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Piccadilly Circus

Often billed as the British version of Times Square, this iconic traffic hub is the perfect starting point for your London adventure.

Piccadilly Circus garnered its peculiar name from Roger Baker, a tailor famous for making men’s piccadills, the frilled collars fashionable in the 17th century. The word “circus” refers to the circular motion of traffic, which whisks around beneath the statue of the Greek god Anteros. Today, the name represents flashing lights, entertainment and the exuberance of a city on the move. Piccadilly Circus has become a must-see spectacle, which draws locals and tourists day and night. 

Piccadilly Circus marks the junction of Regent Street, Shaftsbury Avenue, Piccadilly and Haymarket. It also connects major areas, including Trafalgar Square, Soho, Chinatown and Leicester Square. At its center is the statue of a winged archer, Anteros, which rises above Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain. Designed by Alfred Gilbert and erected in 1893, it was the first statue to be cast in aluminum. Today it’s a popular meeting point or simply a great place to watch the passing crowds. 

From Anteros, choose a direction to suit your mood. Feed your shopping addiction on Regent Street. Take a dramatic turn and catch a show at the Theatre Royal, one of the many venues that makes “the circus” the heart of London’s theater district. Spend an hour or two admiring the landscapes at the nearby Royal Academy of Art, or enjoy a good belly laugh at The Comedy Store, which showcases big-name acts as well newcomers with fresh gags.

Piccadilly Circus is also known for its flashy neon signage, but these days, only one building is illuminated. The dizzying atmosphere remains, however, with lively curbside entertainers adding to the commotion. When it all becomes too much, order a beer from one of the surrounding pubs or catch your breath in a cozy café. 

Piccadilly Circus is located in the heart of London. The nearest Underground station is Piccadilly Circus.


Guide to Exploring Piccadilly Circus


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The Strand Palace Hotel £92
The Strand Palace Hotel

The Strand Palace Hotel

372 The Strand, London
     
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    Located in City of Westminster, this eco-friendly hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Covent Garden Market and Piccadilly Circus. London Dungeon and Big Ben are also within 1 mi (2 km).

    Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London £119
    Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London

    Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London

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      Point A Hotel London Kings Cross – St Pancras £54
      Point A Hotel London Kings Cross – St Pancras

      Point A Hotel London Kings Cross – St Pancras

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        Located in Camden, this hotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of City, University of London, University of London and University College London. British Library and Russell Square are also within 1 mile (2 km).

        St. James' Court, A Taj Hotel, London £146
        St. James' Court, A Taj Hotel, London

        St. James' Court, A Taj Hotel, London

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          Located in City of Westminster, this spa hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Broadway, Buckingham Palace, and Victoria Palace Theatre. Big Ben and St. James Park are also within 15 minutes.

          The Grosvenor Hotel £92
          The Grosvenor Hotel

          The Grosvenor Hotel

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            4.2
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            Located in City of Westminster, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Victoria Palace Theatre, Buckingham Palace and St. James Park. Big Ben and Sloane Square are also within 1 mile (2 km).

            The Cavendish London
            The Cavendish London

            The Cavendish London

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              4.4
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              Located in Mayfair, this eco-friendly hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Royal Academy of Arts and Piccadilly Circus. Buckingham Palace and Oxford Circus are also within 15 minutes.

              Thistle Trafalgar Square Hotel £124
              Thistle Trafalgar Square Hotel

              Thistle Trafalgar Square Hotel

              Whitcomb Street, London
                 
                4.3
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                Located in Soho, this hotel is steps away from Her Majesty's Theatre, National Gallery and Trafalgar Square. Leicester Square and Nelson's Column are also within 5 minutes.

                The Ritz London £407
                The Ritz London

                The Ritz London

                150 Piccadilly, London
                   
                  4.6
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                  Located in Mayfair, this family-friendly London hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Piccadilly Circus, Buckingham Palace and St. James Park. Leicester Square and Her Majesty's Theatre are also within 15 minutes.