The sheer variety of Bristol shopping centres and districts you can explore during your visit is a testament to the city’s diversity. Between Cabot Circus and Stokes Croft, you can purchase the latest lines from designer brands or find a one-of-a-kind piece of upcycled homeware. There’s also a medley of markets, plus street food to fuel your shopping spree.
For designer brands and high street retailers, the Cabot Circus shopping centre is the place to go in Bristol. Spanning one and a half million square feet, and costing half a billion pounds, it’s the retail superhub of the city with over 120 shops, including House of Fraser, Urban Outfitters, All Saints, Levi’s and many more. The huge shell-shaped glass roof will keep you dry whatever the weather while you dash between stores. It’s also been designed to let fresh air flow through the shopping centre, so even when those south-west summers are at their most sweltering, the heat won’t be a factor in shopping till you drop.
If you prefer to shop independent, make your way to Stokes Croft. It’s the most cultural, artistic and creative place in Bristol. The area itself is like Britain’s version of Berlin’s East Side Gallery; its graffiti is world famous – Bristol is the birthplace of Banksy after all – but Stokes Croft also has bars, restaurants, entertainment venues, a museum and more.
As far as shopping goes, you can buy the kind of things that you won’t find anywhere else on the planet, like upcycled furniture, vintage clothing and all kinds of knick-knacks and curios. There’s bound to be something that takes your fancy, not least because Gloucester Road has the most independent shops of any street in the country.
Bristol’s Christmas Steps Arts Quarter is well worth taking a look around too. It’s only a five-minute walk from our City Centre (Lewins Mead) hotel. It’s one of the oldest shopping areas in the city, dating back to the 1600s. As well as an abundance of picturesque historic buildings, you’ll find some great independent shops, art galleries, tailors and dressmakers, plus a slew of good pubs, cafés and restaurants.
Open every day bar Sunday, St. Nicholas Market is one of the finest indoor markets in the country. Established in 1743, it’s the city’s oldest and best-loved market. You’ll find it situated in some of the city centre’s historic buildings, including what used to be the Bristol Corn Exchange. St. Nick’s is jam-packed with more than 60 traders. It’s also home to the Glass Arcade and its grand selection of delicious eateries, some of which feature in our pick of the best places to eat in Bristol.
The Harbourside Market takes over the waterfront on the weekends. It’s an eclectic mix of street food, makers, musicians, artists and traders that’s less market, more weekly festival. When the sun’s out, there’s no better place to be than rummaging through its stalls of jewellery, clothing, books, art, produce and more.
Another good market in Southville is the Tobacco Factory Sunday Market. If you’re staying at our Bristol South hotel, it’s only ten minutes away in the car and always has a great selection of stalls, including Agnes Spencer’s incredible, authentic Jamaican food, Bohobo Therapies’ range of natural, handmade bathing products, Gaolferry’s handprinted t-shirts, Potty Potters pukka pottery, and Chin! Chin! with their pulled pork scotch eggs.
You're spoilt for choice when it comes to Bristol hotels as there are no fewer than ten to choose from within 15 miles of the city centre - perfect for exploring the culutural and historical highlights of this flagship city of the south-west.
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