In the heart of London lies the beautiful Covent Garden and Leicester square, home to so many charming eateries, shops and little nooks and crannies that are not to be missed. Sometimes it can be hard to know where to start! But this week I ventured out on a walk around this gorgeous part of the city and mapped out the perfect route in which you can see all the sights, the hotspots and the hidden gems. Sit back and read on for my Ultimate Tour of Covent Garden…
To begin, rather than getting off the tube at Covent Garden, hop off at Leicester Square and take the exit heading towards Covent Garden. There are signs in the station. Then you can take a walk up Monmouth Street towards the Seven Dials roundabout, enjoying all of the pretty shop fronts that invite you in to buy their bespoke hand creams and the like. You can then head down Shorts Gardens, walking past The Crown pub (Pimms o’clock anyone?!) and into Neals Yard for a coffee and a slice of cake amidst the beautiful coloured buildings.
Once you’re done, you can exit the same way that you came in and continue on your way down Shorts Gardens and into Choccywoccydoodah. If you fancy a little chocolate hit, this place is your go-to! And the decor is also fabulous!
So when you’re done treating yourself in chocolate heaven, continue walking down Shorts Gardens until you get to Endell Street. Take a left and wander down there all the way to the end, then cross over and head down Bow Street. Here you’ll find a row of iconic poppy red telephone boxes and the amazing Royal Opera House!
If you want to take a proper look inside this incredible building, have a look online before you go and see if there are any exhibitions or tickets available. That way you can get a true feel of the Royal Opera House!
But when you’re done marvelling, continue on down and take a right down Russell Street and ahead you’ll see the gorgeous Covent Garden Piazza – for yet more beautiful architecture!
It’s so beautiful in here and there is so much to see and do, I could honestly spend hours exploring. There’s everything from designer shops to souvenir stands, ice cream parlours to wine bars. You can take a short wander around or if you have more time, stop to enjoy a drink or two. The Crusting Pipe wine bar in Apple Market often has performers outside, which makes for a great entertainment.
When you’re finished in the Piazza, exit through the other side and take a walk down King Street where you’ll find the beautiful Petersham Nurseries and a ton of shops such as Burberry, Oakley and Bose.
Continue walking down King Street, browsing the shops until you hit New Row, then at the end of this street you will come across La Gelateria. Now, if you have the space in your tummy, stop and treat yourself to some incredible, drool-worthy ice cream from this parlour because it’s so worth it! La Gelateria uses only natural and organic ingredients alongside traditional churning processes in the making of the ice cream, and by golly it is good! It’s definitely worth a little pit-stop in your tour of Covent Garden.
Now, when you’re all full up of gorgeous gelato, take a left at the end of New Row and wander down towards Cecil Court. This place I have to tell you is one of my favourite finds in London to date. It’s a dark little street full of antiques and rare bookshops, like something out of Harry Potter. It’s utterly divine. If you have the time be sure to stop and take a peek inside Marchpane – it is a tiny cluttered bookshop that is FULL of rare children’s books. It’s so incredible if you are a little bookworm like me!
When you’re done in the dreamland of bookshops, take a left out of the end of Cecil Court and walk along down that road. You’ll soon find yourself next to the National Gallery, and then a little further down you’ll come across Nelsons Column and Trafalgar Square! Here you have a little history moment (and London Bucketlist opportunity) to finalise the end of your whistle-stop tour of Covent Garden!
I hope you enjoy(ed) your trip! To head back home or continue the adventures elsewhere, simply jump on the Charing Cross underground.