Shopping in Taiwan? Well, let’s just say it’s the opportunity to enjoy a little magic on your travel adventure around this delightful island. Between the fabulous food, unique culture, idyllic landscapes, and lovely people, we’re certain you’ll discover more than a treasure or two to keep as a beautiful travel memento from your holiday. Because if shopping in Taiwan teaches you anything at all, it’s the fact there is shopping, and there is Taiwan shopping.
Once again our team has been on the ground researching for the very best that Taiwan shopping has to offer so we can answer all the important questions like what should I buy as a tourist to Taiwan? or what’s the best keepsake from shopping in Taiwan? You can relax because we’ve done all the work to make your visit to Taiwan - and your shopping while you’re there - fun, fulfilling, and the perfect way to remember your holiday. Wherever you decide to travel, we’ve covered it, so settle in and make notes for your trip.
Yet another aspect of Taiwan’s universal appeal is the choice of local markets that are the delight of the traveler who likes to explore for something truly special. You the thing! It’s that travel memento you simply couldn’t walk away from. Well, you’re sure to find ‘it’ wandering the stalls at Taiwan’s many markets. Make a note of our recommendations here and slot them into your travel itinerary. You won’t regret it!
There’s such a myriad of markets in Taipei, it’s hard to know how to condense the list, but we’ve tried that here with our guide’s ‘best of’ list.
. Perhaps Taipei’s most famous markets, the Jinguo Holiday Flower Market is a must for those who can’t resist fresh blooms. For a sensory experience, wander through the 200 plus stalls selling potted plants, flowers, seedlings, and gardening accessories, while you mingle with local gardening aficionados.
. After some traditional jade? Go no further than Jianguo Holiday Jade Market, the largest antique market in Taiwan with over 800 stalls selling various types of jade, gems, and precious stones. It is located in close proximity to the Flower Market, making a visit to both very easy.
. Guanghua Digital Plaza is the largest electronic and computer shopping center in Taiwan. It’s here you’ll unearth the best technology bargains and lowest prices here. And be prepared to negotiate because stall owners expect it!
. Dihua Street was originally built during the Qing dynasty period. Visit this area and you’ll discover the ideal spot for enjoying a local brew (that’s Taiwanese tea). You will also discover a plethora of Chinese medicines and herbs, spices and dried food, fabrics, temple objects, and incense. Definitely an eclectic market in the true sense.
. Nanmen Market first opened in 1906 and is seriously the best traditional market in Taipei. Mix with locals who have been served for generations by market stall holders.
. If it’s a clothes bargain you’re after, then make a beeline for Wufenpu, which has earned a reputation for being the local hub for wholesale apparel and accessories. Pick up fashionable clothes by diving into the array of wholesale garments on sale here.
Not to be outdone by Taipei, Taichung offers its own selection of must-visit markets. Add these to your shopping destinations while visiting Taichung.
. Taichung Second Market is the oldest traditional market in Taichung. Uncover shops selling local delicacies that have truly stood the test of time. Arrive hungry and leave fulfilled.
. Visit Mumu Market in the creative and cultural hub of Shenji New Village. Feel yourself visually and culturally enriched by the beautiful handicrafts, handmade clothes, accessories and delicious food.
. With its new location in a standalone building, Taichung Jade Market is the destination for anyone interested in antiques, precious gem and stones, jewelry, ceramics, stone or wood carvings, and teaware.
. No list of Taiwan’s markets would be complete without a fish market, so of course we’ve included the Wuqi Fisherman’s Market, which is located right next to Taichung Port. It’s here that seafood lovers source their “fish of the day”.
Located on the southwestern coastal plains of Taiwan, Tainan offers spectacular landscapes and equally impressive markets that will surprise and delight the most serious critic.
. East Market is one of three traditional markets in Tainan with a history spanning over 110 years. Many vendors have stood the test of time and have been operating for over 60 years. Our guide’s pick? Visit the Ming Tsung Fish Ball stall. It’s the biggest supplier in Tainan.
. Yongle Market is a hot spot for local delicacies in Tainan and is equally well known among locals and tourists.
. Next to Yongle Market is the centuries old Shuixian Gong Market that offers a banquet of fruit, vegetables, meat, seafood, cooked food, and countless other ingredients. It’s a foodie’s mecca for sure. Many of the food shops and stalls here are five-star rated by locals and tourists forthe authentic Tainan local food on offer.
. Reopening to the public in 2021, the historic West Market (Ximen Market) was built in 1905. Local people visit here for daily groceries, fruit and vegetables, and other consumables. West Market doubles as a garment and fabric market too so you’ll find lots of bases are covered.
On your visit to beautiful Kaohsiung, include these markets on your destination list to create some wonderful travel memories of Taiwan.
. Yancheng 1st Public Market first opened in 1948 and only underwent renovations in 2022. It is a traditional market that melds with creativity. The market is full of old-fashioned food stalls and businesses that have operated for decades, as well as modern restaurants and stores selling traditional handicrafts.
. Opening early in the morning, Neiwei Flea Market is that special antique market where there’s a good chance you’ll find your ‘treasure’ if you’re prepared to be patient and bring your best fossicking attitude.
. By contrast, Ziyou Traditional Market is a sunset market. Opening early afternoon, it’s heaven for food in all its forms, whether it’s cooked, ready to eat, or the raw ingredients.
. A favorite market for the locals in north Kaohsiung, Cihou Market is accessible by ferry when you travel from Kaohsiung to Cijin Island. It’s here you’ll find local food and souvenirs, especially seafood snacks favored by those in the know.
With spectacular ocean views a feature of Taitung, it’s hard to imagine anything could be a match, however, for a peek into the life of a local in Taiwan’s third largest county, make your way to one (or more!) of these markets.
. Zhongyang Market is the most important traditional market in Taitung providing fresh vegetables, fruits, meat, seafood, and dry ingredients. The stand out specialty here are the authentic street food snacks, loved and appreciated by locals.
. If you visit Tiehua Music Village (the hub for the artists and musicians), don’t miss the Slow Market and Twilight Bazaar, home to an array of fresh organic food, creative handicrafts, bakery items, local snacks, hand painted cards, and other handmade accessories.
. Jingya Farmers Market is a ‘one-stop shop’ for Taitung’s local produce and themed handicrafts.
. The Organic Farmers’ Market at Taitung University, which happens every Sunday morning, is a market that not only sells certified organic products, but also promotes organic farming.
. Where do locals in Taitung go for fresh fruit? They visit Zhengqi Road. In fact, it’s just like a fruit market (even though it’s officially a street), because there are so many fruit stores here selling different fruits and juices.
Located on the east coast of Taiwan, Hualien is like many destinations in Taiwan in that it offers amazing views and landscapes. It also competes with other cities and regions with a number of markets that will appeal to the curious cultural traveler.
. The Handicrafts Market at Hualien Cultural and Creative Industries Park (transformed from the former Hualien Brewery) opens during weekends, is one of Hualien’s famous markets.
. Chongqing Market is the largest and most well-organized public retail market in Hualien with over 250 stalls. Fancy a taste of indigenous food? Enjoy it when you wander through the section of the market selling indigenous food exclusively, including Amis traditional ingredients and wild greens.
. The Hakka & Craft Market opens every Friday afternoon and sells local farm produce, Hakka food, creative handicrafts, and even everyday groceries.
. First opening in 2010, Hualien Farmer’s Market is a highlight of every weekend in Hualien. It’s the perfect platform for local farmers selling their fresh vegetables, fruits, and eggs direct from their farms. Expect to see a spirited conversation or two between farmers and their loyal customers when you wander through this market.
Now if markets aren’t your preferred shopping experience, you can relax, because Taiwan offers incredible choices when it comes to shopping precincts. Whether you love a little high end, high street, or something a bit special or boutique, we’re sure you’ll find it in the list below.
Xinyi Shopping District is regarded as Taipei’s Manhattan, a luxury shopping destination with Taipei 101, Shin Kong Mitsukoshi, Bellavita, Uni-president Department Store, and Eslite. During weekends and holidays, the district comes alive with events, performances, exhibitions, and markets. Read more
As the first pedestrian shopping mall in Taipei, Ximending is famous for its history and street food, however, it is also the center of pop culture in Taipei. A wander through this to see what’s trending in high street fashion, shoes, and accessories. It’s also a hub for themed cafes, bars, and restaurants. Or for a memory that lasts a lifetime, head to one of the local tattoo streets. You might even appreciate the local street art and graffiti that is part of this precinct.
Visit Zhongxiao Dunhua shopping area if you’re interested in Asian fashion trends. It is home to local independent boutiques that populate the small alleys that are characteristic of the area. Here you can choose from some well known Japanese and European brands.
By contrast, Dihua Street offers travelers a traditional Taipei shopping experience. Stroll through this old neighborhood for Taiwanese tea, Chinese medicinal herbs, fabrics, bamboo crafts, and other local cultural wares.
Close to Tung Hai University, discover Tung Hai Arts Street, which is a cultural and artistic precinct, discover a melting pot of galleries, antique shops, folk arts and handicrafts, creative studios for tea art hidden in alleys, floristry, jewelry making, as well as stylish restaurants, bars and cafes. From time to time, Tung Hai Arts Street is host to different themed markets and events too. Read more
Jingming 1st Street is a mall and resembles a European equivalent. Complete with boutique-style stores, galleries, sidewalk cafes, teahouses, and restaurants, it has great appeal for locals and visitors alike. If you happen to be passing through on a weekend or holiday, expect to find a popup event that adds to the lively atmosphere. And if a DIY bubble tea is in order, visit the famous Chunshuitang Dadun Store for the experience.
Named after Feng Chia University, Feng Chia Shopping Area is one of Taichung’s liveliest and most popular shopping districts and night markets. Explore what seems to be a countless number of shops and vendor stalls along the main road and side streets selling affordable fashion clothes, accessories, glasses, and stationery. You cannot leave Taiwan without visiting a night market or two and few surpass the food on offer at the famous Feng Chia Night Market.
Make a stop at Ziyou Road near Taichung Train Station, the official birthplace of Taiwan’s iconic ‘suncake’, where you can choose from any number of shops where they are sold. Interestingly, Ziyou Road is the earliest developed shopping district in Taichung and is considered a must-see locale for visitors who gift-boxed suncakes. And if you’re not a suncake fan, that’s okay. There is a myriad of shops selling leather goods, fashion, and accessories too.
Kongmiao Shopping District, named after the Confucius Temple, covers Fuzhong Street and the surrounding small lanes where many shops sell antiques, creative cultural stuffs, local snacks, handicrafts, and souvenirs. This precinct reflects the true energy and aliveness of Tainan.Read more
Shift gears when you move on to Zhongzheng Hai’an Shopping Area, which has been a busy commercial hub since Wutiaogang during the Qing dynasty some 300 plus years ago. It was destroyed and commercial development halted with the construction of the Hai’an Road Underground Project around 30 years previously. Now the area takes in Zhongzheng Road, Ximen Road, Hai’an Road, Guohua Street and You’ai Street and is the most popular shopping destination in Tianan. Apart from the fashion boutiques, jewelry stores, and shops selling daily household requirements, the iconic Yongle Market is where you will find authentic local snacks and street food.
A fusion of old and new, modern and fashionable, Guohua Youai New Shopping District is Tainan’s Ximending for local trendsetters. But don’t be deceived. There are just as many vintage shops and trendy creative stores in this area.
Stretch your legs and enjoy a walking tour on the vintage Zhengxing Street, located in close proximity to Guohua Street and West Market, where you can immerse yourself in the traditional, creative, cultural atmosphere that permeates the area. Food is definitely a ‘thing’ in this area, so once you’ve walked up an appetite, take advantage of the specialty food and dessert options available here.
Sanduo Shopping District was started in 1990, home to three major shopping centers; FEDS Kaohsiung Store, Shin Kong Mitsukoshi Department Store, and Pacific SOGO. As if that wasn’t enough, the district is surrounded by boutiques, quirky small shops, theaters, restaurants. With various kinds of fashion clothes, accessories, discounted cosmetics, night markets nearby, this area is very popular and has consequently become a Kaohsiung landmark. Read more
Shinkuchan Shopping District is where savvy young people go to indulge their love of local and overseas fashion clothes and accessories. But it’s more than a shopping experience for these locals who have made it a hangout too. Regarded as Kaohsiung’s Ximending, Shinkuchan Shopping District is a world of fashion, gourmet food and entertainment.
Looking for something unique? Find it at Pier 2 Art Center, which is situated at Kaohsiung Port, abandoned shipping warehouses that have been converted into an art district with hundreds of shops, studios, cafes, bars, and galleries. Uncover both the practical and artistic here. Think local creative handicrafts, art pieces, accessories, stationery and designer’s limited editions.
Nanhua Shopping Area reflects the local Kaohsiung people with its traditional market style set up. Discover inexpensive clothes, shoes, hats, leather accessories and daily necessities. You’ll also find traditional local delicacies and authentic snacks.
Taitung’s busy commercial areas are easy to spot. Visit Zhonghua Road, Datong Road and Zhengqi Road for a sample of local shops and boutiques selling souvenirs, local handicrafts, clothes, accessories, fruit, and local snacks. And a definite must-do here? Enjoy all that’s on offer at the famously creative Tiehua Music Village, as well as Taitung Tourist Night Market and shopping mall at Showtime Live Taitung, which are also close by.
Who can resist a shopping precinct with the moniker ‘Golden Triangle’? A triangle of commercial enterprise that joins Zhongshan Road, Zhongzheng Road and Zhonghua Road, this area is the busiest of its kind in Hualien. Packed full of shops selling, well, just about everything from souvenirs, to clothes, food, and traditional local delicacies, it really does warrant a solid day of exploration if shopping is on your highlights list. Read more
The Old Rail Cultural Shopping District, which includes a pedestrian only zone, can be found in the center of Hualien city. Super convenient, it’s a shopping and dining experience with a difference.
Hualien Cultural and Creative Industries Park is another hotspot with shops and eateries.
Explore Stone Art Avenue with its various kinds of stone artifacts, or admire the jade, crystal, Taiwan nephrite, stone jewelries and ornaments for sale.
Step into the unusual world that is Taiwan’s shopping malls. In many respects bigger and busier than their western counterparts, a half or full exploring one of these mega shopping destinations is an eye opener.
Want to include a little specialty shopping in your Taiwan tour? Talk to our team today. We maintain a no commission based shopping policy on all our tours, however, through our network of guides on the ground, we can direct you to beautiful boutiques, mega malls, or quiet laneway stores to uncover shopping in Taiwan and the people who make it happen.