SAY WHAT? 19 RESTAURANTS IN 3 DAYS??? SHOPPING FRENZY?? BORING OLD TEMPLES AND DULL BUILDINGS??
That’s exactly what we’ve achieved in our recent Taipei trip- and speaking of 19 restaurants, street eats were not inclusive yet! It was a fulfilling trip, and it helps that the eateries in Taipei is relatively cheap too! Now I can come home and cry to mommy because of those few extra pounds around my waist and blame no one.
I’ve been meaning to share the ultimate Taipei guide with our readers-but by the rate I’m going, always distracted with other things during mid-sentence, I seriously has doubt that this can be completed within a short span of time. But I’m in a good mood today, and I am also a very determine woman today, finally setting out a 2-hrs uninterrupted solitude in order to concentrate writing this post.
So here’s our two cents on all things Taipei (which will be split into different entries) I hope you enjoy reading them! And if you know better places to go, please let us know! There are several items in our itenary which we didn’t manage to achieve due to the lack of time, but we’ll share it with you anyways, because sharing is caring.
TRANSPORTATION- PRETTY CONVENIENT
Because there is no MTR line from the international airport that leads to the city center, your options will be 1) Taxi – which should cost you around NT$1000- 1200 (equivalent to approx RM100-120). Exchange rate is currently approx RM1- NT$10. Alternatively, there are several 2) airport bus companies which will stop by at most major hotels or MRT station in the city. Walk to the nearest bus ticketing counter and tell them your destination to be advised the best bus services to take. Most would cost around NT$120- NT150. The international airport would be an estimate 45 minutes ride to the city center.
First thing when you settle yourself in TAIPEI is get a MRT route map. This will be your bible for the next few days. To start off with, you will need a MRT card which similar to HONGKONG’s, can be used in taxis, and convenient stores as well. We started off with NT$500, which sets you up with NT$400 credit for your usage (NT$100 being deposit and refundable when card is returned). MTR here is cheaper than hongkong, single journey to most location would only cost around NT$12- NT$20 depends on the distance. But if you travel with 3-4 friends, you can also consider taxi travelling as their starting fee is only NT$70, with NT$20 premium for night time (if not mistaken). There are several MRT routes that lead you to all parts of TAIPEI, but if you’re up for just exploring within the Taipei center and immediate surroundings, you’ll find yourself using more of blue and red line.
For this purpose, we will segregate our guide by MRT Route, just because we are nice and all that.
PART 1- 板南线 (BANNAN LINE)- leads to popular station 忠孝新生，忠孝复兴，忠孝敦化， 国父纪念馆，市政府
This form of LA MEIN is originated from YUNNAN, China. Noodles being made with ingredients such as onions and radish , and improvised with thick broth using tomato, minced meat, eggs and mushrooms, it has been a popular eatery in Taiwan, and you'll see many locals dining here during lunch time.
What's nice about this noodle is it has a nice springy texture/ or as taiwanese known as being very "Q" texture. The thick broth is filled with earthy flavours.
台北市大安路1 段73 号
MRT 忠孝复兴UNDERGROUND STREET EXIT 14
Do not miss out this famous taiwan eatery. No matter how full you are at the end of the day, you wont regret that you've save some tummy space for "DU XIAO YUE", for they are famous for their 担仔面
(Disclaimer: Do not bother ordering other dishes if you're on the roam for more food exploring- because we thought it tasted rather normal)
P/S: we preferred the dry versions to the soup ones!
(Pretty close to Ding Tai Fung)
MRT Exit at Zhong Xiao Dun hua station, by foot 5 minutes walk
REVISIT? YES, just for their Dan Zai Noodles!
HELLO KITTY SWEETS
Taiwanese are crazy about their Hello Kitty. I mean, which other airport would actually have a sitting area dedicated to this character but taipei? If you are as crazy as us on HELLO KITTY, do visit this hello kitty concept cafe which is dressed with lovely pink inteior. It's as if you've stepped into a dreamland. OH, and how cute does those desserts look, all delicately designed with more than 30 varieties to choose from.
REVISIT? YES because we love hello kitty!
CAFE KITCHEN 创意咖啡洋食馆
If you're tired, and needed rest for the in between shoppings, Cafe Kitchen would be ideal. As the drawl of this place is their classy posh inteior, award winning barristas, and the extensive list of innovative coffee drinks.
Coffee with Rum
Green Tea Coffee
HAVANA SECRET *thumbs up*
INSIDE SOGO (Fuxing Branch)
If not mistaken, near the menswear section
Being one of the restaurant under the 欣葉小廚 group, whom has diverse from themed taiwanese restaurant to japanese restaurant, each has its own specialty/ unique concept, this particular restaurant aims to introduce taiwanese cuisine to the younger generation. With their neo light display, and casual seating booth- it creates a sorta fun atmosphere. Their name of dishes also implies some playfulness with names such as "wolfmen's omelette eggs" 狼人菜脯蛋 or "teacher im sorry" 老师对不起 or "you're my baby" 心肝宝贝
Be prepared to wait to be seated as the place tends to fill up easily, especially on a weekend, but luckily service was pretty efficient.
2 MR。 J 意法餐厅 (Jay Chou's italian restaurant) Just because it's by Jay Chou hah
4. 东区茶街 忠孝东路4段 181 巷7弄is Taipei's famous Tea Street. Experience Taiwan's Bubble Milk Tea, light bites and supper here. Apparently young crowd loves gathering here till wee hours.
饶河夜市 (RAOHE NIGHT MARKET) VS. SHILIN NIGHT MARKET VS. 市大SHIDA NIGHT MARKET? Want to know which one we prefer most? Stay tuned to our next entry (which hopefully won't drag on to weeks to write! *fingers crossed*
P/S if you are having trouble with the chinese street names, please let us know, we're happy to translate! :):)