14 Reasons We Love Taiwan
Collected by Matt Gibson, AFAR Local Expert
We love Taiwan because it fits a surprisingly exotic array of activities into a tiny area. Mountains, beaches, and cities are all connected by high-speed rail, so within hours of landing a visitor can browse the world’s finest collection of Chinese art in Taipei, bathe in rare mineral mud springs in the south, or stroll among the tea fields in Taiwan’s mountains. Convenience, culture, and low cost all contribute to our love affair with Taiwan.
Taipei 101, No. 7, Section 5, Xinyi Road, Xinyi District, Taipei City, Taiwan 110
Soaring more than 1,600 feet into the air, Taipei 101 is one of the tallest skyscrapers in the world and probably Taipei’s most iconic site. For a small fee, visitors can spend time on the observation deck—a large space that offers a 360-degree...
No. 221, Sec 2, Zhi Shan Rd, Shilin District, Taipei City, Taiwan 111
When Chiang Kai-shek fled mainland China for Taiwan, he took with him many of the treasures that at one time were featured in Beijing’s Palace Museum. Among the items are relics and antiques reflecting 8,000 years of Chinese history. Today the...
No. 211, Guangzhou Street, Wanhua District, Taipei City, Taiwan 10853
Longshan is not Taipei's largest temple, but its unique beauty and proximity to the MRT have made it a very popular one. It's an awesome place to stop by at sunset when the after-work crowd comes to worship. The temple fills with people from all...
Cingshuei Cliff, Taiwan
There is an area of Taiwan, that, in my mind, will always be one of the most beautiful places on Earth. The Cingshui Cliffs, located along the Su-Hua Highway in Hualien – a county in eastern Taiwan – are soul-stirring and breathtaking to behold....
Nantou City, Nantou County, Taiwan 540
One of my favorite Taiwanese foods is the baozi, or simply, bao. Baozi are steamed buns filled with tasty tidbits such as chicken, bean paste, curried meats, pork, vegetables, or custard. You can't eat just one! I love bao so much, I've written...
Alishan Township, Chiayi County, Taiwan 605
Alishan is likely the most famous, and most visited, mountain because of the incomparable tea grown there, its relatively easy access from major cities, and its association with the historic Taiwan Railroad. The best way to see Alishan is to hike...
No. 167-3號, Gangdong Road, Wanli District, New Taipei City, Taiwan 207
Yehliu is a cape northeast of Taipei City with a geopark featuring bizarre hoodoo stones jutting up out of the smooth brown stone surface that were formed by the shearing of wind and water. It looks like the surface of an alien planet. The...
The Guanziling Hot Springs (關子嶺) are located in the foothills of the mountains of Taiwan, about 70 km northeast of Tainan City. These hot springs produce a fine, silty mud which is found in only three places in the world. It's said to be...
Liuqiu, Liuqiu Township, Pingtung County, Taiwan 929
This west-facing beach may appear to be white sand at a glance, but your bare feet will quickly discover that it's made of corse shards of coral, so watch your step. Rough edges aside, this beach is seldom visited (some people may have been known...
Sun Moon Lake National Scenic Area, Nantou County, Taiwan
Sun Moon Lake is Taiwan's largest fresh water lake. When I lived in Nantou County, central Taiwan, I would often ride my scooter to Sun Moon Lake for a bit of fresh air and reflection. One day I drove to the lake and traveled up a hill to the...
No. 194號, Section 2, Xinyi Road, Da’an District, Taipei City, Taiwan 106
The art of making the perfect xiao long bao, or soup dumpling, is something the Taiwanese take very, very seriously. Maybe that’s why so many food experts say that the best dumplings in the world can be found in Taipei at the classic restaurant...
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