The best places to go shopping in Santo Domingo highlight the island’s comprehensive and diverse shopping scene. Beyond your typical souvenir shops, the capital of the Dominican Republic offers unique galleries with local art and jewelry made from larimar (a rare sky-blue gemstone) and amber.

    In Santo Domingo, you’ll find everything from modern malls with designer fashions and retailers selling high-tech items to specialty cigar shops, gourmet food markets, Chinese discount stores, and outdoor flea markets. For the best places to go shopping in Santo Domingo, be sure to put these options on your list.

    Where to shop and what to buy in Santo Domingo?

    1

    Mercado Modelo

    The quintessential Caribbean craft market

    • Shoppers

    Mercado Modelo is the largest market in Santo Domingo. The name itself means “model market” and it truly is the model for Caribbean craft markets. It hosts countless vendors that sell everything from Cuban cigars and spiced liquors to jewelry, colorful carnival masks, and unique items like amber necklaces.

    Special handmade treasures include both Haitian and Dominican finds. Mercado Modelo also is surrounded by food stalls that offer not only fresh produce but also prepared dishes. This is a place to haggle, so be prepared to do some bargaining rather than simply paying the stated price.

    Location: Av. Mella, Santo Domingo 10211, Dominican Republic

    Open: Monday–Friday from 9 am to 6 pm, Sunday from 7 am to 1 pm

    Phone: +1 809-750-0000

    Map
    2

    Merca Santo Domingo

    A great place for fresh, authentic ingredients

    • Shoppers
    • Food

    Merca Santo Domingo is a great place to go if you want to prepare your own meals in the city. Shop for vibrant red, yellow, and green bell peppers, pineapples, bananas, meat, poultry, seafood, and all sorts of grains. There’s a wide array of seasonings available as well, such as bija, allspice or Jamaica pepper, cloves, nutmeg, and anise.

    Open daily, Merca Santo Domingo is very popular with locals looking to pick up fresh and authentic ingredients. Visit on a weekend as you’re likely to find many items at discounted rates.

    Location: Autopista Juan Pablo Duarte, La Guáyiga, Dominican Republic

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 7 am to 6 pm, Sunday from 7.15 am to 3 pm

    Phone: +1 829-541-6464

    Map
    3

    Avenida Duarte Chinatown Street Market

    Immerse yourself in a unique Chinese-Caribbean atmosphere

    • Shoppers

    The Avenida Duarte Chinatown Street Market in the Barrio Chino is one of the best places to go shopping in Santo Domingo. It sits directly north of the historical central neighbourhood known as the Colonial City, with Chinese gates marking both ends.

    It primarily runs along Avenida Duarte, stretching across the Benito Gonzalez, Mella, and Mexico avenues, with sculptures of key Chinese figures lining the streets. This is where you’ll find Chinese grocery stores, as well as local shops selling all sorts of housewares and clothes. A fresh produce market takes place in Avenida Duarte on Sundays.

    Location: Av. Juan Pablo Duarte, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

    Map

    photo by Soman (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

    4

    Calle El Conde

    A great place for people-watching, shopping, and entertainment

    • Shoppers
    • Food

    Calle El Conde runs through the center of the Colonial Zone, between Escaleras del Conde and Puerta Independencia. This pedestrian-only street covers 11 blocks, packed with houses, shops, hotels, restaurants, and a variety of businesses.

    As locals often come to Calle El Conde for shopping and dining, this is a great place for people-watching in Santo Domingo. You might even be able to see a street performer or 2 while exploring this commercial street.

    Location: Santo Domingo 10210, Dominican Republic

    Map

    photo by Mariordo (Mario Roberto Durán Ortiz) (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified

    5

    Mercado de la Pulga

    Dominican antiques, art, and tasty street foods

    • Shoppers
    • Food

    Mercado de la Pulga is held on the site of Merca Santo Domingo, on the northern outskirt of the city. This Sunday flea market is one of the best places to go shopping for antiques, art, and handcrafted items. You'll also find books, household goods, and even clothing for sale among a wide range of vendors.

    It's possible to haggle with friendly sellers, especially if you're buying more than 1 item. Food-wise, you can enjoy delicious meat skewers and chicharron, a dish typically made from fried pork skin.

    Location: Autopista Juan Pablo Duarte, La Guáyiga, Dominican Republic

    Open: Sunday from 6 am to 6 pm

    Phone: +1 829-332-5036

    Map
    6

    Agora Mall

    An eco-friendly complex offering popular brands

    • Shoppers
    • Food
    • Families

    Opened in 2012, Agora Mall was the first eco-friendly mall to open in the Dominican Republic. The capital's first LEED-certified building was designed to maximize sunlight while maintaining thermal control. This creates a natural indoor environment that scientists say can boost shoppers’ moods.

    Agora Mall has over 180 different shops, including internationally known brands like Levi's, Tommy Hilfiger, Timberland, Guess, Zara, Brooksfield and more. You’ll also find over 20 restaurants, an indoor amusement park, and a 7-screen movie theater.

    Location: Av. John F. Kennedy, Santo Domingo 10129, Dominican Republic

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 9 am to 9 pm, Sunday from 9 am to 8 pm

    Phone: +1 809-363-2323

    Map
    7

    Downtown Center

    Shop and catch of show from a Tremor FX active seat

    • Shoppers
    • Food
    • Families

    Downtown Center is a modern 3-level shopping mall with the largest movie theater in the Caribbean. It hosts the Caribbean Movie theaters, which has 16 screens and Tremor FX active seats. Cinemagoers can immerse themselves in the movie with the chairs vibrating and pulsating in response to audio signals.

    You’ll also find plenty of shops and services, gastronomic delights, and family-friendly entertainment here. Downtown Center is not only one of the best places to go shopping in Santo Domingo, but also a great option for an afternoon (or longer) of fun.

    Location: Av. Núñez de Cáceres esq, Santo Domingo 10114, Dominican Republic

    Open: Sunday–Friday from 8 am to midnight, Saturday from 9.30 am to midnight

    Phone: +1 809-797-2121

    Map
    8

    Acropolis Center

    A popular place to shop during the vacations

    • Shoppers
    • Food
    • Families

    Acropolis Center offers a colorful setting for shopping, dining, entertainment, and special events in Santo Domingo. If you’re visiting around the vacations, you’ll discover a world of magic in a gorgeously decorated space. During Christmas, expect an elaborate playground and visits by Santa Claus, complete with opportunities for photos.

    Throughout the year, you can find many international chains within this 4-level shopping mall. Standouts include Mango, Nine West, Zara, Kenneth Cole, and Nautica. There’s also a food court, multiple cafés and restaurants, as well as a 7-screen movie theater.

    Location: Av. Winston Churchill, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 10 am to 8 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 7 pm

    Phone: +1 809-955-2020

    Map
    9

    BlueMall

    High-end international brands and quality dining options

    • Shoppers
    • Food
    • Families
    • Luxury

    BlueMall is a high-end shopping mall in central Santo Domingo, just 450 meters north of the Acropolis Center. If you want to mingle with the well-heeled residents of Santo Domingo, this is where you should go. Just about anything you’re looking for can be found here, albeit with steep price tags.

    It includes retailers like Armani Exchange, Louis Vuitton, Carolina Herrera, Cartier, Longchamp, and many famous global brands. There's also a Gold's Gym, quality restaurants, a good food hall, a children's park, and a 6-screen movie theater.

    Location: Av. Winston Churchill 95, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 8 pm

    Phone: +1 809-955-3000

    Map
    10

    Sambil Santo Domingo

    A mix of just about everything – plus an aquarium

    • Shoppers
    • Food
    • Families

    Sambil Santo Domingo is a modern shopping mall in the city’s Colonial Zone. Opened in 2012, the complex has over 350 different shops and boutiques of well-known retailers like Victoria’s Secret and Aldo. You can also find many electronics stores, including Samsung and Sony.

    If you're hungry, Sambil Santo Domingo has more than 20 eateries. Besides shopping and dining, the mall hosts the 14-screen Palacio del Cine movie theater and the AquaMundo aquarium. Note that the shopping mall only opens on weekdays.

    Location: Av. John F. Kennedy, Santo Domingo 10413, Dominican Republic

    Open: Monday–Friday from 10 am to 8 pm (closed on weekends)

    Phone: +1 809-234-5678

    Map
    K.C. Dermody | Contributing Writer

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