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Stanfords Maps and Travel Store

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by Karen Grikitis (subscribe)
I am a former journalist and editor, currently writing fiction for adults and children. Visit my website at
Published August 27th 2014
Following in the footsteps of Scott of the Antarctic
Planning your next adventure in Asia or maybe you fancy exploring a little closer to home? Then why not head for Stanfords map and travel store in Covent Garden. This grand old shop, which opened its doors in 1901, offers a cornucopia of maps, travel books and gadgets on two levels, with a handy rest stop on the ground floor, the Sacred Café, selling light refreshments for the weary traveller.
maps, travel, London
Stanfords, Covent Garden

Claimed to be the world's largest stock of maps under one roof, Stanfords sells all manner of maps, including road, ordnance survey, walking, cycling, sailing maps, wall maps and globes. Upstairs it offers a framing service and customised cartography for business, educational and marketing purposes.

maps, travel, London
Stanfords maps
The store layout and signage makes it easy to browse by country, region or interest, and if you can't find a particular map, book or travel aid, the friendly staff are informed and extremely helpful. They will order a book, map or gadget for you if it is not in stock.

This, the flagship store, and its sister shop in Bristol, are supported by an excellent website, offering expert travel advice and tips, details of forthcoming events organised by Stanfords, and a host of other useful information about world travel.

maps, travel, London
Stanfords, Covent Garden
According to Stanfords, some of the UK's best known explorers have started their journeys with a visit to their store, including Sir Ranulph Fiennes, Michael Palin, and Captain Scott (of the Antarctic).

maps, travel, London
The Sacred Cafe at Stanfords, Covent Garden
Even if you can only dream of travelling, it is wonderful to simply browse the shelves and be inspired by the scale and variety of countries and cultures waiting to be explored.

Stanfords is located on Long Acre, and is a five-minute walk from Covent Garden underground station.
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Why? World's biggest stock of maps under one roof
When: Mon - Fri, 9am - 8pm; Sat, 10am - 8pm; Sun, 11.30am - 6pm
Phone: 020 7836 1321
Where: 12-14 Long Acre, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 9LP.
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