London is renowned for its wide range of shops, from the bargain basement, tourist-oriented souvenir shops of Oxford Street and the surrounding theatreland, to the high-end designer brands to be found in Mayfair and Knightsbridge.
For the fashion-conscious, the latter two destinations should probably be first on the list of places to visit. For variety, and for service second to none, the discerning shopper could start with Harrods, one of the most famous department stores in the world, but amongst the other shops in London, there are a brace of other highly-regarded department stores, such as Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and Liberty. If the shopping becomes too much, you can always adjourn to Harrods’ food halls for lunch, where the different food bars in the different halls all have their own themes.
Ladies’ fashions are well catered for in the Knightsbridge area, with Zara, Basler aand L K Bennett all represented, whilst male tastes are catered for with Armani, Pellini Uomo and Church’s.
Of course, fashion and clothes retailers aren’t the only shops in London, and other tastes and hobbies are well catered for. Musicians should head for Denmark Street and the surrounding area, known as London’s Tin Pan Alley, where guitar specialists rub shoulders with woodwind and brass retailers, and sheet music can also be found in abundance. Bookshops are also well-represented in this area, with a good mix of new, used and antiquarian retailers to be found all the way down Charing Cross Road.
Whilst many of the high-profile brands are to be found on the main thoroughfares, much of the delight in finding shops in London is in venturing off the beaten track, and exploring the side streets. Many specialists can be found in the streets leading off Oxford Street, Brompton Road, and Regent Street.