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Covent Garden and the Strand, London Travel Guide

Covent Garden and the Strand Summary


  • A cultural hot spot, home to St. Paul's Church, the Benjamin Franklin House, and Somerset House
  • The Strand, a famous street running along the Thames
  • Tons of high-class restaurants and bars
  • Where the majority of the theater district is located, including the famous Savoy Theatre and the Royal Opera House
  • Victoria Embankment Gardens along the river
  • Lively during the day and night
  • Great shopping, particularly along Monmouth Street


  • Can be crowded, particularly on the weekends
  • Expensive area
  • Not many hotels (and almost all of them are extremely pricey)

What It's Like

The Covent Garden area (bordered on the southern edge by the Strand) is the more upscale and cultural counterpoint to nearby Soho. It's home to numerous restaurants, bars, shops, and theaters, and visitors flock here (especially on the weekends) to peruse up-and-coming designer boutiques along Monmouth Street, visit the large shopping mall at Central Market, attend performances at the many theaters and the Royal Opera House, and check out cultural spots such as the centuries-old St. Paul's Church.

The Strand, where the theaters, shops, hotels, and restaurants are concentrated, runs along the Thames River. The area is often very crowded, and understandably so. Somerset House, a beautiful old building which houses numerous galleries, is on the southern side of the Strand, and the Embankment Gardens overlook the Thames.

Where to Stay

Covent Gardens does not have many hotels, but the hotels that are in the area are all top-notch (with prices which reflect that). The majority of the hotels are concentrated along the Strand, putting visitors close to restaurants, theaters, and culutural sights. Many hotels have rooms featuring views overlooking the Thames.

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