Pingzi Sky Lantern Festival
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Upon arrival in Taiwan’s capital, head straight to one of the city’s most iconic landmarks and one of the world’s largest buildings, the Taipei 101 Observatory. Designed to look like a stalk of bamboo, the tower is a must-see when visiting Taipei and offers stunning views of the entire city. Before returning to your hotel for the night, spend some time perusing the largest night market in Taiwan, the dazzling Shilin Night Market.
Start your full day in Taipei with a tour of the National Palace Museum, home to 5,000 years of Chinese Imperial arts and incredible jade collections. Then head to the Da’an district to enjoy traditional tea in one of the city’s oldest and finest tea houses. After lunch, make your way to the exotically beautiful Holy Monk Shrine, with its ornate statues and shrines dedicated to the Sarira and Sakyamuni, the founder of Buddhism.
End your night strolling the waterfront area of Tamsui Old Street and its famous boardwalk filled with shops, carnival games, and restaurants with unbeatable traditional cuisine.
Depart Taipei early for an adventure-filled day in the mountainous gold-mining town of Jiufen. Spend your day strolling the atmospheric alleyways of Jiufen’s Old Street, wandering in an out of tightly-packed shops and cafes and snacking on taro balls and delicious sticky rice cakes. Take in breathtaking ocean views and relax in some of the city’s traditional tea houses.
Return to Taipei in the evening with enough time to visit the Dihua Street night market for some shopping and late-night eats.
Wake early and hop a high-speed train to the small but enchanting town of Chiayi. Take a tour of the National Palace Museum Southern Branch to discover its abundance of exquisite Buddhist art from Asia’s oldest civilizations. For an unusual sight, head to the Ming Yuan Pharmacy. Once an actual pharmacy, the owner Mr. Tsai has worked to fill every corner of the tiny shop with unusual seeds, transforming the shop into a shrine to Taiwan’s indigenous flora.
At night, discover the long strip of road in front of the Chaotian Temple known as Beigang Old Street and spend some time shopping the city’s most traditional shops and food outlets.
After breakfast, board a train to the southern coast of Taiwan to discover Pingtung County. Home to Taiwan’s most beautiful beaches, Pingtung will stun you with its natural beauty and off-the-beaten-path atmosphere. Head to gorgeous Kenting National Park for a day of exploration in a nature lover’s paradise. Rent a scooter and take your time touring quiet roads to pristine beaches ready for swimming, and birding.
End your night feasting on local snacks and street food in the popular Hengchun night market.
Spend your day in Pingtung County’s Dapeng Bay, home to the Lantern Festival. Celebrate with locals and thousands of visitors who come from all over the world to take part in the festivities, starting with a spectacular Lantern Day parade. Marvel at hundreds of intricate lantern exhibits while enjoying live music and dancing, and of course plenty of delicious food and treats.
When the sun sets, end your day witnessing the real magic as hundreds of multi-colored lanterns light up the night sky!
After one last delicious breakfast, return to Taipei via high-speed train. We’ll head to the airport for your international departure home.
Grab your passport and spend seven days exploring the elegant island country of Taiwan. Immerse yourself in the sophistication of Taipei and its cosmopolitan blend of Chinese culture. Wander the hills of Jiufen and stroll the quaint village streets of Chiayi. Cap off your trip in Dapeng Bay as you witness Taiwan’s world-famous Lantern Festival. This spectacular festival is celebrated annually on the 15th day of the first lunar month and marks the grand finale of the Chinese New Year celebrations as well as the coming of the spring. Combining traditional culture with state-of-the-art technology, the Taiwan Lantern Festival is a dazzling party and one of the biggest and most spectacular lantern festivals in Asia!
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