Why Taiwan is My Favourite Place in the World


The first steps I ever took in my beloved Asia were when I touched down in Taiwan. And within 24 hours of arriving, I had already declared it to be my favourite place on the planet.

A little premature? Absolutely, but even now, four years on, I still get hit by a wave of euphoria whenever I step foot in Taiwan. Even now, it’s still my favourite place to visit.

taroko gorge

There aren’t many people who list Taiwan as their favourite country ever, but I can’t stop singing its praises to everyone I meet. Whenever my boyfriend and I would sit down to plan our next stint of travel, I’d vote for Taiwan, but somehow it was always overlooked in favour a country more well-known, usually in Southeast Asia. Taiwan seemed to have taken up permanent residency on our Someday Soon list.

When I finally managed to convince him to visit, I was overjoyed.

And then I was nervous.

Because what if Taiwan wasn’t actually that great? What if I’d thought it was amazing on that first visit because it was my first time in Asia, and just being somewhere that felt foreign was exciting enough? What if Taiwan was boring?

lotus park kaohsiung

I needn’t have worried, because Taiwan was just as spectacular as I had remembered. Maybe even more so because this time around, I wasn’t terrified of the food. And excitingly, my boyfriend fell hard for Taiwan and now counts it among his favourite countries. He enjoyed it so much that we’re ever going to be spending a month in Taipei later this year!

Here’s what makes Taiwan so great:

tea shop taichung

The Taiwanese Are Ridiculously Friendly

During my first visit to Taiwan, I met up with Lia, a Taiwanese girl I’d been chatting with on Twitter. At a cute coffee shop, I happened to mention I’d been hoping to visit Sun Moon Lake, but didn’t think I’d be able to do so (it was both hard to get there and around the lake without your own transport). Two minutes later, she had made a phone call and was eagerly telling me her plan: she was taking the day off work; her mum was taking the day off work; and they were both going to give me a tour of Sun Moon Lake.

They spent the entire day driving me around the lake, buying me lunch, taking me to temples, buying me gifts, and refusing to allow me to pay for anything.

sun moon lake in taiwan
God, I wore some sexy outfits when I first started travelling!

This wasn’t an isolated incident.

When I accidentally stepped off the train at the wrong stop in Taichung and was looking lost and bewildered on the side of the road, with no idea how to get to my hostel, a girl took me under her wing: she led me to her apartment; made me a cup of tea; looked up my hostel online; wrote down the directions in English and Chinese for me; and sent me on my way.

I lost count of number of times someone took time out of their day to walk me to wherever I was trying to go — even if it caused them to be late in the process. When I was feeling lonely in Taipei, my hostel owner offered to take me to his grandma’s house to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival with his family; when I was the only one staying in my hostel in Hualien, the owner took me on his motorbike to an aboriginal dance show as a treat. I’ve never encountered friendliness like I have in Taiwan.

Even when travelling with a guy, I was thrilled to discover the Taiwanese were just as welcoming.

A group of hipster teenagers even ran up to Dave in the middle of a shopping mall, smiled at him, and earnestly called out, “welcome to Taiwan!”

No matter where we went, everyone wanted to welcome us to their country, to help us get to where we needed to go, and to do anything they could to make our stay a pleasant one.

Steamed buns in Taipei

The Food is a Dream

Long time readers of the site will know that when I first arrived in Asia, I had never eaten rice or noodles. I’d lived a sheltered life and ended up spending my time in Taiwan eating junk food from 7 Elevens. Aside from those brief moments where hostel friends took me out to eat and I had to pretend I totally knew how to use chopsticks, I kept my eating habits firmly within my comfort zone.

I don’t know what I was thinking, because the food in Taiwan is AMAZING!

After my recent visit, I now firmly put Taiwanese food ahead of any other cuisine in the world. There’s the night markets you can find in every city, full of unidentifiable dishes of deliciousness. And though you’ll have no idea what you’ve just put in your mouth, I can promise it’ll be the most incredible thing you’ve ever tasted, and you’ll immediately order 10 more.

Night market in Kenting

Dumplings and steamed buns from famous Din Tai Fung; unidentifiable fried meat on skewers; my favourite cong you bing — a messy yet amazing pancake fried with spring onions and wrapped around a fried egg; spicy squid on sticks; bacon, cheese, and egg pancakes for breakfast; fried bright purple sweet potato balls; mango shaved ice drizzled with condensed milk; challenging dishes, like duck tongue, pig blood cake, and chicken feet; a hundred varieties of bubble tea; an enormous fried chicken cutlet the size of my face; oyster omelettes; stinky tofu…

Okay, maybe not stinky tofu.

Everything else, though? The best. You need to come to Taiwan for the night markets and the food. I even prefer them to Thailand’s!

DS Music hospital restaurant taipei

Taiwan is the Land of Themed Restaurants

It’s no secret I have an obsession with themed restaurants, and in Taipei, you could eat out at a different one every day for month and not run out of places to try. They’re so much fun!

So far, In Taipei, I’ve visited a Hello Kitty cafe, a hospital-themed restaurant; a restaurant with a ninja theme; an all-pink Barbie cafe; and an airplane-themed restaurant. I really want to visit the jail-themed restaurant, where they handcuff you to your table!
pokemon bed covers in taiwan

It’s Not Super Expensive

Taiwan is slightly more expensive than Southeast Asia, but if you’re a budget traveller and don’t mind staying in dorms, you can travel around the country for less than $30 a day. When I first visited, I averaged around $10 a night in accommodation costs (the bed in the photo above cost me $8 a night), and $5-10 on food. Transport is cheap-ish, with budget options, like taking local buses (around $15 from Taipei to Kaohsiung), and fun options, like taking the high speed rail for the same journey, at a cost of $50.

I’m not as much of a budget traveller the days, and I’m especially not when I travel with someone else. Dave and I paid between $20 and $50 a night for accommodation, staying in a mix of private rooms in hostels and guesthouses.

It’s Easy to Get Around

Taipei’s metro system is one of my favourites in the world: it’s clean and air conditioned, stops are announced in English, and everyone lines up on the platforms in single file. Getting from city to city is simple, too. Trains cover many of the destinations you’d want to visit, and the high speed rail makes travelling down the west coast fast and enjoyable.

taroko gorge

It’s Seriously Beautiful

You’ve got the mountains and rivers in Taroko Gorge.

taroko gorge

The beaches in Kenting.

Beach in Kenting

The temples in Kaohsiung.

lotus park kaohsiung

The lake at Sun Moon Lake.

sun moon lake

And so much more! I love the vibrant city chaos of Taipei, I still need to visit the hot springs in Beitou, I really want to try surfing and white water rafting in Hualien, and you can even hike up a dormant volcano. Taiwan has something for everyone, and it’s seriously beautiful.

Taipei sausages

There Are So Few Tourists

One of the things that makes Taiwan so great is that you’ll often feel like you’re one of the only tourists in the country! When I befriended a local on my train from Taitung to Hualien, he added me as a friend on Facebook, and then updated his status to say “Wow! I met a foreigner on the train today!”

Because so few people do decide to visit the country, everyone’s so excited to see you’re there, and I lost count of the number of locals who welcomed me to Taiwan.

Getting off the tourist trail in many places in the world typically involves painful travel days and hours spent figuring out logistics. In Taiwan, it’s so easy!

Taiwanese temple at peace park

For such a small country, Taiwan has an incredible amount to offer.

If you’re looking to visit somewhere that has incredible food, is affordable and easy to travel around, has beaches to lie on and mountains to climb, and the friendliest people you’ll ever encounter, go to Taiwan.

 

What’s your favourite country? Have you ever been to Taiwan?

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121 Comments

  1. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    I’ve been trying to convince Matt that we should go to Taiwan but in his research, he thought it might be too expensive (compared to, like you said, other SEA countries) but I think your post might just convince him.

    Did you like the accommodation you stayed in? Was is still good value for money?

    • November 26, 2015
      Reply

      Yeah, our accommodation was good value for money, but it is harder to find the super cheap places. $50 a night gets you a spacious apartment in the centre of the city through Airbnb.

      • November 5, 2019
        Reply

        try renting a cheap camper and explore off the beaten track

  2. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    Ahh beautiful! Look at those temples! and the lake!
    I’ve never been to Taiwan… would really love to go one day.

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      You definitely should! :-)

  3. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    You got me! Now I am desperate to go. I wonder why tourists haven’t crowded in yet? My good friend went recently because her friend is Taiwanese and they traveled together. She absolutely loved it!

    • November 26, 2015
      Reply

      It isn’t promoted much outside of Asia, I think. Definitely try and visit! :-)

      • Tai
        September 18, 2017
        Reply

        It isn’t promoted much is due to the political reason. You know… The great wall of … We are not allowed to say “Taiwan” in the international events. The only time that I heard “Taiwan” was from the mouth of two times best director Ang Lee on the stage in the Oscars event. :)

        • October 21, 2017
          Reply

          Wow, I wasn’t aware of that.

  4. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    Wow Taiwan looks amazing! It is definitely going on our bucket list whether my boyfriend likes it or not :).

  5. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    YES! Yes yes yes! I am Taiwanese American, and if there’s a country I love, it’s my parents’ homeland. Whenever I travel I try to convince people that Taiwan is a fantastic place to visit; most people had at least heard of Taiwan (but oh man, those memorable times I run across a person who never even knew Taiwan was a place) but did not realize it had so much to offer. Thanks for sharing your love for my motherland! :D

    • November 26, 2015
      Reply

      And the people who confuse it with Thailand!

  6. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    I didn’t know you were coming to Taipei again later in the year?! Hurray!

    I do love this country and I’m always trying to convince people to visit. My friends who’ve been here love it, especially my LGBT friends who have lived elsewhere in Asia – Taiwan is extremely gay and lesbian friendly (well, for Asia), definitely more so than Thailand.

    While I wouldn’t say the food is the best in the world – for me, I can think of a dozen cuisines that I’d place ahead of Taiwanese food – the people are generally lovely, and ohmygod the MRT is SO GOOD HERE.

  7. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    Somehow Taiwan was never on my travel radar, but it’s firmly in the bucket list now :) Great post!

  8. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    I must admit I don’t know a lot about Taiwan but it first came on my radar when I was reading about the history of NZ and a lot of historians believe the Maori and other Polynesians originally came from Taiwan and that the native Taiwanese look more Polynesian than Chinese. I have also heard it is very green and naturally beautiful so I will definitely visit some day :)

    • November 26, 2015
      Reply

      Absolutely to it being green and beautiful! :-)

  9. July 9, 2015
    Reply

    You know, Taiwan has never been particularly high on my travel wish list. But you have me totally SOLD with this post!

    Next time I’m in Asia, I’m totally going!

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      Yessss! You’ll love it :-D

  10. July 10, 2015
    Reply

    Hi Lauren,

    You’ve totally got me – I have to go there now! Taiwan looks amazing, I’m excited to dream and plan about it until I go!

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      I hope you make it there! It’s amazing :-)

  11. July 10, 2015
    Reply

    I’ve never even considered Taiwan as a destination before, and now I’ve got no idea why! Who would have thought they’d have beaches like that? Although you had me at ‘amazing food’ to be honest…

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      Ah, the food is so good! And the beaches are stunning. Why haven’t more people heard about both?!

  12. July 10, 2015
    Reply

    Thanks so much for posting this Lauren. I fell in love with Asia so hard and want to visit so many more countries within Asia but to be honest I had never considered Taiwan. I love the fact that you say there’s barely any tourists yet still so easy to get around, sounds like bliss! I’ll have to try and get there on my next trip to Asia :)

    • November 26, 2015
      Reply

      You definitely should, Beth! It’s one of the few places without tourists that isn’t a struggle to get around!

  13. July 10, 2015
    Reply

    Man, this post really makes me want to go to Taiwan. I suppose most people don’t bother with it as it doesn’t have any major draws to it (a bit like South Korea.) People are always going to think “Why bother with Taiwan when I can go to Japan / China / Hong Kong.” I like the idea of these places without as many tourists though!

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      Exactly, but it has a surprising amount to offer, and really stunning scenery. It has a lot more than people think!

  14. July 10, 2015
    Reply

    Had been contemplating Taiwan as my next base, and now I think you’ve convinced me. Great post!

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      Amazing! I think it would work so well as a base :-)

  15. July 10, 2015
    Reply

    Taiwan’s definitely on my list for my next Asia trip! I’ve only recently become aware of how gorgeous the country is, and I hear the surfing’s pretty amazing too! Have you checked out the surf scene there at all?

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      Yay! I didn’t get a chance to surf while I was there — mostly because I am terrible at surfing haha. But I’ve heard from a few surfer friends of mine that it’s really good!

  16. July 11, 2015
    Reply

    I had never really thought of visiting Taiwan before, but after this wonderful endorsement I am definitely adding it to my list! Gorgeous photos and great stories!
    xx

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      Excellent! You should definitely visit :-)

  17. July 11, 2015
    Reply

    I’ve never even considered traveling to Taiwan, now its been added to the ever growing list. Thank you for opening my eyes to another wonderful place.

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      You’re welcome! I hope you make it there, Martha :-)

  18. I felt exactly the same way when I introduced my husband to Thailand, but luckily they got along. Taiwan looks phenomenal and I especially like the fact that it’s not crowded with tourists.

    • November 22, 2015
      Reply

      It’s so unusual to visit such an amazing country and feel like you’re one of the few tourists there!

  19. July 11, 2015
    Reply

    Taiwan really surprised me. I’m also excited to explore a new country but I was blown away with how much I enjoyed Taipei and for many of the reasons you’ve mentioned. People went out of their way to help me and on several occassions. Plus, it was SO easy to be vegan there with so many vegan restaurants and even an all vegan grocery store called IVegan. And you are so right about how beautiful it is – I loved the Shi Fen falls for example and the hot springs in Beitou. Great post! :)

    • November 26, 2015
      Reply

      That makes me so happy to hear! It’s especially great to hear it’s easy for Vegans to eat there as well.

  20. July 12, 2015
    Reply

    I was hoping to make it to Taiwan on our first trip to SE Asia (if only for your stories of the themed restaurants!!) but didn’t manage it. It’s DEFINITELY on my list for next time!

    • November 26, 2015
      Reply

      Excellent! The more people I convince to head to Taiwan, the better! :-)

  21. Looks and sounds amazing! Taiwan is on our list and this inspires me to visit even more. Southeast Asia is just wonderful! Enjoy your travels leading up to this! :-)

    • July 22, 2015
      Reply

      Thanks, Alex! So happy to hear Taiwan was already on your list! That’s pretty rare :-)

    • Katy Wang
      November 10, 2017
      Reply

      Taiwan is not in Southeast Asia. Is East Asia.

  22. Taiwan is 100% on the bucket list! Good to see it’s your fav country. I’ve spent a lot of time in mainland China – I wonder if they differ much? People say Taiwan is a million times more chilled!!!

    • July 15, 2015
      Reply

      They’re complete opposites! Funnily enough, China is my least favourite country! :-)

  23. Dave T
    July 14, 2015
    Reply

    Thank you for sharing your love of Taiwan, with such an excellent list of reasons! I have been there several times and love it too. Take heed, all you prospective visitors; you don’t want to miss it!

    • July 15, 2015
      Reply

      Glad you enjoyed the post, Dave! :-)

  24. Christian From Squeeze Pod
    July 20, 2015
    Reply

    Interesting place and I love to try their food. This country will definitely be on my travel goals!

    • July 22, 2015
      Reply

      Taiwanese food is so, so good! Glad to see you’ve added it to your list :-)

  25. Aisling
    July 20, 2015
    Reply

    Congrats on four years travelling Lauren! :)

  26. David
    August 9, 2015
    Reply

    I lived in Taiwan for 5 1/2 years, and had a similar experience to you: within 24 hours of landing, it was my favorite place on earth. Still is, too, and I can’t wait to move back.

    Everything in this blog entry is basically true (except that stinky tofu is actually pretty good!), besides the fact that in recent years the number of tourists from China has expanded exponentially, so much so that many Taiwanese – including the businesses who profit from the tourists! – have complained to the government about being “overrun.”

    As an aside, it can also be slightly annoying when you’ve lived somewhere for five years and a group of kids run up to you and shout, “Welcome to Taiwan!” Haha. But ’tis all in good fun.

    Bottom line: my favorite country on the planet, and I’d recommend it to anyone.

    • November 26, 2015
      Reply

      I still haven’t tried the stinky tofu! Love that people shout welcome to Taiwan at you :-D

  27. September 20, 2015
    Reply

    I’ve been following your blog long before I took my sabbatical, and now I like you even more! Thank you for sharing this post and putting Taiwan in the spotlight ;)

    (Yes I’m Taiwanese….)

    • November 13, 2015
      Reply

      Yay! Thanks for commenting, Theresa. Taiwan is such a great country! :-)

  28. jae
    October 29, 2015
    Reply

    Taiwan really surprised my friends and customers here in Belgium,
    just by what I have told them, such as free lottery (5% TVA national invoice system) best public transportation ,one of safest nations in this planet….

    Most of them they still did not know yet that Formosa -Taiwan indeed precious as it’s nickname-TREASURE ISLAND

    Taiwanese citizens are welcomed by more than 150 countries for visa-free visiting, this tells that Taiwan is a developed and respectable country.

    • November 11, 2015
      Reply

      Absolutely! The visa on arrival makes it so appealing :-)

    • Jacks Creation
      May 4, 2017
      Reply

      It means Beautiful Island actually get your facts right, and its not beautiful its a boring crappy small island and the food is seriously horrible other countries around Asia are miles better, better food better people more culture and not insular and boring.

      • May 4, 2017
        Reply

        To each their own. Everyone has different preferences when they travel. You’re just being an asshole about it. Calm down — if you don’t like a place, just don’t go there again. There’s no need to waste time and energy creating fake identities and getting angry at people on a travel blog because they happen to have a different opinion to you.

        • Tracy
          November 7, 2019
          Reply

          *Like*

  29. Nuhasi Sadithya
    November 11, 2015
    Reply

    Good Afternoon,
    It is obvious that you are a lady who love to travel the world. I would like to know that whether you have travelled in my beautiful motherland Sri Lanka my dear friend.
    If not please be keep in mind to visit Sri Lanka when ever you are free and feel the beautiful Nature, golden Beaches, world heritages like Sinharaja rainforest, Sigiriya rock fortress,Galle Dutch Fort and much more beautiful unforgettable places and mostly the smiling people who are very rich in hospitality.
    Hope you think about it. Please note that i am not a travel agent. I invite you because i love my motherland so much. I want to show the beauty and the value of it to the world trough the friends like you. God bless you.
    Good Day to you my friend.
    Much Regards to you.
    Nuhasi.

    • November 11, 2015
      Reply

      Yep, I visited last year. Loved it!

  30. Daphne
    November 24, 2015
    Reply

    I just came across your website when doing some quick research on Maldives. It’s only been about 20 min but you have me hooked on reading about your adventures! I was super excited to see Taiwan being mentioned in another post and then stumbled upon this post. I’m Taiwanese American and the best things for me during my visits are super nice people + awesome food. Great posts, I definitely have your site bookmarked now!

    • November 25, 2015
      Reply

      So happy to hear that, Daphne! Taiwan is the best :-)

  31. January 17, 2016
    Reply

    Cannot agree more with you to be honest.
    Had two trips to Taiwan already and I’m soon going to plan my third one. I’m not the biggest Taiwan food fan (caught something naughty during my first trip), but besides I’m totally in love with this island.

    • January 18, 2016
      Reply

      It’s an amazing place! :-D I can’t wait to visit again.

  32. Jeff Bell
    January 17, 2016
    Reply

    You had me at themed restaurants. One of the great joys of travel is meeting friendly locals so I can see why you’d enjoy it.

    My favorite countries fall into two categories – large ones and small ones. I love Mexico, Indonesia and India for big countries, and Guatemala, Jordan and Cuba for smaller ones. I’ll have to check out Taiwan.

    • January 18, 2016
      Reply

      All great choices! :-) I still need to get to India.

  33. Jonny
    May 22, 2016
    Reply

    Hey Lauren – massive fan of your site (and your book!) I’m looking to head to Taiwan in July because my friend lives in Taipei. And of course I’ll be looking to travel a bit around the island as well. How long would you recommend – is two weeks a good chunk of time? Thanks – and keep up the great work :-)

    • May 27, 2016
      Reply

      Two weeks would be pretty good, yeah. Make sure you visit Taipei, Hualien, and Kenting while you’re there!

  34. Christell
    November 2, 2016
    Reply

    I’ve first visited Taiwan for 3 Weeks in 2012 and I actually fell in love with this marvelous “country”.

    This year I came back during my South Korean adventure only for a weekend meeting a Taiwanese friend and I confirm my passion for that amazing place !!!

    You are absolutely right, Taiwanese people really are the friendliess in my experience too!

    It’s a shame their buggs (usually not dangerous) are so HUGE, I could live there !

    • November 2, 2016
      Reply

      Hahaha, yeah, I remember hiking in Toroko Gorge and seeing spiders as big as my face.

      • Christell
        November 3, 2016
        Reply

        I Saw a dozen of those in Elephant mountain in Taipei, black and yellow, I walked back when we saw a web with one spider on it just 6 feet over the main trail we were following… Too creepy for me.

        Surprinsingly, my taiwanese friend who’s living in Taipei never saw this particular spider and she’s now afraid of meeting one. She’s not a hiker so I suppose that’s why she never saw one.

        On other topic, next time give a try to stinky tofu, the one fried served with sauce and kind of coleslaw, it’s really not bad and I sometimes got a craving for it ;)

        • November 4, 2016
          Reply

          Stinky tofu! I can’t believe I haven’t tried it yet. I feel as though I’m comfortable eating most things these days, but I know that getting over the smell will be a battle, haha :-)

  35. November 30, 2016
    Reply

    I am one of those rare people who lists Taiwan as their favourite country. It was love at first sight (and bite) for me.

    My brother and his partner are hoping to move there next year, and I’m hoping I can use that as an excuse to relocate there myself.

    • January 9, 2017
      Reply

      Ah, I’m so excited to hear it’s become your favourite country, too! Yay! :-)

  36. November 30, 2016
    Reply

    I absolutely love Taiwan. I can’t wait to go back. I am always looking for excuses to return and I don’t ‘mind the stinky tofu! (You just have to eat it with some sauce)

    • February 19, 2017
      Reply

      I’ll definitely try it next time I’m there! :-)

  37. Aodhan
    December 2, 2016
    Reply

    Can not wait to visit in 2017 – it looks amazing with modernity and culture as well as great nature areas.

    • January 9, 2017
      Reply

      Yep! It really does have it all :-)

  38. Mercy Delfin
    February 14, 2017
    Reply

    You’re right Lauren. Taiwan is one of the most beautiful place in Asia. Been there 4x and still planning to go back.
    Taiwanese are really friendly. Their food is the best and affordable compared to other Asian countries we visited.
    Subway stations are clean, well lighted and easy to navigate. I do not use my calculator in converting the prices in our currency because everything are reasonably priced. My friends were happy when we brought them to Taiwan.

    • February 19, 2017
      Reply

      Ah, I’m so happy to hear from someone else who loves Taiwan as much as I do. I agree with everything you said and like you, I’m always thinking about when I can next head back there.

  39. Priska
    February 18, 2017
    Reply

    Hi Lauran,

    I and my friend plan to visit Taiwan in late September to early October. The trip duration will be around 8 days. We will be there during the Mid-Autumn Festival.

    Do you have any suggested itinerary for us ?
    We don’t have any specific preferences but we basically enjoy foods, natural scenery, history and cultures.

    With 8 days trip duration, do you think we should head to Southern Taiwan ? or just getting around Taipei and its neighboring cities ? How about middle Taiwan ?

    • February 19, 2017
      Reply

      I’d spend a few days in Taipei, Hualien, and maybe somewhere in the south, like Kenting, if you can squeeze it in. It depends how fast you’re comfortable travelling, but Taiwan is small, the public transport is fast, and you can get everywhere in a day, if not a few hours.

  40. delvin
    May 4, 2017
    Reply

    I stayed in Yunlin Huwei and found it to be the most boring crap town I ever visitedabsolutely nothing to do the people dont even talk Taipei wasnt great either full of crap building ugly concrete structures and corrugated buildings in Taichung, lots of people gobbing spit everywhere like China disgusting, the food was crap all fried noodles and soup filled with fat and grease and tastless tofu (bland fatty and disgusting) I was glad to leave seriously crap place, Thailand and Japan are miles better bigger countries and many things to do

    • May 4, 2017
      Reply

      If you went to Taiwan and only ate fried noodles and tofu, you were doing something wrong ;-)

  41. Claudia
    June 22, 2017
    Reply

    We’ve only been to Taipeh yet, on a stopover from Bali back to Germany. We loved it and Taiwan is on our list of places we want to visit in the near future.

    I actually started learning Chinese two years ago to be able to get around better there but had to stop due to being in Hospital for a while.

    • June 22, 2017
      Reply

      I hope you managed to make it back to explore more of the country, Claudia! And I’ve always done fine in Taiwan speaking English :-)

  42. Shaowei Huang
    October 28, 2017
    Reply

    As a Taiwanese, I thank you for this great article that makes Taiwan known to more people who might be interested.

    • October 29, 2017
      Reply

      That’s my aim with it! :-)

  43. Kevin C.
    March 16, 2018
    Reply

    Hi Lauren! I’ve been reading your blog recently and I feel like I have the same personality and tastes as you (right down how I used to be too anxious to travel in my youth and highly regret it now), so just letting you know that you convinced me to adapt my Japan trip this fall to include 8 days in Taiwan! Looking forward to it.

    • March 21, 2018
      Reply

      Yay!! That makes me so happy to hear, Kevin! I know you’ll have an amazing time there :-)

  44. Daniel
    March 31, 2018
    Reply

    I am a resident of SEA and I must say I have always dreamt of going to Taiwan someday! Good thing I’ll be going there on a 3 weeks teachers exchange program next year. Heard so much from my seniors and lecturers, my eyes are brimming with sparkles.

    Anyway Ms. Lauren how do you think of Taiwan as a place to settle in?

    • April 2, 2018
      Reply

      Pretty close to perfect! I would consider it if visas weren’t an issue :-)

  45. Ines Martins
    November 17, 2018
    Reply

    When would you recommend going? Thanks! :)

    • January 8, 2019
      Reply

      I’d avoid the summer and winter and go for around March-May or September-October. I’ve been in December before and it was pretty chilly. It really depends on whether you like hot and humid weather or would enjoy the cold more.

  46. Anonymous
    December 21, 2018
    Reply

    I’m Taiwanese in US… I’m so glad to hear you all are interesting to visit Taiwan. The best time to visit Taiwan is between March to May or Sep to Dec. Summer is way too hot, some of you may not be able to handle the heat.

  47. Pat
    December 28, 2018
    Reply

    We just booked a trip based on your experience. Thank you for the great description. Well, actually, I also met a person who told us to put it on our list and there was a seat sale happening, so off we go. We have travelled most of SE Asia and Asia. Can hardly wait and plan to spend 3 weeks at a very leisurely pace.

    • January 5, 2019
      Reply

      Ah, amazing! You’re going to have such a wonderful time :-)

  48. Edina
    January 10, 2019
    Reply

    This makes me so excited! My family is from Taiwan and I’ve lived there for some years and gone to school there… but your post made me feel like I didn’t even get to know my country that well! Stumbled upon this blog while doing research on whether or not to start a travel blog and how to. I just want to say: Lauren, you are an inspiration and I hope that one day I get to live as fulfilled as you do. Keep on doing what you’re doing and you just gained another reader! :)

  49. Tristant Chen
    February 2, 2019
    Reply

    As an Taiwanese.
    I’d like to thank you to make more people to know more about Taiwan-my hometown.
    Honestly speaking, I was so moving when I were reading this article because it is true that there are just a few people know about Taiwan.
    Owing to the complex situation between Taiwan and China, we are facing many difficulties in lots of international occasions.
    I think my English isn’t good enough to express my opnion but thank you so much.
    I highly recommend you to rent a car driving on the East Coast of Taiwan, you will find something amazing.

  50. Emma
    February 3, 2019
    Reply

    I moved here 6 years ago and can’t imagine leaving. I miss it so much when I have to go back to the UK to visit family. I count the days till I can go home again.

  51. Dan
    March 6, 2019
    Reply

    Lauren,

    Thanks for the informative article! I lived in China for a year and loved it, and for some reason I’d never thought about visiting Taiwan.

    Not so anymore! I may visit this August. But I have a big question for you about the food. I loved eating all kinds of food in China. That was before I developed GERD. Oops. Long story short, with GERD, fried foods are NOT my friend. If I go to Taiwan and try the local food, are there plenty of other options as there are in China (boiled, steamed, grilled)? I never used to have to think about these things, but before I travel anywhere these days, I always need to consider what the local food is like.

    Thanks!

    Dan

    • March 8, 2019
      Reply

      Hi Dan!

      Ah, I totally get the travelling-with-annoying-dietry-requirements! I have to eat a Paleo diet to keep my health on track, and it can be such a struggle when I’m in foreign countries. But anyway! Yeah, there are plenty of alternatives to fried food in Taiwan, although the Taiwanese sure do love coating everything in oil! Lots of dumplings, steamed buns, grilled meat and vegetables, boiled seafood… And there are a ton of hipster cafes in Taipei, too, so you could always head there for a salad or something if you couldn’t find anything else :-) But yeah, I would still go — I don’t think you’ll have too much problem avoiding fried food.

  52. July 23, 2019
    Reply

    I cannot wait to head to Taiwan and blog about my travels there over 5 months! 4 weeks left! Thanks for the great blog post – I just started getting into travel blogging. :)

  53. John
    August 3, 2019
    Reply

    Will anyone be in Taiwan at the end of September? I’ll be in the South for work for a day and I hope to stay the weekend. A little guidance or even meeting up would be awesome!

  54. September 12, 2019
    Reply

    thanks for loving Taiwan, so happy you had a great time there! as a Taiwanese, I am so moved now :))

  55. Mark
    October 26, 2019
    Reply

    I went to Taiwan to teach English and pay off my student loans after university. What was supposed to be one year turned into thirteen years of life there blessing me with a beautiful wife and daughter. We have now lived in several other countries and I still dream of returning there permanently. I think I love Taiwan more than my wife. LOL! Such an amazing place.
    LOVE TAIWAN

  56. Amanda
    October 31, 2019
    Reply

    Ive actually really wanted to go to Taiwan for years but i feel like ill have to learn the language. Even if there’s english, i just feel like im disrespecting the country/people if i go with no language experience
    Hopefully ill be able to go soon though

  57. November 27, 2019
    Reply

    Hi, Lauren!
    Thanks for your great post. Next year I’m going to Taiwan by myself and I’m really looking forward to it. I have linked your article in my blog, the blog is in German but my readers can definitely speak English!
    Many greetings and take care of yourself!
    Samantha

  58. November 29, 2019
    Reply

    Taiwan has never been on my radar, but my wife just got a job there and we will be moving there in about 8 months. I can’t wait to experience all the island has to offer. I can see why it is your favorite. It is such a diverse place, with mountains, beaches, culture, cities, all so close together. And everyone says the people are amazing. Thanks for the great post.

  59. December 15, 2019
    Reply

    I love this! I’m moving to Taiwan in 2 weeks, never been there before, but this post made me so excited 😊 Thank you!!

  60. Tori
    December 19, 2019
    Reply

    You have a great blog. Thanks for sharing. I really want to visit Taiwan. You inspired me.

    • December 20, 2019
      Reply

      I’m happy to hear that!

  61. Jet Who
    January 21, 2020
    Reply

    Change your skin color and Nationality like Indonesia? and go to Taiwan one more time.
    Thanks

    • January 22, 2020
      Reply

      Cool. Great suggestion. I’ll get on that now.

      • April 13, 2021
        Reply

        Really glag you enjoyed your visit in Taiwan! It’s so beautiful! Went during January 2020, first time there and will be back after the pandemic is over. So love this country and all the friendly people there, miss the great food too!

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