On a recent trip to Europe I was looking for a new and different stopover on the way home and decided upon the ancient island of Formosa. Many schoolboy history lesson had left me intrigued so I was keen to learn about Chiang Kai Shek and Sun Yat Sen and their legacy that has shaped modern day Taiwan.
I only had a couple of days so launched myself into the historical side of things with a visit to the Taiwan Natural History, the Chiang Kai Shek memorial hall, the Sun Yat Sen Memorial hall and the 228 Museum. The next day was spent in the Xinyi District and of course a visit to the iconic Taipei 101. Each evening I visited the famous night markets and had some of the best Asian street food I had ever tasted.
I am a city boy but if there had been more time even I would have headed out into the countryside – Taiwan is a mountainous island with many different landscapes and tropical beaches. You could visit Mount Jade or the Sacred Trees of Alishan, the Tea plantations around Sun Moon lake or the Cherry Blossoms at Wuling Farm. There is so much to see and something for everyone.
My time in Taiwan was brief but the memories will live long in my mind, the people were really friendly and the food was amazing. If you are looking for a new destination in Asia then Taiwan should be top of your list.
Air New Zealand will be flying non-stop services between Auckland and Taipei from 1 November 2018. For travel-loving New Zealanders, this is a chance to explore a captivating destination that’s known for urban sophistication, cultural attractions and breathtaking natural scenery. With its unique blend of Asian ethnicities, Taipei is both beautiful and fascinating!
Images courtesy of Air New Zealand