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3 days beginner's Taipei

3 days beginner's Taipei

Old Nov 23, 10, 5:32 am
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3 days beginner's Taipei

Last time I was in Taipei was 8 years ago and I wasn't able to see anything since it was just an overnight trip. Can anybody help me with things to do and places to eat.

I arrive noon of the 26th and leave at 11am on the 29th so I only have about 2 and 1/2 days left to explore Taipei and since my hotels been paid I cannot leave Taipei overnight.
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Old Nov 23, 10, 12:34 pm
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I'd definitely suggest going to one of the night markets and snacking away at least part of your evening there. Shilin Night Market, located next to the Jiantan MRT station is one of the most popular and well-known and definitely isn't a bad starting point. In addition, there's also Raohe Street Night Market, located a quick walk away from Songshan TRA station (mainline rail, not to be confused with Songshan Airport station of the MRT). Honestly, I think it'd be hard to go wrong with any of the night markets, not that I've been to all of them.

In terms of what not to do, I'd suggest not wasting any of your two and a half days at Taipei 101. I mean, it's fine to get a glimpse of it if you're planning on doing some high end shopping down at the Xinyi District but I certainly wouldn't go out of my way to gawk at it, nevermind going up to the observation deck.
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Old Nov 23, 10, 6:04 pm
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Thanks...any short day trips out of Taipei?
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Old Nov 23, 10, 9:56 pm
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Originally Posted by keslergo View Post
Thanks...any short day trips out of Taipei?
One of the most popular ones is to the former mining town of Jiufen (九份), which is easily reachable by train from Taipei Station to Rueifang Station (瑞芳) and then a quick ten or fifteen minute bus ride to Jiufen itself. The town is quite scenic and is popular as it is a bit reminiscent of the olden days of Taiwan, although like any popular tourist area, there are tons of stores selling kitschy crap. There's a nice summary of the area over at Wikitravel and I know that the Rough Guide to Taiwan also has a nice write up about Jiufen.
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Old Nov 25, 10, 7:56 pm
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We might have more suggestions if you can tell us something about your interests.

Another 1/2-day trip out of town (barely) is going up to Danshui on the MRT. Lots of street food, beaches, the old fort. Still pretty urbanized though. You could make Taroko Gorge a day-trip if you were feeling ambitious. Interesting pottery out at Yingge.

Agree 101 is nothing special unless you have a thing for eyesores. (I completely do not see the point of high-end shopping in Taipei to buy the exact same cr*p as they sell in every other city.)

In the city, there are funky little shops scattered around the Eastern District (centered at the intersection of DunHua South Rd and ZhongXiao East Rd); and the more youthful equivalent at XimenDing--where Hello Kitty and her descendants are alive and well. You have to stroll around the alleys.
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Old Nov 27, 10, 2:01 pm
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I'll second Jiufen (九份) as a nice daytrip. There are a lot of quaint teahouses and snack shops lining the narrow lanes for you to stop and sample. Near Jiufen is Jinguashi (金瓜石), a former gold mining area with museums and historical buildings.

I think Taroko Gorge is a little bit too ambitious for a day trip. The Yingge suggestion is also an interesting museum, there is also a unique temple close to Yingge.

I'm surprised that no one has suggested the National Palace Museum, which houses a large collection of Chinese artifacts and art, including the famous jade cabbage and the jade pork fat. Also, within the suburbs of Taipei, there is Beitou (北投)- Beitou MRT Station, where you can visit hot springs, if that's your thing, and the hot spring bath museum.
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Old Apr 1, 11, 12:02 pm
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I didn't want to start a new thread just to basically ask the same questions. I have a stopover coming up arriving in Taipei around 1300 on a Friday, leaving Sunday around 1600. Generally enjoy walking, seeing things, eating and drinking.
Granted my time is short, but is it feasible to hit the night markets and bars on Friday, get out of town for a hot spring/ beach/ diving on Saturday (before doing the night market/ bar thing that night) and then going to the top of 101 on Sunday? Flying into and out of Songshan. I know everyone hates on the 101 but I like obs decks and really want to see the damper. This will be in August; planning to use SPG points, probably for the Westin.
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Old Apr 1, 11, 6:28 pm
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Originally Posted by chuckd View Post
I didn't want to start a new thread just to basically ask the same questions. I have a stopover coming up arriving in Taipei around 1300 on a Friday, leaving Sunday around 1600. Generally enjoy walking, seeing things, eating and drinking.
Granted my time is short, but is it feasible to hit the night markets and bars on Friday, get out of town for a hot spring/ beach/ diving on Saturday (before doing the night market/ bar thing that night) and then going to the top of 101 on Sunday? Flying into and out of Songshan. I know everyone hates on the 101 but I like obs decks and really want to see the damper. This will be in August; planning to use SPG points, probably for the Westin.
You have a good amount of time as you'll at least have the late afternoon & evening on the Friday, all of Saturday and the morning and a bit of the early afternoon on that day.

The key thing is that going to a hot spring doesn't involve much more than taking the efficient Metro system out to Xinbeitou and then either walking or taking a taxi to whichever hot spring you'd like to go to. In terms of a beach, I think there are some you can get to after transferring onto a bus from Danshui station but someone else can probably advise you on that. I know that other beaches can be reached as a day trip on the regular mainline train services. However, since your time is short, I'd stick with the hot springs. Taipei 101 should be saved for whichever day the weather seems to be the best.

Enjoy Taipei and the convenience of flying in and out of TSA. I myself am set to avoid TPE on my next trip to Taipei in September.
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Old Apr 2, 11, 6:02 pm
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Okay, thanks for the response. It's always good to hear something- anything- from someone who has been there. I think I'll plan on barhopping the first night then going to a hot spring and meandering about the city the next. This stopover is just a leg I added on to an award trip to Tokyo (as part of a trip to Nepal), so I figure anything at all that I get to do or see is better than nothing.
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Old Apr 3, 11, 9:02 pm
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Originally Posted by chuckd View Post
Okay, thanks for the response. It's always good to hear something- anything- from someone who has been there. I think I'll plan on barhopping the first night then going to a hot spring and meandering about the city the next. This stopover is just a leg I added on to an award trip to Tokyo (as part of a trip to Nepal), so I figure anything at all that I get to do or see is better than nothing.
You have plenty of time. I would put stuff down in the hotel and (if you are into history) go to the National Museum first. Maybe freshen up and hit a night market before hitting the bars.

I would go to a different nightmarket each night. Most (like my first trip) go to Shilin night market, but feel free to ask locals (more speak English than you think) about their ideas regarding night markets and suggestions. When at the night markets, observe what folks are eating or where there are lines and just ask! Food is a passion for many Taiwanese and so they'll be thrilled to throw out opinions. There are other great restaurants to visit in Taipei. One I went to recently was Kao Chi - a local chain (pronounced Kao Ji - I went to the one in Da An District). My sister and I had some lovely soup dumpings (xiao long bao), crispy pan fried (at bottom) soup buns (sheng jian bao), shao mao (shrimp and pork)... but when in doubt, ask neighbors or wait staff. As you can see, I love eating..

After Kao Ji we just walked around the local neighborhood and poked in shops. A lot of boutiques, coffee shops, bakeries etc where everyone was lovely. Friendly, helpful, saying hello etc. (although I speak Chinese - it's not apparant at first sight and folks were just as nice to my sister who doesn't speak a word).

Walking around. I walked around the Shi Da area as well and one could walk around Xi Men Ding.

Doing the hot springs on Saturday post bar hopping is perfect...

Have a great trip!
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Old Apr 4, 11, 2:45 am
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Thanks again, everything sounds pretty straightforward but I'm subscribing to this thread. Now on to finding a starwood to stay at for a night in Guangzhou...
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Old Apr 12, 11, 11:21 pm
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I would suggest the Le Meridien for your stay as its location is close to 101, and easy walk to many hip bars located in this district.
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Old Apr 14, 11, 8:47 am
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For noodling around Taipei, visiting the big temples is interesting (I think). I just as soon stay away from museums on a Saturday. For getting out of the city, Wulai is another option--a hot springs town up in the mountains south of Taipei (subway to XinDian, 1/2-hour bus ride).
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