They don’t call it a circus for nothing, and it’s no surprise that so many tourists who step off the tube at Oxford Circus find themselves lost and confused among the melee of shoppers whizzing around, and unable to get their bearings.
One of London’s busiest tube stops, this station lies approximately half-way between Tottenham Court Road and Marble Arch – the two points that mark the eastern and western ends of Europe’s largest and most popular shopping thoroughfare, Oxford Street.
Figuring out where to go when you surface above ground is something that can take a while if you aren’t used to the area, which is why we’ve put together this brief guide explaining the terrain around the station.
The first thing you’ll notice when you exit onto the street is that you’re surrounded by some major flagship stores, with Topshop, Benetton and Nike all having shops at Oxford Circus. If you come out the exit next to Topshop then you’re on the northern side of Oxford Street, and if Topshop is across the road from you then you’re on the southern side. Once you’ve got your orientation, it’s easy to figure out which way to go.
For example, to reach the ‘posher’ end of Oxford Street, you’ll have to head towards Mayfair, which is to the west. En route you’ll pass the likes of the Disney Store, Selfridges and the fancy boutiques of Bond Street.
Alternatively, heading east will take you towards Tottenham Court Road, where you’ll find an array of shops that you’d expect to see on major high streets – including places like Primark and Next.
Another option is to head south along Regent Street, which will take you past the flagship Apple Store, as well as Hamleys and several other famous shops, before finishing up at Piccadilly Circus. Carnaby Street is also nearby, and lies just of Regent Street to the east – or your left-hand side as you walk south from Oxford Circus.