It may not be the first destination that crosses travelers’ minds when they are thinking of visiting Asia, but Taipei definitely won’t disappoint those who pay a visit — the extremely friendly locals, the mouth-watering foods, the unpretentious cultural scenes, the crazy nights and the unforgettable hangovers afterwards.
Good Cho’s Cafe
Bagels in multiple flavors and homemade sugarless yogurt at Good Cho’s are hearty and healthy. But we aren’t here just for the brunch.
Good Cho’s was a military village built in the 1950s. The historic complex now houses hip music cafés, cool lifestyle stores, flea markets and music gigs regularly.
54 Songqin St, Tuesday to Friday 11:00- 21:30, Weekends 10:00- 18:00
The enormous skyscraper Taipei 101 is only a stone’s throw away from Good Cho’s. However, despite its short-lived glory as the tallest building in the world, Taipei City’s landmark is still impressive. It’s even more so when you are taken to the observatory decks — 89th floor for above ground or the outdoor observatory on 91st floor.
Afterwards, go shopping in Zhongxiao dunhua district. From stylish local boutiques to international names to Taiwan’s celebrity Jay Chou’s fashion store Phantaci, the district is truly a shopper’s heaven.
For minimalists, the nameless store in the alley next to Zara sells quality items at good price.
Bistro Le Pont
Tucked away at the end of Yongkang Street, Bistro Le Pont serves great traditional Taiwanese cuisine with a twist.
This family restaurant appears to be an elegant French bistro at first glance, but it serves authentic goose dishes and condiments at reasonable prices. Both viande d’oie (goose meat) and pâtes de riz avec viande d’oie (rice vermicelli with goose meat) – the menu is in French and Chinese – are delicious with tender texture and savory taste.
But none is as surprisingly good as a simple bowl of rice dripped with goose grease and topped with a handful of deep-fried shallots, echalottes confites.
176 Chaozhou Street, Taipei City, 11:30 – 22:00, around TWD300- 400
After exploring the Yongkang district, take a stroll at Huashan Culture Park. It’s an art and culture venue housing a few exhibition galleries, restaurants and a music house, Legacy. You may want to book a ticket for tonight’s show before the tickets ran out.
Longshang temple is the oldest temple in the city. The façade is colorful and majestic. The structure has been destroyed and rebuilt a few times throughout the years due to earthquakes and wars. However, legend said the status in the temple survived all these disasters.
A short distance away from the oldest temple sits the busiest street Ximending. Snack on popcorn chicken and rub shoulders with passersby everywhere.
Shilin Night Market
Who will settle for a sit-down meal for dinner if you can have ten delicious mini meals in one night?
Taipei is famous for its “small eats” culture. The Shilin night market is one of the biggest night markets for small eats lover.
Try the oyster omelet, black pepper pork pocket, flaky scallion pancake, and don’t forget a bowl of luroufan, braised pork rice.
After a fulfilling dinner at Shilin night market, you’ll have the strength to begin your night.
Taipei’s diverse nightlife allows anyone to have a great time. Come see the local band shows at Legacy, the dance floors in the fashionable Room 18 with charming service or the 24-hour eslite bookstore on Tunhua South Road.
*All photos credited to Julia*