Shopping in Aberdeen
There are a profusion of smaller independent shops dotted around the city. For traditional kilts (available for purchase or hire), try Alex Scott & Co, 43 Schoolhill; they also stock a good range of Scottish souvenirs and gifts. Country Ways, 115 Holburn Street, specialises in traditional country and leisure wear. For seriously stylish Scottish homeware and gifts, ranging from Harris tweed clocks to tartan greetings cards, pop into Teasel & Tweed, 85 Rosemount Viaduct. The West End is also good for unique designer boutiques.
Aberdeen's largest outdoor market is the International Street Market which visits the city quarterly, and features over 70 stalls, piled high with food, flowers and crafts from across Europe. The market takes place on Union Terrace. Aberdeen Country Fair, on Belmont Street, sells mainly food and crafts from the northeast of Scotland. The market is held on the last Saturday of every month, with extra dates in December.
Aberdeen's snazziest mall is Union Square on Guild Street and Market Street, which is home to more than 70 shops and restaurants, plus a multi-screen cinema. Also crammed with high-street stores is the Bon Accord & St Nicholas shopping centre on George Street. The Academy on Belmont Street is the place to stock up on designer brands before sipping cocktails in the open courtyard.
Most of the big retailers are open seven days a week while smaller shops may close on Sundays. Shops typically close at around 1730/1800, although Union Square remains open until 2000 on weekdays.
Kilts, jewellery, shortbread, whisky and woollen jumpers are just some of the souvenirs that you can pick up in Aberdeen.
If you live outside the EU, you can sometimes claim back VAT (value-added tax). See www.gov.uk/tax-on-shopping/taxfree-shopping for more information.