I don’t know about you, but when it comes to planning a holiday or little trip away, there’s palpable excitement when I find out I’m going somewhere that has incredible shopping. You can take your tourist attractions and sights all you like; if there’s a great mall with plenty of deals on the go, it’s a must-visit.
Unlike heading down to your local mall, there are shopping meccas dotted around the world that have to be seen to be believed. From the lofty heights of Las Vegas to heading down under, here are seven shopping wonders of the world.
1. Newcastle, England
Let’s start by keeping things simple with a little action at the UK’s biggest mall. The Metrocentre has grown arms and legs since opening in 1986, from not so humble beginnings as one big shopping centre to five different malls with over 370 stores.
It was such a destination when it opened that it had its own theme park with a swinging pirate ship and roller coaster. Sadly that closed down to make way for another mall a few years ago (locals petitioned to keep it open), but the mall that replaced it has a full 18-lane bowling alley and 12 screen multiplex; perfect for letting moms have some peace to go and shop.
Some people argue over whether Westfield London is now the biggest in the country, but Metrocentre is still viewed at the pinnacle of mall shopping in the UK.
Such a trendy German city needs to have trendy stores to boot, so in between seeing the sights you can always make time to visit the Mall of Berlin. It has over 300 stores with top brand names and a few unusual activities available. For example, the mall has a running club which meets every Tuesday evening.
And if you’re likely to shop until you drop, you don’t want to go back to a tiny hotel room where you’ll be tripping over bags. Treat yourself to somewhere like Capri by Fraser Berlin where you can stay in a serviced apartment with a separate living room.
In Toronto, you’ll find precisely the opposite at the Eaton Centre. Located right in the middle of Toronto, the mall gets around 50 million visitors a year with many of the top floors used as offices.
It makes for a unique shopping experience, especially with Toronto’s famous PATH network running right through all the action. As for why it is open on weekends.
Dubai for shopping? Oh, it’s so overrated. You’ll want to get yourself to Riyadh instead. Saudi Arabia’s capital city is a shopping paradise, with malls that have everything you get from your local mall and so much more. Even for the most serious of shopaholics, you’ll be overwhelmed by just how many stores and malls there are around town.
Some of the top-rated in the area include:
- Granada Mall
- Riyadh Gallery Mall
- Al Nakheel Mall
- Kingdom Tower Center
- Panorama Mall
- Riyadh Park Mall
One little thing to know about; Riyadh gets incredibly hot in the summertime, and when thousands of locals are looking for a way to stay cool, they descend on the malls.
Fraser Suites Riyadh is your best bet for accommodation near the shopping area, with studio apartments and a rooftop swimming pool letting you live your best life without the Dubai price tag.
5. Las Vegas
Did you know that the casinos in Las Vegas don’t have clocks on the wall, so people don’t see the time when gambling? Well, you’ll soon find yourself feeling the same way when you visit some of the malls that act.
When it comes to the strip, the Forum Shops at Caesars and the Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian & Palazzo (it’s so big it goes between the two) offer the Vegas shopping experience in all its glory. You could easily spend an entire day in one without even knowing what’s going on outside. The Las Vegas Strip has more stores than you’d expect, especially outside Bally’s where the Grand Bazaar Shops are a weird open-air mall that sits right off the road.
Of course, if you’re one for catching a bargain at outlets stores, you’ll have to go either end of the city, where you’ll find the aptly named Las Vegas North Premium Outlets or Las Vegas Premium South Outlets (see what they did there?). You’ll find all the big brand names offering whopping discounts on jeans, sneakers etc. Even though they pretty much offer the same stores, the northside version is more highly rated on Google, so you might prefer that.
6. Kuala Lumpur
You’ll have noticed that in this post I’m mostly talking about areas of towns and cities to check out, but when it comes to Kuala Lumpur, there’s only one mall to know about: Berjaya Times Square.
Why is it so important? Well, it’s reported to be one of the ten biggest buildings in the world by the amount of floor space it has; not malls, but buildings!
When it opened in 2003, it was the largest mall in the world, but Thailand and China are currently trying to outdo one another to have the biggest. To give you a sense of scale, Berjaya Times Squares at any one time will have over 1,000 stores open. It also has a giant indoor theme park. The higher you get up the 13 floors of the mall, the crazier the view over the atrium looks.
We can’t take a whirlwind trip around the globe without stopping down under. Melbourne is home to Chadstone Shopping Centre, the largest mall in Australia, which also self-claims to be the biggest in the southern hemisphere. You know it’s a big deal when it has a hotel and mini Legoland, along with 530 stores, including names like Zara and Uniqlo.
And on the off chance you ever find yourself in Melbourne to go there, it’s good to know that the locals refer to it as the “Chaddy”.
All this city-hopping got you ready to jet off?
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