Food, fun, culture, and convenience… this is Taipei! Good Food!
A video I made back in 2009 about delicious Taipei night market food.
Developed without much central-planning and lacking an organized, grid-like street structure typical of North American cities, Taipei grew out of early settlements with Japanese influence in the architecture (the Presidential Office building was built by the Japanese). The layout and appearance of the city can seem very chaotic and disorganized, but there probably isn’t a more convenient city elsewhere on the globe with food, shopping, and entertainment never far.
Taipei’s Culture and Lifestyle
The lifestyle of Taipei has been described as a heavily work and school oriented, fast-paced and incredibly efficient. In the years of living here I still have not understood the true extent of the pressures to succeed academically the younger Taipei residents are under. During a visit to a local “cram school/buxiban” (establishments offering cramming courses mainly to pass exams, offering classes outside normal school hours) I found out that the schedule for a course aimed at gaining entry to National Taiwan University is 12+ hours per day of class, lasting from early morning to 9-10 PM. The pressures Taipei is under to succeed in any way is incredibly heavy.
Culturally, Taipei has a rich mix from the period of Japanese occupation to American influences. This is especially evident in the food where heavy Japanese influence is evident.
Taiwan is known for the food, and Taipei is the foodie capital of the island. Seafood is a major staple, an advantage of location on a sub-tropical island.
Taipei has been my home for practically my entire lifetime. My early-life years were spent here and it is where I now call home.