There are a few sports stores around Bicester Village, but Rapha is particularly noteworthy. Not only does it claim to have the best coffee in the village – you be the judge – but it also offers bike rides through the beautiful Oxfordshire countryside on Thursdays and Sundays. The Sunday rides are themed and St Patrick’s Day 2018 saw cyclists embark on an elaborate shamrock-shaped route.
Bicester Village is so picturesque that it can feel a little surreal, but one of the most splendidly strange quirks of the place is the availability of canine pushchairs. These strollers can be hired out for free from the Visitor Centre near the car park so your pooch doesn’t get tired walking around all day. Also available are mobility scooters and prams for children, as well as lots of advice on the local area including attractions like the university town of Oxford and Blenheim Palace, ancestral home of the Churchill family.
While there is an abundance of shops in Bicester Village that are great for updating adult wardrobes, it’s important not to forget the kids. Lots of the big brands have kids’ sections or even entire stores devoted to tots, such as Polo Ralph Lauren Children, but there are also stores like Bon Point that specialise in childrenswear and are well worth checking out too.
Shopping is hungry work, so it’s only right that Bicester Village provides plenty of places to eat. There are options for all tastes, appetites and budgets. Le Pain Quotidien and the Soho House group’s Farmshop cater to more refined palates, while more affordable dining options can be found with the likes of Pret-a-Manger, Dumplings and Rice, Simply Noodles, Roti Roti and Manja Street Food.
Looking to improve the feng shui at home? There’s plenty to consider at Bicester Village. The White Company offers a diverse range of products including bedding towels, vases, jars, photo frames and fragrances – and that’s just one store. Be sure to browse the Penhaligon’s, Emma Bridgewater, Villeroy & Boch Molton Brown, L’Occitane en Provence, Zwilling J.A. Henckels and The Cosmetics Company Store for everything from fragrances and candles to bathroom products and kitchen ceramics.
Bicester Village’s whole raison d’etre is luxury shopping. Offering discounts of up to 60% off high-street prices, the village boasts a plentiful plethora of places to pick up some fresh designer apparel at great prices. Bicester Village is one kilometre long, so it’s well worth wearing shoes you can walk in.