Taipei – A Capital Story

As in every nation I am travelling to, I try to visit the capital of the country. I am living and studying in Tainan, Taiwan so I am almost obliged to see its centre of power – Taipei.

For my master thesis, which I am currently writing, I had to travel to the capital city two times and every time I arrived my touristic me said: “Meh! It looks like Tainan, but bigger. Nothing special here.” I did not realize my misfortune, that due to my study-related cause of going to Taipei, I could not do or see any touristic or amazing stuff.

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But it all changed when the fire nation attacked. By fire nation I mean Jacqueline and by attacked I mean visited me in Taiwan. While reading this to myself, it seems that the Avatar reference does not really fit here. However, Jacqueline came to Asia to visit me and we spent wonderful two weeks together, where we also had been to Taipei for three nights in total – to come back to the topic. This time I saw the real beauty of this place!

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A short hop

On our first visit to Taipei, we kept it casual. Our Hotel was the Holo Hostel near the main station of the capital, and it was casual too. It had everything we need, and nothing that we don’t wanted – such as bugs, criminals or bananas (I hate bananas).

For dinner we went to the Shabu-Shabu near the Q-Square shopping mall, and for her first Hot Pot, Jacqueline seemed quite happy with the choice of food. How can someone not be happy, when there is free ice cream at the end of a rich meal!

A Memorisable Memorial

… try to say that fast three times in a row! After doing this – or probably not – you can marvel with us about the Chiang-Kai-Shek Memorial Hall. This place was like an oasis of peace and harmony besides the stressful streets of the 2,6 MILLION people city (WHOLE Upper Austria 1,4 million – tiny lovely Austria). Here, there is a synergy of beautiful architecture of the landscape. While we can see the white gate, left and right are the National Theatre and Concert-hall with their amazing structure. Their presence is only surpassed by the Memorial Hall. This hall was built to honour the president of China and opponent of Mao Zedong in the civil war (1927-1949).

Upwards

… was the direction of our next way. As a tradition Jacqueline and me went to the top building in the city – Taipei 101. The observation deck of the former tallest building in the world is at a height of approximately 11.390 Meter above the Mariana trench – or just 390 metres above sea level.

Besides the city outside, we could see the giant wind damper inside, that keeps the tower from swinging.

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On the ground floor we ate at Din Tai Fong, one of the best Dim Sum restaurants I have ever been to. The 1-michellin-Star food palace offered marvellously good food and sure is to be recommended. Even the pictures of the food looked so good, that I ate them. Thus, there is only footage of the souvenir chopsticks and the ice-waffle from the café next door we granted ourselves.

A lively Street

Our hotel for the second stay was the Hotel Midtown Richardson, which is located directly beside the famous pedestrian area Ximen. Here is the hot spot of youth, food and cinema in Taipei, and that is what we done. The “feeling young” effect was harder to achieve, but after a successful claw-round with a Dragonite as a trophy, I felt like 23 again. We ate at a local food store called Yes 58 and then strolled through the crowded streets. The One Piece Shop was mandatory for me to see, by the way.

At 9 we went to one of the 8 cinemas that had been in a range of 500 metre to watch the Passenger – a space drama-romance-action-science-fiction-comedy with Katniss Everdeen and Star-Lord. It was a good movie and a perfect ending of the last evening of Jacqueline’s visit.

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As the capital of Taiwan, Taipei offers cultural, religious, architectural and food-related gusto-pieces. There are a lot of things that can be seen there, so I will sure come back and explore again the capital in the North!

 

Deutsch

Als letzte Station von Jacquelines Besuch, entspannten wir uns für zwei Tage in Taipei. Entspannung gönnten wir uns jedoch nur am Abend, denn untertags hatten wir viel zu sehen. Wir besuchten die atemberaubende Chiang-Kai-Shek Gedenkhalle und bestaunten in 390 Meter Höhe die Stadt vom höchsten Gebäude, dem Taipei 101. Als Schlusspunkt bummelten wir noch durch die berühmte Fußgängerzone Ximen und sahen uns Passenger in einem der zahlreichen Kinos dort an.

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