The best places to go shopping in York are mostly found around the city centre and are often small, independent outlets. It makes for a shopping scene that is unique and interesting. Don’t go looking for the high-end luxury of London’s Oxford Street – instead, expect typical Yorkshire friendliness and banter with some weird and wonderful wares.

    Away from the historical streets of the city centre, you’ll find a few big malls toward the outskirts of the city. While not on the scale of Sheffield’s Meadowhall or White Rose Shopping Center in Leeds, they do offer a good fix for your retail needs. For your next retail therapy in the walled city, find where to shop and what to buy in York below. 


    Parliament Street

    York’s High Street

    • Shoppers

    Parliament Street and the streets around it are the main hubs of York City Center. The broad, mostly pedestrianized street is lined with main street stores and cafés, including Marks & Spencer, New Look, and Pret A Manger.

    The nearby Coney Street has a few more big brands and the Shambles Market is a short walk away. If there are any special markets or events in York, you’ll certainly find them here. It's also easy to get to, with many bus stops on Piccadilly, just a short walk away.

    Location: Parliament St, York, UK


    photo by Chabe01 (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified


    Shambles Market

    A vibrant market in a quirky part of York

    The Shambles Market is a riot of color and sound among the small squares and narrow alleys that connect Parliament Street and The Shambles. The 70 stalls of the outdoor market trades in anything, from flowers to fruit, vegetables to vintage fashion, and souvenirs to street snacks, plus plenty more, generally at good prices. There’s usually also live music playing in the food court area.

    Be sure to check out the shops around the market, too. The Shambles, already worth a visit for its remarkable historical look, is home to some remarkable niche shops. Check out Ye Olde Pie & Sausage Shoppe and The Shop That Must Not Be Named, for appetizers.

    Location: 5 Silver St, York YO1 8RY, UK

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)1904 551355


    photo by Richard Vince (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified


    Coppergate Shopping Center

    A convenient main street hub

    • Shoppers

    The Coppergate Shopping Center is a convenient little alley and square that’s lined with interesting shops. It’s located just off Coppergate (obviously), with easy access from the many bus stops and the multi-storey carpark on Piccadilly as well as the parking around Clifford’s Tower.

    The pedestrianized area contains mostly main street stores like Primark and Topshop and The Body Shop, as well as a couple of specialist stores like The Whiskey Shop and Castle Fine Art. It’s also the home of the famous Jorvik Viking Center and the charming old St. Mary’s Church.

    Location: 12 Coppergate, York YO1 9NT, UK

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 9 am to 5.30 pm, Sunday from 10.30 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)1904 627160


    photo by Kaly99 (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified


    York Designer Outlet

    York’s big main street mall

    • Families
    • Shoppers

    York Designer Outlet is exactly what it sounds like – an outlet for designer goods in York. Strictly speaking, it’s just outside of York, on the southern outskirts of the city, but the rest of its name rings true. You’ll find more than 120 leading UK and international main street names in the 350,000-sq-ft mall, often with up to 60% savings available.

    Formerly known as McArthurGlen York, and still occasionally known by that name, the mall has a small children’s playground, occasional special events and plenty of dining options to keep you going.

    Location: St Nicholas Ave, York YO19 4TA, UK

    Phone: +44 (0)1904 682700


    photo by Sama4 (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified



    A historical street that's great for souvenirs

    • Shoppers
    • History

    Stonegate is a narrow, historical street that runs from near the famous Betty’s Tea Rooms up to the approaches to York Minster. Pedestrianized for most of the day, it’s lined with interesting and mostly unique stores and eateries.

    The street is packed most days, being very popular with tourists. Standout places to look out for include Ye Olde Starr Inne, Betty's Tea Rooms' second outlet, York Armory, Abraham Moon, Stonegate Teddy Bears, and Käthe Wohlfahrt. Be sure to explore some of the nearby alleys and streets for more quirky local stores, especially Low Petergate and Little Stonegate.

    Location: Stonegate, York, UK


    photo by Derek Voller (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified


    Monks Cross Shopping Park

    Main street fashion hub on the outskirts of York

    • Shoppers

    The Monks Cross Shopping Park is a selection of big stores toward the north-eastern outskirts of York. With plenty of automobile parking in the middle of the park and bus lines leading directly there from the city centre, it’s a convenient spot for browsing main street fashion names.

    The main stores around Monks Cross Shopping Park include Debenhams, New Look, H&M, and TK Maxx, but there's also a lot of other options. You'll find hobby and stationery shops, cosmetics outlets and a couple of restaurants, too. If you still can't find what you're looking for, the Vangarde Shopping Park is just down the road.

    Location: Monks Cross Dr, Huntington, York YO32 9GX, UK

    Open: Monday–Friday from 9.30 am to 8 pm, Saturday from 9 am to 7 pm, Sunday from 9 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)1904 623374


    Vangarde Shopping Park

    York’s premium shopping experience

    • Shoppers

    Vangarde Shopping Park is a mall on the north-eastern outskirts on York, built around a selection of department stores. The main one is John Lewis & Partners, but there’s also Next and Marks & Spencer – all of which are massive venues. There are also some big-brand food outlets to choose from.

    The Vangarde Shopping Park is just down the road from the Monks Cross Shopping Park but is an indoor mall as opposed to its outdoor, strip mall-style neighbor. They pride themselves on their high level of customer service, making this one of the more luxurious shopping experiences in York.

    Location: Vangarde Retail Park, Huntington, York YO32 9AE, UK

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 8 am to 10 pm, Sunday from 9 am to 10 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)1904 238309


    Murton Sunday Market

    A giant automobile boot sale on the outskirts of York

    The Murton Sunday Market is held at the York Auction Center, which is on the eastern outskirts of the city. It’s a fascinating market, with a huge array of fruit and veg outside, and a bizarre array of antiques and random bric-a-brac inside.

    The market is generally quite busy and, being held in a farmer’s market, the venue is a bit rough and grubby. However, the banter with the stallholders and the amazing bargains you can find makes it well worth a visit.

    Location: York Auction Center, Murton, York YO19 5GF, UK

    Open: Sunday from 7 am to 4 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)1904 489731


    Bishy Road

    One of the great British main streets

    Bishopthorpe Road – known as Bishy Road for short – leads from York City Center into a mostly residential area but is lined with interesting shops for some of the way. From near Skeldergate Bridge, you'll find a cool array of gift shops, florists, grocers, pubs and one of the best butchers in town. The street is especially popular with locals but is still worth checking out if you're just visiting.

    The Traders Association here hosts annual festivals and fairs, raising funds for charity and supporting the 100 local businesses in the area. Look out for the famous summer parties in June.


    Clifton Moor Retail Park

    An entire shopping neighbourhood

    • Families
    • Shoppers

    Clifton Moor Retail Park is an expansive strip mall on the northern outskirts of York. It is mostly geared toward locals, with the stores including hardware and homeware. However, there are also some popular family attractions, including York’s biggest movie theater and bowling alley.

    The roads around the main strip mall feature an array of small stores. Again, the main focus is on hardware outlets, with a few niche stores like those for anglers and musicians. If you want to explore the area, coming in a automobile is strongly recommended as individual stores are spaced far apart. Don’t worry – there’s plenty of parking space available.

    Location: Stirling Rd, Rawcliffe, York YO30 4XY, UK

    Open: Monday–Friday from 9 am to 8 pm, Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm, Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm

    Phone: +44 (0)794 770 6695

    Ben Reeves | Compulsive Traveler

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