It’s the most wonderful time of the year… yes Christmas is on the horizon. To get you into the festive mood, how about checking out one of the many Christmas Markets that are popping up in towns and cities across the north of England?

Whether you want to stock up on cheeses and meats, meet some friends for gluhwein and hot chocolates, or pick up quirky gifts from the arts and crafts stalls, the Christmas Markets have something for everyone.

We’ve checked out what’s coming up and selected the best of the best for you, all easily accessible on a Northern train.

If you’re looking for a great day out shopping to pick up all the gifts on your list, then you can’t go wrong with Chester. Full of charm and character, with its cobbled streets and buildings dating back more than 700 years, there’s something a bit magical about Chester at Christmas. And, with its wealth of high-end boutiques, high street stores and vast number of independent shops, Chester...

Sheffield is probably best known for its out-of-town shopping mall, Meadowhall, which has a great array of mainly high street shops but if it’s independent shops you’re looking for, then stay in the city. Devonshire Street is home to Sheffield’s independent quarter and a great place to start your shopping expedition for something a bit different and personal.   For retro and vintage fashion lovers Influenced by...

Hull has become a bit of a retail mecca for those in the know, offering everything from high-end to high-street stores, as well as some outstanding independent shops that will ensure sorting out your Christmas shopping is simple. With retail hubs across the city centre including St Stephens on Ferensway, the Prospect Shopping Centre and Princes Quay, combined with charming locations in the old...

Lincoln is a historic city which embraces its roots with a broad array of independent retail outlets making it the perfect destination for Christmas shopping. Whether you are looking for bespoke gifts, vintage fashion, artisan confectionery or specialist homeware and crafts, Lincoln’s shopping options will leave you spoilt for choice. We’ve explored three of Lincoln’s main shopping hubs –...

York has long been a favourite for shoppers throughout the year and it’s not hard to see why. With its ancient cobbled streets and passageways, you feel like you’re stepping back in time – or into a movie set with its very own Harry Potter shop (The Shop That Must Not Be Named).  Combine that with sparkling shimmering shop windows displaying their festive-wares (including a dedicated Christmas...

Manchester’s city centre acts as a beacon for shopping enthusiasts and it’s not hard to see why.  As well as a great mix of high-street stores, department stores including Harvey Nicholls and Selfridges, the city also has an abundance of designer boutiques and independent shops. What’s more, the whole of the city centre is easily walkable from Manchester Piccadilly, Victoria and Oxford Road...

If you’re wanting to avoid the busy mainstream stores this Christmas, check out Liverpool’s unique and quirky independent shopping options.   Liverpool’s Bluecoat If you’re planning a trip to Liverpool for a spot of Christmas shopping, Bluecoat is a must. This 300 year old building in the heart of Liverpool’s city centre not only offers a year round programme of family friendly events including arts,...

Leeds is a city that certainly has something for everyone.  With big destinations including Trinity for high street brands, Victoria Quarter for some high-end luxury and Leeds’ newest arrival Victoria Gate housing some fantastic brands and the largest John Lewis outside of London, shoppers really are spoilt for choice.  Looking outside of those well known brands, we’ve taken tips from locals in...

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