantly cheaper than living in other parts of West London — fantastic for anyone wanting to move into a larger home but not wanting to pay the same rent you would living in Chelsea or Kensington!
Living in Ealing is ideal for anyone looking to make the most of living in a friendly, beautiful and accessible neighbourhood that is further away from the city centre. With fantastic residences and schools to go with the many green spaces, Ealing is a tempting place to live for families or, working professionals looking to live a bit further out away from the centre of both West and Central London!
Distance to city centre: 4.2 miles
Main Train Stations: Fulham Broadway
Area description: Riverside – inner city
Notable features: beautiful townhouses and pretty neighbourhoods. Fantastic waterside properties, green spaces, and main high street.
For living in London Fulham offers a bit of everything. It is right next to the incredibly wealthy areas of Chelsea and Kensington and has homes just as lovely as the ones you would expect to find there. Although Fulham can be a bit more expensive to live in, it is still more affordable than most of West London, whilst remaining an incredible place to live!
There are great options for accommodation including lovely, quiet side streets with gorgeous terraced houses, as well as fantastic apartments along the banks of the River Thames. Fulham is a fantastic place for dining and going out, as well as having several smaller shopping centres across the area and plenty of beautiful old pubs, public gardens and parks.
Fulham Broadway has an exceptionally lovely high street for all of this, whilst areas like Brompton, Putney and Parson’s Green, are all wonderful areas with quieter neighbourhoods and with more independent retailers and restaurants. Also, despite the name suggesting otherwise, Fulham is home to Chelsea Football Club, one of the most recognised and successful teams in the world!
The area is good for commuters wanting to travel into the city for work even if you are living a bit further out from the city centre. Additionally, it is an area ideally suited for family living, with some of the best options for schools in London found in the area (such as the famous London Oratory school). Living in Fulham is a good mix between quiet and engaging. It’s very easy for anyone moving to London to make a life for themself in this area!
Distance to city centre: 4.9 miles
Main Train Stations: Hammersmith
Area description: metropolitan – riverside
Notable features: major connection point for the city of London, fantastic riverside leisure and more affordable accommodation options.
As one of the main ways in and out of the city through West London, Hammersmith is one of the busiest areas in the whole of the city, let alone its western areas. Although not without its charming parts and exceptional sights and sounds, Hammersmith is an area becoming increasingly popular amongst start-ups. It is a key connecting point from the west to the centre and other areas of the city.
Accommodation options are plenty from riverside apartments to Victorian townhouses. There is no shortage of charming listed properties in the area to rent. The area is also full of independent bars and restaurants, as well as cute and quirky pubs to visit, like the Dove, a Guinness World Record holder and made popular by literary greats like Ernst Hemmingway, perched right on the edge of the river. Despite how busy the area can be, there are plenty of picturesque places to visit in Hammersmith that remind you; that you are still living in West London!
Commuting from Hammersmith to almost anywhere across London is very easily achieved thanks to the great transport links in the area. No less than four tube lines pass through Hammersmith’s main station, ensuring that almost every quarter of the city is accessible in good time, ideal for anyone travelling into the city centre or other parts of the city for work! Living in Hammersmith is suitable for everyone. Housing is more affordable in this part of West London than in areas like Kensington but, you also benefit from more transport options, as well as sharing close borders with other neighbourhoods.
For families, living in Hammersmith is a great alternative but, still grants access to the fantastic schools in neighbourhoods like Fulham and Chiswick. Whilst there is plenty of space for families, any working professionals living alone may also want to take advantage of some of the more spacious accommodation options, whilst living in a very vibrant and fun part of the city to explore in your downtime!
Distance to city centre: 3.5 miles
Main Train Stations: Holland Park
Area description: Affluent- inner-city neighbourhood
Notable features: beautiful, period townhouses and luxurious accommodation. Prominent neighbourhood close to the beautiful and famous park of the same name.
Few areas of London can match the beauty of the large Victorian and Georgian townhouses found at Holland Park. Whilst there are many parts of London with similar period housing, the houses constructed in the area between 1860 and 1880 are still, amongst the very best homes ever built in West London!
Holland Park as a neighbourhood takes its name from the gorgeous green space that is the central feature of this west London neighbourhood. It’s a surprisingly diverse and filled-out Park given its size. There are small wooded areas as well as open green spaces and children’s playgrounds, making it ideal for family life, particularly if you think of investing in a dog after you’ve moved to London!
Residences by Aubrey House and The Royal Crescent are particularly desirable. Housing around Holland Park is more expensive than in many other areas of London and there is always high demand to live in what is; a quieter and very lovely West London neighbourhood. Being so close to the city centre and other fantastic West London neighbourhoods such as Notting Hill and Kensington, all add to the appeal of living in Holland Park!
Living in Holland Park is ideal for families due to the quieter area and large residences, as well as access to some of the best schools in London, from neighbouring Kensington. Working professionals looking to move to a quieter part of London will love the easy distance commuting to work in the city centre and exploring this part of the city!
Distance to city centre: 3.2 miles
Main Train Stations: High-Street Kensington/Kensington Olympia
Area description: Affluent-inner-city neighbourhood
Notable features: beautiful architecture, department stores, museum quarters, exquisite townhouses and luxury apartments.
Kensington is a fantastic part of London to live in. It holds some of London’s most beloved museums and concert halls, fantastic department stores and streets for shopping for high-end goods, as well as some of the best and most beautiful homes in the whole city. Kensington is the jewel of West London, a precious and attractive area that everyone who visits, wishes they lived there!
Accommodation options in Kensington are plenty. Many former 6-floor Georgian and Victorian houses have been converted into very attractive apartments to live in, although, you can still find many townhouses of the old city in this area to live in! Housing, as a result, can be quite expensive although, there are plenty of options available.
Kensington Gardens is a fantastic green space that has to be in consideration for one of the most beautiful parks in the whole of London. The Natural History Museum and The Royal Albert Hall are standout examples of the magnificent architecture that can be found in this part of the city. Additionally, some of the best universities and colleges in London are also in this area, such as Imperial College, Heythrop College, the Royal College of Art and Chelsea College.
Living in Kensington is ideal for anyone looking to commute to other areas of the city, Despite being designated as West London, Kensington is incredibly central and well connected to the city centre, making transport to other parts of the city very easy. Additionally, the area is perfect for families, with many of the schools and colleges catering to children of all ages. Kensington has everything that you could want from a neighbourhood to move into. Beautiful, well-connected, full of interesting places to visit and possessing the quality of life many people can only dream of!
Distance to city centre: 2.0 miles
Main Train Stations: Knightsbridge
Area description: Affluent-inner-city neighbourhood
Notable features: exquisite department stores, fantastic garden neighbourhoods, high-end restaurants and period houses.
Harrod’s Department Store, flagship stores belonging to Harvey Nichols to Jimmy Choo, The Victoria and Albert Museum — it’s fair to say that Knightsbridge is home to more than its fair share of glamorous locations! Why wouldn’t anyone want to live in what is without doubt; one of the wealthiest and most attractive areas of London?!
Knightsbridge is home to some of the world’s wealthiest people and some of the most expensive properties in the world. One Hyde Park has constantly been referred to as the most expensive penthouse in the world, selling for £100,000,000 in 2007 and then for £140,000,000 in 2014!
Knightsbridge, as you may have guessed, is an almost impossibly lovely area of London to live in. The homes and streets of this part of West London are amongst the very best in the city, if not, the entire world. It is an ideal neighbourhood for anyone wanting to live in the glamour and glitter of West London, whilst it is so close to the city centre that commuting to and from work is as easy a journey as there can be, in this part of the city.
Shopping for amenities in department stores, eating out in some of the most exquisite and excellent restaurants in the whole city and oh, before we forget, anyone thinking of moving with their family will see that Knightsbridge has some of the very best schools in the entire country close by, including the world-renown Knightsbridge International School. If you have the budget available to pull off living in Knightsbridge, then you’ll find it amongst the very best areas to live in the whole of London, never mind West London!
Distance to city centre: 4.3 miles
Main Train Stations: Holland Park
Area description: Bohemian-Inner-city neighbourhood
Notable features: gorgeous houses and apartments in quiet streets and garden squares, fantastic street carnival, brilliant boutiques and independent stores and restaurants.
Whilst possibly, more famous for its titular romantic comedy and fantastic street carnival, Notting Hill is one of the best neighbourhoods to live in West London. If you are a fan of boutique and bohemian living then you need not look any further. Notting Hill is the most fabulous of alternatives to living closer to the centre without having to spend the same money you might need to live in Chelsea and Kensington!
The streets are beautiful, with wide pavements, gorgeous green trees forming a canopy overhead and of course, classic Regency and Victorian architecture which can be seen everywhere from the outside of the buildings to the street lighting (anyone familiar with Mary Poppins or The Chronicles of Narnia will instantly recognise the lampposts!).
Shopping and eating out in the neighbourhood is fantastic, with a wide variety of independent traders and retailers to browse and choose from and the fabulous Portobello Road Market is a must-visit. The streets around the main hub of Notting Hill are particularly beautiful — especially during summertime! The area is ideal for anyone, perfectly placed for families or working professionals looking to live somewhere close to both the city centre and, the heart of West London.
Families will appreciate the proximity to some of the best schools in the whole country, let alone the city, in neighbouring Kensington and Chelsea. Commuting to other parts of the city is very viable thanks to the central and circle line stops in the area. Notting Hill is a relaxed but, fun and beautiful part of the city to live in — an ideal first home for anyone thinking of moving to London!
Distance to city centre: 4.8 miles
Main Train Stations: Shepherd’s Bush
Area description: West London suburbs – metropolitan area
Notable features: massive shopping centre, fantastic street-food/ markets, popular with younger working professionals.
The triangular green at the centre of Shepherds Bush serves as the focal point for the area. Around it, you can find all kinds of bars, restaurants and even a few offices around and along the road connecting this busy neighbourhood of London. From the iconic Shepherd’s Bush Market to bars and restaurants built under railway bridges and arches. No wonder the area is so popular with working professionals for after-work drinks and food!
The area is a major hub for transport in and out of West London which yes, makes the area a little noisier but, this does make it an incredibly well-connected place to live. Especially if you’re looking at working in the city centre! The excellent Westfield shopping centre, which is one of the largest in Europe, is located just a short walk away from the Green and the area around Shepherd’s Bush is incredibly good for shopping locally.
There are plenty of interesting building developments in the area around Shepherd’s Bush and White City. The Dimco buildings stick out for their more industrial architecture and you’ll find the past and present BBC (the national television and radio broadcaster) studios further up the road past Westfield. Both of these sites have become popular for the new-built and fashionable apartments there.
Shepherd’s Bush is a wonderfully diverse and friendly area to move into. People from all over the world call this area home (as can be seen in the great variety between pop-up food stalls and permanent restaurants) and the buzz of life within the area makes it particularly attractive to live in. Families will love the area for the proximity to amazing schools in areas like Chiswick and Fulham and the convenience of shopping locally.
Options for housing in the area are slightly more limited given its smaller size, with a lot more apartments available, rather than multiple bedroom houses. With that being said, there are still plenty of cosy terraced houses around the area to potentially move into, whilst the newer apartments built next to White City at the old BBC building represent fantastic modern accommodation for anyone looking to live in the area!
What About The Rest Of London?
That completes our area guide for the best areas to live in West London! We’ve shared all our secrets for living in the area with you but, if you want to learn more about some of the areas on this list, see our individual neighbourhood guides, for more information.
Alternatively, if you wish to read more about living in other areas of London, check out our blog and feel free to browse through our list of area guides.