Belle of the Zhiben Hot-Spring Ball The Hotel Royal Chihpen

Words by Rick Charette Let’s spend a little time getting to know a place with a legitimate claim to being Taiwan’s premier hot-spring resort hotel. When the Japanese controlled Taiwan as a colony from 1895 to 1945, they transplanted their love of genteel mineral-spring soaking to the island. A distinctive Taiwanese hot-spring culture then bubbled…

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6 things to do in Taipei that should be on every visitor’s bucket list

There’s no shortage of things to do in Taipei’s dynamic capital city, but if you’re only here for a short time and need to winnow it down to six must have experiences, these are our picks:  

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Visiting Kaohsiung, Southern Taiwan’s Largest City

Not long ago, Kaohsiung wasn’t really on the international travel map. Sure, people in Taiwan knew it was a pretty relaxed city, but most international travelers visiting Taiwan chose the bright lights of Taipei, the majesty of Hualien, the history of Tainan or the scenery of Taitung over the arguably more subtle charms of southern…

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If Only You Were in a Pair of Traditional Cloth Shoes: Dongtai Cloth Shoes Shop

Dongtai Cloth Shoes Shop (東台布鞋莊) is hidden within an alley of the Chengzhong Open-Air Market (城中市場) off Wuchang Street (武昌街).
TaiwanScene is going to show you how this particular shoe shop mesmerizes tourists, embroiders new ideas on shoe uppers, and custom-made comfort to bring in swarms of orders.

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Japanese Restaurants in Taipei: 5 of the Best Izakayas You Should Know

In Taipei, there is an abundance of izakayas all over the city. These places fill up in the early evenings when co-workers go for dinner after finishing their jobs. Some are very Japanese, with prints of The Great Wave off Kanagawa on the walls. While others are a bit more formal with tastefully decorated interiors. All of them, though, have delicious snacks that are made and served rapidly for their customers.

Here are five of the best izakayas you should know:  Diakoku, Wan Yakatori, 一生懸命 Izakaya, Chikupa, Okaeri No.2.

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Shaping the Memories of a Century: Master Guo Gengfu’s Life of Mortar Shaping

As one visits temples in Taiwan, the traditional architecture and the decorative crafts of the interior always leave one in awe. Each temple looks and feels like a huge art installation made by way of extraordinary skills, and each of them showcases the devotion and uniqueness of the craftsman.

The Guo-Chen family is one of the few families specializing in the craft of mortar shaping in Taiwan today, and at the head of the family is Master Guo Gengfu (郭亘富).

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Breakfast in Taipei: Start Your Day Like a Local!

If you’re visiting Taipei, there’s no better (or culturally appropriate) way to start your day than with a traditional Taiwanese breakfast. First-time visitors to Taipei are often amazed at the breadth and depth of what’s available for breakfast on the streets of Taipei (not to mention how early breakfast joints start opening – the Taiwanese tend to rise early).

Some traditional Taiwanese breakfast items have western counterparts, while others will be familiar to anyone who’s traveled in China, Japan or Korea. But a few items are definitely uniquely Taiwanese. In this article, we’ll be looking at a few dishes that Taipei people eat in the mornings and suggesting a few spots for visitors to find them during their early-morning journeys around Taipei.

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Adagio hotel, Jinguashi: Experience the five senses with slow travel

For the environmentally-conscious traveler, slow travel has become the new way to see the world. With a belief that travel should be sustainable and leave a positive impact on the environment and surrounding communities, globe trekkers are now choosing to visit places that practice environmental conservation, sustainable development, and the preservation of local culture and traditions.
For the founders of the Adagio hotel in Jinguashi, Taiwan, (“Adagio” meaning “in a slow tempo”) slow travel is also an art meant to be experienced leisurely with all five senses. Throughout the month of March, Adagio holds a series of events that allow guests to enjoy a sensory experience for the ears (musical performances), the eyes (art classes), the nose (fragrance and incense workshops), the mouth (wine tasting, for example), and the hands (plant designing classes).
The hotel is located high up in the mountainous roads, not far from the Golden Waterfall. A cozy vicinity with no cable, Adagio is a hotel that creates a sense of community, with a limited number of rooms and group activities that allow you to meet other guests.

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Why Dadaocheng should be your first stop in Taipei

Why Dadaocheng should be your first stop in Taipei? This charming neighborhood, sometimes referred to as Old Taipei, is smaller, quieter, and way more manageable. Filled with tea shops, traditional apothecaries, artist’s boutiques, temples big and small, and of course, the area’s most pronounced feature of Japanese colonial-era buildings (and a few homes and shops dating back to the Qing dynasty), you’ll find no more charming a neighborhood in which to base yourself in Taipei than the Dadaocheng neighborhood.
Though there are plenty of hotels in the Dadaocheng neighborhood, if it’s history and local charm you’re after, you can’t do better than the DG, a quirky boutique hotel on the northern end of Dihua Street in a restored Japanese-era Colonial building.
What’s more, there are no shortage of places to eat, drink and be merry in Dadaocheng, with the majority of these being along the main drag (Dihua Street). From traditional Taiwanese noodle and rice dishes to fried chicken and thick squid soup, Dadaocheng is definitely a spot where locals come for comfort food.

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