Taipei is the capital of Taiwan, also known the Republic of China, and is located off the coast of mainland China’s Fujian province. With the metropolitan area having a population of more than 7 million people, Taipei is also Taiwan’s cultural and economic hub.
The city of Taipei is divided into twelve distinct districts, each with its own style and charm. Altogether, Taipei is an amazing modern city with an innumerable amount of historical attractions, plenty of acclaimed night markets and shopping districts, as well as cultural amenities like coffeehouses, museum and a fantastic nightlife.
Like most tropical destinations, Taipei is suitable for travel all-year round. However, visitors should note that the best time to travel to Taipei is in late October to January when the weather is comfortably cooler and the rainy season has ended.
Getting around Taipei is a breeze as Taipei has an extensive public transportation network. A truly advanced metropolis, you can travel to the different parts of the city by its very efficient MRT system. The transport network also includes railway and high-speed rail. Taxis are also easy to get everywhere in the city, however some taxi drivers may not be able to understand English very well.
Sight seeing in this vibrant city can be quite varied. You will definitely be spoilt for choice with its long list of attractions. Here are just some of the must-visit spots in Taipei:
Whether contemporary architecture is your cup of tea or not, a visit to this modern icon of Taiwan is worthwhile. This skyscraper with a very distinctive bamboo-inspired form was the tallest building in the world when it was completed in 2004. There are recorded voice tours available at the observatory at the top of the building.
National Palace Museum
The Taipei National Place Museum was built in honor of Sun Yat-sen, the founder of the Republic of China. This huge museum houses the largest collection of priceless Chinese antiquities and artwork in the world. Its architecture is also modelled on the traditional Chinese designs of the Forbidden City in Beijing.
Shilin Night Market
Taipei’s largest and most visited night market, the Shilin Night Market operates from 4pm to past midnight and is easily accessible by the MRT. Here you can find a wide array of the famous Taiwanese street food, from oyster omelette to xaio long bao to stinky tofu. Visitors can also find great bargains for clothing, trinkets and souvenirs.
Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall
This hall was built in memory of the father of the nation, Dr. Sun Yat-sen. It contains displays of Sun’s accomplishments as a great Chinese revolutionary. Today, it functions as a venue for various social and cultural activities and exhibitions. It also displays historical relics of Sun’s life and the Xinhua Revolution. The park surrounding the Memorial Hall is named Zhongshan Park, which is also another popular name for Dr. Sun. The park has beautiful gardens, decorative historical walls and outdoor performance areas.
A visit to Taipei would not be complete without a stop at this large and most well-known ancient temple in Taiwan. Entrance to the temple is free, but donations are welcome. Visitors to this temple should also drop by the nearby Huaxi Market to try the famous snake soup or have a fortune telling session.
This bustling pedestrian shopping district is known as the Harajuku of Taipei. It is a very popular destination for tourists for its wide variety of fashion shops, trendy restaurants and bars. Ximending is a youthful entertainment hub that also hosts street performances and exhibitions.
Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport serves the capital city of Taiwan and the northern parts of the country. Located about 40 km west of Taipei, the airport is Taiwan's largest and busiest airport. There are frequent bus services that connect the airport to Taipei. An MRT line is also underway to provide express services that will bring you to the city centre in 35 minutes. Taxis and car rentals are also available.
The city of Taipei is packed with interesting places that visitors need at least a week to see the most popular tourist attractions,
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