Updated: Aug 17, 2018
How Taiwan is not listed one of the top places to visit in Asia, blows my mind. This was my first adventure in Asia, and I was expecting something completely different from everything I had experienced. I was expecting it to be fast paced, millions of people rushing to and from work at all hours of the day and overall chaos. Except this was not a trip to China or Japan, Taipei was slow paced, early mornings were not a thing (which was horrible when trying to find a coffee shop open before 9:30am) with the most hard working, humble and helpful people I’ve ever met.
The one thing you could find at all hours of the day, was their delicious street food. Taipei had the most flavourful, tasty food I’ve ever had and some of the best items could be found at their night markets. A couple of the best night markets I had gone to were Raohe and Tonghua, apparently these are the hot spots where all the locals go to hang out every night. While at the market you MUST try the oyster omelet, dumplings, braised pork rice, pigs blood rice pudding, shaved ice cream, pineapple cake and of course the BUBBLE TEA! Things to AVOID; its called... Stinky Tofu and boy does it live up to its name. Although, it is very hard to avoid because the moment you are within 10ft of a stand, the smell goes up your nose and dies. What’s even worse is that it taste exactly how it smells… I unfortunately found out the hard way.
Something that really stood out during my stay, was how safe i felt. I was walking the streets at 1am by myself and didn't feel the need to check over my shoulder every couple of minutes. It was refreshing to be in a country like Taiwan, where everyone obeys the rules, they sincerely enjoy helping people and by far the cleanest city i have ever been to.
Places you MUST check out while there:
Elephant Mountain - The hike up was rough, i suggest wearing next to nothing because you'll be drenched when you reach the top, but the view is worth every second of it.
Longshan Temple - One of the best temples i had seen while visiting Taipei, which was full of an entire family of ancient Gods. When entering you will receive incense, which you then light up and take to each deities and pray for something you wish to have.
Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall - No words can describe just how breathtaking this memorial ground is.
Modern Toilet - This place is perfect for a fun night out, where literally EVERYTHING is a toilet. Just make sure you don't have a weak stomach, some of the dishes can be disturbing LOL.
Maokong Gondola - Take the Gondola with the glass bottom up the mountain, and when you reach the top there will be a cute little cafe with tea and ice cream.