Taipei (officially named Taipei City) is Taiwan’s bustling capital city home to mouthwatering street food and fine dining, architectural marvels, and a dynamic nightlife replete with bars and night markets. As one of the world’s top tourist destinations, Taipei is brimming with phenomenal restaurants and attractions. Here are 8 things to experience in Taipei:
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What to Do in Taipei
1. Taste world-renowned dumplings at Din Tai Fung
The original Din Tai Fung opened its doors in Taipei decades ago and has since become an international sensation. With branches popping up in numerous countries such as the United States, Dubai, and Japan, Din Tai Fung proves that its famous, expertly-crafted xiaolongbao, a kind of steamed dumpling traditionally filled with pork and soup, is irresistibly scrumptious. Additionally, Din Tai Fung serves several different savory fried rice and noodle dishes.
Address: No. 194, Sec. 2, Xinyi Rd., Taipei City, Taiwan
2. Hike on the Elephant Mountain Trail
Described as “short yet steep,” the Elephant Mountain Trail is an ideal activity for hikers of all ages. The trail is well-paved and has many benches along the way for quick rest stops. The top of Elephant Mountain boasts a stunning view of the Taipei cityscape which includes Taipei 101, the city’s landmark skyscraper.
Address: Lane 150, Songren Rd., Xinyi District, Taipei City, Taiwan
3. Hang out at Huashan 1914 Creative Park
As its name implies, Huashan 1914 Creative Park embraces imagination and the arts. Popular with locals, this park features art exhibits, live music performances, and a weekend flea market. Huashan 1914 Creative Park is a unique space where visitors can appreciate art and culture by taking a stroll or enjoying a lovely picnic.
Address: No. 1, Section 1, Bade Rd, Zhong Zhen District, Taipei City, Taiwan
4. Shop and eat at Shilin Night Market
Arguably the most renowned and largest night market in Taipei, Shilin Night Market is the go-to place to experience a variety of local food and shops. This night market is divided into two distinct sections: one part is replete with food stalls and vendors while the other offers stores selling goods like clothing, souvenirs, and much more. Night owls and foodies with an affinity for midnight snacks would especially feel at home at Shilin Night Market.
Address: No. 101, Jihe Rd, Shilin District, Taipei City, Taiwan
5. Go fishing for shrimp
Nearby Shilin Night Market are a number of indoor shrimp pools where visitors can pay a fee to catch shrimp as well as cook and eat them on-site. The shrimp fishing process is quite simple: patrons pay for bait and a rod rental; they then sit around a pool and wait for shrimp to take the bait; and finally, they round up their catch and grill them. It’s an intriguing and fun Taiwanese activity for shellfish lovers.
Address: Various locations
6. Explore the city via bike with YouBike
With over 100 stations located throughout the city, the bike sharing system YouBike allows travelers and locals to easily and conveniently rent a bike. Using only an EasyCard, Taiwan’s electronic money system, and a Taiwanese phone number that can be obtained via an affordable SIM card, patrons can rent a bike through YouBike. Since the initial 30 minutes are free of charge, YouBike gives an inexpensive alternative mode of transport to travel short distances.
Address: Various locations
7. Dine at restroom-themed eatery Modern Toilet
Modern Toilet is a novelty restaurant inspired by the diversity and utility of toilets. At Modern Toilet, you can expect décor and serving bowls to be shaped like urinals and squat toilets. Additionally, the chairs are real toilets that are no longer functioning. As for the food, Modern Toilet’s extensive offerings include hot pot soup, curry, and shave ice dessert.
Address: 2F, No.50-7 Xining South Road, Taipei City, Taiwan
8. Visit the historic Longshan Temple
Built in 1738 by immigrants from Fujian, Longshan Temple underwent several reconstructions after surviving natural disasters and a bombing during World War II. As an immensely significant site honoring the Chinese folk religion, this temple attracts Taiwanese worshippers from all over the country. Moreover, even non-religious individuals are drawn to the temple as it boasts impressive architecture and an unparalleled ambiance.
Address: No. 211, Guangzhou St, Wanhua District, Taipei City, Taiwan
This article was written by Justina Tran.