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A great place to shop within a traditional area
Covered Market (Oxford)
Member Name: kirlykird
Covered Market (Oxford)
Advantages: many choices of shops
Disadvantages: can be pricey
The covered market is one of the most famous shopping areas of Oxford city and has been trading since the seventeen hundreds. It was originally an outside market, however, it was decided that the market looked too messy and that it needed to be housed. The individual commissioned to take on the design work was John Gwynn, the architect of the famous Magdalen Bridge. The building was designed and it still stands today with some alterations such as the high-raftered roofs which are the outcome of nineteenth century rebuilding. The market now mainly houses small shops and boutiques rather than market stalls.
* The shops*
I love to visit the covered market and browse around the stalls, small shops and boutiques. The atmosphere here is quintessentially English, and although very stylish it is still very down to earth. There is the usual hustle and bustle of a market place inside but it still feels like a million miles from the main shopping areas of the city.
There are four entrances to the market from different shopping points of the city which makes it very accessible wherever you are in Oxford.
There is a great range of shops and food establishments in the market. It is a place that I like to visit to buy fresh fish, fruit and vegetables, meat and bread. Although the prices are quite reasonable with some on the higher side, the choices and quality of the food products available here are exceptional.
*Fruit and vegetables*
There are two fruit and vegetable stalls within the market which stock a good variety of fresh produce. There are such things are exotic fruits to everyday vegetables to rare and expensive mushrooms. I find some prices to be reasonable and some to be quite expensive though the quality and choice keeps me shopping here.
The fish mongers have a huge variety of fresh fish from octopus to shell fish, to filleted fish to live lobsters! It is here that I purchase my fresh cod and salmon. The prices are reasonable, the food is good quality and very pleasant staff.
There are a number of butchers within the market that sell anything that you could possibly imagine! One of my favourite products from the butchery shops are the hand made sausages that come in a variety of shapes, sizes and flavours, I am still yet to try them all!
One of my favourite butcher's shops in the Covered market is David john butchery and pies. Here you can purchase great sausages and meats but my favourite section of the shop which is the home made pies, sausage rolls, quiche and far too much more to mention. The food is delightful and well worth a visit.
There is a small bakery shop which sells freshly bakes breads, pastries and cakes. There bread is lovely and so many nice treats to choose from.
*The cake shop*
The cake shop is probably the most famous cake maker in oxford and surrounding. There is a large display of their very extravagant and beautiful cakes to be seen v varying from happy birthday cakes to graduation cakes to wedding cakes. At present, there is a very exquisite three tier red and white Valentines Day cake adorned with red hearts and roses and looks fabulous! There are large windows all around he shop where you can stand and watch the workers baking and decorating their cakes. The prices are quite high, though they will make anything for you that you require and their products taste absolutely delicious!
There is a large range of things to buy from the market with shops that sell leather goods, a boot and shoe shop, a shop dedicated to teas and coffees, clothes, accessories, jeweler, children's clothes and accessories, gifts, engraving services and cobblers, chocolatiers, flower shops, delicatessens, custom made hats and framing services just to name a few. In particular, when my father in law comes over to England to visit us, he loves to visit the traditional barbers for a haircut and shave and praises the services very highly.
*Food & Drink establishments*
There is a wide variety of food & drink available for refreshment within the market.
Whether you choose to try the stalls which offer milkshakes or smoothies, whether you purchase a take away sandwich or sit down inside one of the coffee shops or baguette cafes, something will take your fancy. One of my personal favourites is a pie and mash café named 'the pie minister'. As it says on the packet, different kinds of pie and mash available here to eat in or take away and very very good food.
To summarise, this is a fantastic place to buy essentials, quirky items and treats plus essential foods within a beautifully designed building within a beautiful city.
I would certainly recommend visiting this shopping area if you ever visit Oxford and I am sure that it will leave a lasting impression.
Summary: A recommended shopping venue, well worth a visit
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