The Ultimate Things to Do in and around Taipei 101

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The Ultimate Things to Do in and around Taipei 101

Taipei 101 was once the tallest building in the world between 2004 and 2009 before it was surpassed by the Burj Khalifa and afterwards the Shanghai Tower. The most iconic tower in Taiwan, Taipei 101 can be seen from almost everywhere in the capital city, Taipei. Not only is the view from the top incredible, there's plenty of amazing things to do and places to eat in and around Taipei 101.

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The Ultimate Things to Do in and around Taipei 101

Taipei 101 Observatory

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On the 91st floor, Taipei 101's outside observatory is one of the highest in the world, with stunning views across all of Taipei city and the surrounding mountains such as in Yangmingshan National Park. If the weather isn't quite as good, the 89th and 88th floor both have indoor observation decks.

For the first time since opening, Taipei 101 has also recently opened up the observatory on the 101st floor, visitors can pay extra to book a ticket for Skyline460, allowing access to the 101st floor. Previously it was relatively unknown to those but a few VIP guests who were invited such as Barack Obama and Will Smith. The Skyline460 ticket currently costs NT$ 3,000.

Get the Best View of Taipei 101 from Elephant Mountain

view of Taipei 101 from Elephant mountain

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Of course being on top of the tallest tower in Taipei means you won't get a view of the iconic building itself. Instead for the best views of Taipei 101 head to the nearby Elephant Mountain. Also called Xiangshan, the mountain is a short journey from Taipei 101 (MRT Xiangshan Station is one stop away) and takes about 10-20 minutes to hike up to the top. From viewpoints at the summit you'll get incredible views over Xinyi District and the Taipei's skyscrapers, especially famous for the night view of Taipei 101. You can also clearly see the other more recent skyscrapers of Taipei such as Nanshan Plaza, Taipei Sky Tower and Fubon Xinyi A25.

Linjiang Street Night Market

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A short 15-minute-walk from Taipei 101, Linjiang Street Night Market is one of Taipei's many bustling night markets that come to life in the evening hours. It's the perfect place to head to after exploring Taipei 101 to grab some snacks and food to eat. While many night markets have all kinds of shops and vendors selling clothes, goods and games, Linjiang is mostly focused on food vendors.

Watch the Taipei 101 Firework Display

Beautiful Taipei 101 Firework display

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Every year Taipei 101 puts on a spectacular firework display that usually lasts for a few minutes for the new year countdown, with fireworks shooting out of and above the tower. It's one of the most incredible firework displays in the world and is highly recommended to see at least once in a lifetime. The area around Taipei 101 can get a quite crowded during the New Year, so it's recommended to get a hotel within walking distance of Xinyi.

Hotels with a View of Taipei 101

Hotels near Taipei 101

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For the ultimate experience, book a room with a view of Taipei 101 such as at the Eslite Hotel, W Taipei and Grand Hyatt Taipei. Rooms are usually booked up well in advance of the New Year, so make sure to plan early. Watching this incredible firework display from the comfort of your hotel room however is an experience you'll never forget.

Even if you're not visiting for the new year, the view from some of these hotels are stunning, especially at night. For a slightly more budget friendly option, Park Taipei Hotel offers their Taipei 101 View Room which is more wallet-friendly compared to similar five-star hotels such as the W Taipei.

Restaurants in Taipei 101

Taipei 101 Din Tai Fung

Taipei 101 Din Tai Fung dumplings

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One of Taiwan's most famous restaurants, Din Tai Fung started selling its famous soup dumplings in 1972, known for its precise method to creating the delicious and delicate dumplings. The original shop location in Da'an District is more popular and often sees queues to get in, but the restaurant at Taipei 101 tastes the same and is much more convenient to visit.

While the xiaolongbao or soup dumplings is the most famous dish, there's plenty of other delicious things to order at Din Tai Fung. Try the pork chop fried rice, the sesame and peanut noodles and spicy shrimp and pork wontons as well as the range of different dumplings.

The whole menu at Din Tai Fung is huge with almost a hundred dishes to choose from. They even have gift boxes of famous Taiwanese snacks such as pineapple cakes and sticky rice wraps.

86th Floor DingXian Restaurant

For one of the ultimate dining experiences in Taipei, book a table at DingXian, located on the 86th floor of Taipei 101. DingXian offers some of the best Taiwanese cuisine in the city, with a heavy emphasis on fresh seafood courses.

As you might expect from such an incredible location, prices are quite high, however the quality of the food and service is impeccable and well worth the cost even without the incredible views.

Taipei 101 Mall Food Court

For a more informal dining and without the need to wait long for food, head down to B1 of the Taipei 101 mall for the food court. Here you'll find a range of international cuisines along with classic Taiwanese foods.

Incredible Facts about Taipei 101

It's Still the Tallest Green Building in the World

Taipei 101 may have lost its 'tallest building in the world' status after being surpassed by Dubai's Burj Khalifa in 2009, but it still holds a few world titles. Taipei's tallest tower was certified with LEED Platinum status in 2011, the highest award for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

For Years the 101st Floor Was a Secret

The highest 101st floor of Taipei 101 was always shrouded in mystery, labelled as Summit 101, only VIP guests were invited there along with those who had spent over one million Taiwanese dollars at the Taipei 101 mall.

The tower ran an promotional event labeled '101 Reasons to Visit the Observatory' last year for the whole of December where it allowed anyone to take the elevator up to the 101st floor for an extra fee. The event was a first time ever in the tower's history and now the floor has been opened as part of Skyline460, allowing anyone to visit for an extra fee.

Taipei 101 Damper

The damper or tuned mass damper in Taipei 101 is the largest and heaviest in the world, a huge circular weight that's suspended in the tower. As Taiwan is prone to earthquakes, the damper helps to stabilize Taipei 101 in case of strong shaking or strong winds. Taipei 101's damper weighs a total of 660 metric tons, a incredible feat of engineering allowing the building to withstand even the strongest of earthquakes and strong wind gusts of up to 60 meters per second.

There's No 44th Floor

As the number four pronounced in Mandarin Chinese sounds similar to the world for 'death', four is considered an unlucky number in Taiwan and China. For this reason a number of buildings in Taipei don't label a 4th floor and instead use other methods such as 3a and 3b to bypass the number. While Taipei 101 does have a fourth floor due to the confusion for international tourists visiting the mall if it didn't, Taipei 101 does not have a 44th floor, instead it goes from 42, 42a, 43 and jumps to the 45th floor.

Taipei 101 Information

How to Get to Taipei 101

The Taipei Metro's red line also called the Xinyi Line has a station right at the foot of the tower, called Taipei 101–World Trade Center Station. Take a train going towards Xiangshan on the Xinyi Line and get off at Taipei 101 Station (Exit 4). You can also walk there from Taipei City Hall Station (Exit 2) on the blue line or Bannan Line, it takes about 10 minutes. It's also about 15 minutes walk from Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall.