Taiwan

Taiwan, R.O.C. Info

Taiwan-flag Ilha Formosa – ‘Beautiful Island’, is what the Portuguese sailors called Taiwan. Taiwan’s status as a country is contested by its more powerful mainland neighbor, however there is no doubt that Taiwan is a destination sought out by travelers looking for something a little different to the usual Asian experience. The island’s original inhabitants are believed to be the forefathers of all Pacific Islanders and having been colonized and administered by the Dutch, Portuguese, Japanese, Britain and China, the diversity of tradition and culture can still be felt throughout the island nation.

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Taiwan Biking by Land, Sand, Sky

Posted by on 10:00 am in Asia, Spotlight, Taiwan | 7 comments

Taiwan Biking by Land, Sand, Sky

Taiwan Cycling by Land, Sand and Sky   As I rounded the nineteenth corner of the road for that day on my rickety bicycle in one hundred degree heat, I was sure I wouldn’t make it. Each stretch went on for eternity, with an ever so slight incline that was just enough to make my legs scream. But the humidity was the worst. Water bottles immediately went warm and I felt almost blinded by the sun. However, once in a while I’d pause to swing my head from side-to-side, gazing out at the placid sea and bamboo groves, residents speeding past on...

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The 101 ways to travel Taipei

Posted by on 1:40 am in Asia, ITKT Staff Writers, Taiwan | 1 comment

The 101 ways to travel Taipei

  There are many ways to explore and travel Taipei Those who have been to Taipei would unanimously agree that it is one of the easiest cities to travel in. “If you get lost, just look for the 101 and start again,” advised the policeman I had stopped to ask for directions. “The building is the centre of Taipei!” And he had been right. I rotate my map a few rounds to get my bearing, aligning the little picture to the tall, bamboo like building on my right, I knew instantly where I should be going next. Taipei 101 Taipei 101, what used to...

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Breakfast at Yung Chi in Tainan

Posted by on 9:30 am in ITKT Blogs, Taiwan | 0 comments

Breakfast at Yung Chi in Tainan

By far one of my favorite meals in Taiwan was an unexpected stop at a breakfast stand on Kaishan Road in Tainan. Yung Chi is a popular spot with the locals. For very little money you can get a very hearty, authentic Taiwanese breakfast. Here’s what I had: Yo Tiao (a savory churro type bread), pork rice (with pork liver, not my favorite), duck eggs – I preferred the soft cooked over the hard cooked; milkfish balls– think gefilte fish. The fish balls came in a broth in which they were accompanied by fish stomachs and fish skin. And, of course,...

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Exploring Taiwan’s Sun Moon Lake

Posted by on 9:00 am in Spotlight, Taiwan | 5 comments

Exploring Taiwan’s Sun Moon Lake

I awoke in my room at the Fleur de Chine after the best night’s sleep I’ve enjoyed in a long, long time. Was it the hour-long soak in my room’s mineral bath, the mind-blowing dinner in the Rainbow Cloud teppanyaki restaurant, or the low-key, yet luxurious, room overlooking Sun Moon Lake? Probably all three. I dressed again in the yukata (a kimono-like robe made of cotton supplied by the hotel that I’d worn to dinner the night before) and made my way downstairs to the breakfast buffet.  After breakfast I went back to my room and changed into...

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Discovering Taiwan’s Unique Cuisine at Din Tai Fung

Posted by on 9:17 am in Food and Wine, ITKT Blogs, Taiwan | 1 comment

Discovering Taiwan’s Unique Cuisine at Din Tai Fung

The first thing I noticed walking into the original Din Tai Fung was the kitchen to the right, with table after table of kitchen help preparing tray upon tray of xiaolongbao—literally a ‘small steamer dumpling’.   The heat and humidity in the kitchen matched the weather outside and I wasn’t sure this was such a great idea. But after walking up to the fourth floor dining room while inhaling the aromas around me, eating steamed dumplings started to make a lot of sense. A refreshing glass of icy cold Gold Medal Taiwan Beer also helped....

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General Impression of Taiwan

Posted by on 8:30 am in ITKT Blogs, Taiwan | 3 comments

General Impression of Taiwan

After eight days in Taiwan I realize I’ve only heard one car horn. And I’ve been in cities – Taipei, Tainan, Taichung – with cars and scooters galore. Not to mention pedestrians. A Taiwanese woman told me that the Taiwanese are a very orderly people. Maybe that’s the explanation for the unexpected quiet of the city streets. It’s a contrast to the energy in the air that is difficult for this LA native to fathom. I’ve always equated quiet with dull but Taiwan is anything but dull. Is it possible to be both driven and relaxed? Go to Taiwan and...

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A Day in Danshui with Smelly Tofu

Posted by on 12:19 pm in Spotlight, Taiwan | 2 comments

A Day in Danshui with Smelly Tofu

“What is that awful smell?” I wondered to myself as I sat on a low wall, taking a brief rest from the hectic chaos of Shilin night market situated in the heart of Taipei. The answer was right beside me, where a young woman was sitting. No, she wasn’t the source of the pungent odour. It was coming from the food she was eating. This was my first encounter with the smelly tofu I had heard so much about prior to coming to Taiwan. The whiffy snack, made from marinating tofu in a fermented brine, is hugely popular in many parts of Asia....

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Monkey Business in Taroko

Posted by on 9:51 am in ITKT Blogs, Taiwan | 1 comment

It was the ultimate game of cat and mouse – or human and monkey, in this case. Rested and wide-eyed from a blissful sleep at the Grand Formosa in Taiwan’s Taroko National Park (www.taroko.gov.tw), I woke up earlier than usual. Nightlife was no issue on this five-star stay, which proved an indulgence in an eight-day sojourn that typically found me up later than usual. I had slept with the doors opens, lulled to la-la land by a babbling stream that actually enhanced what would have been an eerie silence in an unusually dark setting – which was...

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Mid-Autumn Festival Memorialized with Mooncakes

Posted by on 8:04 am in Announcements, Taiwan News | 0 comments

San Francisco — According to the lunar calendar, the moon was at its maximum brightness and fullness, signifying abundance and fullness for the entire year on the fifteenth day of September. To celebrate this mid-Autumn wonderment, Chinese customs include huge feasts, festivals and mooncakes. This year, Moon Festival celebrations were held throughout Taiwan, and even closer to home in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York on September 14, 2008. “ Traditionally, the Moon Festival is a day of family and friend reunions celebrated with...

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Visiting Taiwan (video podcast in Mandarin)

Posted by on 10:19 pm in Announcements, ITKT Videos, Taiwan | 0 comments

Eileen doesn’t just do interviews for In The Know Traveler in English, once in a while she does them in Mandarin as well. In this video, Eileen meets with Vicki Chen of Taiwan Tourism. Check out this video and understand in any language the enthusiasm for visiting Taiwan. We also have a new video coming out on Taiwan in English, look for it. As with all of our videos Quicktime 7.0 or better is required to see our great videos in all of there luster so scroll all the way down. However, we have now added a new feature so YouTube users can...

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Taiwan Pageant Winners (video podcast)

Posted by on 12:59 pm in ITKT Videos, Taiwan | 0 comments

Devin runs into Ling and Tiffany, the recent winners of the Miss Taiwan and Junior Miss Taiwan Pageants, at the LA Travel Expo. They take a moment to share their experience with us. Doesn’t have a lot to do with travel, but we could not resist. For more on Taiwan at ITKT. This podcast was produced by Wayfarer Digital for In The Know Traveler. To see our great videos and interviews you need Quick Time 7.0 or...

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The Cuisines of Taiwan

Posted by on 6:56 pm in Food and Wine, Taiwan News | 0 comments

Taiwan is home to a multitude of culinary styles that developed when refugees from all over China migrated to Taiwan. The capital city of Taiwan, Taipei offers the widest variety of Chinese cuisines. Restaurants serve Beijing, Cantonese, Sichuan, Shanghainese, Hakka, Hunan, Mongolian barbecue and native Taiwanese. Beijing: Those who prefer less spicy food might fancy this mild, but hearty cuisine. Wheat is the staple and is used to prepare noodles, dumplings and breads. Peking duck, flavored with sweet bean sauce and garnished with scallion...

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Taiwan Tourism Fact Sheet

Posted by on 6:18 pm in ITKT Blogs, Taiwan | 0 comments

A little knowledge goes a long way. If you are considering Taiwan for your next holiday, reading the following is a must. -editor- Location Taiwan is a convenient gateway to Asia positioned midway between Japan (3 hours) and Korea (2 ½ hours) to the north and Hong Kong (1 ½ hours) and the Philippines (2 hours) to the south. The island nation is in the western Pacific about 100 miles off the southeast coast of the Chinese mainland. Geography Taiwan covers an area of approximately 14,000 square miles. Forested mountains, with about 300 peaks...

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Taiwan’s Festivals for 2006

Posted by on 7:48 pm in Announcements, ITKT Blogs, Taiwan News | 0 comments

Throughout the year, the Asian island nation of Taiwan plays host to a number of exciting festivals and events paying testament to the island’s rich and diverse culture. A fusion of Chinese, Fujianese, Hakka, Cantonese and various aboriginal cultures, Taiwan has an array of annual celebrations like the Lantern Festival, Dragon Boat Festival and the Ghost Festival. Twelve aboriginal tribes remain: the Saisiyat, Atayal, Ami, Bunun, Puyuma, Rukai, Paiwan, Tao, Sao, Taroko, Kemalan and the Zou. They celebrate the Ami Harvest Festival, Bunun...

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Taiwan’s National Palace turns 80

Posted by on 9:39 pm in Announcements, Taiwan News | 0 comments

Taipei, Taiwan, September 26, 2005 – Taiwan’s National Palace Museum – home to the world’s most extensive collection of Chinese art spanning 8,000 years – is celebrating its 80th birthday with a massive $21.4 million renovation. Phase one will be completed in October 2005, and when the final stage is finished in June 2006, visitors will be able to see many more of its exceptional treasures including delicate celadon bowls from the Sung Dynasty, extraordinary bronzes from the 4th century B.C. Mid-Warring States Period, prized jade carvings,...

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