Monday, February 17, 2014

High end shopping at Harrods with the family

Tips for visiting Harrods with your family
by Mark Fitzgerald

The Egyptian Escalator at Harrods by HerryLawford on Flickr.  Used through creative commons.
The Egyptian Escalator at Harrods
Visiting a high end department store with my family isn't usually the thing we want to do on vacation, even if it is the biggest in Europe. But Harrods offers something unique to see. Whether it is giant teddy bears, the Princess Diane memorial at the Egyptian escalators, ├╝ber expensive dollhouses, or the unique uniforms of the employees, Harrods is a spectacle to behold.

We will likely spend 45 minutes wandering around the store before heading to the food hall. We will want to take the escalator to the 2nd floor (that would be the 3rd level for the Americans) to the gift shop, stopping along the way to see what is of interest to us. The next level up has some peculiarities such as Spymaster (a shop that sells spy gear), the Millionaire Gallery (a collectors gallery), and not to mention, the toy department.

When we are done with the bulk of the store, we will return to the ground floor to the food hall. As we explore foods from around the world we are in search of an affordable yet fun collection of foods that we can take outside to Hyde Park for a picnic. This may include cheeses, dried meats and bread.  A meat pie costs about £2.50.  We may need a piece of chocolate or two as well.
Harrods Food Halls by pov_steve on Flickr.  Used through creative commons.
Harrods Food Halls

If you have the money and the time there are plenty of cafes and restaurants within Harrods. To give you an idea of cost a hot fudge sundae will set you back £13.50.  If the food court is too expensive for our tastes there is always a Pret-A-Manger across the street.

Harrods does have an unofficial dress code. The users in green at the door may turn people away for any reason.  They ask that people "Refrain from wearing clothing which may reveal intimate parts of the body, or which portrays offensive pictures or writing."  They may nail you for too short of shorts or the like.

In the past Harrods charged for use of their bathrooms.  They do not currently and you can find them on all floors except the ground level.  They are in the center of the building.

Knightsbridge Tube station is very close by.  It is on the Picadilly line.  The nearest dock for Barclay's cycle Hire is a little ways down Brompton Rd on Monteplier St.  Several London Transport buses serve the area as well.

Map of Harrods:
Map of Harrods

Harrods Floor Plan
Harrods Floor Plan

To get an idea of what Harrods is like, check out this short video from our Austrian friends TodayTonight.

Going on a family vacation builds memories, provides life changing experiences and helps teach about the world we live in. Take time to explore, enjoy and have fun. If Harrods sounded interesting, you may also like Regents Street. You can also look at our entire list of London Attractions.


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