Taiwan Travel Information: 6 Things To Do In Taipei

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Why sum up Taiwan Travel Information with just 6 things to do in Taipei? Well, in Chinese numerology, 6 is said to be a fortunate number. Given the fact that my most recent trip to Taiwan was the result of winning a prize, I’d say that it was pretty darn fortunate! While the number of things to do and see in Taipei are actually quite numerous, this list will serve as a great base for anyone interest in Taiwan travel information or in the initial planning stages of a trip to Taiwan.

Me winning a free trip abroad

6 Things To Do In Taipei

  1. The Night Markets

The two best markets in my opinion are: Shilin Night Market and Huaxi Street Night Market, aka Snake Alley.

While the latter is much smaller, the adventurous traveler can dine on many exotic variations of snake dishes there. For those less inclined to indulge in a serpentine snack, you can get a great buzz from alcohol that includes snake venom and snake blood!

Shilin Night Market, on the other hand, was by far the most complete market I visited. Whether you are a foodie or shopper, whatever your needs may be can be found there.

Shilin night market

When I say everything…I mean EVERYTHING!

Penis soap at Shilin Market

Even hard-carved penis soaps (with or without thongs!)

  1. Elephant Trail Hike

Although I’m a huge fan of fitcations, for those not willing to go out and spend hours on a trail, this is perfect. It was less than 30 minutes from base to top, and that includes multiple stops along the way. The location is also ideal. The numerous lookouts give a great vantage point for beautiful shots of the city and it’s iconic building, Taipei 101.

Also, located just a stone’s thrown from said building, it provides the perfect position to pop over and ride the world’s fastest elevator of what was once the world’s tallest building!

6 things to do in Taipei: elephant trail hike

  1. Temple Visits

While I won’t list all of Taiwan’s over 15,000 temples, there were two that stood apart from the others in Taipei. Xingtian Temple is a striking, centrally-located temple that provides a true centerpiece for the city. Given its location and beauty, it is no surprise that this temple ranks as one of the most popular in Northern Taiwan.

Taiwan Travel Information: Xingtian Temple

Mengjia Longshan Temple, on the other hand, is a stunning structure that was so nice I had to visit twice. Once during daylight and once at night. Although it was packed with visitors on both occasions, the contrast of colors in the different lighting is a must-see.

Longshan Temple daytimeLongshan temple at night

  1. Chiang Kai Shek Memorial

This massive compound was erected in memory of the former Chinese president, Chiang Kai Shek. The statue housed in the memorial hall stands much like its American equivalent, The Lincoln Monument, in Washington DC. While guard-changing ceremonies take place hourly, the serenity of the sprawling courtyard is what truly make a visit there memorable.

Chiang Kai Shek from the front gate Chiang Kai Shek Memorial courtyard

  1. Visit The Red House

Confession—I did not actually visit The Red House. I mention it; however, because the surrounding streets of this arts district are just so quirky and cool that they are the perfect place to explore and spend several hours getting lost in—which I did! For anyone who has ever visited and enjoyed the areas of Myeong-dong in Seoul, South Korea or Amemura in Osaka, Japan…this section of the city is right up your alley!

Streets near the red house

  1. Beitou Hot Springs

Located just 30 minutes from central Taipei by metro, this city oasis feels thousands of miles away. There’s no better way to end, or begin a day, than by relaxing in the warm, therapeutic waters of the Beitou Hot Springs.

Beitou Hot Springs

Taiwan Travel Information

  • Average cost for a meal at a local restaurant—less than $5 (USD).
  • Average cost of a fully-equipped, modern boutique hotel—$80-100/night.
    • We stayed at Hotel Check INN, but many cheaper, yet still very nice, options exist.
  • Currency: The New Taiwan dollar (currently 30 NTD=1 USD).
  • Getting around: traveling by metro is the cheapest and fastest way to get around the city. While day/multi-day passes are available, a roundtrip journey to most places will only set you back around $1.50, so paying as you go is also an easy option. For those intimidated by public transport in a foreign country, taxis and Uber are also an affordable alternative.
  • Weather: the average temperature of subtropical Taiwan is 72 degrees Fahrenheit (or about 22 degrees Celsius). A light jacket, hoodie, and perhaps some raingear for the wet-season are the major wardrobe staples you’ll need to pack.
  • People: whether playing drinking games at local bars, ordering food at restaurants, or asking directions to passersby on the streets, the people of Taiwan are very warm and accommodating.

Have you ever visited this island? Based on the Taiwan travel information provided above, comment below and let me know if it seems like a destination you’d like to visit and which of the 6 things to do in Taipei you’d like to experience most!

54 Comments

  1. This is a great list of things to do! I’m hoping to visit Tapei in 2018.

  2. Shabree says:

    What a great prize to win! I’ve never been but would love to. The night market looks like a lot of fun.

  3. Olivia says:

    I’ve always wanted to go, and now I want to even more! It looks like there are so many places to take amazing photos. Gosh the architecture is amazing!!

  4. LaShawn says:

    Love! I have been hearing so much lately about traveling to Taiwan. I really plan on going soon!

  5. Laura says:

    Thanks for all these tips! I can’t wait to visit this place.
    Laura

  6. Kita says:

    I’ve heard the night markets are a must do. I would also love to visit the historic sites and temples.

  7. Natasha says:

    Taiwan is always coming up in travel circles that I’m in, and it’s about high time that I visit. I always love open markets because it’s like a sociology study. Thanks for sharing the insider details!

  8. Regina says:

    This is somewhere I would love to go! Hopefully someday!

  9. Eva says:

    Nice! I think I’d like to get to as many temples as possible. 80 to 100 a night sounds doable for a hotel!

  10. Carissa says:

    I would love to go here one day! Looks amazing and very ummm interesting LOL!!! It seems like there is something to do for everyone and whatever they’re interested in!

  11. Aija Rhodes says:

    Taiwan is on my travel list. I will basically follow your tour trips. This is great. Especially the details on the temples.

  12. Ana Ojha says:

    Looks like there are so many amazing things to explore in Taiwan. I loved the architecture of the Mengjia Longshan Temple and would love to visit there!

  13. Tisha says:

    Those soaps are um… interesting lol! The night markets look very exciting!!! Great guide- seems like there would be something for every kind of traveller!

  14. Tonia says:

    Wow. This looks amazing. I can tell you had a great trip. There is so much to do. I’d love to visit The Red House.

  15. Ashley DTKAustin says:

    Sounds like such an amazing place! I would absolutely love to visit one day!

  16. Nicky says:

    Never been! But so interesting to read!
    Nicky
    http://www.nickyinsideout.com

  17. christina says:

    Fantastic guide!! I would love to travel there someday!

  18. Masera says:

    Wow the hot springs and the elephant trail hike are my favorite on this list. This looks like a blast overall!!

    xo-M
    http://www.wavesofm.com

  19. Brittney says:

    Great tips! I would love to travel here one day!! Looks so fun!


    Brittney
    Missxbo.com

  20. Ramona C says:

    I have not been to Taiwan, but it looks fascinating. I would love to visit the hot springs. However, I will not be partaking in anything in Snake Alley. 😮

    LOL. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  21. Stacie says:

    It’s always cool to see other people’s travel adventures. I honestly have never thought of traveling to Taiwan but it seems like a beautiful place to visit.

  22. Truly, Taiwan has a boatload of great destinations to offer. I haven’t been to Taiwan, but it has long been on my bucketlist. I would love to visit all the temples and douse myslef in the hot spring. IT’ll be great and of course ambling around the Red House is also cool. I will surely traipse my feet to these places soon If I get the chance to visit Taiwan. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

    • EG III says:

      I’m a sucker for hot springs. And the offerings in Taipei did not disappoint…it was, perhaps, the most relaxing part of the entire trip!

  23. I have been to Mainland China. And I had such a great time, but I met some there who were from Taiwan and they said how amazing it was. I really do hope to make it back to that part of the world and visit Taipei someday in the near future.

  24. Julia Comil says:

    Really want to visit this place! Great summary

  25. Chelsea Elizabeth says:

    Visiting the temple would be the first thing on my list. Everything looks incredible, very picturesque. Night markets would be a firm favourite with me

  26. Annemarie LeBlanc says:

    I have not only visited Taiwan, but I lived there for two years. The island is tiny, you can explore the whole island in a day or two. I loved the Beitou Hot Springs. You should have visited Dan Shui. The fisherman’s wharf there is amazing!

    • EG III says:

      That’s awesome that you lived there. Yes, it’s super tiny (about the size of California) and transportation makes getting around very easy as you say. I’ll have to make sure Dan Shui is on the list for the next visit!

  27. Our Family World says:

    I always love going to night markets when I visit other places. This one in Taipei looks really busy! If I would have a chance to go there, I sure would love to take a relaxing dip in those hot springs! Thanks for sharing photos of your adventure.

  28. Emman Damian says:

    I love temple visits in Taipei! It’s funny you saw some “uniquely” carved soaps. Haha! I was just in Taipei last night on my way to Frankfurt.

  29. soonjoo says:

    The night market sounds really fun! I love how you get enjoy local food and experience various interesting eater in Taiwan. I’ve been into hiking and those view look unreal! It looks easy hike not to difficult. I didn’t know the fastest elevator is in Taiwan!!! Crazy!! Love the hot springs! Love your photos!!

    • EG III says:

      I found out about that elevator years ago when I was there and I was very surprise to see that it still maintains the number 1 spot!

  30. Over recent years, I have heard so much about Taiwan but still haven’t been there yet. I really enjoyed this post and it has convinced me even more that I must visit this wonderful country. Being someone who loves nature, the hike and the Beitou Hot Springs certainly are of great interest – although the culture including temples and night markets I find fascinating. Great post and lovely photos.

    • EG III says:

      Thank you. Hopefully it has moved up on your travel priority list as well because, judging from your likes, it will have a bit of everything for you!

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