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Harrods

One of the world's most famous department stores in the world and a favourite for the rich and famous.

TravelCurious Tip

You must not miss the food hall. Try the Mango Tree restaurant for some outstanding Chinese — those Shanghai Pork Dumplings!

Harrods is one of the world’s famous department stores, strongly associated with its home city and a distinctive aesthetic. You only need to see those signature green bags to know that you are in Knightsbridge, one of the most exclusive areas of London. The place is awash with money and glamour. Some people who live here allegedly only shop at Harrods, such is the depth of their pockets. It’s easy to believe when you see lime green Lamborghinis with a fan of parking tickets under the windshield, probably completely forgotten about by their owners.


Harrods has more than a million square feet of space, and 330 departments spread over seven floors. Its motto is Omnia Omnibus Ubique — All Things For All People, Everywhere. In truth it’s not really affordable for all people, but it does attract some 15 million customers a year, and you can certainly find just about anything there.


Humble Beginnings

Harrods began in 1849, in a single room. Charles Henry Harrod founded it, and they mainly sold tea (of course). It steadily expanded and moved upmarket. It was refurbished in a palatial style, with a frontage clad in terracotta tiles depicting cherubs, whirling Art Nouveau windows and a baroque-style dome to top it off.


In 1898 it became home to one of the world’s first escalators. During World War II it went from selling luxury goods to making uniforms and parachutes for Lancaster bombers. It’s all-English roots have taken a knock in recent years as the store is now owned by Mr Al Fayed. He has added some of his own touches, including the Egyptian room, which is adorned with busts of himself. You are also not allowed to wear beach shorts, swimwear or flip-flops inside. Luckily, one rarely does in London.

Nearby Attractions

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Victoria and Albert Museum
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Knightsbridge
An affluent neighbourhood whose streets are lined with exclusive shops and expensive cars.
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Related Tours

Kensington and The Victoria & Albert Museum Private Tour
Join this tour through the elite streets of West London, the home of billionaire emigres, financiers, and aristocracy.

  • Become acquainted with two prim-and-proper neighbourhoods that house the city’s elite.
  • Experience the heritage and history of the neighbourhood’s gleaming facades and celebrated museums.
  • Visit the pristine gardens outside of Kensington Palace.
  • See The Victoria and Albert Museum, the world's largest museum of decorative arts and design that houses a collection of over 4.5 million objects.
  • Learn how these two neighbourhoods have been transformed over the past 100 years.
  • Your tour finishes with a visit Hyde Park where you will see some of Kensington Palace's sprawling public gardens. 
Once renowned for its wild criminality, this area is now a playground for the rich, and synonymous with luxury brands such as Harrods. But unknown to many, it is a love story that truly drives the history of this area - the relationship between Queen Victoria and her Consort, Prince Albert. Join this tour to learn more about the Royal couple and the buildings they left behind them here in London’s ‘Albertopolis.’

You will learn of the life and times of Queen Victoria and her husband Albert - the world in which they lived, the beginning, course, and ending of their marriage, and influence they had on wider society. Your tour continues at the Victoria and Albert Museum - which celebrates  art and design, its 13 acres – that’s over 52,000 square metres – contain 145 galleries that span a colossal 5,000 years of applied arts. The impressive museum displays artefacts, furniture, paintings, textiles, ceramics, costumes, prints, ironwork, photos, and much more besides. In total, it houses over 4.5 million objects. 

On this tour you will see some of London’s most exclusive neighbourhoods, and hear the stories behind world famous luxury institutions such as Harrods. Travelling along Exhibition Road - named for the Great Exhibition of 1851, a landmark event in the history of London - you will learn of the fascinating histories of some of London’s most important centres of intellectual excellence. Your tour finishes in Hyde Park, where your guide will  give you some of the history of the park and orient you, so that you don't get lost in its' 350 acres.
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