Six of the best beer gardens in Croydon


By - Wednesday 23rd May, 2018

Summer’s almost here. Where to go for a glass of something cool – in the open air?


Photo by Liz Sheppard-Jones, used with permission.

There’s something decadent about drinking a pint, or a glass of wine, or a J20, in the sun, isn’t there? It’s one of life’s small pleasures, that glorious feeling of warmth on your arms, a cold glass in your hand, and the sense that even if it’s just for one day – we can equal Spain or Italy in the joy of having a drink outdoors without freezing or getting soaked. Which is why pub beer gardens are such a joy when the weather’s warmed up.

Whether you want a quiet hour sat basking underneath blue skies, or a full-on night out with your mates, I’ve picked out some of my favourite beer gardens in the borough. Oh – this is just my opinion, by the way. If you want to tag your favourite open-air space to enjoy a cider or two in the comments below, I’m happy to be persuaded that I’ve missed an absolute gem. Happy summertime, Croydon!

The Dog & Bull, Surrey Street

I was walking down Surrey Street one day a couple of years back when I saw the gates at the side of the pub were open and there was – shock – a garden at the back. A pub garden in the middle of Surrey Street! How did I miss this? Lots of tables, some sheltered from the sun, and plenty of classic pub snacks on the menu. Plus, the cries of “strawberry, strawberry, strawberry!” from the market traders right outside just adds to the charm.

The Oval Tavern, East Croydon

Ah, a beer garden run by people who know what makes a good beer garden. Lots of seats, plenty of outdoor activities if you want, a big screen if required… as ever, the Oval gets it very right.

The Builders Arms, East Croydon

A Fuller’s pub, which means good ale and a decent showing when it comes to food – the roasts here are a cut above. And the beer garden is tucked away, with plenty of tables, a bit of shade if needed, and some peace and quiet, despite only being a short hop from East Croydon station.

The Tudor Rose, Coulsdon

Bit of a family favourite, this one – it’s posh enough for a birthday meal out, but it’s not so posh that you can’t stop off there for a pint in the sunny back garden. Coulsdon retains a bit of a charming village feel, and the Tudor Rose is a proper friendly country boozer.

The Treehouse, South Croydon

My personal favourite, seeing as I used to live just over the road. The garden is small but perfectly formed, with plenty of seats, and is weirdly peaceful, despite the fact it’s right on the corner of South End and the A236. The Treehouse does really good cocktails; you have to make sure you don’t say ‘just one more’ one too many times.

The Railway Telegraph, Thornton Heath

One for the football fans. Well, we need love too… The Railway has a decent patio garden out the back and promises there will be a new BBQ hut out there, too, this summer. Plus, it welcomes supporters from all over England, so prepare your best banter for when the Premier League returns on 11th August.

Cassie Whittell

Cassie Whittell

Cassie has lived in and around Croydon since 1988. She's a digital project manager and editor with a passion for welsh rarebit, cats and Rotherham United (in that order). She's also Operations Director for the Croydon Literary Festival, and Production Editor on the Croydon Citizen.

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