Taiwan with its rich culture and history is one of my favorite travel destinations. With its kind people and natural beauty, you should consider it on your next travel destination. And like any other place, there are things you should never do when traveling to this beautiful island country. Here’s my list of 10 things you should not do in Taiwan:
- 1 1. Rent a Car
- 2 2. Book Expensive Hotels
- 3 3. Buy Bottled Water All The Time
- 4 4. Enter Temples With A Wrong Foot
- 5 5. Do Not Touch The Monk
- 6 6. Take Pictures without Permission
- 7 7. Sleep Too Early!
- 8 8. Use Your Finger When Calling Someone.
- 9 9. Skip A Cup of Tea
- 10 10. Eat At McDonald’s.
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1. Rent a Car
Unless you’re going in a remote mountainous destination or have tons of money, renting a car is a no, no! Public transportation in Taiwan is very efficient and on time. Trains and buses use easy to remember codes. In Taipei, MRT uses color-coded lines and they use Mandarin & English in displaying the destination so it’s impossible to get lost…unless you’re stupid.
2. Book Expensive Hotels
Unless you ran out of hostels and inns and you’re super rich. If traveling on a budget, never put a big chunk of your money on expensive hotels. Hostels and inns are everywhere and they are comfortable, clean and offers not only free snacks and shower gels but also a chance to meet other travelers.
3. Buy Bottled Water All The Time
Drinking fountains are scattered all around. Not only in Taiwan but wherever you go, carry a water bottle and just refill it. Not only you will save money, but you will also help the plastic waste problem.
4. Enter Temples With A Wrong Foot
Taoist Temples are all over the country and you will probably visit one. For you to not get attention from locals, make sure you enter the temples with correct foot-left when entering and exit with your right foot.
5. Do Not Touch The Monk
Buddhism is widely practiced in Taiwan so you probably see a monk. If you’re a woman, you cannot touch a monk. And if you’re giving any kind of donation, give it to a man first then let him give it to the monk.
6. Take Pictures without Permission
In parks, you probably will spot locals doing their usual routine. If you see locals playing a board or card game and you want to take pictures, get their permission! They might be playing for a bet and conscious with their pictures being taken. And you don’t wanna get into trouble with them.
7. Sleep Too Early!
When you’re traveling to Taipei or any other city, go out and see the nightlife! Explore the night market in Shilin, watch the cosplayers in Ximending, have a drink in Xinyi or simply have a feel of its culture under the moon.
8. Use Your Finger When Calling Someone.
Using your finger when calling someone is considered rude in this country of polite people. When calling someone, use your entire hands and palm facing the ground.
9. Skip A Cup of Tea
Taiwan is one of the producers of fine teas. Oolong is very popular in the country. Bubble tea was even invented in Tainan so you can never go wrong with tea in Taiwan.
10. Eat At McDonald’s.
You traveled to Taiwan or to any foreign country for the first time then you eat at McDonald’s, KFC or any other familiar fast food chain? Seriously? Taiwan has a great tasting food from a cuisine influenced by Chinese and Japanese colonization. And you’ll be missing a lot for not trying it.
These things will help you avoid mistakes but, don’t be too conscious. Hey! It’s totally fine to commit a mistake or two when traveling as long as you learn from it. And Taiwan is definitely a cool place to explore and learn!