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Thứ Bảy, 26 tháng 5, 2012

Taipei 2012 - Taipei City

Taipei is one of the top foodie cities in Asia and I have always wanted to visit, but never had the chance until recently. Originally the trip was supposed to be last year - in order to catch the Taipei Floral Expo, but due to the tsunami and nuclear disaster in Japan it was put off until this year.

The city itself is as I have expected - as I have seen it countless times in movies. Taiwanese directors love to use Taipei as their backdrop, much like New York or Los Angeles. In many ways it felt like visiting an old friend.

Taipei city itself is laid out on a functional grid, with major roads running East-West and North-South. Shimin Boulevard divides the city into the Northern and Southern sections, whereas Jianguo Road divides the city into Eastern and Western sections. Due to this grid pattern, it is not difficult to find your way around town. Howevre it is the small roads and laneways behind the main roads that are the most interesting. During the trip, I must have walked around half of Taipei City on foot - it is not as big as you might think.

The Taipei undeground MRT system is one of the best in the World - and it is also the most convenient way to move around the city. If you are in a hurry - taxies are plentiful and relatively cheap. It is refreshing not to have to haggle over taxi fare, and Taipei taxi drives are some of the most courteous and friendly I have met.
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