Tue, March 16th, 2010 - By

Top 10 Shopping Holidays


Want to find out where the best shopping destinations are? Here are our top 10 cities for shopaholics, the best places to go for some retail therapy around the world – just don’t blame us when the bills come rolling in!

New York, USA

The number one choice for those looking for a shopping excursion thanks to the wide variety and vast number of shops on offer, New York has it all from the well known department stores such as Bloomingdales, Saks Fifth Avenue and Macy’s to the one of a kind shops in SoHo and the knock-off stalls along Canal Street.

If you’re looking for some designer bargains a trip to the discount department store of Century 21 is a must, or if you have the time visit the ever popular Woodbury Common Premium Outlet, less than one hour’s bus drive from Manhattan its home to around 220 designer and brand-name outlet stores.

Paris, France

Paris is a shopper’s dream, the world capital of haute couture and home to a number of large fashion houses. Don’t worry if the cities designer stores are a little out of your league there’s still plenty of options to part with your cash with a great choice of high-street stores, flea markets and second-hand vintage stores.

Barcelona, Spain

A shopper’s paradise, Barcelona offers around 35,000 shops and is home to the famous 5km shopping line stretching from the top of Las Ramblas, through Place de Catalunya and up Avenue Diagonal. Here you’ll find a large number of shops including many of the big names such as Versace, Calvin Klein and Bally to name but a few.

Las Ramblas in Barcelona

Las Ramblas in Barcelona

Milan, Italy

The fashion capital of the world, Milan is famous for its upscale shopping with names such as Gucci, Prada, Luis Vuitton and Versace. Head to Milan’s fashion district, Quadrilatero della moda, here you will find the Via Montenapoleone, a covered street lined with designer stores.

If you have the time, visit the factory outlet stores on the outskirts of town, found around an hour’s drive from Milan there’s the The Place Luxury Outlet, where a handful of stores offer discounts of around 40% on Italian luxury brands or Fidenza Village home to 90 luxury outlet boutiques.

Lisbon, Portugal

Perhaps surprising to see Lisbon on this list, the city has some of the largest shopping malls in Europe as well as offering atmospheric stores selling leather and hand-made goods, antique and contemporary ceramics, and hand-painted tiles.

Marrakech, Morocco

The winding alleyways of the souks are well worth exploring; here you’ll find anything from jewellery to textiles and carpets to camels. Each area is divided into sections specialising in particular products, the Souk el Attarine offers spices, pottery, textiles and metalwork souks while around Souk el Kebir you’ll find leather goods, carpets, lamps and clothing. Don’t forget haggling is a must here.

An Aladdin's cave in Marrakech

An Aladdin's cave in Marrakech

Dubai, UAE

Dubai is home to one of the biggest malls in the world, the Dubai Mall, ideal if you want all your shops at your fingertips and spend some time enjoying the sunshine. As well as having more than 1200 stores the Dubai Mall also houses the world’s largest indoor Gold Souk with over 220 jewellers, a large aquarium, an Olympic-sized ice-rink as well as an indoor theme park. There’s even a hotel attached, the Address Dubai Mall Hotel so when your bags get to heavy you can keep popping back to your room to off-load your goods.

Hong Kong

Hong Kong is not just about electronic gadgets, here visitors will find street markets, designer boutiques and mega malls laden with everything from jade to silk and of course  cutting-edge technology. Markets are a must while in Hong Kong with the historic Stanley Market perfect for collectibles like porcelain vases, silk garments and Chinese artwork and the 500 stalls at the Jade Market are ideal for souvenir hunting.

Bangkok, Thailand

Renowned as one of the best shopping cities in Asia, Bangkok has just about everything for you to spend your hard earned pennies on from high quality silk to tailor-made suits and jewellery to traditional crafts.

A visit to one of its markets is a must-do, particularly the 35-acre Chatuchak Market with 15,000 stalls it’s great for scouting for clothes, home goods or even pythons! Don’t forget haggle for everything and keep with the Thai tradition and smile.

Floating market in Bangkok

Floating market in Bangkok

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Well known for its shopping, Buenos Aires has a great variety to offer its visitors whether you’re looking for clothes, shoes, books or gifts. One of the best shopping streets for high-street fashions and leather goods is Calle Florida, a pedestrianised road in the city centre. Those with a few more pesos to spend may want to head to the city’s more expensive neighbourhood of Recoleta, where designer stores such as Armani and Cartier can be found.

Travel tips for shoppers

  • Pack light
  • Take comfortable shoes
  • Research before you go and find out where the best shops are and their opening times
  • Size measurements – know in advance your measurements and how they translate
  • Learn some basic shopping phrases such as ‘how much is that?’ etc
  • Understand the customs of your destination, are you expected to haggle and can you do so in shops
  • Take a calculator or make yourself up a simple currency table with various amounts for quick and easy converting, always make sure you know the latest exchange rates
  • Finally be aware of importing restrictions as well as your airline’s weight limit for luggage and check excess baggage costs
Make sure you have room for all your purchases

Make sure you have room for all your purchases

Posted : Tuesday, March 16th, 2010 at 07:51
Category : Top 10
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