If you're longing to enjoy your holiday in a lively city, you should probably check out some wonderful places to visit in Taiwan. This urban metropolis offers numerous outdoor activities and fantastic tourist spots all year round. Tourists can barely get bored in a country like this. It's definitely among the top Asian destinations to go to in a lifetime.
Fun Facts About Taiwan - Things You May Not Know
Before jumping into marvellous places to go in Taiwan, why don’t we look at some fun facts about the country? Having some knowledge about the site will make your trip even more exciting! And imagine how fun it is to share the facts with your friends while you are going to this beautiful nation of the East.
As small as it may seem, Taiwan has plenty of big surprises, especially if you are a first-time visitor. With an approximate area of 36,000 square kilometres (13,976 square miles), the country is home to over 23 million residents! Most of the population builds their lives on the land along the east coast. Thus, everything may feel a bit dense when you first come here.
Thanks to ETIAS, Taiwanese citizens can travel to European countries in the Schengen Area. For instance, they can freely explore Czech Republic’s beautiful urban and rural landscapes without a visa. However, this is only applicable for short stays, they still need a full-fledged visa to study or stay longer than 90 days.
You can find many small, cosy alleys with various stalls like this in Taiwan. Photo by Vernon Raineil Cenzon on Unsplash
Due to being administered by China for 200 years, Taiwan was heavily influenced by Chinese culture. For example, to the Taiwanese, white represents death, and red recalls happy occasions. In addition, the primary language in Taiwan is Mandarin, and most residents are ethnically Chinese.
Travellers may find themselves stunned by peculiar things in Taiwan. Little do people know that one of the Taiwanese national dishes is stinky tofu. You can tell from the name that its smell is not very pleasant. Yet it’s surprisingly good for your health. Taiwan is also home to Taipei 101, which was once the tallest building in the world before Burj Khalifa was built.
Stinky tofu may not fit your appetite, but tasty destinations should satisfy your travel instinct. Read further to know more about the best Taiwan tourist places.
Best places to visit in Taiwan
It’s hard not to mention Taipei City regarding famous Taiwan tourist spots. The capital of Taiwan embraces a diverse range of historical and cultural delights, accompanied by a lively, bustling ambience. And how can anyone resist the perfect combination of exquisite food and striking architectural structures? It’s all fun and happiness waiting for you in Taipei!
Shilin night market is always jam-packed with people and food stalls. Photo by Max Oh on Unsplash
If you want the authentic experience of daily life in Taiwan, you should blend in with the crowds at night markets. The fragrant smell from food stalls and the bustling ambience of the night market shall warm up your body in the cold. The walking and snacking experience in a Taiwan night market is unbeatable!
Find your way to Shilin Night Market if you crave fried chicken and bubble tea. Shida Night market is another excellent place to enjoy pork and pineapple buns. If you want to taste some Tian bu la, the traditional fish cakes, come to Guangzhou Night Market.
Not a fan of crowds? Museums may be the perfect choice for you. There are plenty of museums here, but the National Palace Museum in the Shilin district is among the most popular ones. The vast holdings of the Chinese imperial collection and the magnificent architectural complex make it one of the most fantastic Taiwan places to visit.
If you are a history buff and want to visit more museums, consider travelling to Germany and its most wonderful cities and towns. With about 6,000 museums in the country, it will take a while to visit them all.
When it comes to Taiwan tourist attractions, Kaohsiung City often stays at the top. It is one of the best holiday destinations and the perfect site for a healing trip.
If you have been exhausted by the endless workload, take a break and visit Kaohsiung to enjoy the fantastic scenery and the lovely weather. Thanks to the great weather all year round, Kaohsiung offers some of the best sightseeing spots in Taiwan.
Notable among the places are the famous Dragon and Tiger Pagodas. This 7-storey tall structure has a magnificent view of the blooming Lotus Lake and the whole city from afar. The entrance and exit are in the form of a dragon's throat and a tiger’s mouth. It is said that by entering and exiting this way one can avoid bad luck.
Love River is also a great destination to stop by. Most tourists love to have a drink at the riverside cafes and immerse in the gentle, romantic ambience. Riding the riverboats and cruises along the 12 km (7.4 mi) river is also a fun choice for the whole family.
The famous Dragon and Tiger Pagodas, a must-visit attraction in Kaohsiung City. Photo by tawatchai1990 - stock.adobe.com
Tourists travelling with children should not miss out on museums in Kaohsiung city. It may be the perfect chance to educate them in an exciting yet organised way. The Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Art is a good place to do so. They will learn one or two things about Tawainese culture from the amazing sculptures and calligraphy.
Experiencing the marvellous universe via aerospace technology and power display in the National Science and Technology Museum is not a bad idea either. Science and technology is the key to the future, so it’s always best to learn about them.
Taichung City is perhaps one of the most remarkable Taiwan places to visit. This thriving industrial and commercial centre impresses people with numerous transport hubs and shopping complexes. However, what keeps the tourists staying is the friendly people, beautiful scenery and cultural delights.
For a long time, the city has been making efforts to preserve many historic sites, many of which are old temples and shrines. Among the remarkable ones are the Lecheng Temple and Hsinchu Cheng Huang Temple.
Besides the magnificent architecture and sophisticated interior decor, people come to Lecheng Temple to pray for marriage and relationships. On the other hand, Cheng Huang Temple holds most of the grand rituals and festivals in the city. Joining either of the occasions, tourists will have a deeper understanding of community spirit and folk culture.
Adorable patterns are everywhere in Rainbow Village. Photo by Jisun Han on Unsplash
A walking tour through the colourful houses of Rainbow Village is another must-have on any Taiwan travel bucket list. The bright, unique strokes and striking patterns of humans and animals are a sight to behold.
Everything is the work of one person, Huang Yong-Fu. In 2010, he was the only person left in the village after the government announced that they were going to demolish the place.
Feeling bored, he started filling his home and surrounding buildings’ walls with paintings. Some university students discovered his artworks, and the rest is history.
If you love to stay a bit longer, our dear artist still lives in the village and is gladly open to meeting tourists. The 99-year-old painter has lived his life to the fullest, and we hope his incredible artwork will live for eternity.
Driving around 30 km (18 mi) on Provincial Highway 2 and Shimen Cave will be in your sight. This natural wonder is among one of the most beautiful places in Taiwan, thanks to its seaside overview and numerous activities nearby. Around Taiwan’s North Coast, Shimen Cave is an ideal destination for travellers to take a break and recharge their energy.
The breathtaking sunset view through the Shimen Cave’s entrance. Photo by beibaoke - stock.adobe.com
First-time visitors may find it surprising that Shimen Cave is not a cave but a stone arch. As time passed, no one remembered why the place had that name in the first place.
But one thing is certain, Shimen Cave remains an excellent sightseeing spot overlooking the sea. On the top of the stone arch, anyone can observe the stunning sunset view or simply watch the clouds drifting over the deep blue ocean.
Coming at the right time, visitors will have the chance to join the annual Shimen International Kite Festival at the neighbouring Laomei Kite Park. Thanks to the constant wind from the ocean, Shimen Kite Park has become a popular kite-flying destination that attracts people of all ages and reminds them of sweet childhood memories.
Located in the Wanhua district, the Chinese folk temple is among the major architectural works from the 18th century. Since its foundation in 1738, the temple has been under many reconstructions due to natural disasters and bomb damage.
Thankfully its ancient beauty remains intact, from the sweeping swallowtail eaves and colourful figures on the roof to detailed stone and wood carvings inside the structure. Nowadays, this is one of the best Taiwan tourist places.
A few people gather at Longshan Temple in the early morning. Photo by bennnn - stock.adobe.com
Longshan Temple is a unique religious site catering to numerous religions and worshipping many gods. Most visitors pray to Guanyin, the bodhisattva of mercy, whose statue is placed in the main shrine. There are about 100 other gods and goddesses in the rear and side halls you can pay homage to.
The best time to visit Longshan Temple falls around 6 am, 8 am and 5 pm when people gather and engage in the sacred chanting. Travellers should arrange the trip on the 19th day of the 2nd, 6th and 9th lunar month, as these times are the celebration of Guanyin’s birthday. The weeks before and during Lunar New Year are another ideal occasion to appreciate Taiwanese cultural traditions.
If you’re searching for fascinating places to go in Taiwan, Chimei Museum is an excellent option. It is a one-of-a-kind place which houses an impressive collection of Western art and cultural artefacts, ranging from precious pieces of fine art to numerous arms and scriptures.
Stunning displays at the Chimei Museum. Photo via Flickr
Art enthusiasts visiting the Chimei museum would love the great collection of European paintings from the 18th and 19th centuries. Meanwhile, average visitors will have the thrilling experience of weapon exhibitions from prehistoric times to modern times.
Each category has its best items shown in separate display cabinets. Notable among them is “O-Yoroi”, the armour representing the samurai outlook between the 10th and 13th centuries.
Music lovers may love it here as the museum is home to the world’s most extensive collection of violins. Having over 1,300 violins on display, visitors get to admire some of the most valuable violins such as Antonio Stradivaris, Guarneri del Gesu, Nicolo Amati, etc.
Chimei museum hosts various music concerts using their precious instruments. The excellent performances continue to draw visitors from all over the place and turn the museum into one of the best Taiwan tourist attractions.
Shifen Waterfall is genuinely one of the most fascinating things to see in Taiwan. Located in the deep green forest and bathing in the bright sunshine, these striking white columns are a sight to behold. Tourists must come and witness with their own eyes the beauty of “little Niagara falls” in Taiwan.
Wonderful view of Shifen Waterfall in a day without mist. Photo by Timo Volz on Unsplash
The walking bridge over the falls should offer a panoramic view of this natural wonder. As water runs down the edge, the rocks form multiple layers going against the flow and separating them into different streams. This geological feature is similar to that of Niagara Falls and explains the other name of Shifen Waterfall.
There are several viewing platforms providing ideal sightseeing spots for visitors. You can take some photos and appreciate its beauty from different angles. Once you’re done checking in, you may as well visit the nearby village to enjoy the Sky Lantern Festival. Write your wish on the lantern and set it into the sky; perhaps gods will listen and fulfil your dream.
Taroko National Park
Should there be a title for Taroko National Park, it shall be called “the natural wonder.” The awe-inspiring sight of centuries-old caves and impressive gorge enchant anyone stepping in. With such a gorgeous landscape, there’s no doubt that this place stands among the most beautiful places in Taiwan.
The stunning view outside a cave in Taroko National Park. Photo by Keoleakhena Puch on Unsplash
Tourists who love sightseeing should definitely check out Taroko National Park. The incredible landscape here varies from steep valleys and striking mountain peaks to the calm surface of rivers. You can observe from the Eternal Spring Shrine or the Swallow Grotto to have a fantastic panoramic view.
Tourists rarely get bored in Taroko National Park thanks to the significant number of outdoor activities. You can have fun rafting, mountain hiking or even bathing under the waterfalls.
Come at the right time, and you may be lucky to join the Taroko Music Festival. These marvellous performances significantly represent the culture and traditions of people and communities here.
Culture lovers who plan to visit Taiwan should not miss out on Tainan city. With loads of historical delights and cultural landmarks, Tainan city stands out compared to other Taiwan tourist places.
There’s a lot waiting for you in the oldest city in Taiwan, from fascinating architectural works and picturesque landscapes to exciting outdoor activities.
An overview of Tainan, the oldest city in Taiwan. Photo by YEH CHE WEI on Unsplash
Take a stroll around the city, and you will find multiple grand, impressive structures. Among these buildings, Anping Fort is undoubtedly one of the best. Also known as Fort Zeelandia, it was built by the Dutch East India Company in the 17th century.
Although its military duty has ended, Anping Fort remains one of the most renowned historical Taiwan destinations. It’s not a bad idea to leisurely stroll and appreciate the nostalgic ambience. You can also try climbing to the observatory to take in the panoramic view of the city.
Tourists can barely get tired of outdoor activities in Tainan city. There is a wide variety of entertainment for you to enjoy. Take a day trip to Tianjin National Park or Hutoupi Reservoirs if you love to explore the great outdoors.
After that, try spending some time at fantastic shopping sites and enjoying the local cuisine. Dan Zi Mian (Dan-Tsu noodles) or Xia Juan (shrimp roll) are among the must-try once you visit this beautiful city. Depending on your arrival time, you may have the chance to join the annual firework festival or observe the engaging ritual performances.
Yangmingshan National Park
It's not an exaggeration to say Yangmingshan National Park is among the best Taiwan tourist attractions. Peacefully lying on the outskirts of Taipei city, the place brings out a different ambience compared to other national parks. The tranquil scene in the morning, accompanied by the fragrant smell of flowers, will soothe any visitor's heart.
The lush green scenery of Yangmingshan is a feast for the eyes. Photo by Treddy Chen on Unsplash
Yangmingshan National Park is probably the most diverse landscape of the nine national parks in Taiwan. Tourists can walk through the lush green fields and colourful flower gardens or take photos of the gorgeous waterfalls and lakes. When you're tired, sit down and look at the green hillock under the blue sky. Isn't it the calmest moment after a long time?
To have the best experience, tourists should check the weather forecast regularly. It will be a shame not to be able to hike, swim or fish in a beautiful place like this. In addition, make sure to arrange your schedule so you don't come on the closing day, which is the last Monday of every month.
Kenting National Park
Despite being one of the oldest national parks, Kenting National Park offers tourists marvellous things to see in Taiwan. Any visitor coming here won't be able to resist the lovely scenery of a summer day. The brilliant beaches, the beautiful sunshine and the sweet smell of tropical flowers can easily enchant travellers.
The sun is about to set at the beach of Kenting National Park. Photo by Mircea X on Unsplash
If you can visit Kenting National Park, remember to stop by the Eluanbi lighthouse. Created in 1982 to shine the way for people visiting Taiwan's Southernmost end, the Eluanbi Lighthouse, or "The Light of East Asia," is among the brightest in Asia. The tall white house standing firmly on the rugged coastline is also the perfect set-up to snap some photos with friends.
The annual Spring Scream festival is another attraction that tourists should not forget. With a history of 25 years, the music festival is famous among locals and foreigners. Every year, music lovers gather here to indulge in exciting live performances with different stages and live acts. It's a perfect opportunity to put behind your concerns and live the best days of your youth.
Sun Moon Lake
Tourists who ever come to Taiwan must have heard about Sun Moon Lake. Surrounded by beautiful forests and ranges of mountains, the lake is one of the best places to visit in Taiwan. If you’re searching for a perfect weekend trip with your family, Sun Moon Lake is the right choice. Who can say no to such extraordinary beauty, especially when it is open all year round?
A relaxing sight of boats resting on the tranquil surface of Sun Moon Lake. Photo by Lisanto 李奕良 on Unsplash
As the largest lake in the country, the place is popular amongst locals and foreigners. Of course, the number of bars, cafes and restaurants is abundant to take care of visitors’ needs. You can also find great displays of old weapons and handicrafts at the lake’s shore.
If you visit Sun Moon Lake, outdoor activity is a must. Find a good day between January and April, and you can enjoy sailing, hiking and biking around the lake.
Tourists should take a cable ride to get phenomenal views of the area. At 142 metres (466 feet) above ground, passengers can spot shining temples among deep green forests and the lake in the centre. Imagine how gorgeous the scene will be when viewed from above!
Song of The Forest
Song of the Forest is probably among the most wonderful places to see in Taiwan. This remarkable structure was designed by Wang Wen-Chin to replicate the days when Chiayi City was the “timber capital” of Taiwan. Using raw materials such as rocks, wood, and railway sleepers, he has succeeded in recreating the glorious form of Chiayi in the past.
The rattan walkway connecting to the main body is another unique feature. Try walking through this, and you can’t help feeling like sneaking through a cave. The finishing touch is the base. Surrounded by rocks and dirt, it represents the relationship between the forest and the soil. It sets up a unique scene of a flatland forest.
Song of the Forest is the perfect spot to enjoy numerous activities. On the weekends, the residents stop by to enjoy a little sunbathing and relaxation. As for tourists, they visit the place at nighttime to capture the gorgeous view. When the sun sets and the lights fill up the tower, it creates an extraordinary and unforgettable visual.
Alishan National Scenic Area
Located in the Alishan Township of Chiayi County, Alishan National Scenic Area is among the wildest Taiwan places to visit. The site provides countless incredible scenery, from endless green hills, quiet valleys, the deep forests to striking waterfalls. The area also contains 25 mountains with different heights that are above 2,000 metres (6,562 feet).
The sun rises on the beautiful green land of the Alishan National Scenic Area. Photo by Alexa Soh on Unsplash
There are many ways for you to enjoy the panoramic view of the whole area. You may take the Alishan Forest Railway, which runs through the forests and the mountainsides. Otherwise, you can walk by Fenqihu, the ancient village where the remaining parts of a Shinto temple built by the Japanese are located.
No matter what path you take, Alishan is an excellent place to reveal your true self to nature. The journey here shall remain in your memory and grow with you as time passes.
Yushan National Park
For nature lovers, Yushan National Park is a remarkable Taiwan tourist destination. It’s where large sections of Taiwan’s mountain range meet and the home to the tallest mountain in the country, Mt. Jade.
With an approximate height of 3,000 metres (9,842 feet), Mt. Jade offers a great view of the surrounding landscape and has become one of the renowned attractions in the park.
Main Peak of Mt. Jade, the most popular of five peaks in this Yushan National Park tourist attraction. Photo by ngchiyui - stock.adobe.com
The serenity and beauty of nature in Yushan National Park attract many tourists to Nantou County. There are picturesque views that seem to only exist in movies.
There’s nothing like seeing the stunning sea of clouds surrounding sprawling valleys disappear to reveal the scenic rice fields all around you. It’s a beautiful scene that cannot be described in words.
Visiting Yushian National Park, tourists can take phenomenal shots and challenge themselves against nature. Reaching the top and seeing many other towering peaks all around you is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Needless to say, trekking and hiking are the two favourite sports activities in this place.
This is the end of the article. Thank you for reading. We hope you get some awesome ideas for your upcoming holiday. Wish you all the best!