Covent Garden: The Beating Heart of London
Covent Garden is a part of the Borough of Westminster, London, to the east of the famous West End. The Royal Opera House, usually called “Covent Garden”, is located close to the old fruit & vegetable market.
The neighborhood is split by Long Acre, which runs from St Martin’s Lane and Drury Lane. There are individual stores to be found in the colorful Neal’s Yard, as well as Seven Dials in the north. You will also see the London Transport Museum together with Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in the south.
The first market in Covent Garden was recorded in 1654, when sellers set up stalls alongside the wall of Bedford House. The historic market’s stalls and shelters became disorganized, so a new market was built in1830 after a bill approved in Parliament.
The neo-classical market building constructed by Charles Fowler for the 6th Duke of Bedford, is a national landmark. The Floral Hall, then the classic Charter Market, and the Jubilee Market which sold imported flowers were all built by Cubitt and Howard in 1904.
Due to the designation of the original location as a historic property, any future development of the market was halted in 1974, and the market moved away. After a lengthy period of inactivity, the central structure was restored in 1980 as a commercial center bursting with cafés, bars, boutique retailers, and a craft related market.
The London Transport Museum was originally situated in the refurbished flower market buildings, which reopened in 2007.
Covent Garden as an Attraction
Covent Garden is one of London’s most popular districts, and for good reason! After a long day of shopping or touring, relax at one of the many delightful restaurants and cafés in Covent Garden. In Seven Dials, you may (window) shop at various distinctive stores and brands. Locally owned and operated enterprises abound.
Every year, around 30 million tourists and locals visit the Covent Garden market halls. Despite its crowdedness, Covent Garden is a must-see for London travellers. This gorgeous location is the place to be if you want to witness some great street performances or listen to some great classical music.
3 Places Not to Miss in Covent Garden
Covent Garden Market
Remember Eliza Doolittle from My Fair Lady? A flower trader at Covent Garden Market! Although restorations have sought to conserve the spirit of the building and market, Covent Garden Market has changed substantially since it was a location to sell fruits and vegetables in the eighteenth century.
Covent Garden Market currently has many tiny antique and trinket shops, as well as food and craft beer stalls. For a delicious meal, Covent Garden Market is a must-see during your Christmas in London, since it is beautifully decorated for the season.
Neal’s Yard is one of London’s most bustling districts. The capital may be dreary at times. With its vividly painted cottages, Neal’s Yard is one of the best cures for grey skies and gloomy Mondays.
When entering Neal’s Yard, the vividly colored buildings capture your sight. Enjoy a coffee or a drink at one of the tiny boutique cafés while taking in the colorful surroundings.
The Royal Opera House (Covent Garden)
The Royal Opera House, located in the heart of Covent Garden, has been home to the Royal Opera, Royal Ballet, and Royal Opera House Orchestra for over a century.
The Opera’s auditorium seats over 2200 people. In fact, this is the third opera house erected on this exact location. The Opera House was built in 1858, but only the façade, foyer, and main hall were repaired in the 1990s.
It is strongly suggested that you look into what is on during your London visit, especially if you enjoy Ballet and Opera.
Although Covent Garden’s popularity has led to rising rents and the closure of many unique stores, the neighborhood still retains a market vibe. Throughout the perimeter and ground floor of the main structure are hundreds of booths with individual merchants offering a range of intriguing things. The theme varies each week and includes arts and crafts, gourmet meals, cosmetics, and jewellery. If the tables survive, Covent Garden will remain a must-see attraction in Westminster, England.
Covent Garden remains one of those places where such a charming ambiance has been developed that it is worth visiting the area just to stroll and enjoy the multitude of talented street entertainers, and chill out over a coffee.