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Covent Garden Questions

Guangzhou
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Covent Garden Questions

Hi Friends,

I saw a post discussing Covent Garden which made me curious so I went to the webpages discussing that. Unfortunately, some of them would not open here but I did get a look at some. I also searched the forum here for info, but I am still unclear as to exactly what Covent Garden is. From what I ascertain, it is in the West End and is an entertainment center for London. Shopping, theatre, nightlife, restaurants are all popular there.

We are not big on nightlife, have already booked three plays, and don't have a big eating out budget. Given those perameters, is CG still worthwhile to visit? I guess I am really not clear on the big picture of that area- if it's fun to just go and people watch or look around without staying in a hotel there, eating a nice dinner out, or shopping.

I have, as I mentioned, tried to search this out for myself, but would enjoy some of you London regulars giving me the big picture for the area.

And I cannot open the calendar telling the events during our visit, so I don't know if street performers are in the area daily or only on specific dates. We'd enjoy street performers....and we'll be nearby several times so we could fit it into our itinerary if it sounds fun after hearing more details.

Thanks for any advice you can give.

Buckingham Palace
Castles, Historic Sites, Gardens, Points of Interest & Landmarks
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1. Re: Covent Garden Questions

Covent Graden used to be the fruit veg and flower market for London. The old market halls are still there but now contain shops and (non food) market stalls.There is a food market on Saturdays.

It is also the home of the Royal Opera House, also at times just referred to as Covent Garden. Street performers are there every day, with a little more going on at weekends. You will see mimes. opera, clowns, classical music.

There is an interesting church, St Paul's , which is generally known as the actor's church- it's well worth a look.

SYD-LON-MUC
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for Honeymoons and Romance, Richmond, Bondi, Katoomba
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2. Re: Covent Garden Questions

yep as brittraveller says.

But noticing that some pages don't open there I wonder if certain tunnels work.

eg: http://www.vtunnel.com/

Will be slow but it may work...

Brad

Guangzhou
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3. Re: Covent Garden Questions

I'll try that, Brad, thanks. I've tried VPN's and different proxy sites but my computer must have something special inside because it blacks out when I try them. But I can get some really great Chinese food here:-D

I appreciate the replies.

Hitchin, United...
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4. Re: Covent Garden Questions

You don't necessarily have to pay a lot for food in Covent Garden.. as an example Kulu Kulu sushi is the cheapest Japanese place I have ever eaten in in London, but is still pretty good quality. You just have to look a little bit away from the main streets.

http://www.london-eating.co.uk/3733.htm

Time Out's Cheap Eats feature might be helpful:

timeout.com/london/…5617.html

As for what Covent Garden is, you had it right in paragraph 1. I do think it's worth going just to people watch. Sit outside somewhere with a coffee and take it all in. You get most of your street performers at weekends, in the main plaza at both ends (especially musical performers and acrobatic groups), but they're there on some evenings too, particularly those evenings closer to the weekend. Some of the solo performers (magicians, people pretending to be statues etc) stand along James Street, close to the tube station.

San Francisco...
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5. Re: Covent Garden Questions

Covent garden is one of my most favorite places in London. the shops there are interesting,lots of good places for a quick meal,

the markets are a lot of fun also. Marks and spencer has a store there,with a full grocery on the ground floor. I tink it is worth a trip.

Guangzhou
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6. Re: Covent Garden Questions

Thanks for the replies. It sounds like it's worth a look and since we'll bee nearby, it will be convenient, too.

When you say there are a lot of markets there, what exactly does that mean? I've looked into the food market at Covent Garden on Thursdays and I have the Borough Market and it's famous cheese sandwiches and mushroom pate (and so on and so on) on my "list", but when referring to a "market", does that mean a food market of that sort? Sorry, not living in London or traveling there often I'm not clear on the term.

Thank you for your help.

London, United...
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7. Re: Covent Garden Questions

It varies; in the central piazza the market stalls tend to be arts and crafts; lovely scarves, unusual jewellery, wooden toys,bags etc.

In the Jubilee market just across the piazza it is all sorts of things; tee shirts, unusual clothing, household things, but usually rather different from normal shop bought goods. It is difficult to explain until you see it .

There is also a reasonable amount of tat of course.

A market just means a number of temporary stalls, it can sell anything.

Edited: 03 September 2010, 23:26
Hitchin, United...
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8. Re: Covent Garden Questions

The markets at Covent Garden aren't all that much to write home about. There is a smallish central indoor market in the large building in the middle of the Piazza (you'll know it when you see it). That's not too bad but it's nothing like as good as other specialist markets. There are some food shops, jewellery, arts and crafts, bit of everything really.

Around the outside of the Piazza on the Southern side you'll see a handful of other market stalls selling (From Tues to Friday) cheap clothes, handbags, phone accesories, and general other tat. Not worth much of your time, if any really. On Saturdays it's apparently arts and crafts... I've never noticed much of a difference.

Guangzhou
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9. Re: Covent Garden Questions

Ok, that is very helpful info. I've wondered when reading other threads just what folks meant by "markets" and now I see. Thank you both.

Southend-on-Sea...
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10. Re: Covent Garden Questions

The London Transport Museum is situated at Covent Garden - if you have children with you it might be fun for them. Here's a link

www.ltmuseum.co.uk/visiting/findus.aspx