5 Perfect Fall Shopping Day Trips

The best places to go for an autumn afternoon of shopping.

Fall Shopping

Pretty enticing, right? | Photos: Lambertville (Jauhien Sasnou); Terrain (via Terrain); Peddler’s Village (Instagram).

Sure, mall shopping is sometimes necessary, but when the leaves are crispy-crunchy and the air smells like it does right now (read: heaven), it’s much more fun to spend time shopping and wandering our best main streets. Here is where and how to spend a perfect fall afternoon outside of the hustle of the city. Think of it as a shopping map, filled with my must-hit shops and even where to grab coffee and a bite to eat along the way. Happy shopping!

Chestnut Hill
This one is pretty simple: Start at the top of the hill and work your way down. Begin with a hunt through Fashion Forward, a gem-filled designer resale boutique; check out my store review here. Grab lunch at Top of the Hill Cafe (184 Evergreen Avenue; just off Germantown) – the turkey sandwich is delish. Then wind your way down Germantown Avenue, making sure to visit Curio (great architectural salvage pieces), Villavillekula (children’s toys), Indigo Schuy (cute workoutwear), Style Camp (terrific women’s fashion and accessories) and Isabella Sparrow (Instagram-worthy farmhouse decor). Be sure to stop for pumpkin ice cream at Bredenbeck’s, a worthy treat to fuel your eventual trek back up the hill.

This town is like a rom-com movie set, with no shortage of cute antiques shops and cozy coffee shops. You’ll want to start off with a cuppa joe at Lambertville Trading Company, then work your way down Bridge Street, making sure to visit Zinc (eclectic, industrial home goods and one of my favorite shops in Bucks County) and Reinboth (modern home accessories). Then hit the side streets: Bons Rêves has the best selection of bed and bath goods; the People’s Store Antiques Center is a massive and endlessly shoppable trove of treasures; and Blue Raccoon is filled with adorable home goods and gifts. Eat lunch at Annie’s Gourmet and, if you stay long enough, grab a nightcap at the Boat House before heading home. (Want even more tips? Check out our guide to the perfect Lambertville day trip here!)

Terrain, Glen Mills
If you haven’t been to Terrain, the home and garden arm of URBN, well, now’s the best time to make the trek out there. The place is a veritable Pinterest board of inspiration year-round, but fall is arguably when it shines brightest. You can spend an entire afternoon here: Grab a warm drink from its cafe, and then wander the grounds for fall decorating ideas. Make a reservation for lunch at the in-store Garden Café, where you’ll dine on organic food in a greenhouse (the bread is served hot in mini flowerpots; you’ll want seconds). To really make the trip worthwhile, go during an in-store event; October is full of weekend workshops (pumpkin topiaries!), book signings, and cocktail and food tastings. Go here for a full list of events.

Peddler’s Village, Lahaska
Admittedly, the stores here veer towards the artsy-crafty, but they’re all housed in such adorable cottages you won’t even mind coming across yet another shelf of hand-painted oversized wine glasses. Do look out for Eric & Christopher, a Bucks County-based line of quirky screen-printed pillows that you can find at home store Village Pied-a-Terre. Take a break from wandering the cobblestoned pathways with a wine tasting at Chaddsford Winery’s tasting room. For festivals (there a huge beer garden coming October 17th!) and family-friendly events, go here.

The shopping here just keeps getting better, which makes this town worthy of an afternoon excursion. You’ll have to do a bit of driving; here’s how to plan it: Start off at Waltzing Matilda (21 West Avenue) and then make a right onto East Lancaster Avenue. Work your way down the street, making sure to stop at Mushmina (164 East Lancaster Avenue) and Deconstructed Living (201 East Lancaster Avenue). Then make a left onto North Aberdeen Avenue for Eaves (105 North Aberdeen Avenue). Finish off with Eagle Village Shops – pay special attention to Element Six, Menagerie and the Little House Shop – and end with lunch (and shopping!) at Cafe Fleur at Valley Forge Flowers. For more Main Line shopping standouts, go here.