November 22-25 and December 11-13, 2018
Since we were flying to and from Taiwan through Taipei, we visited the city twice. Both stays were just for two or three nights. Despite I can say only good things about the city. To be frank, it is missing a certain charm for me. On the other hand, it is a nice place with a couple of interesting highlights as well as various places to eat, drink and shop. It is clean, full of life and with the damn good transport system.
We had quite a few things to visit on our list. Starting with Liberty Square and National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall and museum just below it that we’ve found very interesting and educating. We also witnessed Falun Gong group exercise happening on the square. Interesting experience, and if nothing else, followers dressed in colourful outfits filling the whole square were picture perfect. Another must do for us was the Taipei 101 tower. We even found a deal on Klook for 460 TWD vs standard 600 TWD. Not bad, and especially trip by the fastest elevator in the world was something to remember. But better to be prepared for a queue.
Old temple Lungshan shaded by blocks of tall buildings was too crowded, too far from a place for meditating or praying. But we did not plan that anyway 🙂 Cultural, shopping and cafe centre Huashan 1914 Creative Park with restored old houses could be good for relaxing, but we found it overrated. Also, I probably should not say that to not to be considered a barbarian. However, the great or the best collection of Chinese art and historical artefacts was a bit boring. Maybe it was because of the outdated building and the presentation, but it was far beyond what we expected after what we read.
For some reason, we found many precisely the same things in 7-eleven more expensive than in Japan. Roughly by 20%. Of course, this does not apply to street food. Variety is plentiful, quality and taste excellent and price low almost as in China. We also wanted to sit outside in a bar or a restaurant, have a beer as we are used to have at home in Europe. We were thinking about Red House Square. Unfortunately, to our surprise, any beer was about 8 USD, and all places were mostly empty at 8 pm. So we went to the cinema instead. I guess it was Bohemian Rhapsody. The next day, on Spotify I downloaded Queen platinum collection 🙂
Read more: Splashed in Hong Kong
The first nights in Taipei we slept in Backpackers Hostel Changchun, conveniently located in a good quarter, not so far from the metro station and just above the well-supplied supermarket. Clean place with a nice common room (3,212 TWD for a tiny twin room with bunk bed). Last two night we accommodated ourselves next to the main station to be on the direct line to the airport. Space Inn was cool, and you felt like in a spaceship. It was not brand new so you could little bit see its age and still perfect. (348 TWD for six-bed dorm pp)