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Canny girls' guide to shopping in Glasgow

LET'S face it ladies -- those days of heading off to the Big Apple with empty suitcases are officially a thing of the past. But if, like me, you're not ready to surrender your inner shopaholic just yet, visit Glasgow, Britain's second-biggest shopping mecca, and a must for fashionistas.

The Scottish style capital is just 40 minutes on an Aer Lingus flight from Dublin, and is bursting with everything from high street favourites to trendy thrift stores. With exchange rates working in our favour there has never been a better time to cross the water.

Whether you arrive in the city by bus, train or taxi you can't help but notice the impressive array of shops. Glasgow's main transport hub, the Buchanan bus station, is located directly across from the Royal Concert Hall, which forms the North End of one of the city's best-loved shopping destinations, the Buchanan Galleries.

Here style-savvy shoppers will find everything from the John Lewis Department Store to H&M, Habitat, Mango, and Next among the 80 shops located in the centre.

For those who want to pick up a few of those special one-off trinkets, there is a huge variety of independent food, cosmetic, jewellery and clothing stores located on the nearby Buchanan and Sauchiehall Street.

Off Buchanan Street is the elegant Princes Square shopping centre, housing numerous exclusive boutiques, cafes and restaurants.

And a must for every shopping trip to Glasgow is a visit to the historical St Enoch Centre, Scotland's largest shopping centre and also Europe's largest glass structure. This is truly a favourite for all the family; featuring a children's play area, a two-man ride simulator for older children and plenty to keep the men in your life busy, too.

Once they're happily occupied, you'll be free to pop out for a sneaky visit to Britain's oldest covered shopping arcade, the Argyll Arcade. The renowned spot boasts 32 jewellery stores under one roof, a true shopping paradise for any girl looking for that perfect diamond or gem. With plenty of budget and high-end hotels, there's no excuse not to make the most of a trip to Scotland's fashion capital.

For info and great offers see www.visitscotland.com/whiteinvite