Regent Street is widely renowned as being one of the top shopping areas in London as it is home to popular luxury stores including the Liberty Department Store and for the kids, Hamley's Toy Store. You can also purchase some jewellery, crystal and fine china in this area at select stores. For the fashion conscious, there are plenty of shops in the area to suit all budgets such as Laura Ashley, Next, Clarks, Jaeger, Benetton and Hugo Boss.
This area is one of the most exclusive in London - and home to two of the most well-known and upmarket stores - Harrods and Harvey Nichols. There are also plenty of designer stores along the Brompton Road and Sloane Street areas such as Gucci, Armani and Christian Dior.
Named after the 17th Century businessman Sir Thomas Bond, Bond Street is divided into two areas, New Bond Street to the north and Old Bond Street to the south. It is well noted for exclusive stores that stock upmarket brands such as Chanel, Prada and Versace. You will also come across Sotheby's Auction Store along Bond Street.
The Covent Garden shopping area has everything the serious shopper wants - from fashion boutique shops to market stalls. The area is renowned for its street entertainment and charming cafes where you can dine, relax and be entertained by the sound of soothing classical tunes!
This is perhaps the most famous shopping area of London and well known around the world because of the large concentration of shops here. It is estimated as receiving 200 million visits a year. Oxford Street is home to the top British stores such as Debenhams, Marks & Spencer, DH Evans and Selfridges.
The wonderful Georgian buildings of Piccadilly are a reason in itself to either shop or window shop on this street! The Piccadilly Arcade may give you some respite from the hustle and bustle of the main shopping areas. The Arcade has some small shops and boutiques that specialize in wonderful gifts and purchases!
Shopping in Kensington
If you want to escape the major crowds on the likes of Oxford Street, Kensington offers a much more relaxed shopping atmosphere and a huge selection of shops. All of the high street stores such as Marks and Spencer, River Island, Next and Miss Selfridge are located here. Heading off the High Street will bring its own surprises - Church Street has a number of antique shops exclusively dealing in Victorian Art. Bakers Arcade offers the exclusive designer stores of Jaeger and Karen Milan. The House of Fraser Department Store is located here.
Kensington Market is located off Church Street, and offers great fashion and accessories.
Getting to the main Shopping Areas of London
Head out of Heathrow Airport and onto the M4 and follow the signs for London. As you are heading into the city the M4 becomes the A4. If you take a left at Piccadilly you will be heading up Regent Street. Taking this route will also bring you to Knightsbridge.
To get to Kensington you get onto Warwick Road after Hammersmith, and take a right onto Kensington High Street.
Mairead writes for Novacarhire.com - an independent car hire reservation website where you can book low cost car hire at over 5000 locations worldwide.