If you ever get to vacation in Rotterdam you will instantly be intrigued by the eclectic nature and atmosphere that makes it so unique from all of the other cities in Europe. There are lots of interesting quirks and fun facts that people don't know about this city. For example, if you wander around the streets you might notice little lights of red flames; they actually mark the spots where the city was bombed during the Second World War, and there are 400 of them in total! Rotterdam also boasts the biggest port in all of Europe and it is a multicultural place that is home to a total of 174 different nationalities (in fact, only half of the population is actually Dutch!).
As you walk around the city you will see some incredible examples of surrealist and modern architecture, most of which were built after the war. Other attractions include a diverse and lively nightlife, wonderful museums, and some pretty great malls and retail centres that you can shop at. If shopping is what you are looking for, keep reading as we introduce you to some of the top malls, outlets, and designer stores where you can do some retail therapy. Bring your wallet with you and stow the rest of your things at a luggage storage facility in Rotterdam.
Shopping Malls and Outlets in Rotterdam
Right in the heart of the city and opposite the Rotterdam Central Station you will find one of the main shopping centres in the city. It is a great place to buy new items as well as eat dinner or grab coffee with a friend. If food is what you are looking for, make your way straight to The Gallery Kitchen!
As for shopping, this mall offers lots of places to explore. Check out Bargello Parfums for some wonderful smelling fragrances for both men and women, or one of the two Coccinelle Fashion shops for any kids' clothing that you need! The shopping centre is also covered, meaning that you will be well protected from the elements.
De Groene Passage
Although it is small, De Groene Passage offers fantastic shopping opportunities. Inside you will find stores and restaurants that actively practice being sustainable so you can shop confidently knowing that what you are buying and eating has the planet's best interests in mind. For example, the eatery called Spirit serves delicious organic and vegetarian meals, and it is a buffet-style restaurant so you only pay based on how much your plate weighs.
Looking to reinvent your home? The home decor store called Van Binnen sells plant-based paints, flooring, and cute decorations. Check out Wereldwinkel Rotterdam Centrum while you are in De Groene Passage; they have a nice stock of fairtrade items and some pretty unique things that would make fantastic gifts.
A trip to Rotterdam wouldn't be complete without visiting Markthal, even if you aren't there to browse the stores. The building that houses the mall is nicknamed the "Sistine Chapel of Rotterdam" and is quite a sight to behold! The incredible ceiling features fascinating paintings and other-worldly designs that will catch your eye as soon as you step through the doors. Construction of the building began in 2009 and was only completed in 2014, and it has already become a local landmark.
Aside from being an aesthetically intriguing piece of architecture, Markthal houses a selection of shops as well as many market stalls selling all sorts of items. Some of the names that you will see include Etos, Naturals, Kookwinkel Habitas, and Holland & Barrett. Near Rotterdam Station, Markthal is a great place to find street food and fine dining options, too!
Shopping enthusiasts will absolutely want to check out the fashion boutiques and nice shops in Rotterdam Zuidplein. With a surface area spanning 55,000 meters squared, it is actually the largest mall in the entire Netherlands! It is found close to the city centre and can be reached easily via the metro.
In total, Rotterdam Zuidplein has 155 different stores as well as a food court where you can take a break between shopping. Come here for your next shopping spree in Rotterdam! If you have your own car you can park it in their underground parking lot, or cycle here and park your bike at the mall. The bus stops here, too.
Ready for a Rotterdam shopping spree? This mall is not physically as big as the Zuidplein but it has more stores, and there are about 200 unique places to shop for clothes and other things. You can spend all afternoon exploring the shops of Rotterdam Alexandium.
This mall is separated into three different areas, each one with a different focus. There is a normal mall that sells clothing, jewelry, shoes, and more, as well as the Alexandrium Megastores where you can find even more things made by other designers. If you are on the hunt for home interior items and decor you should pay a visit to the "living mall" area.
Designer Stores in Rotterdam
Rotterdam Tourist Information
It can be fun to remember your time in the city with a souvenir, like a keychain, t-shirt, jewelry, or postcard. You might want to bring some gifts back for your friends as well!
The Rotterdam Tourist Information centre is the place to go for all of your Rotterdam-themed gift needs. They can also answer any questions that you have about the city and its attractions, too.
If you want to take back a part of Rotterdam with you then a trip to Groos is well worth your time. This concept store sells all kinds of items that have been made by some of the most creative locals in the city, and you will definitely want to check it out before you leave.
All kinds of items can be found here, from apparel and accessories to food and drinks. You might see a cute pair of socks that you want to buy, or even a locally made beer.
Any foodies taking a trip to Rotterdam? This store is sure to be one of your favorites. As you have probably guessed from the name, Foodelicious sells all kinds of tasty treats and drinks, some that you may have never tried before.
The food and beverages sold here are delicious, and the cherry on top is that everything is made either in Rotterdam or in the nearby surrounding area. Come see what they have to offer and maybe buy something to bring home as presents for your loved ones, too!
The Best Shopping Areas in Rotterdam
Van Oldenbarneveltstraat is small but full of amazing places to go shopping in Rotterdam. It is the perfect place for luxury shoppers to go as the stores around the area sell designer brand names, and there are high-end cosmetic stores as well. It is one of the best shopping destinations in the city so don't forget to come here at least once during your stay!
Aside from boutiques and stores selling the latest fashion, you will also find shoe shops, places to buy handbags, and more. The area mostly features French, Danish, and Swedish brands, as well as local designers like Susan Bijl and Monique van Heist, too. Although the stores here can be a bit expensive, the prices reflect the quality of the items and they will last you a while.
For a completely different shopping experience check out the street called Korte Hoogstraat. This hidden gem in the city centre can introduce you to items that can't be found in most shops around the rest of Rotterdam. Don't expect to see many chain stores in Korte Hoogstraat but keep an eye out for those one-of-a-kind fashion pieces!
Interested in comic books? The store called Yendor will be your favorite place to visit. Funkie House is another nice store selling all of the latest street fashion trends, and Zonnewijzer offers every kind of kids' toy that you can think of. Korte Hoogstraat is a great spot to find gifts for others, or maybe a little something for yourself!
Witte de Withstraat
Witte de Withstraat isn't only a good place for shopping in Rotterdam but also for checking out art galleries, too! Between visiting stores, you should take some time to appreciate the local artistic talent in one of the galleries next door, and then head out to dinner at one of the many restaurants.
The stores located in this part of the city can cater to all styles and budgets. Check out the independent shops, like Episode, which sell vintage clothing and items. Danny de Cactus is a store that specializes in decorations, and Design Studio Armeni sells some bold and colorful clothing items. The concept store called Swan is worth stopping by as well, and head to SEVENTYFIVE if you need a pair of hip new sneakers!
Oude Binnenweg is a nice place to shop, not only because of the stores but also because the area is beautiful. It is a historic street that has a cozy atmosphere and is home to some smaller stores. Most shops have a certain focus so you will need to find the right store to stop at, depending on what kind of stuff you want to buy.
Despite the fact that the shops in Oude Binnenweg are smaller and more specialized, there are still a wide variety of items that you can find. Looking for nice quality modern clothing for men and women? Head to Sissy Boy! The younger generations who frequent the street often prefer to shop at the Vans Store.
Coolsingel is the top "shopping gutter" in Rotterdam and one of the best known places to go, so it might be busy. The street became even more popular after it finished its renovations in 2021, which took over three years to complete! Now the shopping street is back full force and ready to welcome everyone with good taste in fashion.
On Coolsingel you will find lots of international stores like Zara or Decathlon, for example. Make sure to check out the local department store called De Bijenkorf; it houses lots of luxury clothing brands that you will love.
We mentioned Oude Binnenweg above, but it should not be confused with the Nieuwe Binnenweg as both areas offer a completely different way of shopping. On this street, you will find plenty of designer stores and fashion boutiques as well as charming coffee shops, bakeries, and bars. The neighborhood that it is located in is both hip and endearing, and it attracts people from all around the city centre.
The styles and trends sold in these stores vary quite a bit, and it is a convenient place to go shopping with friends or if you have a lot of things that you want to buy. Shopaholics will love browsing the wares in all of the shops, like the newest fashions at Joline Jolink. There is even a little gardening centre called Stek for all of you green thumbs!
Zwaanhals is one of the best places to find second hand items and vintage clothing in the entire city. Its location in Rotterdam Noord means that it will be a little out of the way but it is still worth a trip, especially if you like antiques and older clothing.
This area is home to shops like Lily Scarlet, Betje Krul Vintage, Ding & Dingen, Vintage Oudstijl Rotterdam, and Showroom 41. As with most vintage shops, the things being sold can vary from week to week so you might want to stop by more than once during your stay in Rotterdam!
Your Guide to Rotterdam Shopping
Shopping is always a fun way to spend an afternoon or the perfect activity for a rainy day (along with taking part in free things to do in Rotterdam). Rotterdam's shopping scene is vibrant and diverse with shopping streets and outlets located around the entire city. Thankfully there is an excellent public transportation system offered within the city so you can move around and go on a shopping spree in all of the best fashion malls in Rotterdam!