Beyond its cultural heritage and natural beauty, Istanbul is also one of the top shopping destinations in the world. A city built on commerce and trade, Istanbul has been at the crossroads of continents and civilizations for many centuries. Among its magnificent mosques, palaces and museums, it is one of the most diverse and fascinating places on Earth, where any traveler can find something to his taste. While many explore the ancient bazaars or the elegant Istiklal Avenue for their shopping, there are also countless shopping malls in Istanbul.
Some of these shopping centers are among the largest and most interesting in the world. No matter where you are in the city, there is a shopping haven nearby according to your needs, from the luxury shopping malls in Istanbul to the cheap shopping malls in Istanbul. The best and most popular can be found below.
Best Shopping Malls in Istanbul 2021
In our list of the best shopping malls in Istanbul, there are a total of 16 shopping centers. Most of them are located on the European Side (from 1 to 12), while others are located on the Asian Side (from 12 to 16).
While listing the shopping centers, we have included the places that claim to be the biggest and most luxurious. On the other hand, we have included relatively small and cheap outlet shopping malls of Istanbul for those who want to buy cheap clothing.
In our list of the best shopping malls in Istanbul, there are places near Taksim and Sultanahmet, which are popular tourist centers. However, since most of the shopping centers in Istanbul are located in districts such as Sisli, Levent, Sariyer and Kadikoy, there are more of them on the list.
Located in the Sisli District, on the Buyukdere Avenue, Cevahir has excellent access to the public transport system and is relatively close to the famous Taksim Square. The shopping mall was the largest in Europe when it was built and still is one of the big shopping malls in Istanbul, with a great variety of shops and entertainment venues.
Among others, Cevahir Shopping Mall offers over 200 stores including some of the most popular Turkish and international brands, dozens of restaurants and cafes as well as the largest entertainment center in the country, with 12 cinema halls, bowling hall, a small rollercoaster and many more.
Located on the Buyukdere Avenue in the Levent District of Istanbul, Kanyon was opened in 2006 and has an interesting winding valley design. One of the shopping malls in Istanbul near Taksim Square, it can be easily reached from the Levent subway station and features prestigious brands in over 100 stores, some of which are present for the first time on the Turkish market.
The Kanyon Shopping Center also features gourmet restaurants, elegant cafes, large cinema, fitness center and occasional open air performances. The complex also includes a 30-floor high office tower and a 22-floor residential tower.
Probably the best among the luxury shopping malls in Istanbul, IstinyePark is the premiere location for exclusive brands and amazing experiences. IstinyePark is located in Sarıyer district of Istanbul and attracts customers from high-end districts on the shores of the Bosphorus.
Although IstinyePark is a little further from Taksim Square compared to previous shopping centers, it is still possible to reach it by metro. Nevertheless, it is well worth the trip, as it features superb design with both enclosed and open air spaces, including a huge glass roof and a large central park.
IstinyePark features almost 300 stores and brands, many of which are luxury and unique, an authentic Turkish food bazaar, many restaurants, cafes, bakeries, as well as modern cinema complex, huge gym and many other marvels.
4. Ozdilek Shopping Mall
Located in the same vibrant Sisli District of Istanbul, right next to the Levent Metro Station and Kanyon Mall, it is one of the outlet shopping malls in Istanbul. The Ozdilek Shopping Mall offers about 170 stores on 5 levels from Turkish and international brands, a hypermarket, a large terrace, movie theaters, children entertainment area and much more.
5. Zorlu Shopping Center
One of the best luxury shopping malls in Istanbul, Zorlu Shopping Center is located in a superb spot within the bustling Sisli District, with direct access to the Gayrettepe Metro Station, as well as excellent bus connections.
It comprises a large complex that includes high end stores from almost 200 brands, including famous luxury brands, as well as a five star Raffles Hotel, the largest performing arts center in Turkey, a Cinemaximum megaplex, high class restaurants, elegant cafes, residences and offices, all of them complemented by an exquisite design and ambiance.
One of the most fascinating shopping and entertainment destinations in Istanbul, the Isfanbul experience includes a unique concept of indoor-outdoor shopping and dining, as well as the nearby Theme Park, which is the first in Turkey and features over 30 different attractions and rides.
The Isfanbul Mall includes an enchanting outdoor area with over 100 stores from the best brands in Turkey and abroad, as well as many delicious restaurant and pleasant cafes.
It should be noted that Isfanbul was formerly known as Vialand Theme Park. The entertainment center, known as “Vialand” for many years, has changed its name after it has been completely restored.
7. City’s Nisantasi
One of the best shopping malls in Istanbul near Taksim Square and extremely popular among both locals and travelers, City’s Nisantasi is located on Tesvikiye Street in Nisantasi area, within walking distance from the Osmanbey Subway Station. It features mid and high scale brands across about 150 stores as well as extremely interesting and modern architecture.
Visitors will also find an overwhelming number of delightful restaurants and fast-food choices, as well as an entertainment area with seven modern cinema halls and other spaces.
Nisantasi neighbrohood is also famous for its designer boutiques. For this reason, it is a recommended place to visit in Istanbul for women’s clothing shopping.
Located in the fashionable Etiler District of Istanbul, Akmerkez is one of the long standing shopping malls in Istanbul, with many affordable brands and some more luxurious ones. Although located some distance from the city center, it is easily accessible via the Nispetiye Metro Station and other bus connections.
There are countless stores and many restaurants on the four levels of the shopping area, with famous brands like Boss, Gap, Marks & Spencer, Nike, Samsung, Zara and more. The complex also includes an entertainment area with seven cinema halls, a great number of restaurants, as well as three tall towers with office and residential spaces.
Akmerkez is one of the oldest shopping centers in Istanbul and not very big. However, the district where it is located is a very luxurious place. Nusr-et, Ulus 29 and Sunset Grill & Bar, among the best restaurants in Istanbul, are also located very close to this shopping center.
9. Mall of Istanbul
Among the impressive shopping and entertainment complexes of Istanbul, Mall of Istanbul is one of the big shopping malls in Istanbul, covering a huge area and including a wide variety of highlights. The Mall of Istanbul shopping complex is located outside the city center, next to a big interchange, in the Basaksehir area of the city and can be reached by changing a few metro lines and using the free shuttles or by taxi.
It gathers over 350 stores and shops from the most popular international and Turkish brands, as well as a great number of restaurants with various cuisines represented. It also includes the largest indoor theme park in Europe, a 300 room luxury hotel and many other fascinating features.
10. Forum Istanbul
The largest outlet shopping mall in Istanbul and the whole of Turkey, Forum Istanbul is a complex destination that combines a wholesome shopping destination with a thrilling entertainment venue. It resembles a miniature city and visitors might have a hard time exploring the location. It is located about 10 km away from the Old Town area, in the Bayrampasa District and between two busy highways.
It has direct access to the Kocatepe Metro Station. The Forum Istanbul covers a huge area packed with almost 300 stores from all the major brands, over 50 restaurants and cafes, the Sea Life Istanbul Aquarium, a Legoland center, a Cinemaxium complex, a bowling hall and much more.
One of the shopping malls in Istanbul near Sultanahmet, Historia is located in the Fatih district of Istanbul, very close to the Aksaray Metro Station. It is smaller mall with about 80 stores, but its location makes it a favorite for travelers, as it also includes a Tax Free Port. Historia Fatih also features many food and beverage locations, as well as other services.
There are no big shopping centers in Istanbul Old City. However, even though Historia Shopping Mall is small, it can meet the needs. You can reach this mall in a short time by taking the tram from Sultanahmet.
12. Aqua Florya
The fascinating Aqua Florya is part of the same complex as the Istanbul Aquarium, the largest thematic aquarium in the world with an impressive array of attractions. It is also located near the Old Airport, making it a great destination for people who travel to Istanbul. Apart from the aquarium, visitors can browse the 150 stores; dine in one of the restaurants or cafes with sea views, a modern Cinemaxium experience and much more.
One of the best shopping malls in Istanbul Asian Side, Palladium is located in the modern Atasehir district of the city, with bus and minibus access. The Palladium Shopping Mall features almost 200 stores from the most famous brands in Turkey and abroad like C&A, Marks&Spencer, Michael Kors, Nike, Adidas and more, as well as plenty of restaurants and cafes around a huge food court, in-built theater, a Cinemaxium with 10 cinema halls, a 32 floors residential tower and more.
Palladium is easy to reach as it is located very close to the highway called E-5. It also has flashy shops and luxury brands as it attracts customers from a place with high-end residents like Atasehir.
14. Emaar Square Mall
Another of the shopping malls in Istanbul Asian Side, Emaar Square Mall is located in the Uskudar District of the city, with easy access to public transportation. It is expected to become the largest shopping mall in the country, with over 400 stores and many other impressive features that include a breathtaking aquarium and underwater zoo, a wellness center, a wide range of Turkish and international restaurants, ice skating rink, huge cinema and much more. It is developed by the same company as the famous Dubai Mall.
Considered one of the top outlet shopping malls in Istanbul, Akasya is located in the Acibadem area of Kadikoy, on the Asian side of the city. It features a very pleasing design with winding alleys and natural light, offering about 270 stores, a huge 360 degrees food court, a large children entertainment area, 15 movie theaters, an event plaza and a green space area with canals.
Akasya Mall is also on the Metrobus route that travels between the Asian and European sides. Located at the point where Metro M4 and Metrobus connect to each other, Akasya is among the easiest shopping places to reach on the Asian side of Istanbul.
16. Viaport Asia
One of the biggest outlet centers in the country, Viaport Asia is the largest of the shopping malls in Istanbul Asian Side, offering an all-inclusive shopping and entertainment experience. It is located a little outside of the city, close to the Sabiha Gokcen Airport, in the Pendik district of Istanbul.
It has a sister mall called Viaport Marina that is located in the Tuzla area and features an impressive seaside atmosphere. The Viaport Asia Mall is massive, featuring a large area with about 250 stores from famous brands, a miniature Grand Bazaar area, many delightful restaurants and cafes, a multi-hall cinema, bowling alley, a children pony club, go-karting and more.
Viaport Asia stands out among the cheap shopping malls in Istanbul, as it has many outlet stores where off-season products are sold. If you want to shop for cheap clothes before leaving Istanbul, this mall right next to the airport is the ideal place for you.
You can find out how to reach these shopping centers from the article titled Istanbul public transport map. The metro and tram maps shared in this article will provide you with information on easy access to Istanbul’s shopping areas.
In this article, I introduced you to the best shopping malls in Istanbul in 2020. New ones will be added to the list of modern shopping centers in Istanbul in 2021. As I update the article over time, I will add other shopping centers that stand out from the competition.
Best Shopping Malls in Istanbul 2021 by Serhat Engul