Top Shopping Spots in Edinburgh
From high-street staples and Scottish souvenirs to independent boutiques and lively markets, the Scottish capital has everything a shopper could need. Whether you want to try on a kilt, browse designer labels, or sample local delicacies in a laid-back suburb, here are our top picks for Edinburgh’s best shopping spots.
Princes Street and George Street
The city’s two major shopping streets run parallel in the New Town, overlooked by Edinburgh Castle to the south. Princes Street is home to several major high-street stores, including Primark, New Look, and Jenners, and hosts seasonal markets throughout the year, whereas George Street is better-known for its upscale options, including Jack Wills, Karen Millen, and Joules.
No shopping trip to Edinburgh would be complete without a wander down the Old Town’s most famous thoroughfare. Lined by souvenir stores selling everything from whisky and cigars to kilts and Celtic crafts, the five streets that make up the Royal Mile are best explored on foot—join a walking tour to find your way around top shops and sights with ease.
As the home of luxury shopping in Edinburgh, this pedestrian precinct is a must-visit for dedicated followers of fashion, boasting high-end global brands such as Louis Vuitton and Burberry, as well as Scotland’s only Harvey Nichols department store. Come here to indulge in a little retail therapy away from the Princes Street crowds or unwind with a spot of fine dining in one of the precinct’s upmarket eateries.
Grassmarket and Victoria Street
The colorful facades and cozy boutiques that fringe Grassmarket and Victoria Street are thought to have inspired Diagon Alley in J.K. Rowling’s famous wizarding novels. Though several Harry Potter shops have sprung up in recognition of this, the area still retains its alternative atmosphere, with independent cafés, curiosity shops, and vintage stores providing plenty of unconventional retail experiences.
This leafy suburb north of the city center is something of a yuppie playground, boasting gourmet delis, cute cafés, and plenty of thriving thrift stores. It can be easy to forget you’re in Scotland’s capital as you stroll quaint streets in search of high-quality cuisine or brilliant bargains, especially during the weekly Sunday food market, though the area is easily accessed by bike, bus, or even on foot from central Edinburgh.