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The Complete Soho Guide

Tucked into London's West End, Soho is a lively neighborhood known for its eclectic dining and entertainment scene. This small area, a brisk 12-minute walk east to west or a 7 minute jaunt north to south, is rich with restaurants, cafes, theaters, and shops. It's always surprising how such a compact space can hold an abundance of attractions.

Soho sits within Westminster, the very heart of London's central districts, and is part of the West End's vibrant mosaic, which includes Covent Garden, Chinatown, and Mayfair, as well as landmarks like Piccadilly and Leicester Squares. Despite its size, Soho is at the core of the city's tourist bustle, offering a variety of experiences packed into its narrow streets.

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We begin with Piccadilly Circus, which surprisingly may not be brimming with activities, but it's a landmark known for its iconic neon advertising and the bustling fountain area, a magnet for tourists and street performers alike. When visiting, it's worth snapping a few photos; just be vigilant with your belongings to avoid pickpockets.

Piccadilly Circus

Surrounding the square are various shops, such as the expansive sports store Lillywhites, and a mix of restaurants like the Parisian-inspired Brasserie Zédel, NOTTO Pasta Bars, and the Indian restaurant Kricket.

Regent Street divides Soho from the upscale Mayfair, featuring grand stores like the world-renowned toy store Hamley's, Apple's UK flagship, and designer boutiques including Tommy Hilfiger and Michael Kors.

Carnaby Street, once the heart of '60s London fashion, retains its shopping allure with brands like Monki and Dr. Martens. Nearby Kingly Court offers a kaleidoscope of dining options, from the vintage-themed Cahoots bar to the celebrated Indian restaurant Darjeeling Express, and other culinary delights like Señor Ceviche.

For those who fancy sushi, Nala is a hidden gem run by a Japanese family, KILN serves up sought-after Thai grill, Arang offers Korean dishes, and So presents a fusion of Japanese and European cuisines. And for meat enthusiasts, don't overlook the trendy Mountain Restaurant for its special-aged steaks and sumptuous seafood.

Thai BBQ at Kiln

If you're a foodie like us, join one of our London premier food tours, offering a taste of the city's gastronomic excellence.

Carnaby Street

For meat lovers, Blacklock presents a unique dining experience in a setting that retains Soho's historical ambiance, perfect for enjoying a steak with a selection of wines and cocktails. Bocca Di Lupo stands out as a must-visit Italian restaurant, paired with its sister Gelupo ice cream parlor across the street.

A short walk southward leads to Rupert Street, home to The Palomar and Speedboat Bar, known for its vibrant Thai dishes, perfect for late-night dining.

Venturing into London's Chinatown, you'll find Beijing Dumpling for a variety of dim sum, the Golden Gate Cake Shop for traditional Cantonese pastries, and Feng Wei Shi Tang for no-frills, authentic Chinese fare. Olle offers an interactive Korean BBQ experience with traditional Korean dishes.

Olle Korean BBQ

Back in Soho, Amorino and Biju Bubble Tea cater to those with a sweet tooth. Cafe Boheme and Cecconi's provide classic French and Italian dining, and L'Antica Pizzeria da Michele serves renowned Neapolitan pizza. Coffee aficionados shouldn't miss Algerian Coffee Stores, a historic spot since 1887. Nearby, Café de Nata specializes in the Portuguese custard tarts, particularly delightful fresh from the oven. The luxurious Arcade Food Hall near Oxford Street introduces a variety of global cuisines, including Nepali and Indonesian, alongside familiar American and Mexican flavors.

Algerian Coffee Stores

On Frith Street, the timeless Bar Italia offers a slice of Italian café culture, and the next door Ronnie Scott's iconic jazz club is an essential spot for music lovers, requiring advance booking. Nerby, explore the diverse tastes of Zima Russian dishes, Lobos' tapas, Hoppers' Sri Lankan cuisine, and Koya's Japanese udon noodles.

Turning onto Greek Street, Lina Stores delights with its Italian delicacies and cafe, renowned for exquisite pasta. Across the way, Patara offers a taste of Thai sophistication, while the venerable L'Escargot serves classic French cuisine and escargot.

Italian goodies at Lina Stores

Adjacent to Greek Street, BiBimBap specializes in its namesake Korean dish. For a blend of European flavors, 10 Greek Street focuses on seafood, meats, and a rich variety of vegetables.

Milroy's whiskey shop on Greek Street hides a speakeasy, The Vault, behind a secret 'library' door, where whiskey-centric cocktails are the stars. Near Soho Square, take a moment's respite in the garden, once a WWII bunker.

The historic Soho Square

Down Dean Street, you'll find tapas bar Barrafina and Honi Poke with its Hawaiian poke bowls. Kova Patisserie, a Japanese bakery, offers matcha-based treats. Zelman Meats is a haven for carnivores, serving select meats and fine wines. Several French institutions are also located on Dean Street: Pierre Victoire bistro, Prix Fixe Brasserie, and The French House, mixing pints and traditional French fare.

Wardour Street houses Paul A Young's fine chocolates, and Berwick Street, music history echoes through Sister Ray and Reckless Records. Coffee and pastry lovers will appreciate Söderberg's Scandinavian vibe. Yauatcha offers Michelin-starred Chinese dining with a focus on dim sum, while Duck and Rice blends a pub atmosphere with Chinese cuisine.

Try the dim sum at Yauatch

Broadwick Street's John Snow much loved pub commemorates the London physician, not the Game of Thrones character. Nearby on Lexington Street, BAO serves highly popular Taiwanese buns and small plates, while Mildreds caters to the plant-based crowd with its vegan and vegetarian offerings.


Nearby, you'll find two exceptional dining spots: Andrew Edmunds offers a French-inspired ambiance ideal for a romantic outing, while Rita's redefines American cuisine with inventive, light, and delightful dishes.

Fashion followers should explore End Clothing for a curated selection of designer wear from Europe, the USA, and Japan. INKO NITO on Broadwick Street infuses Soho's dining scene with Japanese flavors and a hint of Korean flair. Its dishes, such as yellowtail sashimi, beef cheeks, and lamb ribs with yogurt, offer a feast for the senses without exorbitant prices. For a sweet finish, their mochi is a must-try.

Our Soho guide captures the best of its diverse offerings, but remember that Soho is ever-evolving — a vibrant, in-demand locale where eateries and boutiques frequently update their status. Always verify the latest information on official websites or through Google, particularly for business hours and potential closures. For those high-end or popular spots, securing a reservation in advance is wise to ensure your spot in the heart of London's excitement.

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