The best places to go shopping in Manchester range from major shopping centers and designer jewelry boutiques to charming indoor markets and outlet stores. Manchester is widely known for its sporting history, but there are ample places to pick up a nice souvenir or two. The city is home to some of the UK's largest malls, where you can find a good mix of high-street, upmarket, and affordable stores.

    Manchester is a hub of culture, entertainment, sport, and tourism – and its great shopping scene follows suit. Some neighborhoods are known for specific goods, such as jewelry, local art, antiques, and vinyl records. Whichever you're planning to snag a bargain or indulge in upmarket shopping, you can be assured of the extensive range of shopping opportunities in Manchester.

    Where to shop and what to buy in Manchester?


    Manchester Arndale

    Manchester's premier shopping destination

    The Manchester Arndale is one of the biggest shopping malls in the United Kingdom, boasting a total floor space of around 1.4 million square feet. It attracts 10s of millions of visitors each year and has seen extensive development and evolution since first opening its doors in 1975.

    The Arndale features more than 200 stores in total, selling everything from the latest fashions to homewares, gifts, tech, toys, beauty products, and more. It's also home to an extensive food court with fast food, light bites, and even a street food market.

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    Location: New Cannon Street Mall, Manchester M4 3AQ, UK

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm, Sunday from 11.30 am to 5.30 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)161 833 9851


    photo by Tecmark Ltd (CC BY 2.0) modified


    Trafford Center

    A family-friendly combo of shopping and dining

    Trafford Center can be found a few miles to the west of Manchester's city centre. It's one of the biggest shopping malls in the UK in terms of size, boasting one of the biggest food courts in all of Europe too. Along with the 30+ restaurants of the gigantic food court, Trafford Center also has on display many beautiful sculptures and other art installations.

    This expansive shopping mall is home to more than 200 shops, including the popular John Lewis and Selfridges. Whether you're shopping for jewelry, accessories, clothes for the family, travel gear, gifts, stationery or luxury chocolates, you can probably find it here.

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    Location: The Orient, Trafford Park, Stretford, Manchester M17 8AA, UK

    Open: Monday–Friday from 10 am to 10 pm, Saturday from 10 am to 9 pm, Sunday from 12 pm to 6 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)161 746 7777


    Market Street

    The main street of Manchester

    Market Street serves as one of the main main street shopping spots for the city of Manchester. Buskers and street artists can often be spotted here, adding life and vibrancy to the area, while various main street brands line both sides of the street.

    Huge Debenhams and Primark stores can be found here, along with other major brands for fashionable attire, sporting goods, homewares, groceries, accessories, and health products too. Whether you're looking to fill out your wardrobe with new clothes or browse the latest smartphones, you can do it all on Market Street.

    Location: Market Street, Manchester M4 1PQ, UK


    photo by David Wilson (CC BY 2.0) modified


    Exchange Square

    A great place for fashionistas

    Exchange Square was created in the 90s and has since developed into a haven for high-end fashion shoppers. Lots of big-name brands can be found in this section of the city, which also hosts a range of special events throughout the year like spooky Halloween makeovers and live DJ performances.

    Exchange Square is a great place to shop while also enjoying some of the key sights and sounds of Manchester. The city's Cathedral can be spotted from the square, while the National Soccer Museum is in this part of the city too.

    Location: Exchange Square Central, High St, Manchester M3 1BD, UK


    photo by Aygo (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified


    The Northern Quarter

    Brilliant boutiques and charming cafes

    The Northern Quarter of Manchester stretches from Piccadilly to the Ancoats and is filled with charming boutiques and independent stores. For those looking for something a little different to the big brands and high-street chains, this is the place to be.

    You'll find a range of indie fashion stores here, along with vintage vinyl record shops, boho boutiques and fascinating art galleries too. The Northern Quarter also includes a great range of cafe-shop hybrids, letting you enjoy a soothing hot chocolate or an energizing cup of coffee while browsing the items on offer.

    Location: Northern Quarter, Manchester, UK


    photo by Mikey (CC BY 2.0) modified



    The top spot for indie shoppers

    Afflecks, once known as Affleck's Palace, is an indoor market in the Northern Quarter of Manchester. Filled with small, independent shops and intriguing little boutiques, it's an ideal place to go if you're looking for something special or unique.

    Afflecks is also a terrific location for fashion shopping, with many of the market's stalls and stores dedicated to urban and street style clothes like slogan tees. You can find a lot of great value buys here, with Afflecks being a more budget-friendly alternate to some of the main street stores.

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    Location: 52 Church St, Manchester M4 1PW, UK

    Open: Monday–Friday from 10.30 am to 6 pm, Saturday from 10 am to 6 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)161 839 0718


    photo by Olea (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified


    Barton Arcade

    Premium shopping in a gorgeous Victorian building

    Barton Arcade on Barton Square is a beautiful Victorian shopping arcade that was built from cast-iron and glass back in the late 19th century. Part of the joy of visiting Barton Arcade is simply admiring the architecture, but there's plenty of great shopping to be done here too.

    The Arcade features around 15 independent stores selling everything from high-end jewelry to designer attire and luxury footwear. It's one of the top spots in Manchester for exclusive and premium goods, designed with the more discerning customer in mind.

    Location: 48 Barton Square, Manchester M3 2BH, UK

    Open: Daily from 10 am to 6 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)161 219 3535


    photo by tom_bullock (CC BY 2.0) modified


    New Cathedral Street

    High-end fashion all around

    New Cathedral Street runs right off Exchange Square and leads into several other key shopping hotspots for the city of Manchester, as well as offering many top-tier shops of its own. Major department stores like Marks and Spencer and Selfridges can be found here.

    New Cathedral Street is also home to gigantic Ted Baker and Hugo Boss stores, along with other big brand fashion stores like Zara, Burberry, and Louis Vuitton. With such a wide array of fashion and designer stores, it's the perfect place to begin a day of clothes and accessory shopping.

    Location: New Cathedral Street, Manchester M1 1BD, UK


    photo by Mikey (CC BY 2.0) modified


    Quayside MediaCityUK

    Budget bargains from big brands

    MediaCityUK is the only outlet shopping mall in all of Manchester. It offers over 80 stores spread out across 2 floors, with discounts of up to 60% on big-name fashion brands.

    Along with the fashion and jewelry outlets, this mall is also a great place to save on homeware, beauty products, and even chocolates. For lifestyle and entertainment, the mall is also home to a huge movie theater, an extensive fitness center, and a 400-seat food court with several restaurants and cafes.

    Location: The Quays, Salford M50 3AH, UK

    Open: Monday–Friday from 10 am to 6 pm, Saturday from 10 am to 7 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)161 848 1850


    photo by Rept0n1x (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified


    The Jewelry Quarter

    A one-stop-shop for everything that shimmers

    The Jewelry Quarter, as the name implies, is home to some of Manchester's premier jewelers, spreading out along King Street, Exchange Street and St Ann's Square. You'll find both big-name chain brands and independent designers and sellers of beautiful watches, antique accessories, and contemporary custom rings here.

    Whether you're on the search for something significant, like a custom made, high-end engagement ring for a special someone, or something a little simpler like a new bracelet or pair of earrings, you can find it here.

    Location: Jewelry Quarter, Manchester, UK

    Khadija Bilal | Contributing Writer

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