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shain

Any tips for a visit in Taiwan?

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Hi all,

I'm excited to be visiting Taiwan for two weeks this February.

Obviously, there's lots of info online, but still I thought I might ask for tips here.

Especially recommendations for restaurants and vegetarian food (molluscs are fine), but not only.

Thanks :P


Edited by shain (log)

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I'm so excited for you - Taiwan is awesome! We're planning a trip end of the year. Looking forward to your trip report!

 

Where in Taiwan are you visiting? I don't have restaurant recommendations, because we spent a lot of time with relatives, and I have no idea where they took us. But I can promise you the food is incredible. Vegetarian food is everywhere (Buddhism is one of the major religions), and plenty of seafood. You'll have lots of options. My Mandarin is terrible, but a lot of young people speak some degree of English, so we got around by pointing at food and asking young people.

 

-Go to the night markets. This is a must do. Eat everything. Go to where the lineups are. 

-Eat Taiwanese breakfast, it's the best - soy milk (sweet or salty), fried cruller, oven pastry, egg pancake

-Stinky tofu. Deep fried with pickles. It's funky, but not that funky. You can smell it at the night markets, follow your nose.

-Oyster omelettes

-Oyster vermicelli in thick soup

-Shaved ice

-Tea and bubble tea (boba tea/pearl tea). Taiwan is also known for their amazing oolong teas

-Japanese food is excellent

-Din Tai Fung for the xiao long bao (steamed soup buns). There are a bunch of DTFs in Taipei, but the original one is on Xinyi Rd, by the Dongmen metro station. They also have seafood and veg buns. They open at 10am, but lineups start early. 

-Pork sauce on rice (lu ruo fan)

-Pineapple pastries (another Taiwanese specialty)

-Mochi - sticky rice flour confections, sometimes with stuff in the middle. You can get it on shaved ice too.

-Fresh fruit - really good

-7-11!! 7-11 in Taiwan is NOTHING like the ones in N. America. I can't even describe it - you just have to check it out.

 

OMG, I'm so hungry now....

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Just remembered the cousins told us to go to Raohe Night Market (by the temple) and skip Shilin. Shilin is the bigger, more well-known one, but they said it's touristy. Raohe has pepper pork buns located at the entrance by the temple, and they are really good.

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I'm curious about this also, as Taiwan is high up on our list.  I've flown on EVA and connected through Taipei more times than I can remember without using fingers but we've never seen the country.  What we've flown over looks beautiful.  I've heard some people say that you could spend a week in Taipei alone, but that the rest of the country (especially the south) should not be missed.  I may be mistaken, but I believe @BonVivant wrote up some of her trip to Taiwan - but I could be confused with other locales....

 

We've been to Din Tai Fung (it's a Taiwanese chain with lots of locations) in a few places - I gather some of them are franchised, which is why some are better than others.  We fell in love with DTF in Hong Kong, but were disappointed by their selections in Singapore and Beijing.  Yes, they're best known for their XLB, but many of their other offerings are great (in the good locations).  I don't know how they compare to other Taiwanese dim sum type places - I gather there are tons of them.

 

I'll second @Beebs recommendation for oolongs - Some of the best lightly fermented oolongs I've had have been Taiwanese...  I even had a decent pot of loose leaf oolong in the restaurant we frequent in the airport, pretty inexpensive too.

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