Christmas shopping in Snowdonia means fewer crowds, supporting local businesses, and finding really unusual products you wouldn’t be able to buy from the high street chains. Who knows what little Christmas treasures you could take home with you?
Snowdonia is a magical destination for Christmas shopping. The region has some wonderful little local, independent stores, dozens of Christmas markets and craft fairs every year, fewer crowds, fewer of the ‘same old, same old’ products you could find in any high street chain in any city centre, and far more than its fair share of fantastic wintry views.
But where to start with your Christmas shopping in Snowdonia?
While the bigger shopping centres like Bangor will conveniently have everything close together (Bangor also has several out of town retail parks too, if you’re looking for big-name shopping), there are also some real gems to find in the smaller towns and villages, where getting there and finding the shop is all part of the fun.
Here are five towns and villages in Snowdonia where you can have a magical Christmas shopping experience.
This walled medieval town with its castle centrepiece is home to some lovely independent shops as well as a few (but only a few!) high street chains. Make sure you trawl every back street of Caernarfon in your hunt for Christmas shopping gems, as they lurk in unexpected places!
Lotti & Wren – beautiful gifts for her, for kids, and for the home. Look out for the beautiful Christmas decorations, many of which you’ll struggle to find in high street chains.
Fron Goch Garden Centre – fantastic Christmas department every year, boasting an excellent selection of Christmas decorations, lights and edible treats. Breakfast and tea with Santa events for the kids are very popular.
Inigo Jones Slate Works – just outside Caernarfon at Y Groeslon. Beautiful slate gifts and items for the home – you’ll find some lovely and unusual gifts here.
The ‘gateway to Snowdonia’, Betws-y-Coed hosts an annual Christmas festival which lasts a whole weekend and is great fun for all the family. It’s not a big place, but it manages to pack in plenty of great shops nevertheless!
Candlespower – beautiful handmade candles in all shapes, colours and sizes. They make and sell a great range of personalised candles, including Christmas candles.
Alison Bradley Gallery – stunning works of art influenced by Snowdonia’s landscape and wildlife.
The Log Cabin – large selection of Welsh love spoons (what an unusual and special gift idea!) as well as clothing, jewellery and other great gifts.
This seaside town is a hit all year round. With its great views, great shops and great places to eat and drink, Porthmadog is a fantastic place to shop at Christmas.
Portmeirion Village – beautiful Italianate village where The Prisoner was filmed. Portmeirion is home to several wonderful shops selling beautiful and unusual products. Download their winter entry voucher for discounted entry fees.
Kerfoots – this department store has been in Porthmadog for 125 years and is still going strong! Shop here for items for the home, toys and games, beauty products and other gifts.
Pethau Melys – a tea, coffee and crafts shop on the side of the old harbour. Craft items are largely made on-site by the shop’s owners, so you can rest assured you won’t find them in high street chains.
Dolgellau is an ancient market town that still holds regular markets and livestock auctions. This lovely town in Southern Snowdonia oozes character and charm, and boasts the highest concentration of listed buildings in the whole of Wales (over 200 at the last count).
Corris Craft Centre – a collection of craft shops just outside Dolgellau where you’re bound to find an unusual Christmas gift or five!
Medi – design-led gifts crafted in Wales, France, Scandinavia and the USA. Stockists of gifts, jewellery, items for the home and much more.
Louloupurple – art and craft supplies, for those who like to get creative at Christmas and make their own Christmas cards and gifts!
Another walled medieval town dominated by its huge castle, Conwy’s narrow cobbled streets are filled with delightful little shops, providing a Christmas shopping experience that feels almost Dickensian.
The Secret Garden – sells “lots of lovely gifts (shamelessly mostly just for girls)” which include jewellery, clothing and other delightful gift ideas.
The Knights Shop – if we’ve featured a shop that’s mostly for girls, it’s only fair to also feature one that tends to appeal mostly to boys! Swords and other replica weapons feature heavily, but there are other great gifts too, including period clothing and other items of historical interest.
Yesteryears – a delightful old-fashioned toy shop bursting with toys, games, puppets, ride-ons and just about everything a child could wish for at Christmas.