Shopping in Edinburgh

Shops are usually open between 9 am and 18 pm, with extended opening time until 20 or 21 on Thursday. Many shops stay open also on Sunday afternoon, especially in summer. The main shopping areas in Edinburgh are: Princes and Gorge Streets in the New Town and the Royal Mile and Grassmarket in the Old Town.

Shopping centres

Jenners (founded in 1830) opposite the Scott Monument in Princes Street, is the oldest independent shopping centre in the world. It deserves a visit, if only to walk through the old wooden arcades, have a tea in the afternoon, have some good Scottish food in the food store and get lost in its maze. Other beautiful shopping centres are Marks and Spencer and John Lewis.

What to buy

On the Royal Mile you can find any kind of souvenir, from bad taste items to fine products like whisky or cachemire. Scottish Gems (24, High Street) offers a wide selection of Celtic jewels. Geoffrey (Taylor), 57-59 High Street is the best place to buy a traditional kilt, while if you are interested in tartan, go to the Scottish Crafts (328, Lawnmarket, at the end of the Royal Mile.
As for whisky, we recommend the Scotch Whisky heritage Centre in Castlehill, the Royal Mile Whiskies opposite St Giles Cathedral and William Cadenhead (172 Canongate); The Scotch Malt Whisky Society (87 Giles Street, Leith) also sells some fine whisky.

Edinburgh is also the ideal city where to buy old and new books. Particularly attracting is the West Port Books, a real jewel-case selling old books at discounted prices. If you want to buy some petrified excrements of dinosaurs, Mr Wodd’s Fossils, in the Grassmarket, is the only place in the United Kingdom where you can buy them.

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