[TAIWAN] TAIPEI TRAVEL GUIDE – Transportation, Tips, Must Visit, etc

Ni hao Taiwan! It feels good to be back after our 2015 trip to Taiwan. Actually me and Mr. Jajan have planned to return to Taiwan these last 2 years but due to work schedule we couldn’t make it happen until now, June 2019.

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June 2019 trip was very memorable filled with lots of good food and interesting places. AnakJajan have soooo many amazing things to share specially in Taipei. Let’s start with the basic things first: Visa, Flight, Internet, etc.

Ximending

can you spot my bubble milk tea inspired dress?


VISA

It’s getting easier to travel to Taiwan since they have Online Application option applicable to citizens of India, Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. You can check following link for details https://www.roc-taiwan.org/my_en/post/2504.html 



FLIGHT

Some of you asked us if there’s direct flight from Jakarta to Taipei, the answer is Yes! We used China Airlines and it was really convenient, it took us around 5hours and 30minutes to Taipei.



LANGUAGE

Another most asked question is how to communicate? Most of the locals we met are able to communicate in English, just KEEP THE ENGLISH SIMPLE to make the communication easier.

For example:
✅1. No spicy 🙅🏻🙅🏻‍♂️
❌2. I don’t think I can handle spicy food, can you please make the food not spicy?
The 1st version is 100% better, keep it simple, keep it short.

Other than that, you can use Google Translate app or body language to communicate, no need to get nervous even if you cannot speak Chinese 🙂

Many restaurants or cafes provide English menu. Public transportation such as bus & MRT also provide information and announcement in English.



APP

Google Map app works really well in Taiwan. Don’t forget to install Google Translate so you don’t get lost in translation.



INTERNET

While Free WI-FI is provided at cafes or public area, it’s more convenient to have your own internet connection specially if you travel by yourself since you will need it for Google Map and Google Translate.

Me and Mr. Jajan used tourist Sim Card, you can buy it at the airport or minimart such as 7-ELEVEN (make sure to bring your passport & visa and show it when purchasing tourist sim card).

Simcard & EasyCard


TRANSPORTATION

Public transportation such as bus and MRT are very easy and convenient to use. It’s better to purchase EasyCard or local calls it Yoyoca (you can buy it at 7-ELEVEN). It’s a kind of e-money card where you can top up some balance and use it for public transportation or shopping.

Besides that, there are taxi and Uber as well. AnakJajan find Uber to be very convenient especially if you cannot speak Chinese since you don’t need to tell the driver your destination as they can see it on the map, plus it’s relatively cheaper than taxi.



HOTEL

We stayed at The Howard Plaza Hotel Taipei in Da’an District. It’s located strategically near Zhongxiao Fuxing Station (blue line) and Daan Station (red line) with a few convenient stores nearby.

The hotel room is very spacious with comfortable bed. AnakJajan learned that the hotel is Moslem friendly with Moslem prayer equipment provided and also in-room dining option with Halal certification.





HALAL FOOD

One of the most asked questions, is there any Halal food in Taipei? The answer is yes, not only in Taipei, but all over Taiwan. You can check following link for complete Halal food directory in Taiwan https://www.taiwan.net.my/id/dining



ITINERARY

Day 1 – Dragon Boat Festival
Dragon Boat Festival means the official start of summer. Locals usually celebrate it with Dragon Boat Festival competition and also Zongzi or traditional wrapped glutinous rice or we Indonesian called Bakcang.


We were lucky to arrive in Taipei during the festival so we headed to Dajia Riverside Park for a quick look of the festive event.

Day 1 – Ice Monster 永康店
One of the most popular ice dessert in town that makes a perfect summer treat, ICE MONSTER!! What makes it different is the ice itself. They use flavored ice and then shaved in into snow like dessert complete with various toppings.

 

We got Bubble Milk Tea, Mango, and Unicorn flavors. All of them are yummy but for us the ultimate winner would be Mango with big chunks of sweet mango and mango sorbet. It’s best for sharing since the portion is quite big.


Day 1 – Taipei Sightseeing Bus
After having dessert, we took sightseeing double decker bus, where we can hop on and off to all Taipei’s top attractions all in one day conveniently. The outdoor area on second floor offers the best city view although it can be quite hot on summer 😀


Day 1 – Taipei 101
One of the most iconic building in Taipei is easily Taipei 101, finally we had our chance to visit the observatory and got our bucket list checked!

The admission fee for Taipei 101 observatory is NTD 600/ person for adult where you can visit wind damper area on 88th floor, indoor observatory on 89th floor, and outdoor observatory platform on 91st floor (only open when the situation/ weather permits).

Make sure to visit the observatory on sunny day with clear skies for best view. The city view from Taipei 101 is very mesmerizing, everything looks like miniature.

 

We love the fact that some buildings around Taipei 101 are beautifully design with unique shape when you see it from the observatory for example rose shaped garden, or even laptop shaped roof.

Day 1 – Ximending
Ximending a very popular and busy shopping and eating district in Taipei. It’s a MUST VISIT for anyone who loves to eat and shop.

It’s as busy as Seoul’s Myeong-dong or Tokyo’s Shibuya. Bubble tea? Street food? Souvenir? Cafe? Restaurant? Fashion? You can find it all here.

 

Day 1 – Braised Beef Soup Noodle 清真黃牛肉麵館
Located near Ximending, this is one of many restaurants in Taipei with Halal certification. Their signature dish is Braised Beef Soup Noodle, one of Taiwan’s popular local dishes.

The noodle tastes pretty enjoyable with springy noodle and nicely marinated tender beef, AnakJajan highly recommend you the spicy broth with aromatic spices aroma. Fyi, the restaurant provides praying room on the second floor for Moslem customers.


Day 2 – Kuo Yuan Ye Museum of Cake and Pastry
Pineapple cake is one of Taiwan’s popular delicacies. Besides buying it, there are many shops offering DIY Pineapple Cake class where you can learn how to make Pineapple Cake on your own. One of the shops that offers this kind of activity is Kuo Yuan Ye.

Day 2 – Di Hua Street
Di Hua Jie or Di Hua Street is an interesting area to visit with vintage old school vibes. There are many vintage shops and cafes in this nostalgic neighborhood it feels like you’ve traveled back in time.

Day 2 – 福來許珈琲館 Fleisch, Di Hua Street
Located in Di Hua Sreet, there’s a quite and cozy tea house hidden in the busy shopping street. For complete experience, we got the “art of tea” session where we can see tea brewing process and then enjoy it with traditional delicacies. To make the experience more memorable, you can borrow Qipao or traditional Chinese outfit while enjoying the tea.

Day 2 – In Blooom Workshop
Just a few minutes of walking distance from our tea cafe, we joined DIY bag printing class and made ourselves cute looking bag. I got the bubble milk tea design while Mr. Jajan chose shaved ice design.

Day 2 – Longshan Temple
Known as one of largest and oldest temples in Taiwan, it was built in 1738. It is located in the old village part of Taipei, Wanhua District, that explains why the nostalgic vibes around it. Nearby the temple there’s historic walking street called Bopiliao worth checking too.

Day 2 – Shilin Night Market
Taiwan and night market are two inseparable thing. A visit to Taiwan won’t be complete without visiting night market and one of the most famous and largest markets in Taipei is easily Shilin Market.

Here you can find countless of vendors selling food, clothes, souvenirs, etc. Make sure to try the iconic Stinky Tofu, regardless the smell, it tastes actually pretty good! Make sure to try the fried ones for nice crunchy texture topped with sweet and spicy sauce and pickles.

Another must try local delicacy, Oyster Omelette, you can find it at Shilin Food Court area on B1 Floor.

Fyi, in case if you need to put luggage, there’s locker available on B1 floor in front of food court. There are many night market game vendors too, it can be a fun activity to do after eating and shopping.


Day 3 – National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall

This spacious place is known as national monument, landmark and also one of famous tourist attractions in Taipei. It’s the place to go for anyone who’s interested in history.




Day 3 – Eid al-Fitr Celebration in Taipei
Eid al-Fitr Celebration is held annually every year by Taipei government and we got the chance to visit the event this year.

The festive event was held in Daan Forest Park and packed with visitors with many interesting spots to visit such as: Market, Cultural Interactive Experience area, Lecture Section, Stage Show, etc. It was an honor since we had the chance to meet the Mayor of Taipei too.

Day 3 – Xiang Shan Hiking Trail
Saw this famous spot so many times on the tv and finally we had the chance to visit. The hiking trail is famous for its viewing platform with picturesque views of Taipei’s skyline.

It took us around 30 minutes to climb the stairs and it didn’t dissapoint, we were rewarded with amazing Taipei city view including the iconic Taipei 101. Fyi the entrance fee is free.


Thank you for reading, MORE TRAVEL GUIDES are coming soon. We’ll share complete Must Visit & Must Eat list on our blog SOON, stay tuned.

Check link below for more travel post about Taiwan https://anakjajan.com/category/location/taiwan-location/

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