Area & Location: Taipei covers an area of 27,177 hectares (67,942.5 acres) in the northern part of Taiwan. The city is situated in a basin surrounded by spectacular moutains.
Population: 2.7 million
Language: The national language is Mandarin Chinese. Other dialects, particularly Taiwanese and Hakka, are spoken with some English.
Climate & Temperature: Subtropical
Average annual temperature
Average summer temperature
Average winter temperature
Currency: NT$27.8 to US$1 in June 1996
Credit Cards: Hotels, department stores, airlines, and major restaurants accept credit cards. Elsewhere, it is preferable to use cash.
Business Hours: Most people on the island work a five-and-a-half day week.
Type of Operation Weekdays Saturdays Banks
Goveernment Offices: mornings
(Note: Times may vary from business to business)
Tipping/Taxes: Tipping is optional. It is usual, however, to tip restaurant waiters and hotel porters. A 10% service charge and a 5% value-added to room rates and meals.
Buses: The city bus fare is NT$12-24 depending on length of journey; the buses are frequent and mostly air-conditioned.
Taxis: Tazi fares are NT$50 for the first 1.65 km. (NT$15 is added to the final fare shown on meter), and NT$5 for each additional 350 meters. While waiting in traffic the fare increase by NT$5 every three minutes. Between 11:00 pm and 6:00 am taxi meters add an extra 20 percent to the fare. An NT$10 surcharge is added for calling a taxi by phone, or for putting luggage in the trunk. Most drivers speak only Chinese, so have hotel personnel write both your destination and your hotel's name and address in Chinese.
English Language Media:
China Post and China News/NT$12 per copy
ICRT (International Community Radio Taipei)
Taipei: FM 100.7 AM 576 (24-hour programming)
Useful Phone Numbers: Tourist Hot Line (02) 717-3737
Emergency 119 Fire 119 Police 110 Overseas Call 100
Ministry of Foreign Affairs (02) 729-7227
CKS International Airport Service Counter (03) 398-2143
English telephone Operator (02) 311-6796
Adventist Hospital (Taiwan) (02) 771-8151
Taipei Municipal Police Headquarters (02) 381-8341
In Taipei you can buy almost anything you can think of, from designer names, to antique curios, up-to-date eletronics, original jewelry, hand--painted scrolls, fragrant tea, and quality childrens' toys.
Departmant stores, boutiques, and small stores all offer quality at reasonable prices. Night markets are fun to shop in, accept cash only, and vendors rarely speak English, but shoppers can often bargain. That's where the best selections and prices for souvenirs, gifts, casual clothing, and traditional handicrafts can be found. Taipei's notable shopping districts offer a good selection of shops where visitors can get good buys.
Dinghao Market (Clothing, Jewelry, Footwear, Souvenirs)
All types of restaurants, pubs, teahouses, fast-food shops, bakeries, bookshops, and some of the leading departmant stores are located here to keep you happy! You may purchase designer labels at the boutiques offering international brand-name fashions and accessories, or inexpensive casual wear a variety of footware can also be found easily. Street vendors in the maze of alleys sell clothes, trinkets, and costume jewelry at bargain prices. Established jewelry stores offer gold and other fine jewelry, and can give ceertificates of guarantee. Several movie theaters show both Western and Chiness films until midnight.
Holiday Jade & Flower Market, Chinese Handicraft Mart (Curios, Trinkets, Handicraft)
The Holiday Jade Market is open Saturday afternoons and Sundays. Here rows of vendors offer bargain on Jade, curios and other products. The adjacent Holiday Flower Market features what seems like a nile of flowers, plants, and all the trimmings, with a carnival atmosphere. The Chinese Handicraft Mart has a wide variety of arts and crafts such as wood carvings, laquerware, handscrolls, marbleware, brocade, ceramics, and jewelry. A perfect place for gift shopping!
Kuanghua Market (Computers and Parts, CDs, Curios)
This market is a mixture of the old and the new, selling computers and parts, software, electronic games and gadgets, CDs, and second-hand books. The selection is vast and the prices are competitive. This is also a place to shop for the greatest variety of antiques, reproductions, and curios at reasonable prices.
Chungshan North Road (Clothing, Accessories)
This is where you will find designer boutiques with famous brand-name clothing, shoes, accessories, and so on. There is also a DFS (Duty Free Shop) that sells famous labels. It also sells tax-free perfumes, tobaccos, and alcoholic beverages. All of these have to be picked up at the airport. Several souvenir shops offering curios and handicrafts are also located here.
Tihua Street (Chinese Medicines & Herbs, Dried Foods)
A walk through the Tihua Street area gives visitors a feel of Taipei city's past. The old-town market has scores of shops selling a variety of traditional goods such as Chinese medicines and herbs, temple icons and incense, spices and dried food, colorful bolts of cloth, and bamboo and wooden crafts. A fascinating patch of the past.
Shihlin Night Market (Clothing, Footware, Souvenirs, Local Snacks)
To the north of city proper, this vast and rambling night market had scores of stalls that sell clothing, footware, souvenirs, and delicious snacks and fruits. Here you will experience the sights, sounds and smells of Chinese culture. This is the king of Taipei night market!
Tienmu District (Clothing, Furniture, Brass)
A suburb to the north of Taipei, Tienmu is a favorite spot for foreigner where Western delicatessens, procery stores, and restaurants are concentrated. Beyond the pricey designer boutiques, you will find a dozen discount clothing shops with export items at bargain prices. If you want to purchase brass items and furniture, Tienmu is a great place to look. Antique and curio stores abound, and small teahouses and cafes provide a cosmopolian flavor.
Sungchan (Jaoho St.) Night Market (Clothing, Trinkets, Local Snacks)
Here is a great place for local, selling handicrafts such as tespots and bamboo knickknacks, clothes, traditional Chinese toys, tapes, CDs, eletronic gadgets, and other souvenirs. The roadside stalls also sell a variety of local snacks and fruits.
Taipei offers the finest Chinese cuisine in the world. There are good restaurants with fair prices on almost eveery street, and tourists can find a good meal without difficulty. For gourmets, every major hotel boats excellent Chinese restaurants. For budget travelers, there are numerous fast-food outlets, countless snack centers (generally in the basemants of department stores), and a variety of light meals available at night markets.
As a tourist destination and international business center, Taipei also has restaurants offering European and American cuisines, as well as non-Chinese Asian fare.
When the workday ends Taipei goes into full swing until the small hours! Shopping at department stores and night markets; relaxing at tea and coffee houses, pubs, clubs, and restaurants of all types; attending movies, cultural shows, sports and KTV-all are options offered to visitors.Taipei city is safe at night, so relax and enjoy yourself !
Films And Cinemas
The newest Western and Chinese hit films are available in Taipei. In addition to matinees, evening shows start at around 7 p.m., 9 p.m., 11 p.m. Some theaters even have midnight showings at around 1:00 a.m. and 3:00 a.m. For exact show times, please check daily newspapers.
Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall
A majestic marble monument surrounded by gardens and ponds, the Memorial contains a statue of late President Chiang Kai-shek. A ground-level library displays photos and mementos of the late president's life. Adjoining the Memorial are the National theater and National Concert Hall, both built in a traditional Chinese palace style.
Changing of the Guards: every hour.
Hours: 09:00-17:00 daily.
Buses: 18, 20, 22, 48, 70, 204, 209, 236, 237, 248, 249, 251, 252, 253, 263, 274, 275, 294.
In contrast to many other temples, the Confucius Temple is a tranquil place which comes to life only at dawn on September 28. On this day every year rites are perforned, some of which date back nearly 3,000 years, by school children in ancient costume to honor Confucius on his birthday.
Buses:2, 24, 41, 201, 246, 288.
Pao An Temple
A short walk from the Confucius Temple is the 230-year-old Taoist Pao An Temple. The three main deities worshipped here are Pao Sheng, God of Medicine; Ju Lai Fo, God of Luck; and Chu Sheng Niang Niang, Goddess of Birth and Fertility
Buses: 2, 24, 41, 201, 246, 288.
Hsing Tien Temple
Home to the God of War and other deities, an interesting place to see people worship and intricate temple architecture.
Buses: 0, 41, 49, 54, 63, 72, 214, 222, 225, 226, 277, 283, 286, 502, 505.
Lin An-tai House
This Ching dynasty family home was built in 1783 and reconstructed on the present site in 1978. Intricate stone and wood carvings complement the graceful, classical Chinese architecture.
Hours: 09:00-16:00. Closed Mondays.
Buses: 21, 33, 35. 72, 222, 283, 286.
Lung Shan Temple
Built in 1738, this is one of the best temples to see in Taipei.. Examine the intricately carved stone dragon pillars, roof and caves. Watch the devout worship a variety of ancient gods. Visit the nearby Huahsi Street Night Market.
buses: O West, 9, 24, 25, 38, 49, 62,65, 231, 234, 264, 310, 503, 601.
An excellent example of classical Ming dynasty architecture, dedicated to the fallen heroes of China's wars. A majestic archway, tranquil paths, and a ceremonial changing of the guards. Changing of the Guards: every hour, 10 minutes to the hour. buses: 21, 42, 208, 213, 247, 267, 287.
National Palace Museum
The world's largest collection of Chinese art spanning China's 5,000-year history. Treasures from the ancient imperial collection include jade, porcelain, paintings, bronzes, and more. Pieces on display change regularly. Tea room, Gift shop, gardens, and pavilions. Free English guided tours are available at 10:00 and 15:00 daily.
Hours: 09:00-17:00 daily.
Buses: 213, 255, 304.
Presidential Office Building
The large plaza is where huge annual parades are held to celebrate the Oct. 10 National Day. The Presidential Office Building faces the massive East Gate, one of five built as part of Taipei's original city wall.
Buses: O East, 0 West, 3, 5, 18 204, 209, 236, 238, 239, 241 243, 244, 245, 251, 270, 295, 604.
Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall
The memorial to the father of the Republic of China houses an impressive bronze statue of Dr. Sun Yat-sen and photos from his life and times. See the half-hour English multimedia show about his life. Popular gathering place with a fountain, and a man-made pond with pagoda.
Changing of the Guards: every hour.
Hours: 09:00-17:00 daily.
Buses: 31, 33, 212, 240, 259. 263, 266, 270, 281, 288, 299 504.
Taipei City Zoo Mucha
Taipei's huge new zoo, in the rolling hills of suburban Mucha, is one of the largest in Asia. Its Butterfly House and Garden show exotic native species.
Hours: 09:00-17:00 daily.
Buses: 236, 237, 258, 282, 294, 295.
Taipei Fine Arts Museum
Modern art fills the 24 galleries of the museum.
Hours:10:00-18:00. Closed on Mondays.
Buses: 21, 40, 42, 203, 208, 213, 216, 217, 218, 220, 224, 240, 247, 260, 269, 277, 287, 304, 308, 310, 603.
World Trade Center
The heart of Taiwan's international business world which comprises an exhibition hall, international convention center, office tower, and a 5-star hotel. The ground floor of the exhibition hall hosts domestic and international trade shows while upper floors have permanent showrooms for both exporters and importers .
Hours: 09:00-17:00 daily
Buses: 22, 32, 226,258, 288,503.
World of Yesterday.
Re-created traditional village. Displays of ancient lifestyles offer fascinating glimpses of Chinese history and culture. Folk art demonstrations on Sundays and holidays.
Hours: 09:00-17:00. Closed on Mondays.
Buses: Across from the Taipei Fine Arts Museum.
Yangmingshan National Park
This massive mountainous park on the outskirts of Taipei has waterfalls, volcanic craters, hot springs, and abundant wildlife. Cherry and azalea blossom in spring, and cool, fresh air in the summer are added attractions. Hiking trails, picnic and recreation facilities available.
Buses: 230, 260.
National Fu Hsing Dramatic Arts Academy
Offers tours for those interested in Chinese opera. Available every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday the tours offer an audio-visual introduction on costumes, movements, and make-up, followed by a 20-minute performance, and avisit to the academy's museum; then an optional make-up and costume photo session. For more information, or to book, please call (02) 796-2666 ext.711
Hours: 11:00- 12:30 every Monday, Thursday, and Saturday.
Buses: 247, 287.
National Museum of History & Botanical Garden
The National Museum of History, in a corner of the beautiful Botanical Garden, hosts a collection of priceless treasures
Hours: 10:00-18:00 Closed Mondays.
Buses: o West, 1, 204, 242, 259.
Tours around Taipei can be easily booked at reception desks in major hotels.