In the courtyard in front of St. James´s Church Piccadilly there has been a market open for 30 years. There are not that many markets in the very center of London and I find this one so lovely. It is small, but has got a lot of stalls closely together and it is always busy here.
Opening hours for the market:
On Mondays from 11:00-17:00 there is a food market.
On Tuesdays from 10:00-18:00 there is an Antique and Collectors Market.
On Wednesdays-Saturdays from 10:00-18:00 there is an Arts and Crafts Market. One can find such interesting stuff here, I f.ex. love minerals and have found them here at this small market.
Fondest memory: The Piccadilly Market is open 6 days a week (closed on Sundays) and the rent for the stalls goes to the upkeep of the lovely St. James´s Church Piccadilly.
The market is located at 197 Piccadilly. Tube: Piccadilly Circus and Green Park.
A recommended visit while in this busy area of London - one can also pop into the beautiful church or enjoy the garden with its statues. I just love this area.
What was once a leafy country lane back in the 18th century has developed into one of the most famous streets in West London, thanks to it playing host to one of London's most popular markets. Portobello Road Market is really three markets in one, each with their own speciality.
Portobello Market, the world's largest antiques market, with over 1500 dealers selling every kind of antique and collectable. The market is open every Saturday, while the shops are open six days a week.
Market days start gradually from around 5.30am with trading between dealers from the UK and overseas. Most stall-holders have arrived by 8.00am and the market is in full swing for the rest of the day, with collectors and visitors from all over the world.
The shops and stalls of Portobello Market offer an extraordinary variety of goods ranging in price from a few pounds to several thousands. Visitors come from all over the world because they know that in Portobello Road they will find the most extensive selection of antiques in Britain.
Favorite thing: OK, so you saw a nice t-shirt, paper weight, collectible place (add your favorite souvenir) at a price you think it's adequate. Chances are the shop next door or down the street has the same item but cheaper. At Piccadilly Circus there's plenty of souvenir shops that have pretty much the same range of merchandise and the price differs by as much as a couple of pounds. You might even look at shops outside the city center for even better prices.
Sometimes you buy something on a whim; this is exactly what I done this day.
Me, Chris and my sister, Mel, went to London for a day out shopping in January 1998. Anyway, a few months beforehand, I had found this wonderful ankle length pink fur coat in C & As, but it was £75.00 at that time, so I didn't buy it. I couldn't justify spending £75 on something I knew was just a whim at the time and had regretted it ever since.
It was nearly time for the shops to shut up in the evening, when we decided to go into C & A's, just for a quick look you understand. Lo and behold, my pink fur coat was down to £25.00! So I purchased it this time... Mind you, I haven't actually worn it yet, but it does come in handy to cover myself up on the sofa when it is really cold weather.
The C&A stores no longer exist within England, it's a shame, they used to have some really lovely clothes on sale here. You can still find C&A's in other European countries though, sadly just not here.
Fancy buying a Rolls Royce in London. Well, at least you can window shop at one.
Favorite shopping places for window shoppers for tourists include Harrods where the Queen also has shopped as well as Marks and Spencers.
What about the flea markets? The list goes on as far as the choices and variety of shopping in London. The city of shops.
Oxford Street used to be called such names as "The Kings's Highway", "The Acton Road", and "The Road To Tyburn".
It's named after the Earl of Oxford, Robert Harley. This street is a hustling, bustling group of shops about one mile long that runs west from Tottenham Court Road to Marble Arch.
There's only one pub (The Tottenham), but there are places to eat....but no fine restaurants. The shops are not so attractive or of architectual interest, but about 4,000,000 people crowd to this unique area each week because Oxford Street is the "shopping Mecca of London".
It's quite loud with buses, music, hawkers, and even Scot's bagpipes! I think it must be a "tradition" to shop here. A man told me that "the more middle class you are, the fewer shops you patronize in Oxford Street."
I noticed that the street guys use the "three card trick" to fleece unsuspecting people.
A word of warning: There are only seven public toilets in Oxford Street.
Jill and I went there, and she purchased glassware, and I bought a Buddy Holly CD.
It's fun but tiring, and one has to be careful that he/she does not mix up a "bargain" with a "rip off"!
Fondest memory: The glassware that Jill purchased was truly unique and quite beautiful. I took it home with me to keep for her. She was returning to the states in about six months. Jill was thrilled to see it when she finally returned home.
Favorite thing: With the tube we arrived at Oxford Circus and after we decided not to go Madame Tussauds I wanted to go to Piccadilly Circus. Its not so far but if you walk on Regent Street it will take a long time? Because its a detour? No, no... but all those shops. Although it was very crowded because of all those "x-mas shoppers" I went to many of those shops. And not only because I wanted to protect myself from the rain....
Generally if you are not from the UK you may not know the name of local pharmacies (for tissues, aspirin/panadol, cold medicine and other personal items). Two of the main ones are 'Boots' and 'Superdrug' (both can be found on Oxford St)
To find where other stores are located in London try:
The Portobello Road Market on saturdays is the reason why most people visit Notting Hill.
It is always bustling and and well worth visit even if you do not intend to buy.
Portobello Road is a narrow, winding thoroughfare, in the middle of Notting Hill
At the Notting Hill end there are over 2,000 stalls selling antiques, jewellery, paintings, coins, medals, silverware and collectables. All the stallholders here are experts so don't expect too many bargains. This area also has cafés, bars, restaurants and delicatessens.
Further down the hill are fruit and vegetable stalls.
Under the Westway is a large flea market offering second-hand clothes, jewellery, records and books, and beyond this at Golborne Road the market becomes rundown but it's still worth searching for bargains, as well as the Portuguese cafés.
Saturday is the best day to go, although some stalls are open all week
Antiques: Sat: 04:00-18:00
General: Mon-Wed: 08:00-18:00, Thu: 09:00-13:00, Fri-Sat: 08:00-19:.00
Bric-a-Brac: Fri & Sat 08:00-17:00
Covent Garden is one of the London's biggest tourist magnets. The origins of Covent Garden are firmly rooted in medieval times, when a local 'convent garden' supplied fruit and vegetables to Westminster Abbey.
The impressive covered central market was originally designed for this same purpose, although it now contains restaurants, open-air cafés and small shops selling antiques, books, and arts and crafts.
In 1540 King Henry VIII confiscated the lands of the monasteries and the land was given to John Baron Russell, the first Earl of Bedford.
In 1632 the 4th Earl of Bedford, Francis Russell, commissioned the renowned architect Inigo Jones to develop the area into a luxury neighborhood.
Influenced by Italian piazzas, Jones created London's first public square, surrounded by arcaded buildings and dominated by the church of St. Paul.
Nowadays, the piazza is famous for the many street performers who entertain the visitors.
Fondest memory: One of the places I liked more visiting when I was there was the Cabaret Mechanical Theatre a Museum of Automata (Mechanical Sculpture)
I bought there a lot of books and card cut-outs to my niece and nephew.
SHOPPING. One of my favourite activities in London is shopping, there are so many cool shops that cater for everybodies tastes. There is Carnaby Street, Oxford Street, Bond Street and many more where the shopping is second to none.
Fondest memory: One of my favourite shops is Topman. It is situated in Oxford Street, just by Oxford Circus. Here you can buy all sorts of fashionable clothes at reasonable prices. For the girls try Topshop next door.
Carnaby Street. Calls to mind the Swinging Sixties. Mary Quant. Big eye makeup and bobbed hair.
For three decades the look was out of fashion and out of mind. On Carnaby Street it has re-emerged with a passion. Miniskirts and fishnet stockings. Vinyl slickers and Cleopatra eyes. Psychodelic colors.
Along with the fashion scene there has been a renovation and refitting of local buildings. It is worth a visit, if only for the nostalgia of it all.
Carnaby Street is between the London Palladium and Piccadilly Circus, off Regent Street.
Visit Portobello Road even if the market is closed
Fondest memory: Buying 'Rare Breed' meat from 'Kingsland - The Edwardian Butcher' (140 Portobello Road).
Watching coffee being roasted and then buying tea and coffee from 'The Tea and Coffee Plant' (170 Portobello Road - they may have temp moved along the road whilst they refurbish their shop).
Visiting a bookshop called 'Books for Cooks' (4 Blenheim Crescent). A little road just round the corner from 'The Tea and Coffee Plant'
This is the area in which the film 'Notting Hill' was made.
Favorite thing: This is the car that they used in Die Another Day. They had window displays of all the James Bond movies at Harrods, and they even played the theme songs inside. Since im a big James Bond fan, I was at Harrods almost everyday just to stare at the displays.
Favorite thing: And again, as during my very first visits, the sun was in full shine is London.... my short biz trip was over and I was heading to the airport to catch a plane, but wanting to freeze those last imagest of London, I took out the camera and..... click! here it is, one of the most cognate image! :)))