Whether you want a whole new wardrobe or just fancy going window shopping, the UK is a great place to indulge in retail therapy. And while London may be the first city that comes to mind, there are many other destinations that are worth checking out.
Going shopping for birthday or Christmas presents is an ideal excuse to look for city breaks and this guide provided by travelsupermarket.com highlights the best cities outside of London to hunt for bargains.
Shopping in Newcastle
When shopping outside of the capital, one of the best places to head to may be Newcastle. The city’s Metrocentre is the largest retail and leisure complex in Europe and contains some 330 shops. These include well-known high street brands like Argos, but you will also come across several independent traders, such as Candle Essence.
If you’ve worked up an appetite after a morning’s shopping, head to one of the many restaurants and cafes for a bite to eat. You can also see the latest Hollywood blockbusters at the Odeon cinema.
The Metrocentre is about a 20-minute journey from central Newcastle, but if you’re staying in the city centre you may also want to visit Northumberland Street. This is one of the city’s main shopping areas and is home to the flagship Fenwick outlet, a chain of department stores that was founded in the region in 1882.
You can also visit the indoor Grainger Market, where you will not only find independent traders selling everything from handmade crafts to hardware, but also the world’s smallest Marks and Spencer store.
Shopping in Liverpool
Alternatively, you may want to visit Liverpool on a shopping trip.
Liverpool ONE launched in 2008 and is the largest open-air shopping centre in the country. There is some 1.65 million sq ft of leisure and retail space and with well-established brands such as Ann Summers and Sony having branches here, you will find lots of opportunity to splash your hard-earned cash.
Shops are open to 20:00 from Monday to Friday, until 19:00 on Saturdays and 17:00 on Sundays, so there should be plenty of time for you to find that perfect outfit.
Located nearby is Bold Street, where you will find some fantastic independent boutiques and gourmet food. But why not give your credit card a rest and take a breather at one of the many cafes that can be found here? One of the best things about the city is that everything is close together, and there are many hotels in Liverpool city centre which are ideal if you need a rest from spending your hard earned cash.
Shopping in Manchester
Elsewhere in the north-west, Manchester is a great place to go shopping. While you can visit the centrally-located Arndale Centre, it may be the Trafford Centre – which is around 20 minutes out of the city – that really catches your interest.
This three-floor shopping complex opened in 1998 and contains outlets such as Bench and Next. If you’re looking for jewellery, however, you’ll be in the right place to find it as HS Samuel and Swarovski also have branches here. For high-end fashion visit the area around King Street and St Ann’s Square, here you will find Vivienne Westwood and Armani stores, among others.
Shopping in Birmingham
Birmingham can also be a great place to go shopping, as it contains the historic Bullring centre. The development first began as an open-air medieval market but has undergone significant changes over the years to emerge as a modern 1.2 million sq ft shopping complex, home to brands such as River Island and French Connection.
And you’ll be in good company should you choose to visit Birmingham on a shopping break, as the Bullring claims to be the country’s most visited mall.
However, it may be the Selfridges branch that is the highlight of your trip, as the store has a unique design that takes its inspiration from a Paco Rabanne dress.
If you want a new pair of earrings or a necklace, stop by the Jewellery Quarter, as some 40 per cent of the UK’s jewellery is made here. Alternatively, why not visit Birmingham’s Farmers Market, which takes place twice a week on New Street to pick up some fresh local produce?
Shopping in Leeds
Last, but by no means least, is Leeds. Visiting the Yorkshire city’s White Rose Centre gives you the chance to buy goods such as artificial flowers and handmade costume jewellery from a number of independent traders.
There are also some well-established high street names, including HMV and Thorntons, but if you need help deciding what to buy, you can always make use of the personal shopping service for assistance. Other fantastic shopping centres in the city include the Corn Exchange and the Kirkgate Market, which is housed in a beautiful Edwardian building.
With so many fantastic places around the country to splash the cash, you will never be far away from brilliant shopping facilities.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post from the Travel Supermarket Team