Harrods is the largest department store in Europe, and their motto is "Omnia Omnibus Ubique" or "All Things for All People, Everywhere." I'd heard that it was just a place for tourists, but we wanted to visit anyways, and it really is impressive.
We got there a little early, or before it opened, so we decided to walk around and look at the window displays, which when we went were mostly Great Gatsby or 1920's-themed, which was definitely cool to see. It was also a bit of a walk around it since the store is so big!
We checked out the Food Halls and went on the Egyptian Escalator, then did a little bit of clothes and jewelry window-shopping. We also found a gift store with tons of Harrods souvenirs, from little bears to the iconic green bags that we saw a few people carrying around London. Almost everything there was too expensive for us to buy, but we all got some very delicious cupcakes so we could say we had "shopped" at Harrods.
What to buy: Anything you can think of--they probably have it! I would definitely check out the Food Halls, and I can say firsthand that the cupcakes are worth the $5 USD they cost. :)
What to pay: A lot! It's quite an upscale department store.
Touted as the best and largest store in the world, Harrod's isn’t your basic department store. It is quite overpriced, and overcrowded no matter when you visit. Its more of a tourist attraction in itself and deserves a few hours of perusing. My favorite departments are the food courts, the beauty and accessory department, the pet shop and the travel departments as well as the Arcade with its signature teddies, bags, and other great items.
I always make it a point to stop by and pick up a few things especially some of their signature bags which I love to give as presents (I have a few myself). Their food courts are amazing, just browsing their different departments of delicious goodies like their seafood department or their cheese department.
I love browsing their accessories department as I have found some really unique although pricey costume jewelry.
What to buy: During my most recent trip I purchased a few of the signature bags for some friends, Harrod’s teddy for my grandson and some Harrod’s Tea for a co-worker.
What to pay: Expensive
The Egyptian Room of Harrod's is another which should not be missed. It has a scaled-down Sphinx and Rosetta Stone replica. It's a wonderful experience riding the Egyptian Escalator located in the centre of the store. I just rode it to see what there was to see, and this was the story of the Valley of the Kings.
Very well done!
I just had to go to Harrods, not really to buy anything, but to see the Store I had heard so much about.
I had been told by another VT'er, to visit the food hall, which is what I did. Well, I have never seen such a wonderful food hall, it was amazing! We were there on opening time, so the staff were still busy doing finishing touches to their departments. They looked lovely in their crisp uniforms, including a Boater hat.
I couldn't get over the decorations, do make sure you have a look at the ceiling and the lights, just wonderful!
I would say its a MUST SEE
Travelling with women three "monuments" are mandatory in London - Oxford street, Marks and Spencer and Harrods. I visited all of them (of course!) but my favorite is this one - beautiful, with nice collections, but... expensive, shortenning the time (and cost) of the visit. Very good, indeed!
Well, I'm certainly aware that I'm not the first person to write a tip on Harrods but I can't help it. It's just way too much fun. I mean the food halls alone are reason to go! Interestingly I didn't run into a single English salesperson which is kind of bizarre when you think about it. Anyway, I just couldn't get enough of this store--fun and alive and...OK, I have one complaint. That "tribute" to Dodi and Diana is the tackiest thing I've ever seen in my life. It makes them look like a Vegas comedy team or lion tamers or something. And it's cheap looking--like a plastic wedding cake top. The fact that it's situated in that monstrosity known as "The Egyptian Escalator" doesn't do it any favors, either. That aside, it's still a lovely, wonderful, fun place!
What to buy: Food, food, and more food.
What to pay: The food isn't cheap but it's all pretty much worth it.
Last visit July 2011
Harrod's is the most famous department store in the world, even on my first journey to London back in 1988 I had heard of it and made a point to stop by just to look as I certainly couldn't afford to shop there back then!
I didn't make it back to Harrod's until 2005, I'm not much of a shopper and even less so when I get hit with abysmal exchange rates. But we had some time to kill before dinner on our first day in London and we were in the vicinity so we popped in. I imagine I was impressed on my first visit, my first time out of North America, but on my 2nd visit I think amused was a better word. Gaudy doesn't begin to describe the elaborate Egyptian themed interior, ride the escalators up for the full effect. And I was pretty much speechless after seeing the tacky display devoted to Di and Dodi, the wine glass they sipped from the night of their deaths and the engagement ring.
The connection to Di and Dodi, of course, is that the current owner of Harrod's, is Dodi's father. But there was a man named Charles Harrod back when the department store was founded in 1834, he moved the store to the current site in Knightsbridge in 1849.
But oh, was I impressed by the food hall, even if you don't intend to buy anything, go take a look, it's just a heavenly place to be! And I dare you not to come out with anything in hand, for me it was a very small sampling of Neuhaus Belgian chocolates.
What to buy: Well, I had to buy something from Harrod's to get one of those distinctive green bags with Harrod's written on it, didn't I? So I bought a couple of cute Christmas ornaments, bears with Harrod's written on their feet, and Harrod's stuffed bears for a couple of my friends that just had babies. If the pounds had been dollars the amount would have been palatable so I just ignored the exchange rate and didn't look to see what my extravagance cost me when I got home.
What to pay: A lot!
Harrod's was started in 1849 by Henry Charles Harrod, although the present building was opened in 1905. It is one of the world's largest and most famous department stores with a reputation for quality and service, but it seems to be the service that sets it apart. There is a gift concierge to help you find the perfect gift, experts to help you with your finances, your wedding, and in every department of the store. You can even hire your own private shopper. It's said that if you can't find it at Harrod's they will find it for you.
Children (and some adults too) will love the huge toy department. The beautifully tiled food halls are amazing and you can find just about anything here. There are no less than 8 places to eat (including a Krispy Kreme donuts) from a pizzeria to a pub to a rotisserie.
Even if you don't buy anything, it's still worth a visit. The store's January sales are a big event so be ready to shop then.
If you're at Kesington Palace/Gardens, it's an easy walk to Harrod's.
Opening hours (including Bank Holidays):
Monday to Saturday 10am - 8pm
Sunday 11.30am* - 6pm
Summer Late Night Opening:
Saturday 18 June** to Saturday 30 July: Monday to Saturday: 10am - 9pm
Nice to look but crazy to buy. I am sure most people buy something for £20 or £30 just to say they bought it from Harrods. I know my friend and my sis use their Harrods bags when they go shop at Tesco's. I have mine as well.
There are people who really shop there because Harrods makes a fortune every year, but they are not your average traveller's local shop. It is fun to walk around and the food area is quite nice, more reasonable and seems to be very popular. We were there on a Saturday afternoon. The shopping area (clothes, furniture etc) was very quiet but the food area was a buzz.
What to buy: Nothing in Harrods. Get something at the food store for the bag and the till slip for your travel album.
What to pay: More than anyone should.
Harrods is probably the most famous department store in the world. So even if you don't plan to buy anything there (it's quite expensive) it is a touristical attraction in itself.
Take the very kitsh "egyptian escalator" or try the "luxury toilets" !
What to buy: The place is so big that you will easily get lost and will discover all kind of items : from luxury designer dresses to all you need for hunting... Very surprising !
There is also a pet shop, a special Christmas section and an impressing food hall.
What to pay: Have your credit card ready...
This fabulous and pricey department store was opened in 1849 by Charles Harrod. It has just about everything you could want.
For Princess Diana fans there is a memorial to her and Dodi Al Fayer inside.
Harrods is the most famous department store in the world with other places really only a copy. The store is huge. It will take you most of a day to see the whole place but most go to mainly two spots - the food hall (ground floor) and the gift shop (aka Harrods Shop on the lower ground floor) with a wander past the Princess Diana Shrine.
The toilets generally cost you 1 pound to use and come complete with perfumes etc to complete your experience.
The closet tube station is Knightsbridge (on the Piccadilly line) and the number 14 bus stops right outside.
Interestingly, Harrods has branched out and now has Harrods Bank, Harrods Casino, harrods Estates and Harrods Aviation on thier books.
What to buy: The gift shop has everything that you ever wanted with the Harrods name on as a momento and the items make excellent gifts for an expectant family on your return.
What to pay: Harrods is more expensive than other places but you are generally paying for the name and the service so probably okay.
So you're at Harrods, pretending to be a bit posh, and imagining for a moment that you can afford anything in there. You wander through women's clothes, have a look at the oh-so-English fancy hats, linger over the shoes. You browse the perfumes, both familiar and exotic. But now you're about to leave, and you still haven't bought anything to show for your visit, and kind of fancy a little something luxurious to treat yourself. What's a low-budget traveller to do?
What to buy: Buy yourself a chocolate! Head down to the food markets, and browse the tasty treats. I came across a beautiful array of truffles, small and large, and decided to indulge a little. They have large truffles for £1.10 each, or smaller ones (I didn't check the price). I got myself (to share with my Mom and my boyfriend), some Creme Brulee, Cappuccino, and Champagne truffles. Absolutely divine. Unfortunately, I waited just a little too long to eat them, and just happened to be in London on a stifling-hot day, so they were pretty melty by the time they made it to my mouth - but divine nonetheless.
There, I bought something at Harrods, and didn't break the bank.
What to pay: £1.10 for a large truffle.
!!! UNDER CONSTRUCTION !!!
Harrod's is essentially a large and beautiful department store.
What to buy: Harrod's has a section which sells Harrod's merchandise. This includes items for babies and children, teddy bears and much more.
I was very impressed with the fresh food section. The variety of cheeses, sushi, salads and meats was amazing
What to pay: The items in Harrod's were a little pricey, but the quality was high.
Harrods has the reputation of having anything that you would want to buy. I really wanted to go here to the Food Hall. But it took so long to get onto the London Eye, that the closest I got was this picture from the top of the Big Bus.
Monday 10am - 7pm
Tuesday 10am - 7pm
Wednesday 10am - 7pm
Thursday 10am - 7pm
Friday 10am - 7pm
Saturday 10am - 7pm
What to buy: * Lower Ground Floor departments
Harrods World Souvenirs
Mens Contemporary Collections
Mens Designer Collections
Mens Designer Shoes
Pens, Stationery & Leather Goods
* Ground Floor
Bakery & Patisserie
Chocolate & Patisserie
Cigars & Smokers Requisites
Cosmetics (white hall)
Fine Jewellery & Luxury Watches
Fruit & Vegetables
Meat & Poultry
Perfumery (black hall)
Tea & Coffee
* First Floor
Di Milos Boutique
International Designer Collections
Lingerie & Nightwear
The Designer Studio
The Wedding Dress
* Second floor
Books, Magazines & Newspapers
Crystal & Glass
Design & Decoration
Travel Goods & Luggage
Antiques & Clock Gallery
Beds & Bedroom Furniture
CD DVDs and Videos
Interior Design Studio
Modern Furniture Gallery
Pianos & Musical Instruments
Traditional Furniture Gallery
Childrens Underwear & Nightwear
Concept Toys and Games
Preschool Toys and Dolls
Way In Shoes
* Fifth floor