From small boutique stores to world-renowned stores, North Yorkshire and Yorkshire has a lot to offer those who love to shop. The county has a wide variety of shops to browse through; here we have created a list of the best to visit in North Yorkshire and the rest of the county.
If you are on holiday in a Whitby hotel and want to go shopping in the town centre, then W Hamond is one of the most well-known shops to head to on Church Street in Whitby.
The minor gemstone jet is found in Whitby and W Hamond is the oldest original jet shop in the town. All of the jet is sourced locally, and the beautiful jewellery is handmade within the workshop. There are also tearooms upstairs serving tea, cake and breakfast options.
W Hamond also has a beautiful collection of antique Whitby jet, and customers can browse through a huge range of rings, earrings, pendants necklaces, brooches, watches and lots, lots more. This famous shop is certainly worth a visit and if you are visiting Leeds or York then W Hamond has stores there as well.
Set up by Jim and Sue McLaughlin after 12 years of organising the famous Musicport festival, Musicport Shop is a haven for music lovers.
The Whitby-based store has a fantastic range of instruments and accessories, backed up by an excellent repair and aftercare service.
The Musicport Shop has a variety of ukuleles and guitars (Musicport is a stockist for Yamaha, Tanglewood and Freshman) and shoppers will also find percussion, woodwind, brass and strings, and the occasional quirky item such as a train whistle or klaxon horn!
Visitors may also be treated to live performances by visiting musicians, and can even try out the instruments to find what suits them.
The shop, which is located at 16 Skinner Street (YO21 3AJ) and is open 10am-5pm Monday to Saturday, and 11am-4pm most Sundays, is perfect for visitors looking for special musical gifts.
John Freeman Studio
Staying in Whitby, the John Freeman Studio at 9 Market Place is a must-visit for art lovers in the region.
Established in Whitby in 1969, the studio showcases artist John Freeman's best work of Whitby and its surroundings.
John Freeman's watercolours are a fascinating combination of detail and bold washes that catch the eye at a distance, offering a feast of detail for closer enjoyment. His nocturne studies are now a distinctive and highly collectable part of his work.
In all, the studio on the east side of Whitby features around 100 original paintings and prints as well as jigsaws, books, melamine tableware, calendars, DVDs and more that are based on John's work.
Established in 1983, Youngs Jewellers is a fabulous jewellery shop. Their experts design, manufacture and repair jewellery in their own workshop at 45 Skinner Street, Whitby.
Visitors to the well-known shop can buy both modern contemporary and traditional jewellery along with the famous and beautiful Whitby jet.
If that's not enough, the shop doesn't just sell, repair and commission work; onsite they also undertake bead restringing, watch and clock repairs, as well as valuation work.
The top shops in the rest of Yorkshire
Located in the heart of Leeds city centre since 1996, the luxurious Harvey Nichols store has become a must-visit.
The store in Leeds offers shoppers unparalleled luxury and was the first Harvey Nichols store to be set up outside of London. Harvey Nichols Leeds has five floors where shoppers can explore the world's most distinctive fashion, beauty, food and wine.
The store also boasts two dining venues that showcase the finest local produce and artisanal delicacies from across the globe. The Fourth Floor Café and Bar, one of the most bustling restaurants in Leeds, enjoys panoramic views over the city, while the Espresso Bar is situated in the striking Victoria Quarter.
Demijohn was originally established in Edinburgh's Grassmarket in 2004 by Angus and Frances Ferguson. After being inspired by continental cantinas and markets, they decided to open Scotland's first liquid deli, selling liqueurs, spirits, whiskies, oils and vinegars.
In York, Demijohn have a store at 11 Museum Street, close to York Minster, which opened in September 2009.
Holidaymakers staying in hotels near Scarborough should certainly make the short drive to York and visit the Demijohn store as it is unique - both in its method of selling, which is similar to the continental markets, and the products available.
Many of the liquids are only available at Demijohn and are as unusual and distinctive as the British culture. Visiting Demijohn is better than a trip to a bar as customers are encouraged to taste the products before their purchase is bottled for them in the shop.
With flavours such as Raspberry Vinegar from Perthshire and first class Extra Virgin Olive Oil from a small estate in Tuscany to Gooseberry Gin Liqueur from East Lothian and rare Single Malt Scotch Whiskies, this is fun shopping for the inquisitive food and drink lover.
Leeds Corn Exchange
The Leeds Corn Exchange isn't just worth a visit because it is home to a number of independent retailers, but also because of the building itself.
The Grade I listed building was built in 1864 and was designed by the world-renowned architect Cuthbert Brodrick, but since it re-opened to the public in 2008 following a £1.5 million refurbishment, Leeds Corn Exchange has attracted a raft of new boutique retailers.
More and more independent traders recognise the appeal of its breathtaking spaces and growing reputation as a place where traders can be creative and offer something more individual and edgy than the high street, giving customers a unique and personal shopping experience.
It really is worth a visit.
Image Credit: W Hamond, Musicport Shop, John Freeman Studio, Youngs Jewellers, Harvey Nichols, Demijohn, Simon Dewhurst, Leeds Corn Exchange.