Our Taipei Top Ten

Mention Taipei and most gay travellers will immediately think of its colourful gay scene and large Pride festival.

But there is so much more to see and do. The amazing Night Markets, huge shopping malls and yummy food are only part of the story, too.

Taipei is often missed by travellers who opt for cities with more familiar names such as Hong Kong, Tokyo or Bangkok. This really is a shame because Taipei is as vibrant as any other Asian capital with much to do and see. And, unlike some of its competitors, Taipei can offer a top-notch transportation system with clean, air-conditioned subways that makes the city easy to explore.

Here is our top ten list of favourite things to do and see in this cosmopolitan city:

 

National Palace Museum

The National Palace Museum has a excellent collection of Chinese historical artefacts, and is a great place for first-time tourists to gain and understanding of Taiwanese culture and history. Located in Shilin district. Admission NTD160.

 

Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall

Named after the former Taiwan president Chiang Kai-shek, this is Taipei’s main venues for the performing arts – the National Theatre and National Opera House. It is also a recreational park for people to exercise and relax. Great place for photos. Admission is free.

 

Taipei 101

One of the world’s tallest buildings, it is home to numerous bars and restaurants, a health club, cinema and designer boutiques. Pay NTD 500 and you can go to the 89th to 91st floor to get a bird’s eye view of Taipei.

 

Taipei Zoo

Ninety hectares of exhibition buildings and outdoor areas, including the Asian Tropical Rain-forest Animal Area, the Desert Animal Area, the Australian Animal Area, the African Animal Area, Bird World and the Temperate Zone Animal Area. Don’t miss the giant panda’s. It’s a public park so visitors only pay NTD 20 to enter.

 

Maokong Gondola

From Taipei  Zoo take the gondola to Maokong. Explore this historic areas temples, tea-shops and street stalls that offer traditional Chinese tea and food.

 

Beitou Hot Springs

A trip to Taipei is never complete without visiting a hot spring. Head to Beitou District and choose from over 30 resorts. The Beitou Museum features over 5,000 artefacts of traditional folk art and embroideries.

 

Longshan Temple

The city’s famous Taoist temple. Great place to visit for photos. Admission is free.

 

Night Markets

The Night Market is one of Taipei’s icons. Shilin Night Market is the most famous and great for tourists, with stalls selling souvenir items to apparels and plenty of excellent Taiwanese food. The prices in most shops are not fixed so haggling is a useful skill here. Open until Midnight.

 

Ximending

Vibrant shopping and entertainment district.

 

Elephant Mountain Hiking Trail

A relatively short (600-metre walk) walk up steep steps leads to a forested hill. You are rewarded with amazing city views. Go early morning or at sunset.

26-07-2014 by Tod TGA   |   More: Gay Taipei