Town centre Christmas shopping in Yorkshire

Festive shopping in Malton 

Festive shopping in Malton - Credit: © David Lindsay 2018 photosbydavid.co.uk

Fancy a festive day out but not sure where to head? Support local at some of our favourite Yorkshire towns for the perfect seasonal day trip.

BEVERLEY   

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

When it comes to festive shopping, Beverley doesn’t hold back. It’s not surprising really, either, given it’s made a name for itself for its beautiful market town, local bustling atmosphere, and diverse and high-quality independent shops. Whether you’re on the lookout for gifts from artisan stalls, or just wanting to have a nosey at Christmas decorations for yourself, it’s got everything you could need -  making it a perfect festive day out. Try family-run Design Orchard for beautiful interior gifts, Art and Soul for local artists’ works, or Aura if you’re on the lookout for a lifestyle and womenswear boutique.  

SEASONAL STROLLS 

Once you’ve finished up with your shopping, head out into the beautiful surrounding countryside and stretch your legs on a stroll. There’s a brilliant family-friendly walk that starts in Beverley Minster and heads out to Beverley Westwood, a generous tract of free pasture, before circling back to the town. There’s nothing quite like a frosty, nip in the air walk on a day leading up to Christmas, is there?  

TASTY TREAT 

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Don’t miss out on picking up some award-winning local goodness at Vanessa Delicatessen, or stop for a wintery hot chocolate or warming coffee at the lovely cycling cafe, Velo. On the hunt for some stocking fillers? Pop into White Rabbit Chocolatiers, a family-run business that has been crafting luxury chocolate truffles, bars and novelties in their artisan kitchen since 2004. If you’re looking for a showstopper Christmas treat, finish the day at the Westwood Bar & Grill or the wonderful Pig and Whistle.  

MY BEVERLEY CHRISTMAS 

James Alcock of the Pig and Whistle 

‘The bustle and atmosphere within Beverley town centre is amazing. I love bouncing around the independent shops buying gifts for people and intertwining it with nipping into different restaurants or bars for a festive tipple! On the run up to Christmas, when everyone within the hospitality and retail industry are tuckered out, I normally pop into my favourites such as The Modern Draper, Aura, Pilgrim and Bug Vinyl to give them all a glass of fizz to get into the Christmas spirit! This year, I’m excited to more freely (hopefully) socialise in a more normal way - my favourites are Chequers micro pub & the Westwood restaurant, other than my own Bistro & Tapas bar!   

SPECIAL SOMETHING 

A Beverley Christmas Carol on the 18 December in Beverley Minster is a sure-fire way to get the magic of Christmas going. Or, have you got young kids? The Warton Arms in Woodmansey is doing a festive movie night showing of the Polar Express on 21 December 21, where they’ll be turning the pub into a cosy cinema ewith pop and popcorn for the little ones and a full menu and hot toddies for the adults.  

  

SETTLE  

Snowy scene of Settle is a small market town in the North Yorkshire Dales, in the Ribble Valley.

Settle in the Ribble Valley. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

Settle is a lovely and friendly independent shopping destination and the vast array of producers and sellers makes it brilliant for Christmas shopping in particular. From specialist wine merchant Buon Vino, to Studio Vault for craft jewellery and contemporary accessories, and The House the Jack Built for lovely, unique children’s toys to Ahernes of Hellifeld.  

 SEASONAL STROLLS 

There’s a spectacular circular walk in Settle, so you can incorporate some activity into your festivity-filled day out. Start and finish in the market place before heading upward to the Craven Fault.  

 TASTY TREAT 

With all that walking, you’re sure to be looking out for anything mulled or toasty, right? Lucky for you, Settle has coffee shops a’plenty and pubs to wash down the day such as The Talbot Arms. For a real treat, mooch out to The Courtyard Dairy, for award-winning cheeses and bakes.   

SPECIAL SOMETHING 

Settle’s Christmas lights Switch bring a full festive flavour to the town which is full of atmosphere.  

  

RIPON 

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

RDN7YB Ripon cahtedral in Yorkshire England

Ripon Catherdral - Credit: Alamy Stock Photo

Ripon is chock-a-block full of artisan stores, boutiques and independent goodies. Karma is a quirky little gift shop that sells a bit of everything from local art to aromatherapy and Himalayan salt lamps. There’s the welcoming  Little Ripon Book Shop and The Castle is top spot for gifts. Hop to Booths for a good supermarket sweep.  

 SEASONAL STROLLS 

Take yourself for a short, waterside stroll along the Ripon Canal. The canal runs for just over two miles, from the cathedral city of Ripon, to the River Ure, near Newby Hall. Along the way there are pretty locks and nice views of the surrounding countryside. 

TASTY TREAT 

Vanora’s Bakery is a great place to stop off for indulgent treats – great bread, sweet treats and wine and cheese just made for festive indulgence!    

MY RIPON CHRISTMAS 

Shaun Rankin of Grantley Hall 

‘I’ve always loved the spirit of markets in the lead up to Christmas. Ripon Markets is a fantastic addition to the town with some wonderful, local traders but it has a great buzz and festive atmosphere at Christmas. When it comes to a proper Ripon Christmas, I really look forward to midnight mass at Ripon Cathedral at this time of year. Christmas is all about family and there is a lovely atmosphere at the cathedral. 

 SPECIAL SOMETHING 

After Covid-19 restrictions last year, a huge amount of money has been set aside to extend and improve the Christmas lights across Ripon. This year, there will be a whole new illumination on the Town Hall for a real focal point for the town’s celebrations.   

HAWORTH 

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

CRK01Y Howarth High Street with low winter sun.

Howarth High Street with low winter sun. - Credit: Alamy Stock Photo

Haworth is beautiful at the best of times, but at Christmas, it really comes alive. The cobbled high street, lit by stunning festive displays, is full of independent retailers and unique gift shops. Hawksby’s is a treasure trove of beautiful pieces for the home and Modo Creative specialises in personalised gifts. Fancy gifting a special someone some art? Graham Binn’s award-winning gallery would be a perfect stop on your festive shopping trip.  

TASTY TREAT 

The Hawthorn in the heart of Haworth is a beautiful, cosy pub, perfect for indulging in a large meal by the fire with a glass of wine. Cobbles and Clay is a gorgeous cafe and pottery studio (so you can entertain the kids or set them to work on some presents while you sip away!) and has great coffee, food and wonderful bakes.  

 SPECIAL SOMETHING 

Haworth Celebration of Music Weekend fills the streets with festive sounds on December 11/12. Details at whatson.bradford.gov.uk 

MALTON 

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

pine cones and dried fruits in markets stalls

Festive goodies at the artisan stores in Malton - Credit: David Lindsay 2018 photosbydavid.co.uk

It’s long been known as one of the favourite shopping and foodie destinations in the county. Whether it’s figgy puddings, perfectly prepped turkeys, interiors or gifts Malton has your present list covered! For stylish gifts from independent stores, pay a visit to Hare and Wilde, or the three floors of goodness at 9-11 Interiors. Explore The Lanes for all your toy, homeware and board game needs. Or, pop into the home of the most beautiful and unusual stocking fillers, gifts and books, Kemps General Stores - it’s a Christmas treasure trove. Visit Malton is providing two hours free parking in over 200 car parking spaces in the town centre, seven days a week during December.  

Festive shopping in Malton 

Festive shopping in Malton - Credit: © David Lindsay 2018 photosbydavid.co.uk

TASTY TREAT 

Want something special to nibble on your outing? Florian Poirot is the unmissable boutique from the UK’s pastry champion. The Patisserie Malton is pretty lovely, too, and for great coffee head to Roost Espresso Bar. If you’re looking out for good gifts for alcohol lovers, pop into McMillans of Malton or Rare Bird Gin. Fancy a cosy sit down and a hearty lunch? You won’t be disappointed by the cosiness of The Talbot. Take a mooch out to nearby Raisthorpe Distillery. 

SPECIAL SOMETHING 

Be Amazing Arts and Kemps are teaming up this Christmas to bring to life three wonderfully festive winter stories for young children and their families. Head for Kemps' courtyard which has been transformed into a winter wonderland to hear magical stories. December 22, 12.30-4pm  

 
HARROGATE  

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

Snowy Harrogate streets 

Snowy Harrogate streets - Credit: Harrogate

Want somewhere that’s full to the brim of independent shops, unique sellers, artisan gifts and twinkle? Harrogate  fits the bill with a thriving high street and an abundance of boutiques, alongside high street retailers.  

SEASONAL STROLLS 

Fancy something a little different and combine your shopping with a seasonal stroll? The beautiful RHS Harlow Carr Gardens are playing host to Handmade at Christmas until 29 December. You’ll find handmade gifts and treats from all sorts of local artisans and artists, alongside the stunning horticulture.  

  

TASTY TREAT 

It probably wouldn’t be a festive trip to Harrogate without slipping into Bettys for a Christmas Fancy, a peruse of their famous hampers, and to warm up in the cosy atmosphere. But Harrogate spoils you when it comes to food and drink, so if you fancy a merry tipple, check out Harrogate Brewing Co, for hygge, head to Baltzersens, and for an independent gastro treat, pop into Hustle and Co. Get your gin know-how (and gifts) at Spirit of Harrogate. 

MY HARROGATE CHRISTMAS  

From Victoria Turner of The Harrogate Girl 

'Harrogate is such a magical place to visit over the festive season. I’m kicking off the season with a trip to RHS Garden Harlow’s annual GLOW event. Wrap up warm with a Bettys Hot Chocolate in hand - it’s an enchanted walk through the lit-up gardens. I’m most looking forward to the Little Bird Made Market on 4-5 December in the Valley Gardens. From there I’ll head up into town stopping off at Westmorland Sheepskin, and head over to Harrogate Organics and West Park Antiques where I often find treasures for the home. I’ll certainly be stocking up on festive favourites so, along with a trip to Bettys, I’m going to try Crimple; the new food hall based on Leeds Road which boasts over 60 Yorkshire retailers and has a winter wonderland display. I’m also excited to see the road train, helter-skelter and big wheel in the town centre which I can imagine will be a huge visitor attraction. This year’s Christmas parties are booked at two great independent restaurants, Three’s A Crowd with my work colleagues and the Tannin Level with my friends. I just need to source a cheesy Christmas jumper!' 

SPECIAL SOMETHING 

Harrogate is welcoming a brand new Christmas Fayre this year set right in the heart of the town centre. In addition to the crafts, gifts and delicious hot food, there will be a Ferris Wheel, Victorian Carousel and Helter Skelter adding to the excitement. To help you reach all the entertainment, a festive road train called The Candy Cane Express will take you from one attraction to another free of charge. The fayre is open until December 10.  

 POCKLINGTON  

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

Pocklinton street sign against a blue sky

Pocklington is home to many independent shops - Credit: Tony Bartholomew

This small Yorkshire town packs a punch in regards to independent shopping, which we imagine is music to your ears for a real December day out. You can keep the kids happy too with a stop off at Ye Little Olde Sweet Shoppe, and there will be festive cheers on offer at Pocklington market every Tuesday throughout December, including a Christmas Eve market on 24 December. 

 SEASONAL STROLLS 

Spot the winter wildlife in their natural habitat and take a frosty walk along the Pocklington Canal. The canal runs for around nine-miles but it’s a lovely simple walk and you can do as little or as much of it as you like - depends how many mince pies you have to walk off, hey?  

TASTY TREAT 

Places and locals

One of Pocklington's indie stores - Credit: Tony Bartholomew

It’s often referred to as Yorkshire’s newest foodie destination so you won’t be in short supply when it comes to artisan food supplies and stop-offs. Break up your festive day out with coffee and cake at the Wolds Cafe and Tea House and indulge in the Festive Fayre menu at the hearty Black Bull Pocklington. Finish up your day with a mulled wine or wintery red in Judson’s Wine Bar, while planning your Christmas table list and chatting as a family. Oh, and why not take home some supplies for hearty pigs in blankets from Burtons and Sissons, the traditional butchers?  

SPECIAL SOMETHING 

Don’t feel Christmas-y until you’ve attended a good old traditional carol concert? A Christmas Carol with Pocklington Singers will be at All Saints Church on December 14, and Carols with the Mayor around the Christmas tree in the marketplace will be on December 15.  

  

 RICHMOND  

Richmond castle and town in North Yorkshire at night time

Richmond castle and town in North Yorkshire at night time - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

Talk about pretty, quaint and picturesque, and Richmond definitely sits up there with one of the prettiest market town centres you’ll come across. It makes for a wonderful seasonal day out and with many independent boutiques, you’re sure to tick some bits off your Christmas list, too. For clothing and accessories, take a peek into Lemon, for art galleries, you’ve got Mackenzie Thorpe, Lucy Pittaway and Stacey Moore. There are plenty of interior shops such as Grey’s Interiors and gift shops such as King Street Kitchen and Gifts.  

SEASONAL STROLLS 

Loop round from the market square, along Castle Walk beneath the shadow of the castle, and down to the famous falls on Richmond Batts. Walk along the river and past The Station (pop in for some tasty bakes!) to Easby Abbey and back up into the town along the Drummer Boy Walk.  

TASTY TREAT 

Again, you’ll find all sorts of tasty treats in Richmond, with lovely coffee shops and cafes serving winter warmers such as Sip Coffee, The Little Drummer Boy Tearoom and Mocha (where you can also get some fancy chocolates to take away!).  

MY RICHMOND CHRISTMAS 

From Stacey Moore of Stacey Moore Art Gallery 

'I love that in Richmond, just like in many other towns and villages in the Dales, Christmas celebrations hold onto those old-fashioned traditions. If you walk across the marketplace on a Saturday in December the market will be full of hustle and bustle, the shops will have their lights twinkling inside, and since the town is mainly made up of independent businesses, the scenes could really be taken from any Christmas from the last 200+ years. In the run up to Christmas, I’ll be indulging in my favourite Richmond restaurant Number 29 French Gate with my family or cosying up in the lounge of the Kings Head hotel for drinks with friends. Around the long hours in the galleries and behind the scenes, there is always time for frosty riverside walks, hot chocolate and of course Panto! '

 SPECIAL SOMETHING 

If you fancy making Christmas Eve your festive day out, Richmond goes big on tradition and getting people into the spirit! The Poor Old Horse of Richmond, a hobby horse with a real horse-skull on its head, meanders around the town accompanied by a group of mummers (singers) in huntsman costumes who sing a special folk song and tell the ancient story. Seeing him is thought to bring luck and the custom is believed to date back to the Seventeenth Century.   

SKIPTON  

F00TNW Skipton, Holy Trinity Parish Church, North Yorkshire, England, United Kingdom, Europe.

Skipton, Holy Trinity Parish Church and main street - Credit: Alamy Stock Photo

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

If you like shopping, you’ll like Skipton. And if you like unique, individual, independent shops selling locally made gifts, food, art and more, then it will make the perfect destination for a seasonal trip out. Fusion Jewellers is great for gifts, as is Not So Shabby, while Lighthouse Lane is fabulous for art. If you’re searching for foodie gifts, look out for The Growling Shrew Bottle Shop, Chocolate & Truffles and Coffee Care.  

TASTY TREAT 

Dive into Steep & Filter for a brilliant quality coffee or hot brew to warm the cockles, and for a nice lunch for the whole family, try the family-owned Elsworth Kitchen. For something festive and special, try The Coniston Hotel.  

SPECIAL SOMETHING 

Skipton has become well known for its brilliant market, and Christmas time is no different. The bumper event will run until December 12 The award-winning market is the UK’s best large speciality market that runs along the whole of the high street. Stalls will be packed full of handmade gifts and there will also be plenty of food and drink products from local artisans including baked goods, Belgian chocolate, craft beer and chilli sauces. 

GRASSINGTON  

The cast in Grassington, which stars in the role of Darrowby Front l-r, Siegfreid Farnon (Samuel Wes

The cast of All CreaturesGreat and Small Grassington, which stars in the role of Darrowby Front l-r, Siegfreid Farnon (Samuel West), James Herriot (Nicholas RalphI) and Tristan Farnon (Callum Woodhouse). Back: Helen Alderson (Rachel Shenton)and Mrs Hall (Anna Madeley) - Credit: Playground Entertainment

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

Looking for a particularly picturesque destination for a festive day out? Grassington should be right up there - home of All Creatures Great and Small on TV (get in the mood for the festive special). A bustling cobbled market square, fringed by shops offering local foods, speciality gifts and arts and crafts. Sounds like the recipe for everything you need for Christmas. 

 TASTY TREAT 

Grassington's characterful market pace with cobbles and old buildings

Grassington's characterful market pace - Credit: Kevin Gibson Photography

You won’t go without fuel for your festive day out in Grassington with friendly cafés, restaurants and cosy hotels, all set against a backdrop of the beautiful Yorkshire Dales. The Corner House is a beautiful cafe with something for everyone, and Cobblestones Cafe is brilliant for coffee and somewhere lovely to hide out. For a family treat, head to Grassington House.  

SPECIAL SOMETHING 

Greeting its visitors from near and far in its fabulous Victorian style, The Grassington Christmas Market on December 11 transports the whole village back in time to a bygone era. Imagine a picturesque Yorkshire Dales Village, with cobbled streets brought to life with shopkeepers and entertainers in Victorian costume and the seasonal scent of mulled wine, mince pies and roasted chestnuts filling the air.  

  

 ILKLEY 

Ilkley is a desirable town to live

Destination Bettys for a festive treat - Credit: Kevin Gibson

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

With a reputation for being a cultured and highly welcoming town, full to the brim of independence, good shopping and friendly people, it makes for a particularly joyous Christmas outing. If you’re simply looking for somewhere to have a lovely Christmas-filled mooch or you have a Santa list to tackle, you’ll find what you need in Ilkley. High-end fragrance store, The Bath House, is great for gifts for a special someone, and you’ll find lovely books and accessories in The Grove Bookshop.  

SEASONAL STROLLS 

Grab a hot drink from one of the independent coffee shops and head down to the riverside for a festive foray. The Riverside Walk is a three-mile circuit either side of the Wharfe that crosses over the bridge at Stockeld Way and takes in the pleasant Riverside Gardens.  

TASTY TREAT 

Toast the town = bottles of beer

Toast the town - the perfect festive gift - Credit: Kevin Gibson

You won’t go hungry in Ilkley, that’s for sure, and there’s a real push on local provenance and independence in the foodie scene. Real Food Ilkley’s market will be hosting an extra special one on December 19.  

MY ILKLEY CHRISTMAS 

From Joanne Gill of Moss & Moor 

In addition to the spectacular Christmas experience at Moss & Moor, with our festive menu, beautiful decorations, distinctive gifts and late-night shopping, in Ilkley itself the Christmas light switch on is a popular community event with a large Christmas tree on the corner of the main street. The lights on the Grove and Brook Street however have actually been kept on all year round for the past few years, so it feels magical when it gets dark for those visiting. Bettys  Christmas window is always spectacular as is the local beauty salon Beau Monde that wraps the whole building up as a Christmas present. There are lots of events such as mulled wine and local produce sampling by the local pubs and The Ilkley Brewery Christmas Social to look forward to. The overall atmosphere in Ilkley is lovely, festive and elegant - something we all love. Not forgetting Christmas day food from the local butcher Lishman’s and a New Year's Day plunge at White Wells. 


HELMSLEY 

Helmsley's charming streets are great for a festive mooch 

Helmsley's charming streets are great for a festive mooch - Credit: HIB

FESTIVE SHOPPING 

Food looms large in Helmsley with Hunter’s Deli a great place to find treats and festive hampers. You’ll find wine shops, a local brewery and a sweet shop too. The compact town makes it easy to explore the many independents which always have a friendly welcome. There are many lovely galleries to find one-off gifts such as Salt Box Gallery or try Pennita for a fancy festive frock. Mooch around the courtyards at Barkers Yard or Meeting House Court for more indie shops.  

 SEASONAL STROLLS 

Duncombe Park is one of Yorkshire’s finest historic houses and estates, and home to the Duncombe family. Parkland is open in winter with waymarked walks, discovery trails and orienteering courses for all ages which explore the woodlands, river valley, meadows, woodland skyline and commercial forestry.  

TASTY TREAT  

Afternoon Tea at The Black Swan to watch the world go by –or Mannions for a fabulous coffee and cake or lunch stop.  

SPECIAL SOMETHING  

Helmsley hosts an indoor market with artisan food and local produce on December 17.