It’s happening. It’s been five lonnng years since we crossed over the New Years in Taiwan! So much in life has changed over the years yet this destination remains a (bear-tastic) constant in our travel lives.

 

Considering its reputation as the party & culinary secret of Asia, it’s no wonder that there are so much influx of international travelers to cross over the New Years here. Now I’m no expert food blogger, but today I’m going to give you a short list of my favorite places to go whenever I’m here at this island destination.

 

 

春水堂 Boba / Bubble Tea

 

Taiwanese tapioca pearls are held at an insanely high standard here. You can almost go anywhere in the city and get a fantastic pearl milk tea. That being said, this one (in my opinion) is the best place to experience this staple drink.

 

boba2
Taiwanese tapioca (boba) milk tea

 

 

This place is located in 新光三越 (Shinkong Mitsukoshi) and its interior resembles a teahouse to give a Chinese element feel & experience. Most importantly, the teas and pearls here are top notch.

 

 

boba3
“candid” photo… totally not posed

 

 

 

Traditional Taiwanese Breakfast

 

Breakfast is a big deal in Taiwan. BIG DEAL. Like boba, there are hundreds of endless delicious vendors that get up every morning (typically around 5am) to cook you classic eats like this. It’s heavy (& awesome) and usually paired with a hot bowl of soymilk.

 

breakfast
rice ball, fried dough, hot soybean milk

 

 

Another breakfast must is to visit the local bakery shops in the mornings. Follow your nose’s senses and walk into the store for some delicious bread! One of Paul’s favorites is a “Bolo Bao” 菠蘿包.

 

 

breakfast2
local bakery shop in Taiwan

 

 

FamilyMart / 7-Eleven

 

Like Japan, the standard of convenience stores is much higher compared to the states.

 

familymart1
FamilyMart / 7-Eleven

 

 

For a mere couple bucks, you can get a quality meal. Heck, they even microwave and prepare it hot for you if needed.

 

familymart2
heated bento from FamilyMart

 

 

A nostalgic snack is the famous Taiwanese pudding. Paul makes it an effort to get it regardless of how short his visit is in the city.

 

familymart3
best pudding in the world

 

 

W Taipei

 

For New Years Eve, this place is a must if you can afford the splurge. Located in the prime location of Xinyi District, this luxe/posh hotel is just steps away from Taipei 101. Like Grand Hyatt Taipei, it’s the perfect vantage point to cross over the New Year.

 

101

 

 

It comes at a premium tag though. For instance, here’s the price of their “Fabulous Room” and “Corner Room” per night… and it’s a 2-night minimum.

 

w taipei nye
Thus, $2000+ USD for New Years stay(s) per room

 

 

 

It’s definitely worth the splurge though. To this day, we all still talk about our New Years memories.

 

wet deck

corner room
Corner Room

 

 

 

And if you want to spend a bank account, here’s the “Extreme Wow Suite” Paul toured years back. Hm, maybe they’ll finally upgrade us this time because we’re almost eleven years of being loyal Marriott/Starwood Platinum members? 😉

 

(sigh, one can only dream… 😦 ) 

 

extreme wow suite
Extreme Wow Suite

 

 

Dessert

 

Taiwan also has a wealth of night markets/street vendors with amazing desserts. Here’s one at Shilin Night Market…

 

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Shaved Snow Ice in Shilin Night Market

 

And another at Ximen district….

 

dessert1
Japanese Matcha Red Bean Dessert at Ximen District

 

 

Family and Friends

 

Lastly, holidays are the best time to spend quality moments together with your family & friends.

 

family pic

 

mandarin oriental

 

party

 

 

Overall, we’re always utterly charmed by this festive island. Taiwan is always a destination that will forever be dear to us. For those that haven’t been, I urge you to come and find out for yourselves.

 

fireworks

 

And most importantly…. for those that are joining us this New Year, we look forward to seeing all of you guys soon to start 2019 together. It’s going to be a good time 😉

 

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