23 Sep - 25 Sep 2012 Taipei

East Asia
Taiwan aka Republic of China
Taipei City
2 Lane 56, Zhongshan N Road, Sec 1
Happy Family Hostel +886225810716 happyfamily_2@yahoo.com
Clean and comfy double room with unrestricted wifi and shared bathroom, for TWD 750.- or US$ 25.60 per night. Long-term rates are available. Excellent staff and a great atmosphere - the best hostel atmosphere in downtown Taipei. 15% discount for members of the Konni & Matt Travel Blog.
Beer: 600-ml bottles of cold Taiwan Beer Classic (4.5 % alc./vol.) for TWD 49.- or US$ 1.68 from the reliable FamilyMart convenience store next to the hostel.

Click below for an interactive road map of John's Happy Family Hostel in Taipei, which we would highly recommend, and for directions:


Enjoying tremendously our short sojourn in Taipei, temporary second home away from home and one of our top five Asian metropolises, meeting up with other longstanding members of our Happy Family (a warm thanks to Naoko, Mark and John), swapping memories and latest news, catching up on overdue admin work (answering emails, editing photos and planning our upcoming scuba-dive trip to Sulawesi) and, last but not least, pigging into the yummiest vegetarian food (both fresh veggies and superb “mock meat” dishes made from tofu or gluten on which veritable miracles had been performed) at the unparalleled Breeze Minder Vegetarian food court +886282187858 (hidden on the 2nd floor of Taipei’s cosmopolitan Main Station), xie-xie and zaijian, friendly and beautiful Ilha Formosa!

“If slaughterhouses had glass walls, we would all be vegetarian.” 
(Paul McCartney)

"...many 'mainlanders' cannot understand that the Chinese diaspora in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore and elsewhere look down upon them because the essential cultural characteristics of being Chinese have been destroyed in the 'mainland' by Mao. Confucian, Taoist and Buddhist ethics, filial piety, justice, and the belief in education, meritocracy and traditions was nearly wiped out in China, leaving the generations that lived through that cultural revolution period ideologically dogmatic, under-educated or completely disillusioned. Compile that with 150 years of chaos, the result is a dog-eat-dog mentality that communism was supposed to eliminate. The traditional Chinese values continued and evolved in Taiwan and elsewhere and only now that 'mainlanders' have the means to expose their kids to the wider world that they are slowly regaining their heritage. It might take another 20 to 30 years, for China to be truly 'Chinese' again, and only then will others see them as equals..." 
(Dan Yeo, a friend from Taipei)

Taking the efficient Kuo Guang bus +886800010138 (25 km, ¾ hours, TWD 125.- or US$ 4.30 per person, single fare) from Taipei’s well-run West Bus Station straight to terminal no. 2 of Taipei’s Taoyuan International Airport and noticing fleets of tour buses crammed full of package tourists from China on the oncoming lane of the expressway, flying uneventfully with Air Asia X (“Now Everyone Can Fly Xtra Long”) in a clean Airbus A 330-300 from Taipei’s Taoyuan International Airport to Kuala Lumpur’s KLIA-LCCT Sepang for US$ 140.- per person, one way, all inclusive, and being issued with another 90-day-visit pass for a “social visit” (in our case: a short stopover of less than 24 hours) to Malaysia on arrival, free of charge. 

Click below for more blog posts about our visits to Taiwan
08 Feb 2014 Fo Guang Shan
 07 Feb 2014 Meinong
27 Nov - 31 Dec 2013 Kaohsiung
17 Sep - 23 Sep 2012 Kinmen
05 May - 01 Jun 2012 Taipei

Click below for a summary of this year's travels
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Facing Taiwan
© Konni & Matt