Visit Piccadilly Circus For A Taste Of London

By: Lee Dobbins

If you are traveling to London, make sure to see Piccadilly Circus which can be found at the junction of Shaftesbury Avenue and Regent Street. Much like Times Square in New York, this centrally located area offers most anything that you may find interesting. With it's neon lights and diverse crowds, no wonder it has the ability to attract tourists.

Besides the theaters, pubs, shops and monuments of London, here you'll also find some very interesting people. This area was officially named in 1819 but was un-officially known as Piccadilly Circus since 1743.The Shaftesbury Memorial fountain is located here and was a technological innovation for 1893 because it was cast using aluminum. In 1980, it was moved from the center to it's present day location.

Erected in 1859, the London Pavilion is located in the northeast corner and was originally constructed as a music hall. Shaftesbury Ave bisected the site in 1885 and a new music hall was put up in 1923. This new hall even had electric billboards. The original facade from 1885 was conserved when the building was rebuilt in 1986, after it became a shopping mall. Since that time it's been attached to the Trocadero Center. The stores of interest that are located here are the Virgin Megastore, Lily Whites and the HMV. Below ground you will find the London underground subway system. The locals know it as the "tube".

If you go to the Criterion Theatre, you will see the reduced Shakespeare Company, which is located close to the center of Piccadilly Circus. It's a theater group that specializes in presenting Shakespeare's complete works in only 97 minutes. It's performances are fast-moving and very highly improvised. They've been performing here since 1995 and if you want to see this interesting event, you had better plan ahead, as the shows are often sold out

If traditional theater is more to your liking, the best of British theater can be found at one of London's West End shows. These are so good that they are often adapted for Broadway. You might want to check out the latest technology that is fairly new here. It's a huge curved TV screen that rivals even Times Square.

There are many interesting things in Piccadilly Circus including plenty of pubs. However, be careful when selecting a London pub, because some are for the tourists and others are for the locals, where they might be a little tourist unfriendly.

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