Everything shuts down at 5:30pm!
OK, maybe it's not that drastic, the pubs and clubs are still open past 5:30. And a few restaurants too. But for a town that's renowned for it's shopping, there is nothing open past 5:30 (well, M&S is open until 6:00pm).
If you're unfamiliar with English shopping hours, most stores shut at the insanely early hour of 5:30pm on weekdays. For some reason, Thursdays are considered "late night shopping" days, so shops are usually open a little bit later then.
But if you need to pick anything up after hours, you'll need to get yourself to Cheshire Oaks (a discount outlet about 15 min car ride away from Chester), the Trafford Centre (a mall about 30 min car ride from Chester) or take the train to Liverpool (20 min train ride). Although you don't need to go shopping to have fun. There's always the "walls walk". It's a 2 mile circuit around the walls, so you can time it accordingly. There is the walk along the river. Or possibly a walk through the "meadows" which is a beautiful area just south of the river.
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As the county seat of Chesire, Chester is over-ridden with indigenous felines. Called "Cheshire Cats," these feral beasts slink across the city, taking shelter in trees and archways and hiding from view when spotted. Often, all you can see is the gleam from their eerily bright teeth. I urge caution when dealing with these felines. While they are unlikely to cause real damage, these cats can bring senses of uneasiness and confusion. Be wary.
Despite the congeniality of most drivers in England, given their atrocious driving conditions (small roads, anyone?), Chester drivers seem a bit rabid when they are zipping around town. Don't get me wrong, they have to deal with the atrocious conditions also, but, given that blind curves are abundant in urban Chester, a surprise from a driver is not very welcomed. Stay alert, and mind the crossings!
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