Last updated on April 3rd, 2015 at 12:37 pm
It was marvelous staying in both cities in Taiwan. I am very glad we stopped by and extended our stay by one more month. In total, we have spent almost two months here. One in Taipei (north) and another in Tainan (south). Mr. K and I have learned a great deal about local culture. It is very different from anything we saw previously in Korea, Japan, Thailand, Cambodia, and Indonesia.
The thing is, Taiwan is not a tourist destination partly because it is a small country and out of the way, and partly because it is considered a part of China, which is actually not true. I would not have ever thought of coming here myself if it wasn’t for the inexpensive accommodation and the fact that it was on the way to Japan. Well, I am ignorant no more. I am here to bust those myths away. I am so glad we came here because I have one more country on my radar that I would consider staying in for longer periods.
Taiwan was under Chinese and, then for some time, under Japanese rule. You have to see it to believe the contrast and similarity of those cultures. It all kind of blends together in an interesting and intriguing cocktail of cultural beliefs, values, designs, fashion, cuisines, and possibilities. Once I started writing, I realized that there is going to be lots of tips and information to cover. I am going to separate it in three parts. This one is the first and equally important part of the big picture. Stay tuned for the other two! Here is what you need to know to love Taiwan.
Taiwan is China.
Nope. It used to be part of China until it gained independence. Nowadays China wants it back but thanks to multiple countries recognizing Taiwan as a separate state, it will go on as is.
Taiwan has an Asian mindset.
While it is located in Asia, the general appeal about it is very different. When you think Asia, you think of emerging markets, of almost there infrastructure, inadequate laws, so-so healthcare, and questionable ethics. Actually, Taiwan is way ahead of the game than most countries I have been. They even have laws about the garbage not touching the ground. It took us a month to master the technique of chasing after a garbage truck in order to throwaway recycling and garbage.
Taiwan is expensive.
Depending on your lifestyle preferences, it is all perfectly affordable. In fact, food and restaurants, dentist, gym memberships, and rent are really affordable comparing to Australia, North America, Japan, or Europe.
People must have an old world mentality.
More false than true
In general, people were very nice to us. There were a couple of individuals who were not there yet in terms of hygiene and manners but let us not talk about them. Overall, we got help more than we needed it. Every time we looked semi confused, someone would always offer his or her assistance. It got even friendlier when we got to Tainan and went to the local gym. If you ever want to feel like a super model go there. Why? Because you are going to be the only white person in there. They love to eye white people. J They also like to ask questions, wave from cars, and watch you from aside and talk you over with their friends. Creepy? Not really. Now, I can say that I know, a bit, how celebrities feel.
Would you like to know more about Taiwan? Did you like this post or/and found it useful? Please leave comment right down below! Hope to see you back soon. Thank you for reading!