By Kingfisher Visitor Guides
You’ll find all the independent shops your heart desires in Bath, whether you’re into vintage, quirky homewares or designer goods. Many shops support local designers, artists and food producers – giving you the chance to pick up some unique products in a truly elegant setting.
Clothing, footwear and accessories
Looking for shops to visit? Start at Milsom Place is a small, covered shopping centre, where you’ll find several innovative brands. Pick up luxury linens at Yves Delorme; elegant and ethical French-inspired womenswear and accessories at Biggie Best; and designer footwear at Chanii B.
Just off Union Street, The Corridor is one of the world’s oldest indoor covered arcades, designed by architect Henry Goodridge and built in 1825. It’s home to a good mix of small independent shops, alongside some well-known household names. Feeling sporty? Head to Running Bath for the ultimate in active gear. Or for timeless fashion classics including footwear and accessories, browse the wares at Flock Bath. This is also a good area for a pit stop and refuel – The Corridor’s charming Society Café has built up quite a reputation for coffee and cake (including some gluten-free pastries).
A short stroll away from The Corridor, you can take in lovely riverside views from Pulteney Bridge. Designed by Robert Adam in a Palladian style, this historic Bath landmark incorporates shops right into its structure and is home to several tiny independent retailers, including Pulteney Bridge Flowers, and Nigel Dando, who stock and source exquisite jewellery from around the globe.
Milsom Place is a small, covered shopping centre, where you’ll find several innovative brands such as Yves Delorme and Biggie Best
Close to the Guildhall is the Nicholas Wylde flagship designer jewellery store. Wylde began his career here 30 years ago and is one of the few designers in the world with his own patented diamond cut.
Established in 1898, Mallory is one of the country’s oldest family-owned and run jewellers, now in its fifth generation. Renowned for its bespoke commissions, Mallory also sells exclusive Swiss timepieces, including Patek Philippe and Rolex.
Near Bath Abbey on Northumberland Place is Gold & Platinum Studio, an independent jewellery studio and workshop. The Studio displays beautiful pieces and offers a design space where jewellers can work on bespoke commissions with their clients. Alongside the jewellery made on-site, they also showcase jewellery from leading British designers.
The Silver Shop of Bath sits less than a hundred metres from The Abbey and The Roman Baths, in a quaint lane which Jane Austen described as “this interesting passageway”. This family-owned business offers a combination of exquisite jewellery and inspired gift ideas.
On The Paragon you’ll discover Topping & Company Booksellers – an independent bookshop that has served the city’s literary scene for many years. Come here to pick up collectable books, such as signed first editions from prize-winning authors, or attend ad-hoc book events.
Persephone Books in Edgar Buildings is also a great bet, especially if you’re after something rare. They reprint neglected fiction and non-fiction by mid-20th-century (mostly) women writers.
Directly across the road from the weir is the distinctively domed Guildhall Market. It’s been serving the locals from its current home since at least the 16th century and today you can pick up all sorts of treasures, ranging from books to jewellery to handbags to fine cheeses.
If you fancy digging out some unusual garden features, homeware or bric-a-brac head to diverse Walcot Street, the artisan quarter of bohemian Bath. This is one of the city’s most eclectic streets, where you can buy a bike, a designer fridge, hats, vintage clothes and artisan food, all within a few minutes’ walk of one another – amongst many other things. If you’re visiting Walcot Street at the weekend, pop into the Bath Saturday Antique & Flea. It’s the perfect place to work on your bartering!
The Bath Vintage & Antiques Market is held on the last Sunday of every month, from 8.30am to 4pm at Green Park Station. Hunt for curiosities, prints, sculptures, picture frames, garden décor, textiles, lighting, vintage and retro fashions and lots more.
Food and drink
If you enjoy a quality brew, choose from more than 160 different types of tea from all over the world at Teahouse Emporium on Union Passage. The store also sells a range of beautiful teapots, infusers, strainers and mugs as well as artisan hot chocolate blends.
Close by, on Railway Street, is The Bath Chocolate Company, which offers a bean-to-bar viewing experience and produces unique single-origin chocolate.
Just around the corner, near Bath Abbey, you can buy one of the city’s favourite treats – traditional, hand-made fudge. At Fudge Kitchen you can watch as staff hand-make this sweet treat using an old recipe dating back to 1830. Flavours range from time-tested and traditional to devilishly different – think ginger spice, Eton mess, lemon drizzle and millionaire’s shortbread – plus several dairy-free and vegan-friendly options.
Sniff out The Fine Cheese Co. at number 29 Walcot Street for a selection of more than a hundred types of cheese and other deli items, including Tuscan salami and truffle butter. The company’s café is at number 31 for mouth-wateringly delicious flaky-pastry sausage rolls, pistachio macaroons and endless other gourmet treats. You can also book in for tastings or even take a short course at the Academy of Cheese.
At Fudge Kitchen flavours range from time-tested and traditional to devilishly different – think ginger spice, Eton mess, lemon drizzle and millionaire’s shortbread – plus several dairy-free and vegan-friendly options
If you’d rather browse a whole load of goodies in one place, try out Saturday morning’s Bath Farmers’ Market. Fresh, seasonal produce is sold directly by the people who produce it, usually based within a 40-mile radius of Bath. The stalls are set up at Green Park Station near the River Avon, and sell all sorts of enticing wares, with traders changing from week to week.
Expect to find organic and non-organic vegetables; unusual meats, such as rose veal, venison and game; award-winning local cheeses; fresh fish; sweet and savoury pies; hand-made chocolates; seasonal soups; freshly baked bread and sweet pastries; fruit juices and cider; and nutritious vegan and vegetarian food.
Souvenirs and gifts
If you’re hunting for souvenirs or gifts, head over to the Roman Baths Shop on Stall Street. It’s crammed full of quirky Bath-themed products, like tea towels and mugs, alongside restorative water from Bath’s hot spring and locally made crafts and jewellery.
In the same area of town, you’ll find classic souvenirs at Jacks of Bath. This family-run tourist gift shop sells Bath-themed t-shirts, teapots and mugs alongside British classics such as Union Jack purses and handbags.
Just nearby on Abbey Green, Waller & Wood sells ceramics by artist Gary Wood and original painted clothing and scarves by Carole Waller.
Bath Aqua Glass – a traditional glassblowing and stained-glass studio – has a shop in the city centre, but it’s at their base on Walcot Street where you can see some glassblowing in action. The company’s Glassblowing Studio offers interactive demonstrations from Monday to Saturday. You can also sign up for glass blowing classes.
A new name on Walcot Street is Tilian Kids boutique, an ethical, eco-friendly brand providing sustainable clothing and high-quality gifts for babies and small children. Most of its products have a Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS) certificate, which means they’re free from harmful chemicals and made from 100 per cent organic cotton.
If you are buying for – or travelling with – small children, don’t miss My Small World Toy Store in nearby Little SouthGate. Aimed mainly at the 0-5 age range, this award-winning shop stocks high-quality musical instruments, dressing-up costumes, dolls houses, wooden vehicles, dinosaurs, board games, ride-on toys and much, much more.
If you are hunting for souvenirs or gifts, head on over to the Roman Baths Shop on Stall Street, its full of quirky Bath-themed products, like tea towels and mugs
Beautiful furniture and home accessories are the USP of Neptune, where items are inspired by traditional craft as much as modern making and are often made using natural materials. If you’re after some foliage to take back home, Botanica Studio offers a wide range of houseplants and accessories.
One of the city’s most highly respected antique shops is a 15-minute walk from the centre, on Lansdown Road. Antique Textiles & Lighting specialises in period textiles, fans, lighting and other antiques dating from the 17th century through to the early 20th century. It’s well known in the area for the high quality of its stock and the specialist knowledge of its owner, Joanna Proops.
Close by, located in St Margaret’s Buildings, is Berdoulat, a super stylish interiors store and design firm which sells kitchen and tableware, furniture and a range of decorative products, from hand-marbled wallpaper to fabric on the roll.
Outdoor attractions in and around Bath
British and European restaurants in Bath
The best fine dining restaurants in Bath