London is world-famous for its top-quality theatre, with the West End the capital’s hotspot for the very best shows.
The so-called Theatreland covers an area around the West End of London, bordered by the Strand to the south, Oxford Street to the north, Regent Street to the west and Kingsway to the east. In total, this covers more than 40 theatres. There is a good hotel to stay around these theaters that is The Piccadilly London West End Hotel, it’s a boutique luxury hotel.
Most of the venues date back to the late Victorian or Edwardian era and their style only adds to unique atmosphere of the area. Nestled in between the buildings are also a number of top London hotels so you can stay right in the heart of the action.
The West End also plays an important economic role in the UK as it provides more than 40,000 jobs and attracts some 13 million people to the theatres each year.
Catch a show
There are plenty of shows to suit all tastes – ranging from popular long-running musicals to more avant-garde productions.
The Mousetrap is the longest-running show and has seen more than 25,000 performances. It is currently running at St Martin’s Theatre and shows no signs of losing popularity.
The Phantom of the Opera – Based on Gaston Leroux’s novel featuring Erik, Christine and Raoul, this musical has become a crowd favourite since debuting in 1986. It is currently running at Her Majesty’s Theatre.
The Lion King – Disney fans will enjoy this adaptation of the classic film about Simba the lion and his battle to recover from his father’s death, this musical has been hugely popular since it debuted back in 1999. Currently on in the Lyceum Theatre.
Les Miserables – This show tells the story of a French peasant and his quest for redemption after serving 19 years in jail for stealing a loaf of bread to feed his sister’s starving child. Tickets can be purchased for the show at the Queen’s Theatre.
Take a tour
As well as going to see a show, Theatreland is also the perfect place to explore on foot. The Society of London Theatre organizes a walking tour that aims to tell more about the rich history of the place.
The route covers from Soho via Covent Garden to the Strand and passes by a number of theatres to showcase the popular venues of Theatreland.
There are also plenty of things to do nearby Theatreland including visiting London Zoo. Based in the nearby Regent’s Park, the zoo is one of the oldest in the world and there are more than 550 species on display. It really is a great day out!