This is the first in a new travel post series all about Taiwan. While in Taiwan, we stayed in Taipei, Kaohsiung, Hualien, Juafien, and back to Taipei again.

Our first stop in Taiwan was Taipei. Highlights included hiking Elephant mountain, the Taipei zoo, eating scallion pancakes from Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake, eating soup dumplings at Din Tai Fung, eating traditional Taiwanese breakfast at Yong He Soy Milk King and one of the most breathtaking experiences of my life thus far: the Maokong gondola line.

Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Xiangshan Park signage, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Hello from Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Across the street from Elephant mountain staircase entrance – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Elephant mountain staircase entrance – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Flowers along the hike up Elephant Mountain – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Flowers along the hike up Elephant Mountain – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Climbing Elephant mountain’s stairs to the next viewing platform
Taipei, Taiwan
Climbing Elephant mountain’s stairs to the next viewing platform
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei skyline as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei skyline as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei skyline as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei skyline as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei skyline as viewed from Elephant mountain
Taipei, Taiwan
Step marker, Elephant mountain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain – through trees, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Elephant mountain stamp marker, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Elephant mountain stamp marker, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 as viewed from Elephant mountain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 when viewed from the street.
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 reflected in happy face reflective ball, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 reflected in happy face reflective ball
Taipei, Taiwan
Love artwork signage on the street in front of Taipei 101.
Taipei, Taiwan
Love artwork signage on the street in front of Taipei 101.

Taipei 101

Taipei, Taiwan
Japanese baked goods inside Taipei 101 Mall – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Japanese baked goods inside Taipei 101 Mall – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Din Tai Fung Taipei 101 location – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Enjoying tea at Din Tai Fung, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views outside Taipei 101, Taipei, Taiwan

Boa’an Temple

The Boa’an temple is the first temple we experienced in Taipei. The ornateness and overall presence feel significant — bordering on overwhelming.

Taipei, Taiwan
Boa’an Temple details- Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Boa’an Temple Lanterns & details- Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Boa’an Temple Lanterns & details- Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Birds in flight above Boa’an Temple – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: bike and coffee – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: temple & prayer – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: temple & prayer – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: food market stalls – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: food buffet – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: layers of people – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: fruit stand – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: dumpling stall – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: meat in the window – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: corner market fruit – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: market food stall – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: market food stall – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: market food stall – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: Shilin night market entrance – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: Shilin night market entrance – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: morning time – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: motorist & lantern – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: motorist & lantern – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: motorist & lantern – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views: boxes of dancing light – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan

Yong He Soy Milk King

Soy Milk King, eh? The Taiwanese are serious about their breakfasts. We enjoyed warm soy milk with all the fixings: egg, pork floss, and fried dough.

Taipei, Taiwan
Rolling out and frying dough. Yong He Soy Milk King – Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Rolling out and frying dough. Yong He Soy Milk King – Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Taking orders. Rolling out and frying the dough. Yong He Soy Milk King – Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Warm soy milk with egg and pork floss. Yong He Soy Milk King – Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
All mixed together – Warm soy milk with egg and pork floss. Yong He Soy Milk King – Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Flaky flatbread fried Chinese cruller, sou bing you tiao, Yong He Soy Milk King – Taipei, Taiwan.

This was all a hearty and heavy meal to prepare us for a long day at the Taipei Zoo and hiking around the Maokong Tea Village.


Taipei Zoo

I’ve been fortunate enough to have visited zoos around the world — mostly around the United States, but of all of those I have visited, Taipei has one of the best. Not only is it expansive, but it’s also diverse in its animals — to my knowledge not many zoos have both Asian and African elephants. Orangutans are a species I have not been seen in person until Taipei — what beautiful, quirky, muppet-like creatures they are. Below are some of my favorite captures from the zoo.

Taipei, Taiwan
Flamingos at the Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Orchids at the Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Panda eating bamboo at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Panda eating bamboo at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Asian elephants at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Asian elephants at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Asian elephants at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Asian elephants at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Asian elephants at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Leopard at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Leopard at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Leopard at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Orangutan at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan — looks like a muppet
Taipei, Taiwan
Orangutan at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan — looks like a muppet
Taipei, Taiwan
Orangutan at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan — looks like a muppet
Taipei, Taiwan
Chimpanzee at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Chimpanzee at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Koala at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Koala at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Giraffe at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Some type of bird at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
African elephant at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
African elephant at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
African elephant at Taipei Zoo, Taipei, Taiwan

Maokong Tea Village

The gondola ride from the Taipei Zoo to Maokong is incredible and one of the most breathtaking and amazing experiences I’ve had. The sun was just starting to set as we made our way back to Taipei from Maokong. The mixture of light and fog was absolutely perfect.

Taipei, Taiwan
Maokong tea village, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 viewed from Maokong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 viewed from Maokong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Tea farmers in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Tea farmer in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Tea farmer in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Tea farmer in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Maokong tea village, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Maokong tea village, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Tea farmers in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Tea farmer in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Lanterns outside Yao-Yue tea in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Makong street views, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Hiking in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Bird on a wire in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Bird on a wire in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei grand trail hiking in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Stairs leading up hiking in Makong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Petals from a tung blossom tree (April snow) beautifully cover the stairway leading us upward. Hiking in Maokong, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Views from Maokong gondola line, Maokong -> Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Views from Maokong gondola line, Maokong -> Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 views from Maokong gondola line, Maokong -> Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Views from Maokong gondola line, Maokong -> Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Views from Maokong gondola line, Maokong -> Taipei, Taiwan

Taipei night walking tour

We found some well-reviewed free walking tours in Taipei by a company called TourMeAway. We joined the Longshan Temple Tour. Overall, it was well worth the ~3 hours. Below are some captures from our experience.

Taipei, Taiwan
Medicine market, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Longshan Temple, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Lantern inside Longshan Temple, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Lantern inside Longshan Temple, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei Tourist night market, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei Tourist night market, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Lanterns outside the oldest hotel in the red light district in Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Lanterns outside the oldest hotel in the red light district in Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Poster outside the oldest hotel in the red light district in Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Lanterns outside the oldest hotel in the red light district in Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Lanterns outside the oldest hotel in the red light district in Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Lanterns outside the oldest hotel in the red light district in Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei Tourist night market, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei Tourist night market, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei Tourist night market, Taipei, Taiwan – Taipei Walking Tours

Exploring Taipei

Taipei, Taiwan
Exploring Taipei – walking from the National Palace Museum to our hotel. Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Temple on the side of a busy road Exploring Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Exploring Taipei – walking from the National Palace Museum to our hotel. Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Flowers dripping with rain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Flowers dripping with rain, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Exploring Taipei – walking from the National Palace Museum to our hotel. Taipei, Taiwan

Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall & Square

Chiang Kai-shek memorial hall honors Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, the former President of the Republic of China. The entire venue houses the Memorial Hall, Memorial Square, National Theater, and National Concert Hall.

Taipei, Taiwan
Chiang Kai-shek Memorial & Square, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Chiang Kai-shek Memorial exterior, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Chiang Kai-shek Memorial interior, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Chiang Kai-shek memorial square, National Theater, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Chiang Kai-shek memorial square, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Topiary tree at Chiang Kai-shek memorial, Taipei, Taiwan

Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes)

These scallion pancakes are absolutely delicious. While in Taipei we enjoyed variations on their scallion pancakes several times — with egg and cheese, with egg only, and plain. Each was delicious, cost-effective, and they filled us up. The cooking and crafting process is fascinating in its rhythmic and well-honed workflow.

Taipei, Taiwan
Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making pancakes at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Pancakes are served at Tianjing Chong Zhua Pancake (scallion pancakes) Taipei, Taiwan

Exploring Taipei at night

Taipei, Taiwan
Illuminated lanterns & street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Illuminated lanterns & street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei Taiwan neon sign – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime street views: all the meats – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, lanterns, and bears, oh my! – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime illuminated lantern street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Nighttime illuminated lantern street views – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making dumplings – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making dumplings – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making dumplings – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Making dumplings – Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan train station. Next stop: Kaohsiung
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan train station. Next stop: Kaohsiung
Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan train station. Next stop: Kaohsiung

Taipei extras - last days of the trip

We ended our trip by going back to Taipei for three nights before flying back to Minneapolis.

Taipei, Taiwan
Illuminated nighttime views Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Shopping district gate entrance, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Shopping district street views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Shopping district street views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
The historic Red House Theater exterior, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
The historic Red House Theater exterior, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Eating a ridiculous mound of Mango Snowflake Ice with Sorbet & Taro Balls at Smoothie House, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Wheel cake vendor, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Eating a wheel cake, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Eating a wheel cake, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street Views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street Views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Street Views, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Eating Ay-Chung Flour-Rice Noodle, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Eating Ay-Chung Flour-Rice Noodle, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Eating Ay-Chung Flour-Rice Noodle, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Interior night market, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Coco has delicious passion fruit jelly bubble tea, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Street views, Taipei, Taiwan.

Roahe night market

Taipei, Taiwan
Roahe night market entrance, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan
Roahe night market entrance, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Roahe night market entrance, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Roahe night market views, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Fuzhou Pepper Buns (pork pepper buns) stand at Roahe night market, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Eating Fuzhou Pepper Buns (pork pepper buns) at Roahe night market, Taipei, Taiwan. These were absolutely unbelievably delicious and one of our favorite food items of the entire trip.
Taipei, Taiwan
Fuzhou Pepper Buns (pork pepper buns) stand at Roahe night market, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Fuzhou Pepper Buns (pork pepper buns) stand at Roahe night market, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Fuzhou Pepper Buns (pork pepper buns) stand at Roahe night market, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Roahe night market vendor, Taipei, Taiwan.
Taipei, Taiwan
Roahe night market lanterns, Taipei, Taiwan.

In closing

Taipei is an incredible city housed inside a friendly and beautiful country. This will not be our only trip to Taipei. Next time we will visit Taipei and other cities in Taiwan.