We love getting into London for adventures, exploring and eating, but we're also rather fond of a spot of shopping. Granted, the kids are not always so keen trawling around the stores, so we've come up with a plan: we get to go to our shops if they get to go the best toy shops in London as pay off!
Pollock's Toy Shop
We love any excuse to get to one of our favourite pockets of town, Covent Garden, and Pollock's Toy Shop is always a must-visit when we're in the 'hood. It's been in its current premises since 1980 and sells everything from its famous paper theatres (including Shakespeare's Globe above) to finger puppets, shadow boxes to craft kits, and there's not an annoying, noisy, battery operated plastic bit of tat in sight.
Pollock's Toy Shop, 44 The Market, London WC2E 8RF
From garden games to Lego, 2000-piece puzzles to Kinetic Sand, you name a toy and Just Williams is sure to have it by the shelf load! There's also a large stock of craft kits, fancy dress costumes, board games, outdoor toys and pocket money toys: there really is something for every kid and every budget here.
Just Williams, 106 Grove Vale, London, SE22 8DR and Beckenham and 226 High Street, Kent, BR3 1EN
Sylvanian Families Shop
If you have a Sylvanian Families fan in the house then this place is literally the stuff that Sylvanian Families dreams are made of. Nestled in Finsbury Park this charming toy shop is a family-owned, independent toy retailer specialising in Sylvanian Families and other collectable miniatures, and is the ONLY Sylvanian-focused store in all of Europe. With exclusive products, costumes, and every accessory imaginable, prepare for cuteness overload as soon as you step through the door.
Sylvanian Familes, 68 Mountgrove Road, Highbury, London, N5 2LT
Bespoke party bags, toys, decorations and balloons, you're as likely to find the perfect toy as you are to find a 'sleb hanging out at this pretty little store. With its tag line of ‘full of things you don’t need, but suddenly want’ Semmalina gets a huge thumbs up from kids of all ages, and from the grown ups too.
Semmalina Starbags, La Poule Au Pot, 225 Ebury Street, London SW1W 8UT
There can't be a best toy shops in London guide without mentioning the most famous and oldest toy shop in London: Hamleys! Spread over 7 floors this place is a day out in London by itself! With magic shows, character appearances and toy demos happening all day every day, this is not just a toy store but a toy store on steroids!
Hamleys, 188-196 Regent Street, London W1B 5BT
Harrods Toy Kingdom
The first toy store to take a gender-neutral approach to organising its stock by displaying them by theme rather than girls/boys, Harrods Toy Kingdom spans a whopping 26,000 sq.ft and has eight different individual boutiques, each dedicated to a specific toy category, distinctive in colour and theme.
Harrods Toy Kingdom, 87-135 Brompton Road, London, SW1X 0NA
Niddle Noddle has sadly closed its slide and play table for now, but that doesn't mean there isn't still tons of cool toys, books, accessories and craft bits and bobs to get busy exploring. Our kids especially love this pick for its huge stock of pocket money picks including snow globes, wind up sharks, finger puppets and bouncy balls.
Niddle Noddle, 5 Topsfield Parade (Middle Lane), Crouch End, London N8 8PR
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