Exotic, tropical Taiwan has it all. With influences from Spanish, Dutch, Chinese and Japanese colonizers through whose hands it has passed, it is a country as diverse as it is colorful. Thanks to Taiwan’s booming economic industry, honeymooning couples looking for five-star luxury will find world-class service and hospitality here, as well as stunning coastlines and gorgeous scenery. It is the perfect destination for newlyweds, whether you are seeking the fascinations of city life or the adventure of the great outdoors. Meanwhile, infused into everything is the ancient and modern history and culture of this beautiful little country. Here are a few pointers for an unforgettable way to start your new life together in Taiwan.
Love in the city
For a glimpse of classic Taiwan, you simply cannot miss the capital city of Taipei. Bursting with life, color and culture, this is an ideal starting point for a more extended adventure, or the perfect destination if you and your beloved appreciate art, history, culture and nature. Get a feel for the country’s past at the National Palace Museum, home to more than 700,000 works of art, reclaimed from the Chinese when Taiwan won its independence. Immerse yourself in the ancient religious traditions of Taiwanese Buddhists and Taoists beneath the red arches of the ornate Longshan Temple and discover more modern artifacts at the Museum of Contemporary Art – better known as MOCA. Spend an evening caught up in the energy as you wander Ximending – the first pedestrian zone in Taipei, where the shopping is world-class and street performers fascinate and amaze. Continue onwards to sample delicious local delicacies or pick up unique souvenirs at Shilin Night Market. One of the most remarkable things about this sprawling cosmopolitan hub is its proximity to outstanding natural beauty: venture just a little north and find yourself in Yangmingshan National Park, where winding mountain walks afford you sweeping views of the lush valley below. Spend your stay in Taipei at the city’s finest hotel, the Mandarin Oriental: brand new and perfectly located for all your sightseeing, it boasts opulent rooms, ideal for lovestruck honeymooners.
To get a further sense of Taiwan’s charms, take in the magic and history imbued into the very buildings of Tainan, Taiwan’s oldest city and erstwhile capital. Once a trading base for Dutch merchants, it is home to the painstakingly reconstructed forts and towers. Here, you can try the city’s unique snack foods as you explore the streets among the colonial and Asian architecture including Buddhist, Taoist and even Confucian temples. Discover fascinating stories at the National Museum of Taiwan History and take a stroll around the peaceful city park.
Get out and about to breathe in the fresh air of Taiwan’s stunning natural beauties. Couples in search of adventure and marvels will not be disappointed by the treasures that await. Don’t miss the chance to explore Sun Moon Lake, named for its unique shape, curved like an orb to the east and with a crescent wrapping the central island of Lalu. Sail across the glassy waters of this vast mountain lake to discover the gems on its banks. Wenwu Temple to the north allows for stunning views from its golden roofs and Sun Moon Lake Ropeway whisks you above it all in a cable car. The central island is home to the historic culture of the Thao tribe, whose ancestors still make and sell their traditional handicrafts.
Make a stop in your travels at Hualien, a pretty and charming city from which you can venture out to Taroko Gorge, a plunging canyon carved into marble by the River Liwu. Hike the mountainous trails cut through twisted metamorphic rocks and luscious rainforest to reach Shuilian Cave or along the Shakadang trail to a cascading waterfall. If you are seeking a little action and adventure to add to the sweeping romantic beauty, try river-tracing – a cross between hiking, swimming and scrambling – through Taroko’s crystal waters and river beds.
The volcanic island of Taiwan has no shortage of stunning national parks spanning a wide spectrum of terrains and scenery. At its heart lies vast Alishan, home to Mount Ali, expansive tea plantations and just four small villages where aboriginal tribes practice their traditional ways. Hike the trails through delicate cherry blossom in spring and orange montbretia in summer. Kenting on the south coast, meanwhile, awaits with recreational activities off its sandy beaches, from scuba diving among the soft, teeming coral reefs to rock climbing on its rugged cliffs.