Sorry for the long break between my Taiwan trip posts. It was a big project – took me some time to tidy and select the photos. I will now continue to blog my Taiwan adventure for the next few weeks. Day 2 was more fruitful compared to Day 1 as I packed 3 places into a day – Taipei 101, Wufenpu and Raohe Night Market.
Tourists’ Must-do Registration
If your first stop in Taiwan is at Taipei Main Station, you can settle some tourists’ basic things here.
1) You will need to purchase a transport card, Easy Card which is equivalent to Singapore Ez-link to travel on their public transport. Instead of buying the easy card at the metro service counter, it is recommended by the metro customer service officer to buy it at the automated machine. The difference – machine-issued is refundable. You can purchase easy card at any metro station and I bought it at Taipei Main Station basement as seen in the first photo. The card deposit is NT100. Depend on the number of days you are staying, I top-up a total of NT700 for my 8-day trip.
2) Register a Youth Travel Card at Visitor Information Centre at Taipei Main Station level 1. You will just need your passport to verify you are a tourist and age between 15-30. Get discount at various place of interest with this card. Check this link for other places to apply and the list of promotions.
3) Get free wifi at Taiwan by registering at Visitor Information Centre for iTaiwan wifi login password. Same process as 2). Just one thing to note, the wifi reception was not that good when I was travelling there.
Not many breakfast stores around my hostel vicinity, so I went to Taipei Main Station convenience store to grab some instant food. Look at the wide variety of merchandise they sell in convenience store. Cheap and delicious. So much better than Singapore 7-Eleven and Cheers convenience stores.
First stop Taipei 101. From Taipei Main Station, take Red line toward Xiangshan Station to the second last stop Taipei 101/ World Trade Centre Station. Walk to Exit 4.
Take lift to Level 5 where their Ticket Booth and lift entrance. Purchase the ticket at discounted price NT450 (Usual NT500) with Youth Travel Card. Took a while to queue even when I reached quite early at 9+am. They open at 9am. You will see a long queue for tourists in group tour at level 1.
Experience going to 89th floor in 37 seconds. Admire Taipei landscape from the 89th floor. Climb to 91st floor for the outdoor observatory. Watch a short video on the building of Taipei 101. Get a iconic pencil from their souvenir shop when you follow Taipei 101’s Weibo.
Before you can go down to Level 1, you need to pass by a compulsory walk along the crystal gallery shop. And a very looooooong queue to the lift.
Taiwan’s must try food – Ding Tai Feng’s Xiao Long Bao. If you want to skip the long queue to sit inside, Ding Tai Feng offers takeaway with no additional charges. Priced NT100. You can then eat in the Taipei 101 food court which is just a few minute walk inside. Much more spacious.
Next stop is Wufenpu, Taipei’s famous wholesale market to get cheap bargains.
From Taipei 101, instead of taking the Red Line, you can walk 10-min to Taipei City Hall metro station which is a blue line and take three stops to Houshanpi towards Nangang direction.
Before vigorous shopping, try the famous braised pork rice which is on the way towards the Wufenpu from the Houshanpi Station. Portion was kind of small but tasted delicious. Cost NT35 for small bowl.
Now shopping time. Too bad did not manage to buy much as they were selling Fall/Winter clothes in October. Mostly were wool cardigans, long sleeve tops and woolen dress. Not recommend to buy bags here as they were overpriced. Advise to check up their sale racks with price signboard instead of asking them prices of tagless clothes. Most shops I went like the first photo below sell quite stiffly. Not sure is it my accent makes me an easy prey.
Raohe Night Market
Pick up my dinner at this night market. I tried the famous pepper bun and Kang Xi Lai Le recommended omelette egg snacks. This night market offered cheap yet good quality shoes. Bought a pair of ankle boots at NT350.
End of Taiwan Day 2: Taipei 101, Wufenpu & Raohe Night Market adventure.