Taiwan : The Travel Complete Guide


When it comes to Western tourists, Taiwan is still under the radar compared to Japan, Mainland China, and Hong Kong, yet it manages to take the best of the three and pack the jam into a small island. From the vibrations of Taipei to the futuristic districts of Xinyi and Ximen, and nightlife, nature, outdoor activities, and mineral-rich hot springs, to stunning art, creativity and culture, to excellent transportation options, including bullet trains, and elaborate Chinese, A range of Japanese and indigenous cuisine, Taiwan offers something for every traveler.

Taiwan | Planning Your Trip

Best time to visit: While much of Taiwan falls in the subtropical climate according to the climate, winters can be quite dry, pleasant, and even cold during January and February so jackets and other winter apparel are needed. . The autumn months of October and November are a sweet spot when it comes to the weather, while from March to May it is warm and cherry blossoms, and also warm enough to hit the beaches in the tropical south of Taiwan. Huh.

Language: Like Mainland China, Taiwan’s official language is Mandarin, which became the case after WWII. However, Taiwan is multilingual thanks to both its indigenous cultures and periods of occupation, and other common languages ​​include Taiwanese Hokkien and Hakka.

Currency: The New Taiwan Dollar (TWD).

Getting around: The Taiwan high-speed rail system runs nearly the entire length of the island from north to south, with stops in a dozen cities, including Taipei, Taichung, Tainan, and Zuoying/ Kaohsiung (line extensions may occur in the future as well ) There also exists a strong assortment of public transport routes for large cities, such as Taipei’s MRT subway/rail, and airport-to-bus buses, while taxis are also readily available and not expensive. For those who cannot read Chinese characters, Uber is present in Taipei (again), while the Taiwan Ride Healing app Find Taxi also has an English language option.

Travel tip: The Chinese New Year equals the West’s holiday season, and by the time locals take a vacation from their jobs, close small businesses, and restaurants, and go back to their hometowns or abroad on vacation. It is a double-edged sword for tourists during this time, because on the one hand, you will avoid crowds and lines and can experience colorful lantern festivals and parades, but you will also find some attractions, activities, restaurants. And stores closed, especially on the New Year itself.

Things To Do in Taiwan

Like Japan in the north (without snow and subtropical temperatures!), The city of Taiwan offers a diverse and distinct combination of nature, culture, and adventure activities, including relaxing, natural hot springs, and all mixed together in a single city. Occur! Only Taipei can serve as a holistic sample of everything Taiwan has to offer, yet it is so easy to traverse other cities across the island, thanks to the high-speed rail, you get a comprehensive sample itinerary from north to south Can be curated.

Explore Taiwan’s Famous Night Markets: If you ask a Taiwanese expatriate what they miss the most about home, chances are they will call the vibrant night market culture of their homeland. Spread across the country, with dozens in major cities, these markets offer a wide range of street food and trendy dishes, including the aptly named Stinky Tofu, Frisbee-shaped Tapioca Dough Crisp Crusted Chicken Cutlets, “Coffin Bread” and There is a lot involved. Which includes clothes, gadgets, and other items.

Soak in Taiwan’s natural hot springs: Like Japan, Taiwan has mineral-rich hot springs and resorts built around them (as well as more modest, public access, low-cost facilities). Conveniently, a handful can be found in the Beitou district of Taipei (which is also home to a Hot Spring Museum!) While other popular Hot Spring destinations include Wenshan in Hualien County, Taian in Miyali County, and Tangwigou Hot Spring in Jiaoxi Parks are included.

See city views from Taipei’s 101 Tower: The world’s largest tower when it first opened in 2004 (and now ranked number 10), this stacked cup-shaped skyscraper features an incredible multi-level observation deck featuring From where you can see both it is inhabited by modern cityscapes and natural wonders, as well as a Xiao Long Bao (soup dumpling) lunch at the ground floor Din Tai Fung Restaurant.

Enjoy the splendor of Taroko Natural Park: Once you experience the bliss of modern metropolises in Taipei or any other big city, explore the astonishing glory of Taroko through its many trails and iconic gorge.

What To Eat And Drink in Taiwan

The past decade has seen the development of Taiwanese cuisine, taking local, seasonal ingredients of clay to tech-forward Michelin star levels in restaurants such as Taipei’s Raw and Mume and Taichung’s Singapore-Taiwan fusion venue JL Studios. Some foods often associated with Taiwan are accessible, simple, and tasty; The most famous, “bubble/boba tea”, which includes tea, juice, or even a drink of milk served with a scoop of Chubi tapioca pearls. Although only invented in the 1980s, it is now an international phenomenon, and Taiwan takes all kinds of innovative, creative new takes and looks at artistic brands as well as large chains that make drinks.

Stinky tofu is one of the most popular and aptly named street foods in Taiwan, with even an entire street dedicated to it. Shenkeng Tofu Street is located in the Shenqing District of New Taipei and offers many people unpleasant tastes and smells as well as non-stinky tofu iterations and even deserts.

Xiao Long Bao is another Taiwanese who must eat. Known in Western countries as “soup dumplings”, it can originate in mainland China and its Shanghainese reverberation is found worldwide (with a flabby, thick doughy skin consisting of soup and usually succulent pigs. ), But Taiwan’s Michelin starred series Din Tai Fung helped popularize Taiwan’s daintier, slimmer, the one-or-two-bite-sized version at home and abroad. You will find Din Tai Fung’s formulas and twists in filling throughout Taiwan restaurants.

Bubble tea aside, Taiwanese also satisfy their sweet tooth with signature local snacks, pineapple cakes, and nuggets. The former can be found everywhere, including airport shops and 7-Eleven, but for good things, handmade, real pineapple-filled shortcakes from Sunnyhills are a must (but note their limited shelf life, as All preservatives are accompanied by free foods)) Nougat is also found all over Taiwan, but local gourds find that the most delicious food can be served at the Okura Prestige Hotel shop in Taipei (they are on holiday for gifts Are snatched fast).

Where To Stay in Taiwan

Taiwan offers a wide range of accommodation and price points, from international chains to local luxury and boutique properties. The Chinese palace-style Grand Hotel in Taipei is an architectural icon (albeit inconvenient for public transport) and classic. More contemporary, new properties such as Mandarin Oriental, W Taipei, and Hotel Proverbs offer Primo City District location and lavish modern décor.

Unlike Hong Kong, Taipei’s hotels are price-wise evasion, especially its local boutique properties (unless there is a major conference or function). Although highly regulated, Airbnb has a Taiwanese presence and is currently legal. However, as with some other destinations the legal lines blur on specific types of stay, some hosts only speak/write in Chinese, and their home rules may be more strict than in other Asian countries. However, they are very reasonable in terms of price.

Getting There

Located outside the city limits and La Tokyo’s Narita requires time to travel, Taipei’s Taoyuan International Airport (TPE) in Taipei is the country’s largest, busiest air transport hub, and EVA Air and China Airlines There is a domestic base for (both offer direct flights to and from the US city). The two terminals, with a third in the works, offer plenty of places to eat and drink, from Taiwanese fare to Starbucks and even some local craft beer.

A second, conveniently located but smaller area airport is Taipei Songshan Airport (TSA), which serves cities in Taiwan and China, and some other Asian countries. Kaohsiung International Airport (KHH) in southern Taiwan is the second largest / busiest air hub with more than two dozen Asian airlines and destinations including Japan, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Philippines, Malaysia, and Macao.

Culture And Customs in Taiwan

Although any business with international or Western customers, especially five-star hotel brands, will typically have an English-speaking employee and will have an accent on the Maps app, English is not entirely prevalent in Taiwan (and for the same street English translation) or occupation can be written phonetically in many different ways). A Chinese-English translation app can be extremely valuable for communication and allows local people to enter the Chinese characters of destinations directly in your favorite map app, also to find places and roam freely from tours, guides, etc. Extremely helpful tool. People are generally sociable, simple and polite, so don’t be afraid to ask for help!

Money Saving Tips

The food options are plentiful and the prices in Taiwan’s night markets are affordable, making them an absolutely frugal way to fill your stomach with authentic local fare.

Another unique Taiwan attraction is its creative art parks: adjacent walkable and photo-friendly districts (often with abandoned factories or military facilities) are now filled with sculptures, galleries, craft shops, cafes, and exhibitions (although the latter Some charge entry fees) These include Songshan Cultural and Creative Park in Taipei and Husshan 1914 Creative Park, Blueprint Cultural and Creative Park of Tainan and Pier-2 Art Center in Kaohsiung.

Book a trip during the low season, which usually occurs during both the cold winter months and the warm, monsoon-obsessed times of late summer, which is also the “Ghost Festival”, which is believed to occur when Taiwan The entirety of is considered to be haunted. Spirits and it is not advisable to travel (August to September).

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Frequently Asked Questions About Taiwan

Q. Is Taiwan its own country?

A – Taiwan (Traditional Chinese: 臺灣 / 台灣; Simplified Chinese: Pinyin: Taiwan), officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a country in East Asia. Neighboring countries include the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in the northwest, Japan in the northeast, and the Philippines in the south.

Q. Is Taiwan a part of China?

A – Both the ROC and the PRC still officially (constitutionally) claim mainland China and the Taiwan region as part of their respective territories. In fact, the PRC only rules Mainland China and has no control, but claims Taiwan as part of its territory under its “One China Doctrine”.

Q. Is Taiwan a good country?

A – Taiwan is a very safe place to live with a crime rate that consistently ranks it as one of the safest countries in the world! This is due to their strict adherence to the law. The Taiwanese conduct themselves in an orderly and respectful manner, and when in Taiwan you should do the same!

Q. Was China the owner of Taiwan?

A – Taiwan has been declared a province of the Qing Empire. Following the defeat in the First Sino-Japanese War (1894–1895), the Qing government signs the Treaty of Shimonoseki, by which it assigns sovereignty over Taiwan to Japan, which ruled the island until 1945.

Q. Which is the best month to visit Taiwan?

A – September to November is considered the best time of year to visit Taiwan in terms of weather. This season provides the perfect combination of cold and dry weather. During most of September, the south remains warm, but temperatures in North Taiwan begin to cool, although they are still pleasant.

Q. What is the coldest month in Taiwan?

A – January. Overview: January is the coldest month in Taiwan, but is still relatively mild by North American or European standards. Average lows are 13 ° C (55 ° F) and the average elevation is 16 ° C (61 ° F).

Q. Is Taiwan safe for tourists?

A – At the end of the day, Taiwan is safe for female passengers traveling alone. It is a progressive country but that does not mean that it is not without its issues. However, Taiwan is like other East Asian countries, as it is much safer in terms of crime than many other countries around the world.

Q. Is Taiwan expensive for tourists?

A – Taiwan is definitely more expensive than the mainland. The main cost is accommodation. However, elsewhere, you are the only real choice, a cheap Taiwanese hotel would be, and cheap Taiwanese hotels rarely cost less than 180 Renminbi. Otherwise, there is very little in Taiwan that can eat your budget.

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