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Taiwan Sightseeing and Attractions: Places to Visit in Taiwan

Updated on January 10, 2011

Taiwan has a lot of places to visit as well as for sightseeing and tourist attractions. Here are some of the places that we visited in Taipei, Taiwan.

National Palace Museum

One of the places we visited in Taipei was the National Palace Museum known as “the treasure house of Chinese culture”. If you want to see the world's largest collection (around seven hundred thousand items) of Chinese artifacts, this museum located in the Waishuanghsi neighborhood of the Shihlin District is a must on your list of places to visit in Taipei. This museum ranks as one of the four best museums in the world, in a class with the Louvre, the British Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Included in the collection are artifacts made from jade, bronze, porcelain, lacquerware and enamel. There is also tapestry and embroidery, and many priceless documents and books containing excellent examples of ancient Chinese calligraphy. The most famous and notable pieces of the treasures now displaying at the museum are Jadeite cabbage, Meat-Shaped Stone, Agate Finger Citrons, White Jade Branch of Elegant Lychee, T’ien-huang Stone Miniature Mountain, and Jadeite Screen Insert. Some of the oldest artifacts in the collection of the museum are pieces of prehistoric pottery over 5,000 years old. The vast majority of these art objects are from the private collection of China's emperors.

The museum displays around fifteen thousand pieces at any given time while the other treasures are kept in well protected, air conditioned vaults buried deep in the mountainside. The displays are then rotated once every three months.

Visit the National Palace Museum's website to read their calendar of events, visiting hours, entrance fees, site location and more!

National Palace Museum

Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall

Noted as a national historical site of Taiwan, Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall or the National Taiwan Democracy Memorial Hall was built to commemorate the former Taiwan President Chiang Kai-Shek. This important landmark attracts large populations of visitors every year so we made sure this was part of our Taipei tour.

We got to see history coming alive through preserved photographs, vehicles, uniform, old commodities used by the former president. His former office was restored with him seated on the table.

Aside from the main memorial hall, there is also a National Theater and National Concert Hall, where numerous local and international performances have been shown.

Website:  Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall

Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall

Lungshan Temple

Built in the Ching Dynasty, the Lungshan Temple is one of the most famous and most worshiped temples in Taiwan. The devotees worship Guanyin, the Goddess of Mercy, and other divine spirits. Known to be one of the oldest and magnificent Buddhist temples in Taiwan, it has a three-sectional shaped design, the best traditional temple architectures of Chinese temples. There is a front, middle and rear hall with bronze dragons on the right and left pillars. The doors, beams and poles are wonderfully decorated. You can also see stunning wood sculptures. Numerous worshipers visit during the first and fifteenth day of each month of the lunar calendar. Surrounding the temple are antique shops, medicine shops and traditional streets.

Lungshan Temple

Nanya Rock Formation

Our first stop on day 2 of our Taiwan tour was the northernmost part where the entire coastline was a breathtaking view of sculptured stones and sea waves. Nanya has this fantastic rock formations and a unique sea-eroded coral shore. This is formed through the weathering of the sandstone and the oxidation of iron ore that looks like a striped pattern, seen as striations on the stone.

Nanya Rock Formation

Yin Yang Hai or Yin Yang Sea

Yin Yang Hai or Yin Yang sea is also called the bay of two colors. As the bus traveled along the coastal road, we saw a bay where the sea has two colors --a brownish/yellowish color due to copper and iron deposits amidst a majestic blue.

Some believed that the yellowish sea color was due to the pollution resulting form smelting activities does by mining company. Strangely even if the mining company has stopped operating, the Yin-yang sea still exists. Scholars claim that the area which has a large amount of pyrite that has formed Fe3+ which does not dissolve easily in water. It resulted to the formation of iron ion floating particles when it flows into the sea caused the bay of two colors to exist until today.

Yin Yang Sea

Golden Waterfall

Further along, we stopped to watch a waterfall.  Still you can see the brownish colour of the waterfall due to the copper and iron deposits picked up during their passage through the mines. Hence, the waterfall is known as the Golden Waterfall.  It is also believed to be one of the sources of the Yin Yang Sea.

Golden Waterfall

Jiufen Village or Chiufen Village

Jiufen or Chiufen village is a quaint little town nestled on a mountain in Rueifang Township of Taipei Country near Keelung.  This used to be the gold mining center of Taiwan.  I also read that Jiufen means 9 portions in Chinese.  And there used to be 9 families who lived in this mountain.  Since transportation was difficult, the village would request for 9 portions every time a shipment arrived from the town.  We walked along the winding lanes, tea houses, shops and enjoyed taste testing the different food/delicacies that was there.  We also ended up buying food stuff to bring home as souvenirs.

Jiufen Village

Yehliu Geopark

I adored Yehliu Geopark with its fascinating rock formations. Yehliu is a cape on the north coast of Taiwan located in the town of Wanli. This is in between Taipei and Keelung. The most common rock formation and easily visible are the mushroom rocks. There were many mushroom rocks dotting the coastline. There were also honeycomb rocks, obviously because they look like honeycombs. And ginger rocks, candle rocks, pot holes, chessboard rocks and fairy's shoe.

Yehliu Geopark

Queen's Head

The most famous rock found in the Yehliu Geopark is the Queen's Head. Lots of tourists fall in line to have their photo taken with this iconic landmark in this region. Of course, including us! The Millennium Queen is believed to be around 4,000 years old. Continuous exposure to the wind, sun, rain has caused the Queen's neck to become thinner through the years. So they also made a similar one to remember this remarkable rock formation just in case time will destroy the real one.

Queen's Head

Taipei 101

This landmark skyscraper, Taipei 101 or the Taipei World Financial Center, is located in the Xinyj District, Taipei, Taiwan.  From 2004 up to 2010 (until the opening of Burj Khalifa in Dubai), it ranked as the world's tallest building. 

As the name implies, Taipei 101 comprises 101 floors above the ground and 5 flours underground.  We took some time to tour around the shops inside Taipei 101 but refrained from going up the observation deck since the line was too long.

Taipei 101

Yangmingshan Park

On our third day, we were going to experience the famous hot springs! But before that, we dropped by The Yangmingshan National Park. The Yangmingshan National park is the only national park in Taiwan that has volcanic geography and hot springs. It is next to Sha Mao Shan (Shamao Mountain) and Chi Hsing Shan (Chihsing Mountain), with Da Tun Shan (Datun Mountain) on the right and Kuan Yin Shan (Kuanyin Mountain) in its front. Established in Sept. 16, 1985, its vegetation differs from other areas at similar latitudes. The volcanic activity that created the area makes the soil unusually warm and it is strongly acidic and lacking in calcium.

Yangmingshan Park

Hot Springs at Calla Young Garden Resort

Our tourist guide took us to Calla Young Garden Resort to experience the beauty of hot springs.  Located between Yangmingshan National park and the North Coast and Guanyinshan National Scenic Area, the resort is nestled among lush, green mountains.  Wash away the tiredness and worries by dipping into the hot spring pool (there is also a cold spring pool) that was very refreshing and relaxing.

After our hot spring bath, we ate in the Pin Shan Shue Restaurant with a breathtaking view of the mountains as we enjoyed their delicious, organic meals.

Outdoor Pool of Calla Young Garden Resort

Taipei Zoo

Guess who was grinning the biggest smile ever when we reached the Taipei Zoo?  Of course, my 7 year old nephew was beside himself with excitement!  The cool weather with a touch of the warmth of the sun was just perfect as we explored the largest city zoo in Asia. The Taipei zoo displays animals from Taiwan, Africa, Australia, the Asian tropical rainforest, the desert and the temperate zones.

Panda Bear at Taipei Zoo

See the Panda Bear?
See the Panda Bear?

Maokong Gondola

Before dinner, we rode the maokong gondola, cable car or crystal cabins.  It is also called the eyes of Maokong Gondola.  Unfortunately, the queue was long so when it was time to board the maokong gondola, it was rather dark already and we couldn't see the trees and mountains around us.  The beautiful thing though was seeing the view of the city lights and buildings as we rose above the air.  The weather was cool up there since it was December.  I enjoyed my maokong gondola ride.  

Maokong Gondola--Cable Car Ride

Sanshia Old Street

On our last day of the tour, the group decided to start late in the morning since our flight was scheduled late in the evening. We checked out of our hotel and asked the tourist guide to take us to a souvenir shop to buy goodies to bring back to our families.

Then we traveled to sansia/sanshia old street where we also entered the sansia qingshui zushi temple. After we walked along the streets and entered the quaint looking shops with red bricked buildings, arched hallways and Baroque styled architecture.

Temple near Sanshia Street

Spanish Ceramic Art Exhibit

The Spanish Ceramic Art exhibit was a treat as we saw ceramics being used in many ways including sculpture and paintings.  "Spanish ceramic art offers an interesting interpretation of trends in the world of contemporary ceramic art.  The pieces on display showcase a stunning collection of different styles, types, techniques and expressive methods, illustrating the diverse range of aesthetics and ideas that infuse the artistic medium of ceramics."

Ceramic Art Exhibit--Some Samples

A visit to Chiang Kai Shek's mausoleum

In 1975, 26 years after Chiang came to Taiwan, he died in Taipei at the age of 87. He had suffered a major heart attack and pneumonia in the months before and died from renal failure aggravated with advanced cardiac malfunction at 23:50 on April 5.

A month of mourning was declared. Chinese music composer Hwang Yau-tai wrote the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Song. In mainland China, however, Chiang's death was met with little apparent mourning and Communist state-run newspapers gave the brief headline "Chiang Kai-shek Has Died." Chiang's body was put in a copper coffin and temporarily interred at his favorite residence in Cihu, Dasi, Taoyuan. When his son Chiang Ching-kuo died in 1988, he was entombed in a separate mausoleum in nearby Touliao (頭寮). The hope was to have both buried at their birthplace in Fenghua if and when it was possible. In 2004, Chiang Fang-liang, the widow of Chiang Ching-kuo, asked that both father and son be buried at Wuzhi Mountain Military Cemetery in Xizhi, Taipei County (now New Taipei City). Chiang's ultimate funeral ceremony became a political battle between the wishes of the state and the wishes of his family. --Source: Wikipedia

Chiang's body was not buried in the traditional Chinese manner but entombed in his former residence in Cihu in respect for his wish to be buried in his native Fenghua.

Chiang Kai Shek Statues

Tina, our tourist guide, thank you!

One Last Note

Our trip was booked through the Edison Travel Agency and the hotel where we stayed was in the Riviera Hotel. The MTR station was about five minutes walk away.  The staff spoke English and was quite friendly.  Our rooms were nice, clean and quiet. Our tourist guide, Tina, was very helpful and made sure our trip was a very memorable one. 

December is a rainy month therefore, we brought with us umbrellas and raincoats just in case it rained.  I remember Tina saying that we are very lucky that the weather was very good.  I would grin and declare back, "Yes we are very lucky." 

Our Taipei, Taiwan trip was a very beautiful one and I wouldn't mind going back to explore more of the beautiful places that they have to offer.


Taipei, Taiwan

A markertaipei taiwan -
Taipei City, Taiwan
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    • tastiger04 profile image

      tastiger04 4 years ago

      Excellent hub! I grew up in Taiwan and you really got all the great places!! I enjoyed this a lot, great memories :) voted up!

    • bumblehub profile image

      escaran 4 years ago from Philippines

      nice post!!

    • profile image

      skl 5 years ago

      its a cool country

    • rosettaartist1 profile image

      Rosetta Ceesay 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      Great information and photos.

    • SweetiePie profile image

      SweetiePie 6 years ago from Southern California, USA

      You go on some amazing trips Michelle. I love the landscape pictures the best.

    • htodd profile image

      htodd 6 years ago from United States

      Great post..Thanks

    • ripplemaker profile image
      Author

      Michelle Simtoco 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Serena, there was no entrance fee for Nanya rock formations. I am not sure how to go there as we had our tourist guide with us. But you can ask, I am sure somebody can help you with the directions. Thanks!

      visionandfocus: that would be great! Thanks for visiting this hub..I enjoyed our Taiwan trip too!

      To all those who have come and commented, thanks so much. Blessings.

    • visionandfocus profile image

      visionandfocus 6 years ago from North York, Canada

      My husband and I went on our first short trip to Taiwan early this year, and we didn't get to see half of the attractions you went to, so I'm bookmarking this for when we go back again. Really useful and interesting hub--thanks for sharing your travel experiences.

    • profile image

      Serena 6 years ago

      Hi, I would like to ask if there is any entrance fee required for Nanya rock formations? How do you get there? :)

    • mj_daye profile image

      mj_daye 6 years ago from Pacific Northwest

      Why do I suddenly crave tofu? Nice article.

    • sam19392 profile image

      sam19392 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      Thanks for such informative hub. I'd like to visit your country in the future

    • CaravanHolidays profile image

      CaravanHolidays 6 years ago from Wales UK

      Nice photos - the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Square is a great place to wander around and feel lost. Ironically I arrived on this hub via your anti stress hub - I lived in Taipei for a year, and whenever I felt the need to de-stress, I walked to the square, sat down, watched people go by and 'let go'. I'm not exactly sure what it was about the location that helped me 'let go'. Anyway, nice hubs!

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago

      Thank you for the terrific travelogue. I enjoyed the journey with you very much. Your photographs are wonderfully made and you look precious in them. Taiwan looks beautiful and interesting. Well done!

    • ripplemaker profile image
      Author

      Michelle Simtoco 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      goody, you deserved it I am sure! :) Thank you for being here.

      Mike, someday you can surely visit Taiwan and the many wonderful attractions they have! :)

    • Mike's Corner profile image

      Mike's Corner 6 years ago from Maryland

      Wow, great hub and such beautiful pictures, Ripplemaker. I've never had the opportunity to travel to that part of the world, but it looks truly breathtaking.

    • goody7 profile image

      goody7 6 years ago from over there under the sycamore tree

      This is a terrific hub you have here ripplemaker. I also want to thank you for the nomination in the contest. I'm not sure if I deserve it or not, but I sure do appreciate it. Keep on hubbing............

    • ripplemaker profile image
      Author

      Michelle Simtoco 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      imchemist, it would be nice to visit Taiwan and the Philippines :) I'm from Cebu so I don't have a lot of knowledge about Davao.

      KoffeeklatchGals, hmmm I'll remember that advice! LOL Thanks for dropping by. :)

    • ripplemaker profile image
      Author

      Michelle Simtoco 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      tim-tim, go for it! :)

      Rhonda, yes it was awesome. :)

      Katie, thank you for taking the trip with me...the recollection brought a smile to my face too. :)

      prasetio, yes each place truly has wonderful sightseeing attractions. blessings and hugs to you too. :)

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Haze 6 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Ripplemaker, the photos are superb. I especially like the rock formations. What a wonderful trip you had. I believe you should think about adding another career - wrting tour brochures. Great job.

    • ImChemist profile image

      ImChemist 6 years ago

      Nice pictures , i like this country and hope to visit it , and i like your country too Philippines.

      Do you have of Philippines specially Davao city?

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 6 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Wow.. I really enjoy your tour. Taiwan gave us a lot of attractions and I really love your description about places and some great events in Taiwan. I hope I can visit this country someday. Thanks for writing this. I give my vote to you. Cheers....

      Blessing and hugs,

    • katiem2 profile image

      katiem2 6 years ago from I'm outta here

      What an exciting and beautiful tour of Taiwan. It was wonderful to go sightseeing with you. The photos are amazing and makes me want to be there myself. Thank you so much for this amazing collection of sights and details about the beautiful Taiwan! :) Katie

    • Rhonda Waits profile image

      Rhonda Musch 6 years ago from The Emerald Coast

      Awesome beautiful pictures. Looks like a great place to visit one day.

    • tim-tim profile image

      Priscilla Chan 6 years ago from Normal, Illinois

      Awesome! Love to go to Taiwan some day!

    • ripplemaker profile image
      Author

      Michelle Simtoco 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Tatjana, you would love the rock formations I am sure! :) Happy new year my friend!

      Wooded, thank you for sharing this beautiful moments with me!

      Hello, hello, we have so many photos it was so difficult which ones to post only. :)

      tipoague, I am sure your dad will enjoy Taiwan. Thank you for sharing this hub with him. Cheers!

    • tlpoague profile image

      Tammy 6 years ago from USA

      Wonderful pictures! I will have to pass this hub on to my dad. He has always wanted to take a trip there. I am going to put is on my list of places to see. Thanks for sharing!

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

      Thank you for you sharing your wonderful trip. I never knew any of these fabulous sightseeing.

    • profile image

      Wooded 6 years ago

      Wow, what a wonderful trip! Thank you for sharing all of your beautiful pictures too!

    • Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

      Tatjana-Mihaela 6 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA

      Hi Michelle, I am glad you enjoyed your trip and that you shared your impretions and photos here, so we all can enjoy in virtual travel to Taiwan.

      Lungshan temple is magnificent, hot spring bath sounds great for me, but I certainly find rock formations the most beautiful.

      Peace and love.

    • ripplemaker profile image
      Author

      Michelle Simtoco 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Claptona, had to just choose a few photos coz we have hundreds of photos hahahahha thanks for dropping by :)

      Rohn, glad you enjoyed this hub!

      Just Ask Susan, oh yes that was very interesting! :)

      jcales, my friend told me it's 7 to 13 degrees and raining hard. We were so lucky that it didn't rain the 5 days we were there! For us living in tropical countries, we find that to be cold temp indeed. :)

      chspublish, thanks so much. There is so much to learn from all the countries around us. :)

      noturningback, since we were 14 in all in my family & relatives, we found it easier to have a tour guide have a planned itinerary for us with the tourist places in mind. But living there and experiencing their culture would also be interesting I am sure. :) The last time I was in Taiwan, we were in a group of 75 as performers in a Siddhartha musical show. So it was another experience altogether!

      lilian, wow, that is nice to know! :)

      Our Siddhartha musical that got the opportunity to be performed in Taiwan. https://hubpages.com/entertainment/Siddhartha-Musi

    • lilian_sg profile image

      lilian_sg 6 years ago from Singapore

      Nice hub...it's very informative and reminded me of my trip there years ago!

    • noturningback profile image

      noturningback 6 years ago from Edgewater, MD. USA

      Very nice, I think I would visit Thailand as well. I would realy like to know more about the local customs and the not so everyday tourist places. I do like the tourist trap areas as well, but I'm an explorer at heart. Very nice hub all together. Thank you for sharing.

    • chspublish profile image

      chspublish 6 years ago from Ireland

      Hi ripplemaker, sounds like a really great place to visit with such richness, literally, from ancient culture and interesting landscape features. Wow! Thanks for the hub.

    • jcales profile image

      jcales 6 years ago

      Wow. This was out together very well. I am always interested in sightseeing & travel. I prefer the museums and memorial hall much more though as it appears to be cold right there now.

    • Just Ask Susan profile image

      Susan Zutautas 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Awesome hub ripplemaker. It was so nice to see this part of the world through your eyes and if I ever get to travel I would just love to visit Yangminshan Park. Beautiful!

    • profile image

      Rohn 6 years ago

      Very nice stuff and cool pics. Enjoyed !!!

    • claptona profile image

      John D Wilson 6 years ago from Earth

      Good hubpage ripplemaker.

      Informative and nice pictures.

      Cheers

      John

    • ripplemaker profile image
      Author

      Michelle Simtoco 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Emohealer: Sue, yes the rocks were really wonderful and awesome. I'm glad to have these photos to remember these moments by. Thanks for dropping by!

      Dottie: The temples were awesome with its intricate carvings. I wish I could post more photos (maybe one of these in another hub hehehe)! And the hot spring bath was totally an experience altogether as we had to bath naked! LOL But we stayed in an indoor pool since it was cold at that time. Photos are not allowed inside though so just posted the outdoor pool!

      Violetsun: Marie, yes the hot spring was nice. Oh you love the temples? Like Taiwan, Thailand has many of those too. :)

      Katrina: Nice to meet you. Glad you enjoyed the photos! Thanks for the visit.

      Daniel: Thanks for being here! :)

    • daniel steve profile image

      daniel steve 6 years ago from India

      wonderful hub it was excellent. have become your follower

    • katrinasui profile image

      katrinasui 6 years ago

      Wow! Taiwan seems to be a beautiful place to visit. Pictures are simply awesome. Thanks for sharing your trip, it was enjoyable.

    • VioletSun profile image

      VioletSun 6 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie

      Beautiful photos! I love architecture, the feel of old, ornate structures, so I was attracted to the temples. Enjoyed "visiting" even I was not there physically. Oh, and the hot springs, wow, I have never experienced one.

    • Dottie1 profile image

      Dottie1 6 years ago from MA, USA

      Was captivated at the temples architecture, wow! Just imagining the work and how long they took to build. Also imagining the hot spring bath. I could really use one of those right about now! Great photos of the landscapes/formations, and your family poses, awesome. Thank you for the tour, it was enjoyable.

    • emohealer profile image

      Sioux Ramos 6 years ago from South Carolina

      What beautiful photography! I felt like I had made a trip. The rock formations were of most interest, made me think of volcanic rock. Is this what they appear to be in real life? Thank You for sharing your trip adn opening my eyes to this part of our world in such a personal way.