The World’s 10 Most Famous Streets
Whether it's for their historic nature, incredible shopping, or simply because they represent the heart and soul of their city, these famous streets are worth the journey in and of themselves.
Champs-Élysées—one of the world’s most famous streets
When it comes to famous streets, the Champs-Élysées is surely the world’s most recognizable. Running through Paris’ 8th arrondissement, it attracts throngs of tourists not only for its historical significance, but also for the chic little cafés and shops located all along the avenue. Its western end leads all the way to the Arc de Triomphe, one of the city’s most popular monuments, which visitors can climb for a breathtaking shot of the Champs Elysées before them.
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This famous street in San Francisco is truly one of the city’s coolest spots to visit. After all, with a one-block stretch on Russian Hill that includes eight sharp turns, the “crookedest street in San Francisco” is sure to pique even the most travelled tourist’s curiosity. With a city known for its steep hills, this design was originally meant to allow cars to go down the road safely and slowly. Slow indeed: the recommended speed limit is 8 km per hour. If you’ve got a car in tow on your California excursion, we highly recommend a drive down Lombard if you can. It won’t be a speedy thrill ride, but it certainly will be a fun time trying to navigate each turn.
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A fashionista’s paradise, Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue is one of the world’s most famous streets for luxury shopping. Particularly between 49th and 60th Streets, this avenue is lined with showrooms for the best-known (and most expensive) designer brands: Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Armani, Versace and more. Visitors looking for sartorial finds are wise to come to New York City with a loaded wallet. For a film buff, a stop at the Tiffany & Co. headquarters comes standard, with a coffee and croissant in hand to imitate Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
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Santa Monica Boulevard
For all the California dreamers in the world, Santa Monica Boulevard is where they long to be. Lined with palm trees, the 4.5-kilometre thoroughfare runs through West Hollywood, dotted with shops, cafés, bars, and restaurants, ultimately making its way to the Santa Monica Pier with a welcoming view of the Pacific Ocean.
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Tokyo’s fashion district was built from the ashes of an 1872 fire, and then rebuilt after a series of bombings during World War II left the area practically in ruins. Nowadays, it’s the booming epicentre of Tokyo, housing hip restaurants and art galleries, important names in fashion from Caroline Herrera to Chanel, as well as flagship electronic stores like Sony and Apple. It’s reminiscent of Broadway in the midst of New York City’s Times Square but with a culture and identity all its own.
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Playing a pivotal role in Memphis’s rich music history, Beale Street is where the likes of Louis Armstrong, B.B. King and Muddy Waters perfected their respective sounds, contributing to the city’s distinct bluesy sound. Now considered a National Historic Landmark District, tourists flock to Beale Street year-round to take in the live (and lively) entertainment, be it in one of the many bars and clubs or the various outdoor street performers.
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The heart of New Orleans’ French Quarter, Bourbon Street comes alive at night—and we’re not only talking about Mardi Gras! Lined with strip clubs, bars, restaurants and shops, it’s practically a non-stop party on weekends, allowing visitors to get the most of NOLA’s nightlife. A bar crawl with friends is essential, and with traditional Louisiana music as the soundtrack to your night, it’s bound to be one you’ll never forget.
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Via Monte Napoleone
No trip to Milan is complete without a stroll down Via Monte Napoleone. The street’s name refers to Milan’s role as capital of the Napoleonic Italian Republic at the start of the 19th century, so it comes as no surprise that it’s steeped in history. Given that it’s situated in one of the fashion capitals of the world, it’s equally unsurprising that it boasts a slew of popular boutiques, from world-renowned brands like Bulgari and Dior to upscale local Italian designers. It’s a fashion mecca for budding designers and everyday fashionistas alike.
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Hollywood Walk of Fame
Stretching block after block (after block) on Hollywood Boulevard, the Walk of Fame in Los Angeles boasts more than 2,500 pink terrazzo stars on its sidewalks, honouring a myriad of celebrities for their achievements in the entertainment industry. Attracting approximately 10 million visitors every year, many tourists pose for the requisite ground shot alongside the star of their favourite celebrities, both past and present. And, on your way from one end of the boulevard to the other, a stop at TCL Chinese Theatre (formerly Grauman’s Chinese Theater) where many celebrities have left their mark—literally—is a must.
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The iconic pedestrian crossing that was featured on the Beatles album cover in 1969 has since become one of the most famous streets in the world. Since the record’s release, many fans have made the pilgrimage to central London’s Abbey Road to mimic the image of John, Paul, George and Ringo crossing the street.
Looking for more famous streets to explore in the U.K. capital? Check out 50 London attractions worth adding to your bucket list.