Taipei City is located in the Taipei Basin at the northern end of Taiwan Island where the Keelung and Tamsui rivers flow. It is the political, economic, cultural, industrial and commercial center of the island. Many companies, banks and malls are headquartered here. There are 12 districts in the city, covering an area of 105 square miles (272 square kilometers). The population is over 2,700,000 making it Taiwan's second largest city.
It has a long history. Human beings have been living here since the late Old Stone Age (over 3 million years ago). In 1875, the government official Shen Baozhen of the Qing Dynasty
(1644-1911) built a city here to deal with political and military affairs, naming it Taipei meaning “north of Taiwan”. Thus the area gradually became the most prosperous region of the island.
The city is also the tourism center of Taiwan. The charming natural scenery, rich historical relics, colorful customs of different nationalities, and various delicious foods have attracted more and more visitors each year from every corner of the world.
As the transport hub of Taiwan, you can fly here directly from many cities such as Bangkok, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Amsterdam, Dubai, Singapore, Seoul and Tokyo. If you are already in mainland China, almost each provincial capital has direct flights to Taipei. The urban mass transit is also very efficient due to an extensive network of city buses and the metro train system.
Located near the 25 degree north latitude line, Taipei doesn’t have winter, only a hot season and a cool season. The hot season is from April to November and the cool season is from December to March. The annual average temperature is 73ºF (23ºC). In May, the rainy season comes so in June, July and August, you can expect thunder showers. From June to September, typhoons may hit here. Therefore, the best season to visit is October and November.
Known as a paradise for foodies, it has various foods from all over the world. Here you can eat clam fry, pie cake package, pearl tea, big sausage, stinky tofu, stewed ribs with herbs, papadam and tofu pudding. The best place to enjoy them should be nowhere else but the night food markets, among which the Shihlin Night Market is the most famous and the Jaoho Night Market is the oldest. Apart from these two, a great many of night food markets are spread all over the city.
The Hsimending and Sinyi business district are the two most famous shopping places. Cosmetics shops, book stores, and malls can be found everywhere. Shin Kong Mitsukoshi, Breeze Center and Eslite Bookstore are well-known worldwide. You can buy anything you want there.
Taipei’s nightclubs have different styles such as retro, modern and preppy, which will surely attract you. Most clubs are located in the Sinyi District. Myst Night Club has the best place to see the nightscape and is the most luxurious. In addition, there are LAVA, BABE 18 and Space Club, all playing various styles of music and providing high quality beer.