Highgate is one of the most expensive London suburbs in which to live. It has two active conservation organisations, the Highgate Society and the Highgate Neighbourhood Forum to protect and enhance its character and amenities.
Until late Victorian times it was a distinct village outside London, sitting astride the main road to the north. The area retains many green expanses including the eastern part of Hampstead Heath, three ancient woods, Waterlow Park and the eastern-facing slopes known as Highgate bowl.
At its centre is Highgate village, a collection of largely Georgian shops, pubs, restaurants and residential streets, interspersed with diverse landmarks such as St Michael's Church and steeple, St. Joseph's Church and its green copper dome, Highgate School (1565), Jacksons Lane arts centre housed in a Grade II listed former church, the Gatehouse Inn dating from 1670 which houses the theatre Upstairs at the Gatehouse and Berthold Lubetkin's 1930s Highpoint buildings. Pond Square, behind the High Street, is a registered village green and is the centre of communal activities which take place in the elegant buildings of the Highgate Literary and Scientific Institution and Highgate Society facing the Square.