Talking about Taipei can be a bit confusing to people who aren’t from Taiwan, or are at least somewhat familiar with the country. The name Taipei can refer to the city proper as well as a greater metropolitan area of just over seven million people.
In a city and region that populous, it should come as no shock that there is a lot to do and a lot to see. Taipei City has endless options for people who spend a lifetime there, let alone a few days in town on a trip. It’s the kind of place you’ll want to go back to again and again.
Treasure Hill Artists Village
This community in the city has gone through a lot of changes over the years. It was an illegal settlement founded in the 1940s. Then, the Taipei City Government redeveloped it, establishing an artists enclave called Treasure Hill Artists Village.
It’s home to both local and international artists who work in a variety of genres. Visitors can explore the community, and view the various small galleries. Just keep in mind that some of them are also in people’s homes, so be respectful of any and all signage.
Hit up a Taipei quick-fry restaurant
Taipei is filled with incredible places to eat. More than a few of them have Michelin stars and highly respected menus. But you can’t say you’ve eaten in Taipei unless you hit up a kuai chao, or quick-fry, restaurant. They are a key Taipei experience.
These street side restaurants are great places to relax with a local beer while sampling their menus. They generally specialize in deep fried seafood, but there’s more to them than that. Pin Xian is an incredibly popular quick-fry joint, both with locals and tourists.
Yangmingshan National Park
Taiwan might be an island but it still has some incredible National Parks. Yangmingshan National Park is located between Taipei City and New Taipei City, and is actually a surprisingly short bus ride from the former.
Yangmingshan is one of Taiwan’s most popular and beautiful parks. It has lush green hills filled with life while other areas have steam vents and sulfur deposits. Datun Nature Park within Yangmingshan offers its own selection of experiences.
Explore Dihua Street
Built in the 1850s, the area now known as Dihua Street has become a key economic center in the city. Some of its architecture has been around since the 1600s, so its historic importance and beauty cannot be understated.
Products that flow through Dihua include tea, fabric, medicinal herbs and much more. There’s also a lot of interesting food to choose from. Walking tours are great year round, but you have to be there during Chinese New Year to see Dihua at its peak busiest.
Stand at the Gates of Old Taipei
In the 1800s, the government turned Taipei into a walled city. When the Japanese took over, they tore down the walls but the gates still stand. There are four in total, though only the North Gate remains in its original condition.
While any of the gates are spectacular, the North Gates should not be missed. They are a special connection to the city’s history, not to mention gorgeous pieces of architecture. The Gates of Old Taipei are symbolic of everything that makes this city amazing.