One of the highest per capita concentrations of convenience stores on earth. Where else can you pay your college tuition, eat dinner, print Mayday concert tickets, send express mail, and buy a handle of Johnny Walker at 4:30 a.m.?
The perils of democracy and advertising.
Eat it, Seattle. Boomers worry that today’s Taipei kids don’t want to conquer the world — they just want to open cafés with their friends. Coffee shops are basically bars in Taipei. Check out Sugared n Spiced for some choice spots.
Saturday night people-watching at Eslite Bookstore Dunnan is never a bad way to sober up. Time magazine named it Asia’s best bookstore in 2004.
A 12-floor palace devoted to karaoke? Sure. Cashbox Partyworld does brisk business on typhoon holidays.
Possibly the weirdest gastro-sport ever. Time to bust out your jorts and six-pack (of delicious Taiwan Beer).
Is that a crab or a cursed alien slipper? Why is that chicken blue?
Taipei hosts a Beef Noodle Soup Festival every year. Everyone swears a blood oath to their favorite shops. If you don’t like beef noodle soup, you are a disgusting pervert and I don’t want to know you.
Sweet soy milk and fried Chinese doughnuts forever.
“You have checked in to That Fucking Place on Foursquare.”
Modern Toilet offers enticing fare like “baby’s explosive diarrhea” (actually just green curry) served in mini toilet bowls.
Keep Taipei weird, yall.
And James’ Kitchen is arguably the best Taiwanese restaurant in town.
From C-pop megastars to symphonic metal, hip-hop, post-rock, and folk singer-songwriters, Taipei exports the best Mandarin pop music in the world. You’ll also catch bands like Neutral Milk Hotel at surprisingly small venues (The Wall andLegacy). For schedules, check GigGuide Taiwan.
Formoz, Simple Life, Huashan, Hohaiyan beach festival. Tizzy Bac speaking their minds.
Decidedly less douchey than clubbing in many other big cities. Every year there’s a new club du jour, but Luxy was your first fake-ID love.
Chungshan North Road Section 2. I have never seen this in any other city. Keep. Taipei. Weird.
On the rare occasion the sun’s out, you can take day hikes on a whim.
Get your gothic loli on.
Flawed democracy is still democracy. Read.
Brave the clouds of nerd-sweat at GuangHua for a steal on a new computer. Bring your haggling A-game. (Also, RIP old GuangHua.)
Imagine hundreds of street-food carts and pop-up stores crammed in 10 city blocks. Everyone goes to Shilin, but Shida has the coolest stuff. Too bad the government’s scaling it down.
The northern suburbs appeal to the geriatric in us all.
You can get to Kenting Beach in four hours…
Camping out at a park near Taipei 101 with your friends, drinking 7-Eleven whiskey, watching fireworks, then seeing the flag-raising ceremony at sunrise at the Presidential Palace = best way to start a year.
Food is good. I like food. Everyone and their mothers’ dogs have a food blog in Taipei. A Hungry Girl’s Guide to Taipei is a good place to start. Anthony Bourdainagrees.