Every beginning of the year, most conversations will revolve around traveling. Although there are many things to do and eat in Penang, it is always fun to explore brand new places. In recent news, Starlux Airlines Malaysia had announced that there will be Penang-Taipei direct flights. Commencing on 23rd January 2020, the new flight will consist of 180 economy class, and 8 business class. Are you ready to visit Taipei?
Fun Things To Do In Taipei
1. Check out the observatory deck at Taipei 101
When you are in Taipei, it is hard to miss out on the supertall skyscraper. With 101 floors in total, there are many things to do within the building. Starting from the lower ground floor, check out the fancy food court with CNN recommended kiosks. Head up for some retail therapy with notable brands! Don’t forget to catch a birds-eye-view from the observatory deck, too! So many floors to uncover, so little time.
2. Feast on Michelin-recommended* stalls at Shilin Night Market
Without a doubt, Shilin Night Market is one of the most famous spots in Taipei. This spot offers an array of street food that you must try at least once in your life. Find different treats including but not limited to XXL fried chicken, sweet potato balls, oyster noodles*, sugar-coated strawberries, and even smelly tofu! Wash it down with a cup of bubble tea from a local brand.
3. Go hiking at Elephant Mountain
With so many mountains scattered around Taiwan, it is a must to participate in the locals’ favourite activity. One of the easiest spots to hike is Elephant Mountain. Taking less than 30 minutes to reach the summit, this hiking route promises an amazing view of Taipei 101 and its surroundings. It is an easy hike, so don’t worry about bringing your hiking shoes! Sneakers are good to go!
4. Visit the bustling Shi-Men Ting
Sure, Taipei 101 has many luxurious brands. But, what if you’re looking for something more affordable? Shi-Men Ting is the best stop. In this location, you will find some common brands such as H&M, and Dr. Martens. Not to worry, you will find some local brands, too. It also offers rows and rows of super fun claw machines. Pst, it is the only spot that you will get your hands on Gold Foil Brown Sugar Boba Milk from Xing Fu Tang.
5. Day trip to Jiufen, the spot that inspired Spirited Away
How about a little bit of the countryside? Here’s why you need to visit the picturesque Jiufen. Famous Japanese animation, Spirited Away, drew some inspiration for this particular spot. Walking through the old streets of Jiufen will definitely remind you of the food kiosks surrounding the bathhouse. Of course, the bathhouse was inspired by A-MEI Tea House from the same location.
6. And then, make your way to Shifen for floating lanterns
Another fun activity to do in Taiwan is writing all your hopes and dreams on a colour lantern, and watch it float. Many tourists flock to Shifen to experience it. The lanterns are available in different colours, and each colour has its representation. As an example, pink can stand for love! Watch out, as you will be standing in the middle of the train tracks whilst letting your lantern go!
7. Visit Xia Hai Temple to find for your true love
In this era, we will be using Tinder, and other dating apps to find love. But, does it work? Rumour has it that Yue Lao, or “Love God”, is very powerful. In fact, some said that Sarah Jessica Parker even visited this particular temple. Find your true love by introducing yourself, and mentioning the attributes in the person you are looking for. When the prayers are successful, people will offer wedding cookies to Yue Lao.
8. Stroll along Tamsui Fisherman’s Wharf
Believe it or not, but Taipei is known for its mesmerising sunsets. Along the busy Tamsui’s Fisherman Wharf, there are carnival games, and traditional snacks to try out. You will also find locals spending their afternoons having picnics on the field! Head in to find a night market, packed with famous dishes, including A-gei noodles, and fishballs with fillings. So good!
9. Ride on 4.3 kilometers long gondola at MaoKong
If hiking isn’t your kind of activity, how about riding a glass floor gondola? Apart from 4.3 kilometers long gondola rides, MaoKong is notable for its tea houses. With oolong leaves being one of its specialty, you will be able to try to brew your very own teapot with tea sets! It is really fun to be able to make it from scratch. Of course, the view from MaoKong is undeniably beautiful with untouched scenes.
10. Explore the old streets of Taipei
Last but not least, do as the locals do in Taipei. Taipei consists of many old streets that are selling herbs, and spices! One old street nearing Xia Hai Temple has intricate architecture. Rows and rows of shophouses offer different types of treats to bring home. Feeling thirsty? You can always stop by some bubble tea shops here, too! This is less of a tourist attraction and more of an understanding of the lifestyle of the locals.
There are so many more things to discover!
Taipei is definitely not short of amazing things to do, and interesting local food to try! It is a must-visit for foodies, especially the night markets! Although there is already a direct flight by China Airlines from Penang to Taipei, we are excited that Starlux Airlines are starting this route. Will you be heading to Taipei with friends and family in 2020? Let us know in the comments!
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