Monday, 9 January 2017

Taiwan general impressions

Taiwan general impressions

Based on one visit staying in Taipei (Fri 16 to Tue 20 Dec 2016), I can fully recommend Taiwan as a destination for tourism and gay activities (see subsequent post).

Thanks to all friends who recommended and gave advice about Taiwan.

List of positive observations, in comparison to Germany and Thailand:
Weather was nice during my stay (not as cold as Germany in winter and not as hot as Thailand).
Complete absence of scams (elsewhere in South-East Asia it starts when you step out of the airport, and runs the whole duration of your holiday).
Entry to national parks is cheap and there is no double pricing as in Thailand.
Public transport network extensive and cheap.
Little traffic.
Street food easily available and cheap.
There are plenty of convenience stores open 24/7.
Most houses in Taipei overhang over the sidewalk, so you have a covered sidewalk as protection from rain or sun (similar to Singapore and Phuket).
No stray dogs or cats, no rats, no cockroaches.
No unsightly cables hanging in the air.
I saw only one fat person, everyone else in normal shape. Whereas in Thailand, there are even 5-year-olds who are overweight. In all sauna and gay spring visits, not a single fat customer!
A wide range of natural attractions (especially interesting for me: geological parks and old mining town), museums, architecture, of which I could only sample a small part.
Whenever I needed help, my request was processed quickly and competently.*
90 days visa free entry for German.
Level of English spoken is ok.

update: not the vast amounts of bottled water (waste of money and resources, and the empty bottles pollute the environment) as in Thailand.

Only drawback is hotels are more expensive then I'm used to in Thailand, however there are hostels in Taipei below 500 Baht that are fine for me (obviously I can't take anyone to my room).  And I like brown skin (even Thai-Chinese are too pale for my taste), Taiwanese boys are lacking in that department.

*Around 15dec2016, I went to bookshop in Goethe Institute to buy December issue of "Der Farang" (German language magazine in Thailand, December issue was published on 9dec2016). I could only spot the November issue, so I asked cashier about December issue. Cashier called another staff for help, and both scrolled through all pages of November issues, finally telling me that December issues have not been delivered yet.

Opposite experience in Taipei. I wanted to withdraw money in main railway station, entered PIN and amount, but only a receipt in English (not enough for me to understand what was the problem) and Chinese came out, but no money! After staring at the screen and tapping the cover of the money slit several times, I realized this will not work. I went to the counter and showed receipt, cashier immediately told me that their ATM cannot process foreign credit cards and called another staff to walk me to an ATM that can.

Overall, from all my travels in south-east Asia, Taiwan is the optimum of civilization, reasonable prices and cute boys. Singapore comes second (my visit to Cruise Club was devastating: and as a city state less area/volume/population than Taiwan.

Update: see here as well

Copyright 2017 ChristianPFC

1 comment:

  1. I agree with your assessment of Taiwan. In some ways the equal of Hong Kong, in other ways maybe a little more "Western" then Hong Kong. Soon to have gay marriage.


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