With three days to spend in Taipei, you’ll get an overview of everything the city has to offer—culture, history, food, and natural beauty—with time to head outside the city limits to one of many worthy day trip destinations on the island. Here are a few ways to spend an unforgettable 72 hours in and beyond the Taiwanese capital.
Day 1: Taipei Sightseeing
Get an early start for an action-packed day of sightseeing. Book a guided city tour to get an overview of Taiwan’s key attractions, including the National Palace Museum, Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall, Taipei 101, and Longshan Temple. Alternatively, ride the hop-on hop-off bus to explore the city’s top sights at your own pace, getting off where and when you want. After lunch, head to one or two of the attractions that warrant a more thorough visit. History and art buffs might want to check out the impressive collection at the National Palace Museum, while families traveling with kids could opt for the Taipei Zoo. Watch as the sun sets and the city lights blink on from the top of Taipei 101 before heading to a night market for a delectable dinner of street food; join a food tour to ensure you find the best bites.
Day 2: Outdoor Adventure
There are only a few major metropolises in the world where you can commune with nature without leaving the city limits—and Taipei is one of them. Spend today basking in the city’s natural beauty. Get an early start to watch the sunrise over Taipei from Yangmingshan National Park, or take a guided hike up Elephant Mountain Trail (aka the Nangang District Hiking Trail and Xiangshan Trail) for panoramic views. Spend some time touring Taipei’s Beitou District, also known as Hell Valley, to see where the country’s famous geothermal waters originate, or go for a soak in historic Beitou Hot Springs. Other options for adventure in the city include rock climbing in Xinbeitou and mountain biking in Jiufen. No matter what you choose to do, reward your efforts with a dinner at the Michelin-starred Din Tai Fung, famous for its slurp-worthy soup dumplings.
Day 3: Greater Taiwan
Now that you’ve explored the cultural and natural sides of Taipei, spend your last day seeing what the rest of Taiwan has going on. Day trip options abound, depending on your interests. Soak up the beauty of Taroko Gorge, Taiwan’s most popular tourist destination. Take a tour of the Northeast Coast to explore the harbor city of Keelung and snap photos of the unusual rock formations of Yehliu Geopark. Or journey to the central mountains for a relaxing day cruising the waters of Sun Moon Lake. Alternatively, get a feel for the Taiwan of yesteryear with a visit to Jiufen, a charming town famous for its traditional teahouses, handicraft markets, and colonial architecture.