Don’t stay home, explore Taiwan!
I don’t know a lot of people who went on holiday to Taiwan. Taiwan itself is already quite an unseen country, without a lot of tourism. Very soon after arriving you have a feeling of the authentic Taiwanese lifestyle and you will immediately be absorbed by the culture.
Normally I would never tell something about the capital of the country since it is usually quite touristy, but as I explained before not a lot of people are familiar with this country. As in every Asian country, the traffic is a big chaos. Even whole families are driving on one scooter. Astonishingly enough I saw no accidents at all.
Every 5 meters there are food stands with all kinds of traditional food. Don’t be scared, but try some things (if it does not look too scary)! If you go to Taipei, there is no escape from the local life.
A Taipei highlight you should not miss is the local karaoke scene. On every street you can find an “MTV”, which is where the locals meet up, have drinks and sing their favourite song. They would sure love your performance of a classic song!
Alishan is a small primitive local Taiwanese mountain village. It is not far form Taipei as the crow flies but you have to take a flight of 1,5 hours to reach the village since the mountain peaks are so high. Otherwise it will take days to drive there. This village has a beautiful sunset; you have to leave at 5.00 AM to see the sunset at 5.30 AM which is really astonishing. And on the way back the monkeys are starting to wake up. You can feed them, but watch them since they can be naughty sometimes. After that you can consume a typical Taiwanese breakfast, with rice, rice and rice. If you are not accustomed to this food yet there is a Starbucks, so don’t be afraid.
Alishan forest railway
When you are at Alishan, you can take the Alishan forest railway back to Chayi. From there you can go everywhere by public transport. The forest railway is one of the oldest trains in the world, in this trip you pass different climate zones. First you see a temperate climate, then a sub-tropical and at last the tropical climate, very impressive to see 3 different climates all on one mountain. You can not miss this and you have to go back to civilization anyways, so instead of a taxi enjoy this awesome trip!
The last place you can’t skip when you are in Taiwan is the Yeliou national park, it is not a normal national park but one with eroded rock pieces. You can find 4 types of erosion in the rocks, this is very exceptional. It is located at the east China’s sea so the view is breath taking as well. Likewise, it is also amusing because of the forms of the rocks.
Little things you need for Taiwan
Clothespin – it often smells dirty in the city, to avoid the smells take a clothespin ;).
But because there is smog in Taiwan the Taiwanese people walk with mouth masks. It is not necessary but if you feel more comfortable you can use one.
Raincoat – the weather can be very unpredictable, certainly when you will go hiking it can be colder when you walk up the mountains.
I hope I inspired you to go to Taiwan; the less obvious holiday destination, which makes it unique itself! You’ll notice that there are not a lot of tourists there, since every Taiwanese want to take a picture of you.
Next time I will take you to another unpredictable colourful country. No you’re not rid of me yet! Please feel free to comment, I’m curious to hear what you think!