Taiwan, a little island just south of China, is Asia’s best-kept secret. When you think of The Far East, countries like India, Japan, China, or Thailand come to mind as places to travel to, but let me show you what Taiwan offers and why it should be high on your to-go list too.
The best way to travel in Taiwan
Before I go on and reveal the beauty of Taiwan, let’s talk about ways of travel. Admittedly, it isn’t the same if you’re traveling with a group of friends or solo. If you rent a van in Taiwan or explore by bike. Or if you plan out the trip or you let a travel agency do it for you. As someone who came to visit Taiwan and ended up living here, I can definitely tell you what to visit and how to do it best.
You see, whether solo or with your friends, renting a van in Taiwan gives you a chance to explore the island on your terms. You decide where to go, how long you’ll stay, and whether to crush on that beach or find another one to swim in. Van rentals in Taiwan are extremely easy to get to, and they offer the freedom of discovering every hidden gem this beautiful island holds.
By renting a van, you can go on an epic road trip across, and the best part? It can save you a lot on accommodation and transport, especially if you’re staying longer than a week planning to see most of the island. Now that we got that out of the way let’s start exploring.
Places to see in Taiwan
In the list below, there are sites worth seeing both in cities and nature as Taiwan has plenty to offer to adventurers and city lovers. Take your planners out as we start with Taipei’s most marvelous.
At 508 meters, Taipei 101, built in 2004, was the world’s tallest building until Dubai’s Burj Khalifa was built in 2010. Offices, top-notch restaurants, and multilevel shopping complex can all be found in Taipei 101. Still, the best part of it all is located on 88th and 89th, where you have the indoor observatory giving you the whole city to see, while on the 91st, you have the outdoor observatory for a better scenery of the town.
You can explore some of Taiwan’s most awe-inspiring scenery in Taroko National Park. If you are traveling from Taipei, take your van rental in the morning to Hualien. From there, you will get to the national park and see the spectacular Taroko Gorge. While there, explore the Hualien Stone Sculpture Park and park your van close by Chi-Hsing Beach for a pleasant sunset stroll along the coast.
Yushan National Park
Listed as one of the most beautiful national parks in Taiwan, Yushan is set around the island’s tallest mountain. Hiking fan? Park your van just outside and explore many of the picturesque peaks such as Sanqingshan.
Sun Moon Lake
Tired of beaches? Rent a van and camp nearby the Sun Moon Lake taking in the beauty of central Taiwan. There’s an island in the middle of the lake which separates the lake in a moon and sun shapes, hence the name. Additionally, there are a plethora of hotels nearby, but lucky for those who rent a van in Taiwan, they don’t have to spend unnecessarily on accommodation. You can take a boat to get across the lake to the island and a cable car with which you can see the Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village.
Many people combine a trip to the Taipei zoo by taking a gondola ride to Maokong, but if you rent a van in Taiwan, I say Maokong deserves a trip alone. You will see a peaceful scenic village situated on the top of a mountain.
Dragon and Tiger Pagodas
Situated on the shore of Lotus Lake, in the heart of Kaohsiung, the two beautiful pagodas are a
must-see of the area. You enter the temple through the animals’ mouths, and when on top, you have the chance to enjoy the view to the lake from up high.
Just as Taiwan is Asia’s best-kept secret, Penghu or the Pescadores Islands are Taiwan’s best-kept secret currently as they remain unfamiliar to most international tourists. Penghu is an archipelago of 90 islands and islets. So, if you’re an outdoor enthusiast, this is the place to be. You will be blown away by the astonishing turquoise beaches and white coral sand shores.
Kenting National Park
Waterfalls, hiking trails, beaches, and forests are everything this park offers. Many people rent a van in Taiwan to get to Kenting to enjoy the outdoor activities as well as the sun, sea, and sand.
Fo Guang Shan Buddha Museum
No trip is complete without a visit to some of the most notable museums. In Taiwan, that is the Buddha Museum in Kaohsiung. It has an impressive architecture in and outside with the Buddha statue and the pagodas lining the avenue. Photo? Yes, please!
Longshan is one of the most famous temples in Taiwan and home to a plethora of gods from other temples that were destroyed in the past. In fact, Longshan was also attacked by an air raid during World War II but survived and is now known for its rich folk culture and architecture.
Taiwan has a lot in store for you, whether outdoor enthusiast, seafood lover, an avid swimmer or someone who admires Asian culture, it’s up to you to feel the real Taiwan experience. So as you are packing your bags, ready to travel, don’t forget to check the best Taiwan van rentals for the best pricing, comfort, and quality. It’s the only way to truly see what the island has to offer on your terms.