Last week, we went on a short trip to Taiwan to see the sights and eat all of their food. All of it. Unsurprisingly, it turns out you can’t eat an entire country’s food supply in just a few days, but we did our best and it was a fun trip nonetheless. Because Taiwan is a big place, we mainly stayed in Taipei like the shameless tourists we are. And here are our first impressions!
Japanese influences everywhere!
Taiwan used to be a Japanese colony for fifty years between 1895 and 1945, and you can still see the Japanese influence in modern-day Taiwan. When you look outside, some places look more Japanese than Chinese. You can find an abundance of Japanese restaurants in Taipei, as well as Japanese fashion, games and anime. A little fun fact: just like their Japanese counterparts, Taiwanese garbage trucks play music as they drive by, like ice cream vans that sell only disappointment.
Food is tasty and cheap
You can find good food everywhere in Taipei, and it’s incredibly affordable – much more so than it is in Hong Kong. Walking down the street, you can see people at food stalls working hard to keep up with the demand of piping hot, delicious buns and dumplings. Need something to wash down all that pork you’ve been stuffing down your throat? There’s a convenience store (7-Eleven, Family Mart) a minute’s walk away, wherever you are.
Traffic rules are only suggestions
As a pedestrian, be sure to watch both ways before crossing the street like you were taught as a kid – yes, you legally have the right of way on that zebra crossing, but no, that taxi driver won’t agree with you. If there are traffic lights, be prepared for a long wait in the blistering sun. But once it turns green, the sassy little green light guy makes up for all of it!
The views are magnificent
When you get out of the city, you get to experience some breathtaking views. You can see shadows of the clouds passing over far away green mountains and enjoy the peace and quiet you won’t find in the city. But even in the heart of bustling Taipei amazing views are waiting for you: right at the top of skyscraper Taipei 101.
Book that ticket and fly your butt over to Taiwan if you have the chance. You won’t be disappointed!