At long last, I have finally traveled to Taiwan. Ever since I was a kid, I’ve always wanted to travel there. However, I couldn’t since my family was always busy and I’m obviously too young to travel alone. Now, since I have a stable job, I can finally afford to travel there myself. And I will never regret that decision.
Taiwan is considered as the capital of Asian cuisine so I had some expectations going into this. What I didn’t realize was how active the nightlife was there. From late night food markets to light up night clubs to 24 hour gaming cafes. I was completely blown away from all the exciting activities to do. I just wish that I learned mandarin so I can communicate to the locals.
Through the course of the 2 weeks while I was there, I stayed at a friend’s house in Taichung for a week, then I stayed at a hot spring resort and a hotel in Taipei for the remainder of the trip. I was surprised about the prices too. For the resort it was 4500 ntd (around $200 cad) for 3 days and 1600 ntd (around $70 cad) a night, both are at 3.8 stars.
In terms of the food, I was blown away from all the variety of food. From late night food grubbing to Michelin star restaurants, Taiwan really knows their stuff when it comes to food, and most of them are relatively cheap. With $5 Canadian, you can get away with good quality food from night markets.
The most iconic part of the trip was visiting an old friend from culinary school. I’ve been out of school for quite some time now and to be fair, I haven’t caught up with any of my classmates since I’m always busy with work. To my surprise, my friend was in the area and wants to meet up! (I thought she was living in Toronto all this time). Catching up with an old friend is always nice because we’re all busy with our own stuff in life from working in the kitchen to opening up a restaurant, to getting married. It can be hard because you don’t where to start, but start on the best part.
We went to Taipei 101, walk around the observatory deck , talked, and share some of our wild stories while we were away all this time. I told her that I’m staying at my workplace as an Eatery Team Leader, coaching and teaching new employees. She told me that she’s starting up her new business in Taiwan with her family. Sadly, we have to leave because she got work to do after. In the end, I was happy to catch up with her again, sharing our wildest stories and thinking just how far we come; and it’s just been 2 years. We’re excited what exciting stuff the future holds for us individually.
On top with everything, it was an incredible experience traveling alone. This trip left my heart (and my stomach) full, and I would gladly go back again. There’s still so much stuff to do like traveling down south to Kaohsiung, Cijin and Kenting National Park. And also trying out bazaar food such as chocolate chicken and snake venom (yes, snake venom). . But next time, I’ll bring a friend or 2 to show them around and explore even more.