Travel Itinerary: Taipei in two days 2016June 08, 2016
Like Hong Kong or Thailand, Taiwan is the kind of country that you can always fall back to when you want culture, nature and food. I had the good fortune to visit my favourite food city, Taipei, for the third time a month ago. This time round I also visited Hualien for their amazing Teroko Gorge (magnificent rock and stone formations cut by water) and 7-star Beach (pebbles, not sand), and did a day trip to Taichung City (cafes every 10 steps!) both via trains. I had an awesome time in both.
We are however, here to talk about Taipei City. I've done a post about some of the food that I had the previous time, and this time round I went back for more! In this post I'll do a quick and dirty travel itinerary for those who will be planning to visit Taipei for a few days.
First, some logistics.
1. DataGet your tourist sim card from the Taipei Taoyuan Airport via one of the counters. Otherwise, you will have to find a telco shop such as Chunghwa Telecom to get a 3 or 5 day SIM card with data. It is relatively inexpensive at NT300 (or SS12.60) for 3 days of unlimited data!
2. Getting aroundFrom Taoyuan International Airport you can either take a city shuttle bus, or be like us and order a UberX taxi, because you don't really want to be squeezing on the bus after a long flight with all your luggages. Taking the metro when you are in the city will be the most convenient, as most places are situated around the stations! Having the cashless metro/bus card will be helpful if you want to venture around via buses. For further locations for more than one person you can also take UberX, which I find to be very helpful when I was in Taichung. View the hi-res English Metro Map here.
3. Where to stayI stayed at a hotel (Diary of Taipei Hotel) near the massive Taipei Main Station this time, as well as a hostel (Mr Lobster's Secret Den Hostel) just further south. Had my Rosemary Pasta, which was within walking distance from the hostel! There's also this fried donut coated with milk powder nearby, which was delish. I find that it is a great location to be at -- the hostel was within walking distance to the Taipei West Bus Station, which you can take an airport shuttle to Taoyuan International Airport within 1 hour for just NT125 (S$5.30). More info here.
Next, where to go for food!1. Ximending
The most happening and legit area for themed cafes and street food plus shopping would be Ximending, which is also where the famous Ah Zhong Mee Sua is at. You MUST go there for a small bowl, as a symbolic start to your food journey in Taipei. After that, hop over to Wuchang Street Section 2 Lane 50 where Prince Cheese Potato, have a mountain pig Taiwan sausage and a cup of 50 Lan Milk Tea with Pearls. That is the 4 things you need to have there!
The most famous food street in Taipei, this where the original Din Tai Fung flagship is at, just near Kao Chi (another famous establishment) where you'll see tourists queueing. On the street you can find so many different stalls, but I was told to check out the Lu Rou Fan from 喫飯食堂 (just pork with lard on rice for NT50, S$2.75) as well as 8% Ice for its gelato (very smooth and creamy!).
If you also have time, check out the hip and youth centric "Dong Qu" East Shopping District Area (Metro Stop Zhongxiao Dunhua) for the shopping, with tonnes of boutique shops like our Haji Lane. That's also where you can digest your food before you do more eating at the night market!
Check out Taipei 101 if you are a first-timer to the city, and maybe go up to the tower for a panoramic view, though I think the best is if you just walk around and explore on foot! I especially like the Studio Ghibli shop that is near Taipei 101.
That's it for my Taipei travel itinerary this time round! Hope this helps :)