Visiting Taipei 101 was not at the top of my list. Huge tourist attraction? Crowds and tour buses? I figured I would give it a pass, and would instead find a sweet vantage point from which to view the tower under the stars.
I did end up getting up to that vantage point, but I also went up Taipei 101 itself, when my friend Ben visited on a layover enroute to Vietnam. He kickstarted my stoke levels towards visiting the structure that consistently dominates the Taipei skyline, and I’m glad he did. It’s quite the engineering marvel, especially in a typhoon AND earthquake-prone nation; it also takes the cake for having the most time-effective ear popping elevator.
Here are a few photos from inside, and outside Taipei 101.
A few days later, I took in Taipei 101 from a different perspective.
From the Houshanpi MRT station, it was a quick ten minute walk to one of the entry points of the ‘Four Beasts’ hiking area. From its base, you can find yourself gazing out towards a panorama of the Taipei cityscape in around only fifteen minutes…an urban hike at its finest.
Or, if you have more time, you can try to visit all of the Beasts (Elephant, Leopard, Lion, Tiger); the views improve the higher you get. Before sundown I only made it a short way, to a place called Longdong Rock. Next time I’d love to explore more of the path network, before dark, so I can find my way back.
The highlight for me of my afternoon and evening up here was that although I saw a few folks on my way up, I had Longdong Rock all to myself. No one to rescue me should I have fallen off the edge of it, which looked to be a quick ticket to crash down through the jungle below. Don’t get too close.
The thing about marvelous buildings is that when you’re in them, you can’t savour their beautiful exterior! I was glad for the opportunity to enjoy both the inside and outside of Taipei 101. The lines weren’t even (that) bad.