Allison Mou (10), her sister Antonia (8) and their mother Carol Chang traveled to Taipei for a five-day holiday before this year’s Chinese New Year.
Enjoy a Delicious Meal
The first stop for travelers in Taipei should be the original Din Tai Fung (鼎泰). It’s no surprise that this famous Taiwanese eatery has one of the city’s longest waiting lines. Dig into a petite xiaolongbao (小笼包), the best bun of its kind. Be careful of the bursting soup, though!
Visit the National Palace Museum
Taipei’s National Palace Museum holds many ancient artifacts and paintings that were shipped from the Forbidden City in Beijing to Taiwan 60 years ago. While the museum has various masterpieces, the jadeite cabbage is notably astonishing. It is a single block of jade carved into the shape of a white colored cabbage with green leaves, both colors coming from the original layers and colors of the stone. Look for the cricket carved on top; you might spot it nibbling its way through the jade leaves. There’s also a kids center, where children can play at various work stations. Other kid-friendly highlights are two films in which cartoon characters introduce the museum’s artifacts through their adventures.
Check out the Shilin Night Fair
Here, you can sample almost every imaginable variety of Taiwanese dim sum. Allison’s favorite treat is a shaved ice plate called "blackberry snowflake" at Xin Fa Ting (辛发亭). It looks like a pile of fresh, powdery snow. Eating it is an experience: It melts in your mouth with a taste of milk and blackberry syrup.
Head to Taipei 101
Want to take a ride on one of the world’s fastest elevators? Go to the fifth floor of Taipei 101 to buy tickets and step on board an elevator that takes you to the top in just 38 seconds! Also, check out the largestdamper in the world: a mechanism that supports a building during earthquakes and typhoons. Taipei 101’s damper extends from the 92nd floor, down to the 88th floor. Kids will love walking down the ramp, admiring this impressive machinery.
Browse the Eslite Bookstore
Eslite Bookstore, one of the largest bookstore chains in Taiwan, is a great place if you want to stock up on good reads. There are multiple locations throughout Taipei, but the flagship store is worth a visit. It’s a six-story building located near Taipei 101.
Shop at Taipei New World Mall (Underground Mall)
This is a great place if you want to shop, or just to take a walk. There have plenty of cute stationery, accessories, and inexpensive shoes.
These Taipei tips were provided by California native Allison Mou (10). She attends Western Academy of Beijing.