A visit to Covent Garden is a must, whether you intend to shop, sightsee or soak in the carnival atmosphere. The focal point of Covent Garden, the market, has dominated the area ever since the Middle Ages when monks tended their market garden here. Since the 19th century the market has expanded. Watch out for mime artists – harmless but irritating. The Garden is a mecca for shop-hoppers because of the variety available here. High Street outlets include Oasis, French Connection, Zara, Urban Outfitters, Hobbs, Marks & Spencer and Mango. Menswear is available at Diesel, Replay, Ted Baker and for the smarter guy, Paul Smith. There are a huge number of women’s fashion stores and Neal Street, which runs out of the Piazza, is probably the best shoe shopping street in the capital, with numerous trendy outlets including Office, Foot Locker and Size. Further options include Neal’s Yard, a quaint and colourful courtyard that’s worth a stroll through and Seven Dials, which is home to yet more high street stores. If you’re still keen to shop remember to pay a visit to the beautiful Apple Store which, located in a carefully restored 1876 building, is spread across numerous floors and makes shopping a thoroughly enjoyable experience.