Our Taipei Travel Tips – An Intro to Taipei Travel Guide

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Here’s our Taipei travel guide. Taipei travel tips? We’ve got’em. Get ready for some Taipei travel tips for backpackers, traveling families and everyone else: getting around, where to eat, what to see and what to bring. We love traveling in Taiwan, and we hope this Taipei travel guide helps you get more out of this dynamic city!

Cover image Our Taipei Travel Tips — An Intro to Taipei Travel Guide

Taipei Travel Guide

Taipei is an amazing, safe, modern, creative and fun city to explore. Despite this, Taipei travel is still fairly undeveloped amongst typical travelers.

But you’re not a typical traveler, are you?

You’ve read our top 15 things to do in Taipei and you’ve browsed through our spotlight on Taipei night markets and other Taipei attractions, so now it’s time to book your flight and make your Taipei travel a reality.

Need some more Taipei travel tips? We’ve got ’em. See our Taipei travel guide below.

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Taipei Travel Guide: Amazing People & Places

Our Tips for Taipei Travel with Kids

These Taipei travel tips are just a few things I’d recommend you consider before you visit Taipei. It should make your Taipei visit run more smoothly.

That said, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Some people in Taipei speaks English, and many are helpful even when they don’t. Feel free to ask questions on the street.

By the way, the most important Taiwan travel tip I could give you is this: don’t just see Taipei. The entire island of Taiwan is worth your time. Keiko and I lived in Tainan (southern Taiwan) in the late 90’s and loved it. The town of Kenting on Taiwan’s southern tip has beautiful beach scenery, and the island’s east coast is breathtaking.

Taiwan has a clean and modern high-speed rail system that can zip you to more southern cities in no time. And at a fraction of the price of a bullet train in Japan.

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Taipei Travel Advice

So here are a few specific Taipei travel tips for your trip to Taiwan. Whether you’re in town for a day or a month, there’s something in here for all of you!

Buy an EasyCard ASAP

Taiwan Taipei MRT train

Any Taipei travel itinerary is made easier by a clean, efficient subway system. It’s extremely useful, so when you visit Taipei, I advise going ahead and buying EasyCards at any MRT station so you can use the trains easily right away.

You can use it on the Metro (MRT),  the public bus system, and on some TRA trains that go outside of the city. They even work on the Maokong Gondola, which is one of the most popular Taipei attractions.

Taipei MRT train

Most major Taipei attractions are near a subway or train station, and having a pre-paid card means that Taipei travel is more fluid because you can go in and out of the subway gates without having to stop and figure out prices for everyone every time you use a train.

Most importantly, using a prepaid card means that you get a 20% discount on each trip. An NT$100 deposit is required for the card, so be sure to get it refunded before you leave the country.

Taxis & Carrying a Chinese Address

Taxis in Taipei

Taipei travel plans are often made easier with an occasional taxi ride. Compared to many major cities, taxis in Taipei are a steal. Fares start at NT$70 for the first 1.25 km with an additional NT$5 charge per 250 meters, which means that you can go just about anywhere in the city for about US$6-8. That’s pretty cheap, and they can make hotting lots of Taipei attractions much easier.

EasyCards and some credit cards work in most taxis as well but always check with the driver before you get in. If you’re staying in a Taipei hotel or guesthouse, keep one of their business cards with you. If staying at an Airbnb, grab a business card from a nearby shop or restaurant.

The point is to have an address in Chinese to refer to if you want to take a taxi back home or ask a taxi driver (or a policeman, or a 7-11 cashier…) for directions. Most drivers don’t speak English, and it can be hard to explain to the driver where to go if you don’t speak Chinese well, so it’s best to keep a business card from your hotel, guesthouse or some nearby restaurant/store with you — that way, you’ll always have a Chinese address to refer to. Make sure the card has the address in Chinese.

Get Out of Town!

Wulai Taipei travel tips

Your Taipei trip isn’t complete without seeing a little of the surrounding hillside. Taxis, public transportation and walking cover just about everything in the city, but if you’re the adventurous type, then rent a motorbike or scooter and ride the roads out of town towards Wulai.

A guy named Jeremy runs Bikefarm, and he rents wheels to visitors, usually bringing the vehicle to you. Both motorcycles and scooters are available, but selection may depend on what he has when you arrive or when you reserve. Contact him before your Taipei trip and see what he has available. Remember that he’ll probably want you to stay in in the area — don’t plan to drive to Hualien or Kenting.

Carry a Poncho or Umbrella

Taiwan rainy season Taipei travel tips

It can rain any time of year in Taipei, so it’s best not to be caught unaware. And important Taipei travel tip is to be prepared for rain.

If you don’t have a poncho or umbrella already, you can find cheap ones in convenient stores and any of the city’s night markets. Even if the weather is clear when you head out for the day, keep it in your bag for sudden changes in the weather.

Check if Your Hotel is Near a Temple

Taiwan temple fireworks - Taipei travel tips

Temples are some of the most beautiful Taipei’s attractions. The festivals that happen around Taiwanese temples can also be ear-splitting loud, but only on certain days of the year. Before you book accommodation, check on a map to see where the nearest temples and night markets are.

You’ll definitely want to see these when you visit Taipei, but if you’re too close, it can be LOUD both at night and in the morning. Granted, this is often unavoidable (fireworks like those above start at temples, but continue onto nearby streets, as well), but it’s worth checking. one of our favorite things to do in Taiwan is exploring temple festivals, but I don’t want to sleep next to them!

Any decent Taiwan travel guide should tell you to pack some earplugs just in case.

Watch for Scooters Everywhere

Taiwan scooters Taipei travel tips

Most people in Taipei follow the traffic laws: they stop at red lights, stay on their side of the road, don’t drive on the sidewalk, etc.

But that’s not everyone, so always look both ways before you step out, especially once you leave the center of Taipei, as driving laws are upheld less and less the further from the capital you go. My son found out the hard way.

Big Taiwan travel tip: always look both ways.

Seven-Eleven is Your Friend

Taiwan 7-11 Seven Eleven Taipei Travel Tips

You might be surprised to know that 7-Eleven is not just a crap-filled convenience store (although there is a fair share of crap), but that many branches of the chain provide a variety of useful services.

They can take care of dry cleaning, print your airplane tickets, mail your packages and call you a cab in the middle of the night if you can’t find one on the street. And they almost always have an in-store ATM. If you’ve been in a Japanese 7-11 before, then you have a rough idea of what to expect.

If you have any problem and there is no tourist information around, just step into the nearest 7-Eleven. Chances are there will be someone who may/may not speak English but will help you anyway. Just remember you may have to wait as it’s usually crowded. Excellent Taipei travel tip: Embrace the 7-11.

Don’t Miss These Foods

Taiwanese food Taipei travel tips

One of our top Taipei travel tips is to visit the night markets. If you’re looking for which markets to try first, check our Taipei night market recommendations. Below I’ve listed up just a few of our favorite Taiwan night market foods. This list is super limited — try whatever looks good, but if you want just a few dishes to start with, these are a few of our favorites:

Taiwanese Rice Dumpling

Zongzi in Mandarin. Glutinous rice and fillings are wrapped in bamboo leaves and steamed, then served with cilantro and two sauces: one sweet, one spicy. Inside the dumpling, you’ll usually find a mushroom, a duck egg and a hunk of pork belly.

Taiwanese Sausage

Xiang Chang” in Mandarin. This sweet sausage is eaten with hunks of strong, toe-curling local garlic. Perfect with a cold beer.

Soup Dumplings

Xiao Long Tang Bao” in Mandarin. This is the steamed soup dumpling. Some people go to restaurants like Din Tai Fung for the famous/pricey version, but most street stalls make a mean batch as well. Careful: these are really hot, and the soup inside is boiling at first, so it’s best to let them cool a bit, and then put the entire thing in your mouth. Otherwise, plan on scalding your tongue. or worse. For kids, you can put one in an empty rice bowl, poke it open and then blow for a minute or two.

Taiwanese Hamburger

Gua bao” in Mandarin. Nothing like a western burger, but it’s the same principle of meat & toppings inside a bun. Except here the meat is pork belly, the bun is steamed and the toppings are pickled mustard greens, cilantro, and sweet crushed peanuts. It’s exquisite, and like nothing you’ve ever eaten.

Oyster Omelette

O Ah Jian” in Taiwanese (no one says it in Chinese). Cooked with small oysters,  potato starch, egg and sometimes a few bean sprouts or greens are thrown in. It’s usually smothered in a mild, sweet chili sauce before being served, so stop them if your kids are super spice-averse.

Taiwan-style Vegetarian Cafeterias

If you don’t eat meat, you’ll find plenty of choice in Taiwan. I could probably write an entire Taipei travel guide for veggie options.

Taiwanese veggie food is delicious and found all over town — often near temples and major Taiwan attractions. There are pricey high-end places to try it, but my favorite places are the humble pay-by-weight cafeterias, which often have a huge variety of cooked veggies and fake meats.

I can go on and on about the food but should stop. It’s making me hungry just thinking about it. But perhaps one of the top Taipei travel tips is to EAT ALL THE FOODS.

Want More Food Tips? Read: Taiwanese Food Kids Love

Find Pili on TV (Extra Taipei Travel Tip)

Taipei travel tips Taiwan Pili Kung fu puppets Our Taipei Travel Tips — An Intro to Taipei Travel Guide

Okay okay, this isn’t essential Taipei travel advice, and this is more a Taiwan culture thing, but look it up and you’ll thank me later. If you have access to a TV in Taipei, you might want to try finding Pili, a long-running show that involves kung-fu fighting puppets (search Youtube with the words “pili Taiwan puppets”).

You will either love it or hate it. I love it.

Taipei with Kids. Our Top 15 Things to Do in Taipei with Kids: : taiwan scooter

Do You Have Taipei Travel Tips?

Have you traveled to Taiwan on your own? Have you been to Taipei with kids? What is your Taipei travel story? What can you add? Any other Taipei travel advice that I missed? We want this Taipei travel guide to be as useful as possible, so let me know in the comments below, or contact me directly so I can add it to the list.

Further Reading:


Taipei Travel Tips PIN 1
Photo credits: #2, #3, #4, #7, #8, #9, #10

Disclosure: This Taiwan travel guide contains affiliate links. This means, at no extra cost to you,  we might receive a small commission if you make a purchase or book using those links. My opinions are my own and I only recommend places/services that I believe will genuinely help your Taipei travel. Do you have any Taipei travel tips or Taiwan travel tips to share? Let us know!


  1. Hey Jason!

    Great read and pics! I was in Taipei last year and it brought back memories. I only spent three days thinking it was enough since Taiwan (and Taipei) is relatively small. It turns out there’s so much more to do!!

    Glad you had fun!

    Mick 🙂

  2. Looks fantastic Jason, i would certainly go there

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