Posted by: David Stewart | September 27, 2009

English – the coolest language – in Taipei

Young people, out and about in Taipei on the weekend. Many wear really stylish t-shirts, almost all of them are in English. Is this crazy or what? I wouldn’t mind a really cool t-shirt – in Chinese!

Taipei, the capital city of Taiwan, is a relatively small burg of two million souls. Yet they boast one of the tallest buildings in the world (Taipei 101), and have a zillion restaurants, all of which are full to the brim with hungry people.

Speaking of food, the Taipei Main Train Station has this amazing collection of restaurants on the second floor of the main station building. Restaurants include:

  • Steak
  • Korean
  • Italian
  • Indian
  • Japanese – I saw shabu-shabu, tonkatsu, omelet rice, tempura
  • bakeries – with all manner of Chinese baked goodies
  • a wine shop
  • coffee shops, including Starbucks of course
  • Mr Donut
  • Burger King – so you can have it your way

Speaking of malls, the shopping centers look a lot more like western-style malls than the ones in China. But in the unused spaces, kids hang out on Sunday afternoon dancing. Line dancing, break dancing, and sometimes just collapsed in exhaustion from dancing.

And I had to make a check of a local technology mall. But I think Singapore has the best technology malls of them all.

Finally Taipei has such a terrific Metro system – clean, safe, well organized. One of the lines is even automated, with no driver in sight.


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