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1 week in Taiwan - Nomadic Travel

1 Week in Taiwan

By | Destinations, Nomadic-Adventures, Taiwan, Uncategorized | No Comments

1 Week in Taiwan

Taipei Itinerary

After spending 1 week in Taiwan I felt like I visited a more tropical and cultural cross between China and Japan. In Taiwan, the semi-tropical climate and environment provide beautiful beaches as well as breathtaking mountain ranges in Taroko National Park. There are literally so many things to do and see I was a little disappointed I wasn’t able to circumnavigate the entire island but the week I spent in Taipei, Keelung, Jiufen, and Hualien was incredible.

Taipei: Days 1-3

I naturally started my 1 week in Taiwan by traveling around the countries capital city of Taipei. This modern city is filled with many cultural wonders and many excellent places to eat like the night markets Shiling and Raohe. I spent two full days exploring the city before heading to Keelung and Jiufen. I would recommend staying for 3 days or more even I was able to see many of the recommended places to visit in Taipei but was a little rushed.

Taipei 101 Tower

I spent 3 days in Taipei total and started by visiting the famous Taipei 101 tower. The Taipei 101 tower was actually the tallest building in the world until the Burj Kalifa was built, and then subsequent others.

1 week in Taiwan - Nomadic Travel

Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall

This blue and white octagonal temple was probably one of the coolest places I went to in Taipei. The memorial hall was created to commemorate the former president Chiang Kai-Shek and is definitely worth visiting.

1 week in taiwan - Nomadic Travel

With a huge courtyard connecting it to the local opera and art museum adjacent to the memorial hall.

Sun-Yat Sen Memorial

To commemorate the national founding father Dr. Sun Yat-Sen’s and his unparalleled morality, and revolutionary conducts they erected this Memorial with beautiful flowers and cultural decorations and regular performances.

1 week in taiwan - Nomadic Travel

Elephant Hill

After visiting the temples and tower I made my way back across town to the famous elephant hill viewpoint which is the best place to view the city skyline and sunsets. I was told by locals that this place usually has a long line all the way down the hill so it’s recommended to show up early. Fortunately for the weather forecast called for rain and I was also visiting during the week which resulted in much smaller crowds so I was able to get a great spot for Sunset.

1 week in taiwan - Nomadic Travel

Roahe and Shiling Night Markets

1 week in taiwan - Nomadic Travel

I spent my evenings at the famous Taipei night markets eating incredible exotic foods and other local fares. See my post here about Taipei street food.

Keelung: Day 4

Keelung is a historically rich city which is known for its Ghost Festival which is put on not only to honor their dead ancestors but also those who died during years of war and invasions.

Zhupu Altar

1 week in taiwan - nomadic travel

This impressive hilltop alter has a small but cool museum inside with figurines and other information about these ancient Chinese traditions.

1 week in taiwan - nomadic travel

I highly recommend hiking up the hill to this place and enjoying the classic architecture and panoramic views.

1 week in taiwan - nomadic travel

Keelung Miaoku Night Market

The Keelung Night Market was one of my favorites for the sheer variety of food available. After exploring the town and hiking up the hill head down to the pedestrian-only Miaoku Night Market. For more about Taiwanese food, check out this post, Taipei Food 101.

1 weekin taiwan - nomadic travel

There were definitely some different food options available here that I don’t remember seeing elsewhere. So if you don’t mind walking and eating then head down here and grab some snacks!

Jiufen: Day 5

Jiufen was on the top of my Taiwan Bucketlist and is also super popular with the Japanese. This place is teeming with character and unique charm. The views from this mountainside destination are also breathtaking, to say the least.

jiufen taiwan - nomadic travel

When you arrive it’s like practically going down the rabbit hole when you enter the narrow and crowded cobblestone alleyways of Jiufen Old Town and Shuqi Road. jiufen taiwan - nomadic travel 1

You’ll find that there’s a lot to take, I was literally looking left and right almost every step as new foods and souvenirs presented themselves. Many shops offer similarly good but when it comes to food there are things you must try like their specialty Taro Ball and Bean Dessert. Served either hot or cold, this is a must try the experience, plus the views aren’t bad either!

For more on planning your visit to Jiufen, check out my post Jiufen Day Trip.

Hualien/Taroko National Park: Days 6-8

I ended up heading east to visit Hualien and the incredible Taroko National Park. While there are nice beaches in Hualien and down south, having lived on an island in Thailand for so long I was yearning for some mountains and forests.

Taroko did not disappoint! The entire park was filled with massive forest-covered mountains, deep ravines, unique bridges and sketchy narrow mountain roads with falling rocks signs everywhere.toroko gorge itinerary - Nomadic Travel

I ended up renting a scooter for 600 Taiwan Dollars ($20 USD) and riding solo for about 7 hours high up into the mountains from the Eternal Spring Temple to the Swallow Gratto, then to Tanxiang and onto Baiyan Falls, this trip was unforgettable. For more on this, you can check out my Taroko National Park post.

1 Week in Taiwan Video

1 Week in Taiwan

Thanks for reading my “1 Week in Taiwan” blog post, please feel free to leave a comment below or on my Youtube. Follow my Instagram to keep up with my travels and subscribe to my blog for more travel tips and adventures.

Jiufen Taiwan - Nomadic Travel

Jiufen Taiwan Day Trip

By | Destinations, Nomadic-Adventures, Taiwan, Uncategorized | No Comments

Jiufen Taiwan Day Trip

One of my favorite places in Taiwan was the decommissioned gold mining town of Juifen. This popular mountainside holiday destination is a particular favorite with the Japanese. If you’re into Anime and have seen the movie Spirited Away then you’ll definitely want to come here because it’s where Hayao Miyazaki pulled much of his inspiration from.

Although the tourist popularity has nothing to do with the actual story of Spirited Away, many parts of the film do tear off some huge Jiufen chunks as inspiration for the characters and places that Miyazaki created. Jiufen Taiwan is fun for wandering around the old town full of small shops and food or head to the mines, or the mountain peak viewpoint!

Jiufen Taiwan Day Trip - Nomadic Nava

Jiufen Old Town

Founded during the Qing Dynasty, this small town was a relatively isolated village until the discovery of gold during the Japanese occupation in 1893. I spent a half day enjoying all the sites and smells there are to take in walking through the bustling business alleyways with interesting shops the entire way on either side.

Jiufen Taiwan - Nomadic TravelThe cobblestone steps of Shuqi Road is the recommended way to go from one end of the marketplace to the other. Boasting a wide selection of shops, cafes, and restaurants you can plan on spending at least a couple of hours if you really stop and take in the experience.

Jiufen Taiwan - Nomadic TravelThe souvenir shops and eateries that line both sides of the pedestrian-only pathways are home to Jiufens best-known specialty snack enjoyed either hot or cold. This tasty treat is a tapioca and sweet potato ball soup, it’s highly recommended! I had mine iced and will never forget it.

After reaching the top you should make your way down to the famous Jiufen A Mei Teahouse.

Jiufen Taiwan - Nomadic TravelA convenient way to visit Jiufen (as well as Shifen in Pingxi 平溪) is to take a shuttle bus from Ximen, leaving in the morning and returning before dinner.

Jiufen Taiwan - Nomadic TravelThis mountainside-hugging town faces the northwest, meaning you can expect some pretty spectacular scenery and sunsets on the northeast coast.

Jiufen Taiwan FoodJiufen is located in Ruifang District of New Taipei City. The town of Ruifang is a great place to begin your adventure in scenic Northern Taiwan. The train from Keelung costs only a few bucks and the bus up to Jiufen is even less expensive.

This place and Taiwan, in general, are so full of culture and history between the Taiwanese and Japanese which results in a variety of hybrid food options with something for everyone to enjoy. They even have a hilltop shop dedicated entirely to cats and cat merchandise!

Jiufen Taiwan Day Trip

Thanks for reading my “Jiufen Taiwan Day Trip” blog post, please feel free to leave a comment below or on my Youtube. Follow my Instagram to keep up with my travels and subscribe to my blog for more travel tips and adventures.

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