Taipei Shopping Tour (Self Guided), Taipei

Among the many things Taipei is famous for, shopping is undoubtedly one of the main. The fashion-conscious and business-oriented Taiwanese capital is rightfully regarded to be a shopper’s paradise in East Asia, comparable to the likes of Hong Kong, Seoul, Tokyo, Singapore or Kuala Lumpur. The variety of markets, boutique stores, shopping districts and, of course, first-class malls here is truly impressive and enough to make the most discerning shopaholics shop till they drop.

Keeping up with the latest vogue is a full-time job in Taipei. Those keen to learn the tricks of the trade, should head to Ximending. This traffic-free shopping and entertainment area, otherwise known as Ximending Youth Shopping District – for being flooded with young hipsters and teenagers, is ideal for that. You can start your spree at the Wan Nian Commercial Building and Shinjuku Plaza. And if there's an owl in you waiting to be satisfied, consider Ximending Night Market where you can both, shop for trendy items and taste authentic local food in a safe atmosphere.

Due to its highly dense population and lack of space, Taipei also has many underground markets and transit malls. One such place is called Taipei City Mall. Divided into three sections, it has hundreds of shops to choose from, the bulk of which specialize in clothing, electronics and food. The wares on sale are generally on the budget end of the scale. For fans of anime, there's also plenty of specialist stores catering to this passion.

It would certainly be a pity to leave Taipei without having explored the local shopping scene in its entirety. To find your way around the city's top – in terms of price range and variety – shopping locations, check out this self-guided walking tour of Taipei and perhaps get yourself something truly original to reflect your visit!
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Taipei Shopping Tour Map

Guide Name: Taipei Shopping Tour
Guide Location: Taiwan » Taipei (See other walking tours in Taipei)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.9 Km or 1.2 Miles
Author: Daniel
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Taipei City Mall
  • Chengzhong Market
  • Ximending District and Red House Theater
  • Ximending Night Market
  • Shinjuku Plaza
  • Wan Nian Building
1
Taipei City Mall

1) Taipei City Mall

The Taipei City Mall is an underground mall located under Civic Boulevard in central Taipei. There are more than 180 shops that sell clothing, electronics and food.

The mall is a popular place to find souvenirs, get something to eat or simply get out of the heat of a Taipei summer. The underground location ensures that visitors stay cool even on the hottest day of the year.

This mall, built in 2000, is the oldest underground mall in the city. It also has a number of low-cost shops that are ideal for those who want to shop without spending a lot of money. Many anime and gaming-focused stores populate the mall. Visitors can also enjoy an arcade, a massage or a visit with a fortune teller.

The Taipei City Mall is open every day. The mall opens at 11 AM throughout the week. It closes at 9:30 PM on weekdays and 10 PM on Saturdays and Sundays.
2
Chengzhong Market

2) Chengzhong Market

Chengzhong Market is a busy market located on Wuchang Street in the Zhongzheng District of Taipei. The market has a variety of vendors that sell wares like clothing, shoes, handbags, housewares, toiletries and food items.

The low prices at Chengzhong Market bring in many locals along with tourists. Visitors can expect tight spaces and a large amount of traffic, but it is worthwhile to experience a traditional Taiwanese market with a wide variety of items.

Heading to Chengzhong Market in the evening gives visitors a glimpse of the brilliant lights strung between the street and the lanterns that hang overhead. This is also likely to be the busiest time at Chengzhong Market, so evenings provide ample people watching as well. Conversely, many tourists prefer mornings at the market where they can have a late breakfast while shopping.

Chengzhong Market is open daily between the hours of 10 AM and 8 PM.
3
Ximending District and Red House Theater

3) Ximending District and Red House Theater (must see)

The Ximending District is Taiwan's first pedestrian zone. In addition to being home to a large collection of stores, the district also attracts street vendors. As many as three million shoppers visit this area every month. Some of the larger stores represented in this area include Shizilin Square and Wannien Department Store.

One of the focal points in the Ximending District is the Red House Theater. This building dates back to 1908 when Tapei was under Japanese rule and originally served as a market building. This theater consists of an octagonal building for theatrical performances, along with a cafe and display showcasing the building's history and a cruciform-shaped building that hosts shops.

There is a square in front of the Red House Theater that has served as the location for the Lantern Festival in the past. You might even be lucky to see a celebrity performing an unannounced concert in the square area. The area immediately behind the theater is host to a number of bars that contribute to much of the city's nightlife.
4
Ximending Night Market

4) Ximending Night Market

The Ximending Night Market is not just for night owls. This market is a great place to go shopping, try various types of food and go for an enjoyable walk in a safe space.

This market is a favorite among visitors because it is clean and has plenty of space. The street is closed to traffic, which contributes to the open nature of the market. Along with multiple restaurants, the market sees regular street performers who provide endless entertainment.

Though there are many night markets in Taipei, Ximending Night Market is unique because the neighborhood's routes are embroiled with Taiwan's Japanese era. As such, much of the visible architecture has a distinct Japanese influence. Many of the food stalls also get their flavor from Japan.

Ximending Night Market is popular among youth thanks to many quirky and interesting shops. Those traveling with youngsters may find a claw machine shop or bubble tea cafes that sell fun and trendy drinks.

Ximending Night Market opens at 5 PM and closes promptly at 11 PM every night.
5
Shinjuku Plaza

5) Shinjuku Plaza

Shopping in Taipei is nearly synonymous with Shinjuku Plaza. The mall, located next to the Wan Nian Building, offers six floors of clothing, shoes and souvenirs.

Shinjuku Plaza is filled with stores that are run by independent sellers. Shoppers can find name-brand merchandise as well as one-of-a-kind styles. Prices aren't as attractive as some of the outdoor markets, but shoppers can be assured they are getting high-end products rather than convincing lookalikes.

Along with shopping, patrons of Shinjuku Plaza can visit a nail salon, hair salon or a tattoo parlor. The plaza has a cinema and a number of restaurants as well.

Located in the Ximending district, Shinjuku Plaza has a distinct Japanese influence. This can be seen in the design of the architecture and many of the eateries. The plaza opens at noon, which is a perfect time to sample some sushi, dim sum or sip on a trendy bubble tea.
6
Wan Nian Building

6) Wan Nian Building

The Wan Nian Building is a commercial building in the Ximending district. It was founded as a spot for shopping and continues to offer clothing, electronics, gaming and much more. It is particularly known for toy stores

This famed shopping mall was erected in 1973 from a design by architect Cai Baifeng. It was built as a place for the youth of the region to shop and spend time with friends. The building was particularly known for a popular ice skating rink and trendy restaurants.

Much of its appeal has remained steady for the last five decades. The building now has an arcade and amusement center on its fifth floor, a cafe on the top floor and a series of restaurants that are both old and new.

Wan Nian Building is open seven days per week. Shops are open from 11 AM through 9:30 PM Tuesdays through Thursdays, 11 AM through 10 PM on Saturdays and Sundays and 2 PM through 9:30 PM on Mondays.

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