No trip is complete without some delightful souvenir shopping. Taipei, as the economic and cultural center of Taiwan, is always full of surprises and wonderful things to see and try. After your adventures in the capital, it’s definitely a must to grab some souvenirs for your friends, family or yourself. Here’s a list of the best places for souvenir shopping in Taipei that will provide you with items that best represent the beauty of this city.
Combining Nordic simplicity with traditional Chinese zen style, Toast’s streamlined products are certainly one-of-a-kind. Although it was not open until 2007, this up-and-coming local design brand has already been recognized by several renowned design awards. Toast takes the most essential daily products and gives them an ingenious designer twist to create a balanced, elegant, yet not overly elaborated style, just like a piece of toast, on which one may freely add other things to create one’s own flavor. From elegant Aquarius aroma diffusers and wood-carved teacups to pebble-shaped salt and sugar containers, the minimalistic beauty of Toast products will bring the same simple happiness into your life. Their products are also available online.
image via Toast Living
Lovely Taiwan is a place to appreciate the unique beauty of different parts of Taiwan. With the goal of establishing a stable and profitable relationship with the local community, Lovely Taiwan effectively integrates the craftsmanship and culture of different parts of Taiwan, creating more than 100 distinctive products. These include biscuits from Sanyi, colored glass from Sandimen, triangle rush weaving from Miaoli and handicrafts from the island’s various indigenous tribes. Every dollar spent at Lovely Taiwan will go towards establishing a fair trade system to support local communities.
image via Sun Line
The biggest handicraft center in Taiwan that has been around for more than half a decade, Taiwan Handicraft Promotion Center is ideal for handmade gifts. This non-profit organization showcases an impressive 50,000 kinds of high quality Taiwanese products ranging from Koji pottery, tea ware, porcelain, Chinese ink painting and calligraphy and popular items from the gift shop of National Palace Museum. Currency exchange, gift-wrapping, and shipping service are all available. All products are also available online.
image via 國家文創禮品館
The outdoor plaza of Songshan Cultural Park is brought to life every weekend by the delightful Goodsmarket. Quickly emerging as the biggest creative market in Dongqu, this weekend market provides a platform for young artists to establish and promote their own brands. With more than 100 stands sitting in the plaza, Goodsmarket is not only a place to buy handmade gifts, but also a place of exploration and inspiration, brining the shopper and artist closer together. At Goodsmarket, you’ll not only find gifts but also a relaxing and lively afternoon under the warm sunshine of Taipei.
image via Goodsmarket
With a passionate crowd flocking in during weekends, the once-out-of-date shopping area in Tianmu has experienced a revival and become an European-styled outdoor holiday market. Combining the elements of the creative and flea markets, Tianmu Weekend Market is a treasure trove waiting for eager-eyed shoppers. Secondhand clothing, Taiwanese antiques, and other items are all available for a fairly low price, making the place bustle with excitement, laughter and a whole lot of bargaining. The experience is made even more jolly with performances from street artists and live bands.
image via miho+miho
Established in 1975, Chia Te is a prestigious pastry shop that provides the best baked goods in Taipei. With its award-winning pineapple cakes and cranberry pineapple cakes, Chia Te’s products are listed as one of the top ten gifts in Taipei. Everyday, the creamy fragrance of freshly baked pineapple cakes, egg yolk pastries, sun cakes and Nougat candies envelope the store, lure in hungry passersby. All these wonderful pastries are available online and in store.
image via Chia Te
The famous tea brand Lin Hua-Tai has been around for more than 130 years, having gone through five generations of the Lin family since its establishment in 1883. Don’t be hasty to judge its tea by its simple packaging; Lin Hua-Tai tea is so popular that it’s been exported to Japan and the United States. The friendly staff in this humble store often take visitors on a small tour in its factory. Be sure not to miss their Dong Ding Oolong Tea, Oriental Beauty Tea, Pouchong Tea.
image via Mi hoo
feature image via Lovely Taiwan