Fashion: Best British Cities for Shopping

Visit Britain

Whether you're on the hunt for great vintage bargains or want to round out your wardrobe with designer clothing, don't miss the chance to shop in one of the major shopping districts around the UK. From London to Edinburgh, you can shop until you drop at popular boutique shops, department stores, fashion houses and even a few spots that have become popular destinations for celebrity shopaholics.

Here are some of the best UK cities for shopping:


Host of London Fashion Week and a hotbed for avant-garde fashion, design and art, London is the ultimate shopping destination for any fashion maven. Head to Harrods in Knightsbridge for the ultimate department-store shopping experience, or pick up high-end accessories, shoes and designer collections at the fashion boutiques on Oxford Street, Regent Street and Bond Street. Venture out to one of the famous markets such as Old Spitalfields Market or Camden for knickknacks, souvenirs and bargain finds.


If you have more of a bohemian fashion sense, head to Glasgow to shop its indie stores and local designer boutiques for handmade goods, vintage clothing, and jewelry. Scotland's largest city is considered a haven for design junkies and shoppers looking for something that's anything but mainstream. The Merchant City area, in the city's West End, is full of unique shops as well as bars and restaurants. One of Britain's oldest covered shopping arcades, Argyll Arcade, built in 1827, contains 32 jewelry stores.


The main shopping district in Bristol, in South West England, is the Bristol Shopping Quarter in the center of the city, which is divided into Broadmead, The Galleries, Quakers Friars and Cabot Circus. Full of stately Georgian architecture, Clifton Village is one of the city's most posh shopping areas. You can shop at vintage stores, high-end boutiques, and even a lingerie shop for some unique finds. This is also a great place to enjoy some classic pub fare or a hot cup of tea when you need a break.


Shopping in Birmingham is as diverse as the city itself. The high-end Birmingham Bullring is home to more than 160 retail stores and the famous Selfridges department store. Plan on spending an entire day at this shopping center for your fair share of designer clothing, fashion accessories, European housewares, and shoes. For shopping on the other end of the style spectrum, try The Pallasades, which specializes in discount goods. 


A popular destination for sports fans and music enthusiasts, the city of Manchester is also a haven for shopping with its array of shopping centers and smaller locally owned shops. The Manchester Arndale Centre is one of the country's largest urban shopping centers and the place to scope out the latest trends and find brand-name merchandise and designer collections. The city also hosts vintage fashion markets each month and is home to locally owned bookstores, boutiques, and music stores.


Princes Street is the main retail thoroughfare in the heart of Scotland's capital. Well-heeled shoppers can spend a few hours at Jenner's department store, one of the most upscale shopping destinations in the country. The beautiful Victorian architecture will have you enthralled for a while. When you're done browsing at this shopper's palace, you can head to the historic Royal Mile and nearby Grassmarket to shop at fine boutiques and other high-end stores.

by Sabah Karimi

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