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5 Magical Towns To Visit For Christmas Shopping This Year

Matt Crisp November 10, 2023

Christmas is coming, and that means it’s time to start planning extra shopping trips to make sure that we tick everyone off our present list. It’s well worth exploring some of the UK’s regional towns that hold Christmas markets or are just particularly magical at this time of year. Book a coach hire and arrange a memorable day out at one of these charming places.


York is of course well known for its rich history. It has an award-winning Christmas fair that takes place on Parliament Street every year, with Alpine-style chalets and beautiful decorations. There’s all sorts of delicious local and seasonal produce on sale, as well as the Made in Yorkshire Yuletide Village, where you will find a splendid array of festive fare.

There is even a Victorian style helter-skelter to keep the kids entertained while you enjoy a glass of well-earned mulled wine. If you want to make a full day of it, you can book your place on the Festive Guided Walking Tour, where you will learn about the ancient origins of the modern festival, from the Winter Solstice to Saturnalia.


Leeds is a fabulous shopping destination, and never more so than at this time of year. The legendary Leeds Corn Exchange is home to an independent Christmas market, while the Leeds Christmas Markets is bigger and better than ever this year. Streets and squares all over the city will be hosting timber market stalls for local and international traders. 

There will be plenty of family-friendly events and activities, including the Ice Cube outdoor skating rink and themed attractions in the Victoria Gardens and Millennium Square. Meanwhile in Victoria Leeds you will find big-brand names such as John Lewis, Harvey Nichols, and Gant, as well as an excellent choice of bars and restaurants.


The historic city of Cambridge is well worth a visit at any time of the year, with its well preserved high street and eclectic mixture of architecture. There is a wonderful selection of independent shops as well as established high street names, and a unique atmosphere with surprises around every corner. 


Winchester is sometimes referred to as ‘England’s Christmas Capital.’ The Winchester Cathedral Christmas Market is renowned as one of the best not only in the UK, but also throughout Europe. It’s a perfect chance to shop for unique gifts for your loved ones, or to stock up the pantry with delicious local produce. 

Soak up the bustling atmosphere and stunning location and take some time to explore the beautiful cathedral, which will be hosting a range of seasonal services. 


Ludlow in Shropshire is a popular tourist town, with a historic castle and timber-frame Tudor buildings. It has a range of high-end boutiques offering ample opportunities for gift shopping, from jewellery to clothes, antiques and artisan crafts. There is also a street market every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.