The countdown to Christmas has officially begun! Stores are bursting with Christmas gifts and the hunt for the perfect Christmas party outfit is on.
And while Gloucestershire has plenty of choice for Christmas shoppers, for anyone heading further afield for festive finds, SoGlos rounds up nine Christmas shopping destinations that are all easily accessible on the GWR network from stations in Cheltenham, Gloucester, Cam and Dursley, Kemble, Stonehouse and Stroud.
GWR is the south west’s leading train operator, connecting Gloucestershire to locations including London, Bristol and Cornwall.
Making family train travel easier, GWR offers fixed priced family tickets for up to two adults and four children across its network – including travel to and from London Paddington – as well as free WiFi on its trains to keep little ones entertained on the way.
For more information, visit GWR.com.
While we never need an excuse to visit the capital at Christmas, Oxford Street has gone all out for 2021, with over a million LED Christmas lights sparkling across London’s West End.
As well as taking in the festive sights, Oxford Street has some of the best Christmas shopping destinations in the country too – from Selfridges to Superdry’s new flagship store, Pandora to The Disney Store. You can even book in for a blow dry at the Dyson Beauty Lab to get you looking and feeling fabulous this festive season.
Oxford Circus is around 10 minutes from London Paddington via the London Underground.
With an Enchanted Snow Maze to explore and capture those festive family selfies, to some of the biggest name brands outside of Gloucestershire, including Apple, Harvey Nichols, The Lego Store and Vans, Bristol’s Cabot Circus is well worth a trip in the run up to Christmas.
There’s festive food and drink to enjoy too, as Klosterhaus restaurant becomes The Haus of St Nick, offering Christmas cocktails and festive décor throughout December 2021.
Cabot Circus is around 14-minutes’ walk from Bristol Temple Meads station.
From independent toy stores like My Small World to big brands like Boux Avenue, Lululemon, Peloton and Swarovski, SouthGate Bath offers plenty of choice for Christmas shoppers visiting the historic city.
There’s also an ice rink and a Christmas Light Trail to enjoy in Bath, if you fancy a break from the Christmas shopping, too.
SouthGate is around a three-minute walk from Bath Spa station.
There’s no better time to visit London’s most famous department store than at Christmas. Its spectacular window displays are an incredible sight, not to mention its legendary Christmas World offering everything from luxury hampers to beautiful decorations and of course, the Harrods Christmas teddy bear.
On top of luxury and designer gifts galore, there’s also a Chanel No. 5 takeover in the beauty department until Sunday 2 January 2022, to celebrate 100 years of the iconic fragrance.
Knightsbridge is around 30 minutes from London Paddington via the London Underground.
As well as shopping for Christmas gifts at stores including Bobbi Brown, Burrows & Hare, Calvin Klein, Dr Martens, Mac, Uniqlo and Hamleys, Westgate Oxford has its very own Christmas market on Leiden Square, offering everything from personalised Christmas decorations to hot mulled wine.
For little ones, there’s also Believe, Santa’s Magical Reindeer Grotto, where they can meet Norbert the reindeer, make reindeer food, pay Father Christmas a visit and receive a book to take home and keep.
Westgate is around 10 minutes’ walk from Oxford station.
For high end Christmas shopping without the high price tags, McArthurGlen Designer Outlet Swindon is the ideal destination.
Pick up the perfect Christmas party outfit from big fashion outlets including Guess, French Connection, Monsoon and Superdry; treat little ones with a trip to Hamleys or the Build-a-Bear outlet; indulge in festive tea, coffee and hot chocolate gifts from Whittards; and get everything wrapped up with gift wrap, stationery and cards from Paperchase.
Designer Outlet Swindon is 14 minutes’ walk from Swindon station.
With over 100 shops and eateries, from specialist tea shops and coffee roasteries to vintage fashion stores and one of the city’s oldest record shops, Cardiff’s shopping arcades offer Christmas gifts with a difference.
Located in the Castle Quarter, visitors will find an eclectic mix of stores, including well-known brands and local independents, all situated within seven stunning Victorian and Edwardian arcades decked out for the festive season.
Castle Quarter is around eight minutes’ walk from Cardiff Central station.
From designer shopping at Armani Exchange and Hugo Boss to high street names like Diesel, Hollister, Kurt Geiger, Lacoste, True Religion and Zara, Westfield Stratford City is a shopaholic’s dream at Christmas.
If you’re shopping with children in tow, there’s plenty to keep them happy, with a Biodiversity playground, a bowling alley and baseball batting cages – not to mention a ping pong, cocktail and craft beer bar for young-at-heart grown-ups too!
Westfield Stratford City is around 40 minutes from London Paddington via the London Underground from nearby Lancaster Gate station.
Designer fashion fans won’t want to miss visiting Bicester Village this Christmas, with incredible offers on the biggest luxury brands.
Splash out at stores including Barbour, Charlotte Tilbury, Christian Louboutin, Dior, Gucci, Manolo Blahnik, Vivienne Westwood and even Gloucestershire’s very own designer brand, Holland Cooper.
Bicester Village is a 17-minute train journey from Oxford station.
For more information about GWR, visit GWR.com.
By Chloe Gorman
Tuesday 07 December 2021
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