Covent Garden

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by Jctravel1983 on November 30, 2010

It's been a while since I last was in London. But some places you will not easily forget. One of those places is Covent Garden. London and as a city where everyone must have been a time Covent Garden is a place that's worth a visit.

What is it?
You would think if you read the name that has a garden. But it is a neighborhood in London. It falls under the administration of The City of Westminster. Covent Garden got its name during the reign of King John (from 1199 to 1256). The place has been inhabited for centuries. First a whole bunch of Romans. Only there were archaeological done showing that people lived before that. Around the 17th century was just agricultural land. After that it was used as a major fruit and vegetable market. End of 1600 a project was started to allow a large public plaza. Unfortunately I could not find where the name comes from Covent Garden. The name Covent Garden is also famous because it is also the name of one of the many subway stations in London.

Where is it

As above it is located in London, England. It lies on the north bank of the River Thames in the part which is called Greater London. The district is located in the eastern part of The City of Westminster. Lie around the Soho, St James, Bloomsbury and Holborn. The place is best known for the Covent Garden Piazza. The piazza is a large central square where the heart beats of the neighborhood. It is very easily accessible through the Covent Garden underground station or get off at Leicester Square tube station. By bus you can get it easily.

The Covent Garden Market

This is a large building in the middle of the piazza. This market is one of the major attractions of Covent Garden. You'll never feel lonely because there are more than 30 million tourists annually over the floor. And that is not recently, since it is known that there was already a fruit, vegetable and plant market since long. The original market was designed by Inigo Jones in 1632. Of course it has changed considerably. It is a big place with a kind of buildings in between. The real front is an imposing stone structure. The stones are very large and has a large round entrance. The market is located on two sides. This is at the front side open, so it has only a roof on it. And this roof is round and made of glass. You can then also enter the building from different sides. This looks very graceful with elegant fabrics and colors that you know of a country like England. It has a bit of an Italian atmosphere generated by Mr. Inigo has traveled a lot there. Between these openings are small rooms where all kind of shops in it. The shops are all a bit pricey.


Around the market you will find many street performers. This street is a picture that truly belongs to the piazza. They range from mimes, jesters to waders. There are people who paint. Covent Garden is the only place in London where they issue permits for street performers.

Royal opera house

The Royal Opera House is beautiful with its entrance on the north side of the market hall. Its entrance is on Bow Street. The original building was built in 1809 at a spot where formerly stood even a theater. By a major fire building was destroyed and was rebuilt in 1857. This building was made bigger in 2000. Actually they called the building not a opera house, but Theatre Royal. But because Michael Costa took his company to enter the building to play in 1847 it was renamed the Royal Italian Opera with the performance of Rossini's Semiramide. The repertoire of the opera was expanded in 1892 and left to the italian word away from its name and officially became the Royal Opera House. Currently there are performances in ballet: The Nutcracker, Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake, Giselle and Snow White.

London's Transport Museum

On the piazza think it's also the London Transport Museum. It contains old-fashioned trolley buses, London buses, trams and metro trains old. I myself am not been and can not tell whether it is worth. The cost to get in, I can tell you, for adults is around 10 British pounds and children under 16 is free. The opening times are from 10 am until 18 hours. More information please read the website:

St Paul's Church

This building is on the west side of the Piazza. At the front it does look Italian. He has about four large pillars with arches and looks impressive. That appearance is italian is not that weird because it was built by Inigo Jones in 1633. Only was the idea because lack of money never completed. The building was consecrated for divine worship until about 1638. It was also known as the actors church. This because of the actors came here from the former Royal Opera House. The great London fire of 1795 also left the church scathed. The roof and part of the walls were burned. It was rebuilt, but it immediately became some decorative built. For many people at that time found him dull. Currently the church is still used for the parish of Covent Garden. At the rear of the building is a lovely garden with benches where you can sit quietly. The church and garden are open to the public. Opening hours are Monday to Friday from 8:30 to 4:30 p.m..


In Covent Garden, there are over one hundred restaurants. I obviously do not describe all of them. They come in all price ranges, sizes and variations. There are several Italian, Asian and French restaurants and the famous fast food chains. There are also some real English pubs. One of the most famous is The Punch and Judy is in a beautiful old building overlooking the square.

My conclusion

You can safely take off for one day at Covent Garden and the surrounding area. It is a very diverse district. You walk between the beautiful old buildings with a somewhat Italianate appearance. The district is really a character in itself. The atmosphere is friendly and cheerful. Because of the street has just a little extra. Around Christmas time, everything is beautifully lit. I think it's really a must.
Covent Garden
Covent Garden
London, England, WC2
+44 20 7836 9136

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