Top 20 Things-to-Do & Places-to-go for First-Time Travelling in Taipei

Apart from going to touristic places like Taipei 101, I've planned my trip the other way round. If you're the kind of person who dislikes queues, dislikes tourism ripped off charges, dislikes the mainstream. This fun list of Things-to-Do & Places-to-go might be just for you as well!

Similar to Hong Kong, Taipei's shopping attractions and experience are as splendid as you can imagine. Eat, shop, sleep, repeat!

Places that you may not want to miss when you're in Taipei.
Here are 5 Places to do your STREET SHOPPING:

(1) Xi Men Ding

This pedestrian shopping heaven is the "Harajuku" of Taipei, hosting a massive variety of fashion, clothing shops, food places and more... It's like Orchard Road in Singapore, things are generally not the cheapest but trust me you will enjoy this place just like others do.

Located just west of Taipei Main Station in the historic Wanhua District, Ximending.

This painted rainbow colors on the active road of Ximending also is a local and tourist spot for OOTDs at Ximending. The word “Taipei” aligning the colours is to celebrate the city’s diversity. People are spotted standing for pictures and lie on a stretch of road for photos, it's located outside MRT Ximen Station in the Ximending area.

Nearest station: MTR: Ximen

(2) Dang Shui
Danshui (Tamsui in English) is an Old Street is that is filled with shops that are entertaining in traditional ways such as carnival games & etc. There are also many food places such as restaurants and cafés, as well as street food.

This waterfront area is a great place to watch the sceneries while shopping in this area. The Shops generally open in the afternoon and stay open until the last MRT train at 12 midnight.

Nearest station: MTR: Tamsui

(3) Da Dao Cheng Dihua Street
Dadaocheng (大稻埕) is undoubtedly one of Taipei’s most compelling neighborhoods and best places to explore on foot.

Dihua Street is developed as a place for trade in tea, medicine, herbs, fabrics, and all manner of dried goods, as it remains from history until today. The area also contains some of the most interesting temples in Taipei.

If you're someone who is crafty, Yongle Fabric Market at Dihua Street is probably somewhere you would love. If not, walking through the streets exploring is almost good enough.

Nearest station: MTR: Da Qiao Tou

(4) Jiu Fen

Jiufen Old Street is usually crowded with people in the noon and night time, especially on the weekends. While Jiufen is absolutely worth a visit, the sheer number of tourists making their way there every day makes public transport busy and massive human jams and road jams, sometimes even requiring you to queue for a long time just to board a bus. If you are keen to visit Jiufen alongside other attractions nearby, do plan a longer time here as there may be delay caused by all the queues and jams.

Jiufen is definitely worth the trip especially for Photography enthusiasm as there are really fantasy perspectives and scenery on the top of the hill where the real-life spirited away is located. Do you know the movie "Spirited-Away is inspired by Taiwan's Jiufen?"

Last but not least, don't miss the very delicious and juicy Taiwan's wild boar sausage. You won't regret even after buying a dozen of it.

Nearest station: MTR: Rui Fang & take bus up the hill (Bus ride time is approx 1hr)
Or book Tour on Klook App (apparently, is the most convenient & affordable way to travel there)

(5) Shi Fen

After visiting Jiufen, don't forget to hop by the nearby Shifen.

In my impression, Shifen is the over-famous place for movie scenes. Apart from being an attractive place for sky lanterns where many make their wishes here, Shifen Old Street is also a bustling hub for those eager to get a glimpse of an old railroad town that still retains the charm of yesteryear. Originally built to transport coal, the Shifen Old Street stop has now become one of the most popular tourist spots in Taipei. It is easy to see why so many are drawn here for local food, souvenir shops as well as it is a fantastic place for photography.

Visitors today paint their wishes with traditional calligraphy (not markers) before releasing the lanterns into the sky. Releasing a sky lantern costs around TWD100~150 each.

Nearest station: MTR: Rui Fang & take bus up the hill (Bus ride time is approx 1hr)
Or book Tour on Klook App (apparently, is the most convenient & affordable way to travel there)

(6) Shilling Night Market
Night markets are essential to Taiwanese culture and have been around for longer than you can imagine. A trip to Taiwan is never ever complete without touring one of the night markets. The one and most famous night market that you should visit is Shilin Night Market which is divided into two sections. One is a building where stalls are spread over four floors: one floor above ground and three underground.

A food court can be found on level B1, while the ground floor is all about fresh produce, souvenirs, clothes, and accessories. The food court is a wonderland alive with myriads of vendors selling deep-fried chicken steaks, stir-fried cuttlefish, oyster omelets, and many more. You will be spoiled for choice. Don't forget to plan a long time there as there are very popular stalls around with long queues.

Nearest station: MTR: JianTan

Here are 6 Places to visit for RESTAURANT & CAFE:(Click on the photos to read more)

(7) Fei Niao Xiao Chu 飛鳥小初

(8) Risotto 阿毛石鍋燉飯

(9) Al reves 顛倒餐廳

(10) Da Che Lun 大車輪壽司本舖西門店

(11) The Pasta Bar 義大利面的達人

(12) Phythonism 玩蟒人生

The place to go for HOUSEHOLD & CRAFTS:

(13) iColour

Not too famous and hides in the corner of Ximending, not obvious to spot if you're just walking past. There are many creative designed household items as well as good-looking crafts materials. It's similar to Singapore's Daiso where everything is at a fixed rate, and you may get many affordable good deals from here. Click here for more information.


Here are 3 Places to go for BUBBLE TEA SHOP:

(14) Machi Machi

Like many of us, Jay chou is also a Bubble tea lover that makes him invested in Machi Machi (a Taiwan-based cheese tea store). This is also the very reason why you should visit the store. You may be just in luck to see the super celebrity, Jay Chou, in the store. During my trip in Taipei, he was in Ximending's Machi Machi twice and I missed it twice by 25mins and an hour. So keep a lookout when you're near Machi Machi. Don't miss him! Get a nice wefie there!

(15) Tiger Sugar

Other than Xingfutang which is slightly much more commercialized in Taipei and overrated, Tiger sugar is one of the well-know bubble tea shops around.

This Taiwanese bubble tea chain is well-known for its brown sugar pearl milk so when you're in Taipei, it's definitely a MUST-TRY.

(16) Xing Fu Tang

If you don't mind paying more, and for unique insta-worthy photographs, this is where you can visit for Bubble tea. You'll always see the longest queue for Bubble tea is always Xing Fu Tang at Ximending, that's partly because they always have new ideas for making their drinks look unique. For once they put edible gold paper for presentation, and another season they added the whole rose flower on top their drinks.


Here are 3 Places to go for BEAUTY SHOPPING:

(17) Watson

Beauty Spree at Taipei Ximending 4-Storey Watsons can possibly make you easily shop for at least 2 to 3 hours.

What’s more, it’s 24 hours! This also means there's no need to worry if you haven't got enough for your shopping spree, you can go back anytime on your trip as there is no closed time.

Nearest station: MTR: Ximen

(18) Cosmed

Considering both a pharmacy store as well as a beauty supply shop chain in Taipei. Cosmed (康是美) is one of the bigger players in the beauty line in Taipei. You may get some brands that you couldn't find in other places but here.

They also have very creative packaging for many products, such as this woman's pantyliners.

There are many outlets in Taipei, it easily spots one while walking on the street especially around Ximending area.

(19) Xiao San Mei (小三美日)

Not sure if it's named after mistress, as Xiao San in mandarin simply means Mistress. If it's so, it's probably a shop that tells you what keeps the mistress so attractive. Haha. So keep up with your beauty just like the Mistress, shop at Xiao San Mei.

Xiao San Mei's products are much cheaper than Watson and Cosmed, however, there are rumors saying that some products are not authentic and we won't know what is added in the non-authentic version of products. However, it's just rumored. Check it out before you decide to visit them.


(20) GET FREE ONDEN SOUP during winter:

Kind thoughts in Taiwan; No matter who are you, which type of level are you. You can scoop your own free soup with 7eleven's disposable bowl in Taipei, Taiwan. Every 7eleven in Taipei, allows you to drink their soup for absolutely FREE during winter times. Especially kind, for those who are homeless. I love this beautiful thought.


Make the trip worth with apps! Make sure you have a good network on your phone to be always ready to download shop app for more discounts n freebies!

Don't forget to bring your own bags when shopping:

Taiwan plays a part in going eco, and they fight for a greener future. Taiwan Is Reducing Single-Use Plastics Everywhere, Except Traditional Markets. In majority places in Taipei, no plastic bag will be given no matter how much you spend. So remember to bring your own bags as well as a cup holder bag to hold your drinks and carry your things around.

Thanks for Reading! 
And Enjoy your Taipei's Adventure!

♥ Thanks for reading as always!

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Singapore Food & Lifestyle Blogger Hello, I'm Irene

Welcome to Goodswanderers blog! The concept of Goodswanderers blog is to explore & blog about the Good things around me & my love ones. Read more long self-intro about why I started this blog here.