If you're new to the city, you'll probably be raring to go out and do some shopping. Here are the three areas you should check out first.
One of London's busiest areas, Oxford Circus is where Oxford Street meets Regent Street. For many tourists and locals, it's the city's number-one shopping district.
There are several large department stores in the vicinity, such as John Lewis, House of Fraser and Selfridges. Right in the middle of Oxford Circus itself is the huge Nike shop (which is so big it's referred to as Nike Town), and an enormous H&M store.
On Oxford Street you'll find many of today's essential clothing stores, such as American Apparel, Gap, and Uniqlo. Take a look at the full list of Oxford Street's shops.
Carnaby Street and Soho
It's only a two- or three-minute walk from Oxford Circus to the famous Carnaby Street, but the vibe is quite different.
It's still very busy, but the shops in this area are smaller and more specialised. For example, the Size? store's wide range caters for all kinds of 'sneaker freaks', while the Levi's Vintage Clothing shop sells more classic-looking and premium items which aren't available in regular Levi's stores.
Liberty, which is kind of tucked away between Regent Street and Carnaby Street, is another place well worth a visit. It's a large department store with a bit of a twist – it sells brands that are luxurious and prestigious, yet at the same time a little less common than those you see in Selfridges and John Lewis. Some might call it the 'hispter' department store. Be sure to check it out.
See a full list of the shops on and around Carnaby Street.
Shoreditch and Brick Lane
Shoreditch is on the other side of the city to Oxford Circus and Soho, but it's just a short Tube ride away – just hop on the Central line, get off at Liverpool Street, and you'll be a short stroll away from Shoreditch and its various shopping delights.
In this area you'll find independent boutiques and small shops belonging to exclusive fashion brands. If Liberty is the hipster's department store, Shoreditch is the hipster's shopping area and general stomping ground. If you're into alternative culture, you'll probably love it here.
The BOXPARK development is particularly cool – it's a collection of small specialist shops and cafes, each of which is set in a converted shipping containers. It has a sort of 'pop-up' setup, so shops come and go all the time – but that's part of the beauty of it.
Brick Lane is very close by, so you should make sure you take a walk down there too. There are exclusive and vintage clothes shops at every turn, as well as bakeries and coffeehouses, Brick Lane Bookshop, and the famous Rough Trade music and record shop.