Hamleys, the world’s oldest toy store, has stood as an iconic landmark in the heart of London since 1760. It’s more than just a toy store; it’s a magical experience for both the young and the young-at-heart. Here’s a concise guide to make the most of your visit.
Address: Regent Street, London, W1B 5BT.
Closest Underground Station: Oxford Circus (Central, Bakerloo and Victoria lines).
Buses: Numerous bus routes pass close to Hamleys, including the 3, 6, 12, 13, 15, 23, 88, 94, 139, and 453.
- Monday to Friday: 10:00 am – 8:00 pm
- Saturday: 9:00 am – 8:00 pm
- Sunday: 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Note: Hours may vary on public holidays and special occasions, so it’s always a good idea to check the official website or call ahead before your visit.
Things to Do and See:
- Seven Floors of Fun: Hamleys boasts seven floors filled with an array of toys, games, and unique demonstrations. Each floor has its own theme, so there’s something for every interest.
- Demonstrations & Live Entertainment: Hamleys is famed for its in-store demos. Marvel at flying drones, see magic tricks, or meet popular children’s characters on any given day.
- Personal Shopping Experience: If you’re looking for specific items or need recommendations, Hamleys’ experts are there to help.
- Birthday Parties & Events: Check if there are any special workshops or events during your visit. Hamleys also offers birthday party packages for a truly unforgettable experience.
Tips for a Pleasant Visit:
- Weekdays are Less Crowded: As one of London’s premier attractions, Hamleys can get crowded, especially on weekends. If possible, visit during a weekday morning for a more relaxed experience.
- Allow Plenty of Time: With so much to see and do, you might spend more time here than anticipated. Budget at least 2-3 hours if you want to explore thoroughly.
- Budget for Purchases: While entry to the store is free, the allure of the toys may entice you to splurge.
- Stay Connected: Free Wi-Fi is available in-store, handy for sharing your magical moments on social media.
- Refreshments: If you need a snack or drink, there are cafes located nearby on Regent Street.
- Regent Street: Renowned for its flagship stores and architectural beauty, it’s one of London’s top shopping destinations.
- Oxford Street: Another shopping haven, it boasts over 300 stores.
- Piccadilly Circus: A bustling square known for its neon signs and Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain.
- Carnaby Street: A pedestrianized shopping street famous for its unique boutiques and rich history.
Conclusion: Hamleys isn’t just a store; it’s an enchanting experience that transports visitors to a world of imagination and wonder. Whether you’re reminiscing about your childhood or creating new memories with the next generation, Hamleys offers a magical journey that’s not to be missed when in London.