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Taipei, the vivacious capital city of Taiwan, is a lively, free-spirited, and multi-faceted metropolis. The city remains alive after five, with a full range of activities to tempt business working travelers.
Don’t leave this city without sampling its legendary street food! To find out where to stay in the city, see this guide to the best hotels and neighborhoods in Taipei.
How to Get to Taipei
It takes 35 minutes by MRT or 1 hour by car to reach central Taipei from Taoyuan International Airport.
The Taipei MRT is one of the best metro systems in the world and the pride of Taipei. It is extremely clean, air-conditioned, comes frequently, and goes everywhere in the city. Pick up an EasyCard to making swiping in and out even easier.
Taxis are also plentiful and cheap in Taipei, and most drivers speak at least basic English.
Driving in Taipei is not easy and it is notoriously difficult to find parking anywhere, so I strongly advise against renting a care in the city.
Where to Eat in Taipei
Gordon Biersch // A high quality American-style food chain with excellent craft beer brewed in house.
Din Tai Fung // Taiwan’s most famous restaurant, specializing in Shanghai-style xiaolongbao (soup dumplings). A top choice among visitors.
Shilin Night Market // Taipei’s largest and most famous night market, in a city that is famed for its night markets. Head there right at 5:00 when it opens to beat the intense later evening crowds.
Le Palais // Taipei’s only restaurant to be awarded three Michelin stars, specializing in Cantonese cuisine and located in Palais de Chine Hotel.
RAW // Contemporary cuisine with innovative use of local ingredients by internationally acclaimed Taiwanese chef André Chiang.
Toasteria // A laid-back eatery with an extensive menu covering Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine, and claiming to serve a wider range of panini than anywhere on Earth. The cocktails are great too!
Things to See in Taipei
Taipei 101 Observatory // Watch the city transform into night mode from the 89th-floor observatory at Taipei, once the world’s tallest building (open to 10 PM)
Elephant Mountain // If you prefer to hike for a view, the trail up Elephant Mountain beside Taipei 101 offers the best sunset views in the city.
Night Markets // Taipei is famous for its night markets; they get going around 5 and last until midnight. The top 5 are Shilin, Raohe, Tonghua, Ningxia, and Huaxi.
CKS Memorial Hall // See the city’s most famous historical monument lit up at night.
Speakeasy-style cocktail bars // For creative cocktails in “secret” locations, seek out Ounce, Alchemy, or movie theater-themed Hankou 60.
Beitou Hot Spring // Head to the city’s only hot spring village for an evening soak. Try Beitou Public Hot Spring (until 10 PM), or for a soak in a private room, try one of the many spa hotels (24 hours).
Taipei is an extremely safe city, even at night. You can wander in any neighborhood at any hour, evening as a solo female visitor. 7-Elevens are on every corner and serve alcohol, so one favorite pastime of local expats is to grab a beer from the corner store and explore the city on foot.
Also check out:
- Sharjah, UAE After 5:00 pm
- Ras Al Khaimah, UAE After 5:00 pm
- Osaka, Japan After 5:00 pm
- Rishikesh, India After 5:00 pm
- George Town, Penang After 5:00 pm
- Chiang Mai, Thailand After 5:00 pm