TAIWAN must have been one of the most visited countries in Asia by Filipinos this year.
One reason, probably, because it remains visa-free. It is one less of a hassle when you want to travel outside the country and you don’t need to pay extra few thousands of pesos just to be allowed an entry.
Another reason is word of mouth.
May pakpak nga ang balita, they would say.
Pero, what makes Taiwan tick?
We listed a few things you might consider doing while you are in Taiwan.
But before that, you must really plan your trip.
After you have booked your flight and hotel (or Airbnb), plot the itinerary, which would save you time and money.
Here’s a few things you could do there:
1. Ride the MRT
The best mode of transportation in Taiwan is train. Kaya pagdating mo pa lang sa Taiwan Taoyuan Airport, bumili na ng MRT card that will get you to places. From the airport, pwede kang mag-MRT lang for the price of NT$150. But you need to buy the card first, which costs NT$100. Don’t worry, the stations are safe and very accessible, and yes the people are helpful and accommodating if you get lost and need directions.
2.Witness the changing of the guards at the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall
It is like paying homage to Taiwan’s hero, Chiang Kai Shek. It is a must to visit the memorial hall and watch the ceremonial changing of the guards. This is one of the many ways to understand its culture and history.
3. Fly a sky lantern
Sending your wishes to high heavens via sky lanterns is one of the coolest things you have to experience when you are in Taiwan. Kaya when you prep your itinerary, list down Pingxi or Shifen Old Street as one of your destinations. Each lantern costs NT$200, pero kung marunong tumawad, you can have it for NT$150.
4. Get ‘spirited away’ in Jiufen
If you have watched and enjoyed Spirited Away, a Japanese anime film, then you will be surprised by what Jiufen could offer. Walk the old street of Jiufen and get amused by a number of tea houses, food stalls that always offer free taste, souvenir shops and a lot more!
5. Looking back at Bopiliao old street
Learn more of their culture and history by going to this well-preserved street and traditional shops built since Qing
6. Experience Taipei 101
Don’t miss to have your photo taken at the tallest building in Taiwan, the Taipei 101. Experience the record breaking high-speed elevator (37 seconds) that will take you to the Taipei 101 Observatory at the 89th to 91st floors, which will show you the city space.
7. Explore the night markets and have a food trip
What is Taiwan without night markets and food trip?
Almost every town and city in Taiwan have their own night markets. Maybe because it is part of the culture that is as old as Tang dynasty. But you may zero in on at least three – Shilin Night Market at No. 101, Jihe Road, Shilin District; the Raohe Night Market in Songshan District, Taipei, and Ximending Night Market.
At Shilin, one of the most popular food that you should not miss is the fried chicken chop, then you can have fruits in a cup, and penis waffle!
You won’t go wrong when you try the stinky tofu and oyster omelette at Raohe. Both Shilin and Raohe are great places to buy your pasalubong, too.
Ximending, on the other hand, is known for its high-end fashion and a bit pricey. You will enjoy here street performances.
And lastly, it’s a sin not to try their milktea or simply tea and their xia long bao!