Shopaholics or not, we all like to buy things during our travel and take them back home as souvenirs. Taipei is lovable for this very reason. Shopping malls, shopping streets and all kinds of markets have sprung up everywhere, offering whatever you’re looking for. From artistic knick-knacks, mouthwatering street foods, and thrift store clothing finds to high-end fashion brands, Taipei has it all—you just need to know where and how to go. (READ: Taipei Transportation Guide: Buses, MRT, Bikes, and the Latest Danhai Light Rail)
In this guide, we’ve picked our top 7 shopping districts for you to treasure hunt. Whether you’re a fashionista, an artsy hipster, or a bargainer, read on this guide to find out your most suitable fashion haven and scratch that shopping itch!
1. Xingyi — Posh and Creative
Surrounding the towering landmark Taipei 101 is the commercial hub filled with trendy malls, high-end restaurants, and top nightclubs. Upon stepping out of Taipei City Hall Station, you’ll see a strip of malls standing before you. Window shop at Bellavita, a European-style luxury mall with exquisite boutiques. Then hop to Eslite Xinyi, which is the largest bookstore in Taiwan and a paradise for bookworms, CD collectors and stationery geeks. Other malls around such as Shin Kong Mitsukoshi or ATT 4 FUN are also inundated with fashion brands and food malls.
Xingyi is more than just about trendy shopping. For some creative and artistic vibes, head to Songshan Cultural and Creative Park or Sisi Nan Cun, a historical village just next to Taipei 101, to explore the weekend-only handicraft markets. Local artists there will enthusiastically showcase their works to you and you’ll have a hard time restraining yourself from taking these unique crafts home!
- Nearest MRT Stations: Taipei City Hall, Taipei 101/ World Trade Center
2. Ximending — Young Subculture
A recreational district originated since the Japanese era in the 1980s, Ximending is now a popular shopping district of young subculture. It gathers all the favorites of the young— cinemas, KTVs, funky shops of clothes and accessories, highly-praised local food and exotic cuisines. Weave through the crowded pedestrian zone with other teenagers dressed in alternative styles, and explore the Japanese pop culture which could be clearly visible around this area.
Ximen Red House is another 110-year-old landmark sitting right outside the MRT Ximen Station. It is a red-bricked boasts exhibits, markets, and a tea house. The south court of Red House the gay bar district, while the north is the artist and designer weekend market.
Why not come to Ximen for some exciting night activities after a day trip at Jiufen? KKday provides a comfortable and convenient direct shared transfer between Ximen station and Jiufen:
- Book a Juifen Shuttle Service
3. Nanxi — Shop in Style
Shoppers keep flocking to the Zhongshan station area (also called Nanxi, meaning Southwest) because of the three well-known department stores—the two Shin Kong Mitsukoshi and Eslite Nanxi. The latter has only opened since October 2018, featuring not only books but also a selection of designer boutiques and shops that encourage people to pursue an ideal lifestyle.
Around the department stores, more quaint boutiques and stylish cafes are hidden in the alleys, just waiting to be discovered. Stroll down Chifeng Street, the thriving hipster street filled with fun shops and cafes owned by young entrepreneurs.
- Nearest MRT Station: Zhongshan
4. Taipei Main Station — Everything for Everyone
As a transportation hub, Taipei Main Station is of course yet another hotspot to go on a shopping spree. Go to Q Square for international brands and to Breeze Taipei Station for quality food. However, if you’re seeking diverse clothes, food, accessories at a much lower price, then head to the wholesale market located at the back the station!
The 4 metro malls extended from the station are also worth exploring. Scope out tons of video games, comic books, and capsule toys stores to satisfy your inner child. One maid cafe and another butler cafe can also be found here!
- Nearest MRT Station: Taipei Main Station
5. Yong Kang — Peaceful Vintage Hub
This is an area particularly famous among Japanese visitors, but there’s no reason why it can’t be loved by all. It’s more enjoyable at a slower pace. Take your time to savor some famous local food like shaved ice dessert at Smoothie House or Dongmen Dumplings. Afterward, pace down the street and visit nostalgic stationery store Yong Ye, wooden furniture or hand-made lighting stores just around the corner. Each shop is full of its distinctive character; we bet you’ll find your next vintage treasure here!
- Nearest MRT Station: Dong Men
6. Songshan— Discounted Fashion and Night Market
Situated north east of Xingyi, Songshan district has the biggest clothes wholesale shopping district—Wufenpu. As you walk into the maze-like alleys, you’ll be dazzled by various colors, fabrics and styles of clothes bursting out from the clustered shops. The clothes here are from mostly local brands or imported from Japan and Korea. It is the place to put your bargain skills to test, and if you’re good at it, walk out of the shop with tons of clothes at a steal for the price.
Only a short walking distance away from Wufenpu is the Raohe Street Night Market. Since the night market is one of the most beloved things of Taiwan, there’s no good excuse to skip this place! Some must-try dishes include Fuzhou Pepper Buns, Xiangkou Ting Tofu Pudding, and Chen Dong Pork Ribs Medical Herbs Soup (It’s even recommended on Michelin Guide!). Otherwise, be spontaneous and let the enticing aromas lure you to any food stall.
- Nearest MRT Station: Songshan
7. East District — Classic Shopping District
East District extends from Xingyi district and is commonly known as the most important business and commercial area of Taipei. Conquer long-standing department stores Pacific Sogo, Dinghao Mall and Tonlin. Then, walk through the 725-meter long East Metro Mall that allows you to shop regardless of the weather. Here, you’ll find restaurants, phone accessories, trendy clothes and many more.
When it’s sunny, you can also go back on the ground and explore tons of international brands like ZARA, Forever 21, and UNIQLO, boutiques and food joints all gathered here.
- Nearest MRT Station: Zhongxiao Dunhua, Zhongxiao Fuxing
Alternatively, check out our video guide of 8 places to shop in Taipei:
Dining experiences for your trip to Taipei:
- Taipei Din Tai Fung Xiao Long Bao Set Menu
- Taipei KiKi Sichuan Restaurant Set Menu
- Taipei Wu Lao Guo Twin-Side Hot Pot Restaurant
- Taipei Jingmei Night Market Walking Tour
What you might need for your trip to Taipei:
- Taiwan High Speed Rail Discount Ticket from Taichung
- Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TPE) Private Transfer to Taipei
- Taipei – Jiufen Shuttle Service