Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, is becoming one of South East Asia’s top destinations. Fall in love with this jewel of a city: there’s so many sights to see including the National Palace Museum, which houses perhaps the finest collection of Chinese art in the world, and Dihua Street with its cafes, restaurants and stalls selling Chinese medicine and textiles. Taipei’s vibrant fusion of Chinese, Japanese and Western influences means it’s the new hotspot for those in the know!
Light Up The Night: The Lantern Festival
Every first full moon, the Taiwanese celebrate the coming of spring with the famous Lantern Festival. The festival has its beginnings in 206 BC, with the legend going that when you are holding a lantern you can see various gods descending from heaven to bless the earth. Taipei’s own Lantern Festival has been running since 1990 and features folk dancing, laser shows, mock battles and flying sky lanterns. Don’t miss the spectacular giant lantern reflecting a theme according to the Chinese horoscope sign of that year. Make your own lantern at a workshop to bring luck!
Tiny Societies: The Miniatures Museum of Taiwan
The Miniatures Museum of Taipei is the second largest of its kind in the world. You’ll be amazed by the craftsmanship of these tiny models: dolls, castles, houses, soldiers, characters from fairy stories and much more. You can see the love that’s gone into creating each tiny character and scene. Highlights to watch out for include an incredible representation of Victorian London, a tranquil Japanese garden scene with blossoming trees, and huge doll houses featuring breath-taking levels of detail. Kids will love this museum too and with so much to see, it’s a real day out!
Hub of Inspiration: Huashan Creative Arts Park
In the 1920s, Huashan Creative Arts Park served as Taipei’s largest wine factory until the 1980s, when it was abandoned. Things have changed and the park is now a vibrant, creative hub hosting performances, events and readings by some of Taiwan’s most exciting artists and writers. Originally attracted by the former factory’s high ceilings and well-lit workspaces, artists began making eye-catching and ground-breaking work, creating a new buzz in the Taipei art world. Official rebuilding began in 2005 and the park is now very much the city’s major centre of culture. Visit to get a taste of hip Taipei.