Shopping , High street Soho
  • 4 out of 5 stars
(37 user reviews)
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Both a tourist attraction, with regular school-holiday events for children (check the website), and a ginormous toy shop, Hamleys has all the must-have toys, attractively displayed to boot. Arranged on five noisy floors, with perky demonstrators showing off certain wares on every one, you’ll be lucky if you can spend less than an hour in here if you’re accompanied by children. There’s much to see: the basement has interactive toys, the ground floor is soft toys, floor one is all games, two is for pre-schoolers, three is girls’ stuff, four hobbies and five is boys’ toys with a café attached.


Venue name: Hamleys
Address: 188-196
Regent Street
Transport: Tube: Oxford Circus
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Average User Rating

4.2 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:12
  • 4 star:20
  • 3 star:5
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
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Sunday morning trip with a 5 year old to the oldest toy shop in the world made me the best aunt in the world! I couldn’t remember the last time I’d been to Hamley’s. So, when the opportunity to go with the legitimate excuse of “accompanying” my niece came up, I was all over it.

Endless floors of toys and games, yes please! I, I mean, WE headed straight to the good stuff, the science section! :) We were also given a little goodie bag containing a teddy bear and a sharpener. That was insufficient for my niece though, I was guilt-tripped into buying her a My Little Pony beanie bear thing which cost a pretty penny. The staff were so lovely and attentive to the kids, they are what make the visit memorable. If you want to win some brownie points with the kids, take them to Hamley’s!


Magical world! Anything you can think of, you will find it there! A person should visit this place at least once in their lifetime.

Poppy L

Having attended a special Time Out event at Hamleys a couple of weeks ago, it was my first visit for around 10 years. I can honestly say that the experience was as exciting as an adult as it was as a child. The Harry Potter/Game of Thrones part was particularly fun! Staff were incredibly efficient and the toilets were a 7/10 (2 marks were due to Steps being played!)


I've made plenty terrible decisions in my life. The worst was taking my five year old niece here, on a Saturday at noon, the week before payday. There's genuinely a whole section devoted to Frozen - there was no way we were going to escape that unscathed. Of course flash back fifteen years ago and this place was heaven on Earth for me too. If you can't be bothered to take your kids to Disney land then Hamleys is the next best.

Ed. T

I thought I'd be a bit too old for Hamleys when I first walked in, especially as I was greeted by a man dressed as a toy soldier that I wasn't too keen on engaging with on an hungover weekend. All it took though was one step into the shop before my view changed! A floor for lego? Yes please. A Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings section dedicated to replicas and models? Hell yes! All around me I could see the nostalgia and memories lighting up peoples' faces, from young to old as they made a beeline directly for their favoured toys. My girlfriend was lost in the Sylvanian families section for a while, and the energetic helpers and shop assistants showing off the latest toys made me wish I had someone else with me who was buying me gifts to hassle! 

Definitely one to visit, and don't feel ashamed about it! 

Tamara B

hamley's is four floors of every toy you can think of including lifesize lego royal family people. The staff are cheerful and enthusiastic. Don't expect to leave with a heavy wallet.

Ana M

Hamleys is a mecca for lovers of toys, rightfully regarded as one of the most magical places in London. 

The staff make it an amazing experience whenever you visit - you can't help but be won over by their enthusiasm and zest (similar to that of the staff at The London Dungeon). Their fantastic attitude fires up the wonder and imagination of children (and some adults) who visit the store. I spent far too much on Lego sets and a 'build a bear' of the character Toothless from How to Train your Pet Dragon - but I don't regret it. 


Looking for a present for the little ones in your family? This is the place to go. Floors and floors of toys, games and costumes… You’re sure to find something that’ll get them excited. Heck, you’ll probably find something that’ll get you excited. Whether it’s the special Lego sets or the Harry Potter memorabilia, there’s fun stuff for grown-ups too.

The ambiance is pretty cool too. Staff is nice, polite and super mega duper happy – makes me laugh every time. They usually do a little demo of the products you’re interested in too.

A great place for Christmas shopping I’d say.

Daniel L

This is definitely one of the happiest places in London. I really did feel like a kid in a candy store. The numerous array of toys and games on display is mind blowing. Makes me jealous of kids these days, and also feel sorry for parents' wallets... The staff are so energetic and enthusiastic that they totally engage the children (including myself) in the store. I can see children spending hours in this store each week and never getting bored. Good luck to you parents!

Livvi AT

Whether you are visiting with your young family or are just a 20 something year old who still hoards her Polly Pockets in the attic (don't judge, we all do it), going to Hamley's is like entering a magical wonderland; with cars zooming around your feet, bubbles floating in the air and gadgets whizzing over your head, it is easy to be sucked into the land of toys. 

The staff are all enthusiastic, energetic and knowledgeable, who ensure every child leaves with a smile on their face. There are many demonstrations and showcases so the toys can really come to life. There is also a puppet show, an in-house Build a Bear workshop and lots of personalisation services, so you can make the toy or gift all the more special there and then.

With Christmas around the corner, I would definitely recommend visiting with your children to sniff out what Santa is expected to bring this year, or, like me, just go with friends to relive childhood memories, try out the new toys on the block and to leave with a warm fuzzy feeling. 


I had the opportunity to explore Hamleys at its recent VIP October event before its official opening hours, however I am not ashamed to admit that as a 21 year old, who knows pretty much no children, Hamleys is still one of my favourite central London shops to visit and let my inner child run wild. That being said, I would never be able to afford to purchase anything! But the atmosphere is absolutely incredible!! The staff treat me with the same fun and games as they would if I was 5yrs old - and I'm a total big kid, so I love this!!!! :) Spread across too many floors to remember, my biggest gripe with Hamleys is that it has just become a stocker of too many brands and doesn't have enough traditional toys!

Laura G

London’s finest toy shop is a joy for any kid's – or adult's – eyes. With 5 floors (plus a basement) of colorful choices for all ages. Taking a kid there might take a good few hours, as the staff is friendly and there’s plenty available for a try out throughout the store. Try going on a weekday or off-peak hours, as it tends to get hectic on weekends.


Be prepared to be chased by a miniature drone or to get your face painted. By accident. Last time I visited Hamleys was when I was five years old. It was a dream. Now 20+ years later, it still felt like a dream. Great place to head to if you need to find Christmas presents for your nieces and nephews and you're in the need for some inspiration on what to get. (3D puzzle football stadiums. Obviously.)

Kishma S

Hamleys is normally teaming with kids and tourists so an opportunity to visit before official opening was brilliant. I decided against taking my daughter as I didn't want to have to take out a second mortgage if she decided she wanted something.

It looked like children were well catered for though with face painting, and demonstrations to entertain and entice.

I thought the staff were brilliant, so enthusiastic and helpful which is what you need to soften the blow if you decide to pay £75 for Lego. That said, there is a range of prices in store.

It's a great place for kids or to bring out your inner child.

Kirsty E

We really enjoyed the Hamleys VIP event on Sunday. My 21 month old daughter loved exploring the 5 floors of toys, seeing the puppet shows and demonstrations and especially loved the goodie bag and free teddy bear!

The staff were fantastic, so excited and hyped up. They made such a fuss of my daughter, one guy with a bubble gun pretty much followed her around the shops as she was loving the bubbles!!

The only issue we had is that the food and drink was nowhere near what was promised. A few pieces of fruit on a tray at any one time and there was never any coffee or juice on any of the 5 times we tried to get some.

I also have to say that I actually can't believe the behaviour of some grown adults.. We participated in the treasure hunt which was fun but my daughter being barged out of the way and trampled by adults (with no kids) was not so fun! Unbelievable!!

Overall a fun event though, thanks Time Out and Hamleys!

Lucy H

Thank you Time Out for a wonderful morning at Hamley's! A great time was had by every member of the family and you even saved money on my Christmas shopping aswell! xx

Izzy K

Had a chance to visit the store during a VIP event which was fantastic experience as normally the shop is super overcrowded. I'm not sure who had more fun, the kids or the adults as their both fought in the treasure hunt with equal passion. The entertainment was full on but we were also able to browse the toys calmly. At the end we all received goody bags and snacks & drinks prepared by a local restaurant.  


London’s infamous toy store – known for its lively staff, tremendous array of gifts and gadgets plus giant cuddly animals. None of that disappointed on the Timeout event allowing you to invade the store pre-opening.

It’s an incredible place. For adults, it takes you back to childhood and that giddy feeling walking through a dream after a few too many Skittles. For kids, that previously stated dream.

We were allowedin two whole hours before the general public to get high on magic, nerf guns and lego. It was a free event, so I felt incredibly lucky to be a part of it, however it would have been good if more of the gadgets and toys were on demonstration – seeing an unused Scalextric was a little heartbreaking.

The food and drink were on short supply, but as an overall event it was super cool, fun and a unique way to spend a Sunday morning. (Although I reckon anyone that went on a hangover would disagree with all of the above).

Emma S

I love Hamleys and the staff were so nice and friendly. Great morning!


Hamleys is the perfect place to embrace your inner child, especially when Time Out opens it 2 hours early for you and other readers to run about like little kids.  Hamleys is so much more than just a toy shop.  There are puppet shows, stations you can play with and some of the most friendly staff you will come by in London.  Part of the charm is being able to explore and get lost across the many floors.  My personal favorite was the sweet section where I ate so many I had a severe sugar crash around 3pm.  

Hamelys is a must visit for all those in London however beware of the crowds.  When the store opened to the public at 12 there was a queue a mile long outside and a small stampede to get in.  Sundays and Saturdays are best avoided.  

Priya N

I felt like a big kid! Staff were really friendly.

Seems like I missed out on a free bear though

Michael N

Great morning ! Staff fantastic Hamleys marvellous and felt like Christmas came early ! Thank you Time Out !!

Alex F

I attended the Time Out exclusive event and we had a very warm welcome from all the staff which I would find difficult to do early on a Sunday morning. It set the standard for how toy stores should be with demonstrations of their best toys, mini shows and entertainment laid on for the children and a huge range of toys over 7 floors, competitively priced.


I went along to the exclusive event on Sunday and it was brilliant!  I love the bear in the gift bag too and it was amazing to see just how many toys are available for kids now, they are so lucky!  Thanks TimeOut for coordinating such a great event!!

Ruth J

The timeout event let big kids go and see what all the fuss is about around the biggest toy shop without the little kids running riot! A great event showcasing all the wonders that Hamley's has, I particularly loved the free gift bag with my very own Hamley's bear. A thoroughly enjoyable experience!

Paula - ToT

TimeOut held on exclusive event here on 25 October 2015 and it was really good fun.  Being in Hamleys makes you feel like a kid and I was in awe of all the toys and games - the old ones bringing back some great childhood memories and the new ones astonishing me in terms of how far technology has come.  The staff were so enthusiastic and made the event what it was.  The only criticism was that there was enough of the food and drink that we were promised, although the restaurant staff were working very hard.  Though it also seems like I missed out on a free bear!

Angela L

6-7 floors of fun! I was here two hours before it was opened to the general public and actually it's a lot of fun without the kids and parents because it's not so noisy, you get good service in terms of one-on-one demos and you can try out the toys in peace like the Nerf guns by the target wall - without having to dodge germ infested kids, harried parents and space filling prams! This means u can properly research the toys u intend to buy for the kids you do have in your life. The staff here are so friendly - and very convincing sales ppl. I ended up buying magic pens and mess free glitter - they do such great demos and at kid-friendly prices - why not! At midday when it officially opens to the public the queue snakes down Regents St comprising of tired parents and excited kids... What a nightmare. It was like Boxing Day sales when they were let in. I was outta there at 12:05pm with my bag of goodies to try out at home. Great place for kids but even better without!


I've never been to the Flagship before but was treated to a wonderful morning courtesy of Time Out Card club and Hamleys which included a treasure hunt, 5 floors of entertainments and even brunch snacks.

Hamleys is a wonderful treat to take the little ones, anytime of the year, The staff are passionate and energetic and throughout all the floors, there are activities centred around the toys and displays to wow any age group! 

Pricing is very good - for such an iconic brand i expected big prices but they are in line with most high street brands.

The Man on the Street

I attended the Time Out Card private shopping event on Sunday. 

What a treat.

To be in this amazing store with so much time and space to browse and buy.

Christmas is going to be good in our house this year - especially for the kids !


It is the best toy store in the world with 241 years of history behind it but that's not the best thing about Hamleys. 

The staff are enthusiastic, bubby and knowledgable and clearly enjoy playing in the store that you can't help but get bitten by their verve. Whether you are geeking at the game section downstairs or trading monopoly and chess moves on the 5th floor, you are sure to have a fantastic time.

There are huge sections where you can get craft things for a knitting kit for the scarf you want to make for grandma; the latest in t shirt paint and decoration for a personalised gift for your bestie and a whole section where you can get supplies for your edgy pirate party of halloween get together AND

you can get the latest toys and merchandise for that blockbuster you're watching.

I am definitely smitten...

My ONLY complaint? Of course there is one. When we were outside having fun at the private event, there were queues of customers trying to get in... and the queue to pay was long... That's my only complaints but then again you get quickly reassured that the only reason the queue is that long is because everyone LOVES Hamleys and it will be stay on for another 241 years...

Alanna S

I went along to the TimeOut morning and found the whole place almost as magical as I did as a kid. The staff are all full of energy and excitement and feel like they actually love their jobs - which isn't really the norm for our very British approach to customer service. We entered to cheers, bubbles and a (£1,000) toy gorilla and properly felt transported to another world for an hour. Easy to navigate and every toy imaginable, it is a special store in central London.


Great event to have free reign onHamleys for two hours before it opened to the public today. The staff were very helpful and obliging. I've never seen so many toys in my life. Unfortunately, we bought some toys and when we got home, we found them to be double the price in store than some competitive online sites. Which was annoying. It's a great day out for the kids and I thoroughly recommend it for kids to roam around on all the floors. The puppet show and face painting was so much fun. The food served by Heddon street was so popular, that there wasn't enough to go round, even the coffee ran out which was disappointing. Thanks time out and Hamleys!

Cheeky Bellini

A place for big kids and little ones. I was fortunate to visit the store for Timeout event this morning and had the chance to shop before the store officially opened.

The store has large variety of toys to cater for different ages. You could spend hours exploring and playing the items on display. There is just too much choice.

Given the location, a number of toys were more geared towards souvenirs or gifts for tourists such as red buses and Paddington Bears.

It is definitely worth visiting with kids when in London. It can also be fun for adults to embrace their inner child while shopping. However, the toys are expensive. So it would be better for occasional shopping trips bearing in mind that shop gets very busy during peak hours.

Tara P

It was fun to be able to visit Hamleys without the usual crowds as part of their TimeOut event this morning, and we did have a laugh playing with the toys on display, despite not being their target audience. 

The event itself was a bit of a disappointment - it felt as though more was promised than offered on the food and entertainment front. However, it was free so I can't really complain. I could see the potential - particularly if Hamley's launched an adults-only "lates" type of event. 

There are always some fun toys to play with, but I don't feel the offering changes very often - great for a first experience but not as good on repeat visits. 

The staff are always wonderful, with loads of energy. It's also a well laid out store. Fantastic for tourists and treats - but not your everyday toy shopping (unless you're a lot richer than me!)


Lizzie W

It was a treat and relief to be able to visit Hamley's this Sunday as part of a Timeout event (i.e. before opening) as in the past I have gone in to look for presents and had to walk straight out due to the amount of people. A nicely laid out store with super duper enthusiastic staff who are all very friendly. Lots of interactive displays show casing their magic trick kits, pens and activities. A must for children visiting London however everything is pretty pricey and as I say normally very very busy.


Best attrction for kids in London! They must see it! It is really fantastic. Huge offer of toys and very friendly vendor. There is always something going on! Great animators :)


I've been to Hamleys, I've been to FAO Schwartz........ENGLAND WINS!!! Seriously, Hamleys is so much fun, even if you're not a kid, even if you're not with a kid. My biggest regret in life. Not actually going there when I was a kid!! "Mum?? Dad??.....why did I not?!?!!?"