London is one of the world’s premier shopping destinations with thousands upon thousands of shops dotted all around the capital, from tiny pop-up fashion boutiques to world-famous behemoths such as iconic department stores Harrods and Selfridges (the two largest shops in the UK) and Hamleys, the oldest and largest toy shop in the world.
The sheer volume of retail in London is staggering. Selling everything from the latest in fashion and jewellery to cutting edge technology and super-cars, London’s vast shopping empire turns over sales of around £100bn per year to eight million Londoners, who have the highest level of average disposable income in the UK. A further 16 million international visitors also come to the capital each year and hit the high-street!
No less extreme is the range of shops on offer, from the bustling markets such as Camden, Portobello and Spitalfields to the flagship retail stores on Oxford Street, Regent Street and Covent Garden.
Finding your way around can be an exhausting experience so it is worth spending some time planning your shopping trip and familiarising yourself with the London tube map.
Below we have listed some of London’s best known shopping areas and shops.
- Running from Trafalgar Square to St Giles’ Circus, where it turns into Tottenham Court Road, Charing Cross Road has a reputation for its bookshops, specialising in everything from titles on… more »
- Chinatown is the unofficial name for the area centred around Gerrard Street, just below Soho in the three blocks between Leicester Square and Shaftesbury Avenue. Although the tiny ghetto is… more »
- Forming part of London’s inner ring road, Commercial Street joins Aldgate and Shoreditch, also acting as a boundary between the affluent City and the poorer East End. The street runs… more »
- Covent Garden is one of the top shopping and entertainment areas in London. Filled with exquisite restaurants and big fashion labels, it has become a popular venue for tourists to… more »
- Hamley’s is the largest and most famous toy shop in the world. Situated on one of London’s busiest shopping areas, Regent Street, the giant emporium occupies six huge floors packed… more »
- Spread over seven floors and encompassing an estimated five acres of floorspace, Harrods is one of the world’s most famous department stores and for a long time enjoyed a reputation… more »
- In the heart of central London’s busiest shopping district lies Oxford Street, which runs from Marble Arch to St Giles’ Circus, crossing Tottenham Court Road and Charing Cross Road on… more »
- Piccadilly Circus is London’s answer to New York’s Times Square. Ablaze with neon advertisements, noise and traffic, Piccadilly Circus is a popular meeting place for all and sundry. Traffic swirls… more »
- One of London’s best-known and most popular tourist attractions is Portobello market, famed for its antiques and second-hand bargains. The road from which it gets its name was itself named… more »
- Famously part of the green set in Monopoly, along with Oxford Street and Bond Street, Regent Street is a Mecca for shoppers. Home of Hamley’s, which holds the title of… more »
- In the midst of Piccadilly Circus to the south and Oxford Street to the north, and Regent Street to the west and Charing Cross road to the east, lies Soho… more »
- Running south from Euston Road and intersecting with Charing Cross Road and Oxford Street at St Giles’ Circus, Tottenham Court Road forms part of the edge of the City of… more »