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Leisure and shopping

York's unique assortment of high street stores, designer boutiques and leisure attractions are the perfect place to spend your time, and it couldn't be easier to get around. Whether you're shopping, going to the cinema or meeting friends for a coffee, there are several travel options open to you.

To find the best walking, cycling, public transport or driving routes - and to see how they compare for time, cost or convenience - see our Journey Planning page.

Popping to the local shops?

Instead of jumping into the car to travel a mile or less, save money and burn calories by walking or cycling to your local shop, post office, bank or supermarket! This has many benefits:

  • You can do lots of errands in a very short space of time; 
  • You have the convenience of travelling door to door with the flexibility to change your plans as you need to;
  • You have lots of opportunities to get fit or be more active in a very accessible way
  • You get the chance to chat with others in your community as you go about your day
  • and it provides a much-needed economic boost for local businesses.

Did you know?

  • Walking just one mile can burn off nearly 100 calories
  • Driving one mile could cost you around 40 pence each way – that’s the price of a morning paper!

Check out our Journey Planner and see how quick and easy your local journey could be.

City centre

Most of our leisure time comes at the weekend, when the city centre car parks fill up very quickly, but there are a plenty of other ways to get into York without taking the car.

  • Why not try cycling into town? The city centre has ample cycle parking close to many shops and cafes, meaning you can get closer to where you want to be, and quickly. Even at a leisurely pace, you can cycle two miles in around 15-20 minutes.
  • Use Park & Ride. It's a great option if you're coming from outside York – simply park FREE at one of six Park & Ride sites and take advantage of the fast and frequent bus service into the city centre.
  • Catch the bus from your local stop. Regular journeys from most of York's suburbs and villages can get you in and out of the city without worrying about parking.
  • If you have no option but to drive, plan your route in advance and allow plenty of time for any traffic delays

Out of town

York's retail parks provide a range of shopping options from supermarkets and high street stores to designer labels. In addition to the large Tesco supermarket at Askham Bar, there are five main retail parks:

  • Clifton Moor, including many restaurants, a cinema and ten-pin bowling in addition to Tesco, B&Q and high street names including Curry's, Mothercare and Wilco.
  • Foss Islands, including Morrisons, Waitrose and Sainsbury's supermarkets and other stores such as Halfords, Pets at Home and HomeSense.
  • McArthur Glen Designer Outlet, providing luxury and designer brands in one large covered shopping centre.
  • Monks Cross, including many high street names including Boots, TK Max and Clarks shoes plus Asda and Sainsbury's supermarkets.
  • Vangarde Shopping Park including M&S, Next, John Lewis plus a choice of restaurants and cafés.

All of the above retail parks are served by regular buses from York City Centre and other surburbs. Click on a shopping destination for further information and/ or to view an interactive travel map of each area.

You can also combine designer shopping at MacArthur Glen with city centre shopping using the Park & Ride service, giving you the best of both retail experiences. For more information on all bus services see our popular destinations page.

To cut down on fuel costs and make the journey more sociable, why not consider car sharing when you next go shopping?

Clifton Moor

Clifton Moor is located approximately 2 miles north of York city centre, alongside the A1237 outer ring road. More

Designer Outlet

York Designer Outlet is located approximately 2 miles south of York city centre, near to the A19/A64 junction. More

Foss Islands

Foss Islands is located immediately to the east of York city centre, alongside the Foss Islands Road section of the A1036 inner ring road. More

Monks Cross

Monks Cross Shopping is located approximately 1.5 miles north-east of York city centre, between Huntington and the A64. More

Vangarde Shopping Park

Vangarde Shopping Park, situated near Monks Cross Retail Park, is just a short trip away from York City Centre. More