World Travel 2013-2014, Hello Taipei City

Today was our first full day in Taipei, and although we were both sick (and finding it harder to move around then we should) we managed to accomplish a bit which is always good!

After our breakfast we wandered over to Taipei 101 and began the hike up Nangang District Hiking Trail (also known as Elephant Mountain). The trail itself isn’t a particularly hard hike and is relatively short; however, being sick and the trail being basically all stairs it was a bit more of a challenge than it should have been.

The view of Taipei from the lookout was beautiful and well worth the hike. We then travelled over to Longshan Temple which was filled with people worshipping. The temple has a great atmosphere, although it was rather crowded even after lunch time on a week day. Bopiliao Old Street is nearby, and built in 1896 is a series of preserved buildings from the Qing Dynasty. We didn’t spend long here as both Takeshi and I were feeling reasonably sick by this point, so we began our way back to our accommodation in the Ximen area and called it a day.

Taipei so far has me pleasantly surprised. I wasn’t expecting much as I didn’t know much about Taiwan and had read that it isn’t known for being a high tourist destination, but so far my impression of Taipei is good. We’ve encountered some friendly people who provided directions and in general the people seem friendlier than Hong Kong. The city itself feels like a bit of a cross between Hong Kong and some parts of Japan so it will be interesting to see what other areas in Taiwan are like.

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