Built upon one of London’s oldest Roman roads, Oxford Street is now Europe’s most famous retail avenue. An array of major outlets and boutiques cater to about a half million shoppers each day. The street’s history, architecture, and Christmas light displays also draw all manner of visitors to the capital.
The best way to enjoy Oxford Street is to stroll along its bustling paths, free to browse at your own pace. Hop-on hop-off tours provide the flexibility to wander and shop, without the constraint of a set itinerary. Alternatively, those with limited time can take advantage of tours that offer customizable itineraries with private transfer, letting visitors tick off this landmark along with other attractions.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Oxford Street is an absolute must for shopaholics.
- Remember your coat and umbrella in winter, as the mile and a half-long street is entirely uncovered.
- Most of the street’s major department stores are wheelchair-friendly, with step-free entrances and wide-access elevators.
How to Get There
As with all capital cities, driving yourself is not advised. Marble Arch, Bond Street, Oxford Circus, and Tottenham Court Road Underground stations are dotted along Oxford Street, which is also served by many local buses and hop-on hop-off services.
When to Get There
Oxford Street’s annual Christmas street light and window displays are a top draw for many in the city. With a different theme every year, the display turns even London’s busiest street into a festive wonderland, and some providers offer seasonal tours to experience the sight in all its glory.
The Survival of Oxford Street
During the Blitz of 1940-41, Oxford Street was heavily bombed by the German Luftwaffe, resulting in significant damage to flagship stores, including Selfridges and John Lewis. The street was targeted again by the Provisional IRA during the Troubles. Despite these obstacles, Oxford Street is still a retail hot spot that does upward of £5 billion in sales each year.