Taiwan Overview

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LuoDong

Sample delicious street food!

Taroko Gorge

They have to shoot a James Bond chase scene through here, that’s all there is to it. Taroko Gorge was made for the cinema. It’s a winding maze of looming marble crags, huge cut-out roads tunnelling right into the mountains, rushing river gorges and looping alpine passes. If you are ever being chased by gangsters in your supercar, you want it to be here.

Night Markets

Though many countries have tried to channel the splendour of a proper night market, nothing quite compares to Taiwan. Coloured lanterns, sizzling hot pots and nattering vendors create an exciting, carnival-like atmosphere. Shilin Night Market, located in the capital Taipei, is the most popular market for tourists and one of Taiwan’s biggest. Though seating is available, the best way to eat is to walk around and snack on the hawker-style dishes. Try the intriguing aftertaste of stinky tofu, have your mind blown by a small sausage inside large sausage, or enjoy the silky textures of fresh oysters. After sampling all the different flavours, finish things off with a bubble tea (born in Taiwan), some sweet lemon aiju jelly or fresh papaya juice.

Confucious Temple

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Sun Moon Lake

One of Asia’s best-kept secrets, Sun Moon Lake is easily the equal of any Como, Bled or Windermere. It’s a huge blue oasis hidden among the green peaks of Taiwan’s central mountain ranges. By day it’s merely beautiful, but in the blue-gold light of dawn, with mists rolling over the water and local fisherman paddling past, it’s like something out of a fairy tale.

Penghu Islands

Penghu is one of Taiwan’s hidden gems, an archipelago of 90 islands between the mainland and China. They’re remote, but worth the journey, with brilliant beaches devoid of crowds, glorious temples, towering basalt columns and genuine old-fashioned Chinese hospitality. Penghu is also a windsurfing mecca and a nesting ground for rare green sea turtles. Not bad for one tiny volcanic island chain.