My college friends and I traveled abroad last January and it was our first time to be together in a foreign land. Taking the opportunity of a visa-free offer of Taiwan for the Filipinos, we grabbed the chance to go there and see the tourist attraction in Taipei.
We arrived at The Taoyuan International Airport at wee hours of the night. That airport is about 40 minutes (more or less) away to Taipei, the capital city of Taiwan and to where our hotel accommodation can be found. We took the Uber since trains are closed and had 5 hours of sleep right after checking in.
We were restless but excited to fill our days with our DIY city tour in Taipei. That morning, after eating at Fuhang Duijang, we went to Longshan Temple.
Mengjia Longshan Temple used to be a gathering place for Chinese settlers in 1738. It is located in the old village part of Taipei, Wanhua District, and is one of the big three temples in the place. It was badly damaged during World War II but the Taipei residents have continuously renovated as a pride for representing the Taiwanese temples – worshipping a mixture of Taoist, Buddhist, and deities like Mazu. The entrance is free! We visited on a Sunday, so we have witnessed the manner of their worship.
From the temple, we rode the train to go to our next DIY tour which is Liberty Square. The Liberty Square is where Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall, National Theater and Concert Hall can be found. The Liberty Square Main Gate is astonishing itself with a combination of cream and blue color that channels a royalty aura.
The opposite side is the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall which is named after the late President of China. It has 89 stairs which represent the age of Chiang’s death and the roof has 8 sides which is a lucky number in Asian countries.
The National Theater and Concert Hall are twin concert venues located on the north and south side of Liberty Square. These halls are two of the first major modern performing art venues established in Asia. It hosts over 800 events per year.
The overall park is 240,000 square meter. This is where Taiwan mostly held their events like lantern festival, foreign dignitaries, concerts, etc. When we visited, we hear music and people having their rehearsals.
The next place we visited was the Taipei 101 Building. It used to be the tallest building in the world until Burj Khalifa in Dubai was made. It also used to have the fastest elevator in the world with the speed of 60.6 km/h. We were not able to experience this though since there’s a fee of 600 Taiwan Dollars/ 1,000 Philippine Peso/ 21 US Dollars. In exchange for that price, you will be able to see the indoor observatory, multimedia corridor, the outdoor observatory and the elevator speed experience, lol. See more info here.
On the other hand, it still holds its title as the world’s largest and highest-use green building. (Wikipedia: a structure and application of processes that are environmentally
responsible and resource-efficient throughout a building’s lifecycle)