The East District (or Xinyi and Daan) of Taipei is the financial and commercial centre of Taipei.
As home to the Taipei City Hall, Taipei Convention Hall, the Taipei World Trade Center, Taipei 101, Taipei City Hall, and various shopping malls and entertainment venues, the East District is considered the most modern and cosmopolitan district of Taipei.
Much of the district used to be wetlands, explaining the abundance of space for construction projects as this was one of the last places in Taipei to be developed.
The East District is fully or partly served by MRT red, blue, green and orange lines, depending on the line. In addition it is also served by a number of bus lines.
- 1 Daan Forest Park (大安森林公園). The park rests on 26 hectares in central Taipei bordered by Xinyi Road, Jianguo South Road, Heping East Road, and Xinsheng South Road. Due to its size and location, it is also known as Taipei Central Park. Bus lines 15, 52, 235, 278, 284, 20, 22, Xinyi Main Line service this park. Free.
- 2 Discover Center Of Taipei (台北探索館), 1 Shifu Rd (Taipei City Hall Stn), ☏ . Tu-Su 09:00-17:00, closed M. Located just inside the main entrance of Taipei City Hall, this is a good place to know the history and culture of Taipei City. Free.
- 3 Songshan Cultural and Creative Park (松山文創園區), No. 133, Guangfu South Road, Xinyi District, ☏ . Daily 09:00-18:00. in 2011, the park turned into a full fledged art center. Now it is a hub for cultural activities and exhibits. You can walk around the park and see the old structures as well as the new exhibits, restaurants, and the Eslite mall. Within the Eslite mall you can participate in various activities including glass blowing, jewelry and soap making.
- 4 Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall (國父紀念館) (SYS Memorial Hall stn, MRT Blue Line). 09:00-18:00. Constructed in the memory of Dr. Sun Yat-sen who is the founding father of the Republic of China. The construction of the Memorial commenced in 1965 in conjunction with the 100th anniversary of Sun Yat-sen's birth. It was opened on 16 May 1972, with the majestic architecture and placid landscape covering an area of some 115,500 m². The park named Zhongshan Park marks the front yard of the Hall. On the inside, there is a 19-foot bronze statue of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, watched over during the day by motionless military honor guards, along with a library of 400 seats storing over 1.4 millions books. The 100-m long Zhongshan corridor links the main hall to the four large exhibition buildings where contemporary arts and historical articles are frequently on display. The Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall has grown into much of a community center, and is much less touristy than the newer and larger Chiang Kai-shek Memorial. There is an auditorium which has weekly lectures and seminars on aspects of art and life. It is also a popular site for public concerts.
- 5 Taipei 101 (臺北 101). (臺北國際金融大樓) is rich in symbolism. This 101-floor, 508-meter high skyscraper is designed to resemble bamboo rising from the earth, a plant recognized in Asian cultures for its fast growth and flexibility. The building is divided into eight distinct sections, with eight being a number associated with prosperity in Chinese culture. The internal architecture of Taipei 101 is similarly awe-inspiring. Pay attention to ornate details on the structural beams, columns, and other elements. It was the world's tallest building from 2004 to 2010, but was soon overtaken by others willing to splurge for bragging rights.
- Taipei 101 Indoor Observatory (臺北 101) (Taipei 101 stn, MRT Red Line). 10:00-22:00. The world's second fastest elevators will zip visitors up to the 89th-floor observation deck in a mere 37 seconds. It's worth taking a ride up, as the views are stunning. The best time to visit would be in the late afternoon when you spend a couple of hours and see both day and night views of Taipei. Don't forget to look toward the middle of the Indoor Observatory, where you'll see the world's largest spherical tuned mass damper (one of three) that keep the building steady. Also, it is probably best to come early (around 08:55) or you will have to stand in line for 15–60 min. NT$600 for adults, NT$370 for kids under 12.
- Taipei 101 Outdoor Observatory (Taipei 101 stn, MRT Red Line). 10:00-22:00, closed during bad weather. You can also go up to the outdoor observatory on the 91st floor (while it's possible to go to the outdoor observatory in a wheelchair, the view is negligible, as the concrete railing is too high to see over). Often only the elevator side remains open and you cannot walk a circle—if this is important to you, ask ahead. Included in Taipei 101 Observatory price.
- 1 Elephant Mountain Hiking Trail (Xiangshan Hiking Trail / 象山步道) (From the Xiangshan Station head south and after 500 m the path starts to the east.). A short walk from Taipei 101 in Xinyi District. Very steep steps lead up into a shaded, forested hill overlooking the city. Elephant Mountain, about 200 m high, is one of the Four Beasts Mountains, and paths from here go up to higher peaks in Nangang.
There are a variety of department stores in this area since this is the financial centre of the city.
- 1 Eslite Mall (誠品), 245 Dunhua South Road (Zhongxiao Dunhua MRT, near intersection with Renai Road). An upscale market-style shopping center with a 24 hour book shop (with a good English selection) on the second floor and ethnic music store in basement.
- 2 Eslite Flagship Mall, No 11 Songgao Road (From Taipei City Hall MRT Station Exit 2, walk towards Taipei Bus Station.), ☏ . Daily 10:00-02:00. The flagship store of the Eslite Company is an eight-storey building devoted to books and creative and innovative products and music. Up-scale food court in basement. Cafes on various floors. Worth a visit even when not shopping.
- 3 Taipei 101 Mall. Attached to the tower is a large, upscale mall. While most of the stores are from the same brand-names as stores in other major cities around the world, the mall also features several homegrown Taiwanese luxury brands, and even the international brands often have items designed exclusively for the Taiwanese market. Even if you don't plan to buy anything, the open and spacious design of the structure itself definitely makes it worth a visit. A supermarket specializing in imported food items is located in the basement.
- 4 Shin Kong Mitsukoshi (新光三越). Xinyi branch of the department store chain, this is the largest department store in Taiwan, occupying four different buildings.
The Yongkang Street area is one of the best places in Taipei for souvenirs and handcrafts. The area is also home to a number of shops specializing in natural soaps and balms.
- Fingertip Art (一針一線), No11, Lane 6, Yongkang Street,, ☏ . A two-storey (first floor and basement) handicraft and local souvenir shop. Stylish and affordable goods. Friendly and very helpful staff.
- 5 Jianguo Holiday Jade Market (假日玉市). Located under an elevated expressway, reaching from Renai Road & Jianguo South Road intersection down Jianguo Road, till Xinyi Rd. In addition to jade, flowers and many other kinds of handcrafts and jewelry can be purchased. There are actually three different markets, the Weekend Jade Market, Weekend Flower Market and Weekend Handicrafts Market in this same location. As the names suggest, they are open only on weekends until 18:00.
- Potala, Lane 51, Da'an Road. (behind the old Sogo Store on Zhongxiao East Road), ☏ . A wide selection of Buddha statues, prayer flags, Buddhist chanting CDs. Staff speak English.
- Xunyilu Art Boutique, No.12, Lane 2, Yongkang Street, ☏ . 11:00-21:30. An interesting and eclectic mix of traditional handicrafts with contemporary souvenirs. Helpful staff.
- 1 Tong Hua Night Market (Linjiang Night Market), Alley 1, Lane 40, Linjiang Street, Da’an District (Primarily located along Linjiang Street (臨江街), east of the main gate at the intersection with Tonghua Street (通化街)). Su 18:00-00:00, M-Sa 18:00-02:00. This night market caters for the more adventurous eaters. The market featuers not only local foods but dozens of exotic delicacies, including inexpensive Malaysian, Japanese and Taiwanese snacks. Free.
- AiYu's Dream Journey Grass Jelly (愛玉之夢遊仙草), Tonghua Street No. 56 (臺北大安區通化街56號) (Close to the Tonghua nightmarket), ☏ . Great Ai Yu Jelly, Grass Jelly, and Tofu Flower desserts. Recommendations: 愛玉綜合冰 (ai yu zong he bing);仙草綜合冰(xian cao zong he bing);豆花綜合冰 (dou hua zong he bing -- warning: this contains peanuts, but you can ask for it without them -- "不要花生" (bu yao hua sheng)). Ai Yu is only found in Taiwan.
- Kiki Restaurant (Kiki 老媽餐廳), 28, Fuxing South Road Sec. 1 (opposite Breeze Center), ☏ . This restaurant serves authentic Szechwanese peppery hot pot.
- Mani Mani, 19, Lane 233, Dunhua South Road, Sec 1, ☏ . 11:30AM-9PM. Innovative vegan meals. Chic and warm environment.
- 2 Minder Vegetarian Restaurant (明德素食), Basement of Xinyi and Dunha Eslite Malls. 11:00-21:30. A buffet style restaurant offering a wide rage of Chinese vegetarian dishes.
- Thanh Ky, 1, Lane 6, Yongkang Street, ☏ . Always busy and popular with Vietnamese expats and locals. Rice noodle soup with spicy beef and curried beef or pork is a specialty.
- The Pengs' Traditional Hong Kong Cuisine (彭家園), Guangfu South Road, Lane 240, No. 49 (Close to Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall MRT Station, Exit #2), ☏ . Opened in the 1980s, the food and the decor of the restaurant have not changed since. Known for being more authentically 1980s Hong Kong than most restaurants in Hong Kong today.
- Yin-Yih Restaurant (銀翼餐廳), 2F 18 Jinshan South Rd Sec. 2, ☏ . Dedicated to old style Yangzhou cuisine.
- 3 Yongkang Beef Noodle (永康牛肉麵), 17, Lane 31, Jinshan South Road Sec. 2, ☏ . One of the top-twenty beef noodle shops in Taipei. Yongkang Beef Noodle occupies the former location of Lao-Zhang Beef Noodle, which is now located next to it.
- Alleycat's Pizza, 6-1 Lishui St B1 (near the intersection of Xinyi Road and Jinshan South Road), ☏ . Generally considered by expats to be the only edible and best traditional Italian pizza in Taipei.
- 4 Din Tai Fung (鼎泰豐), 194 Xinyi Rd Sec. 2 (Entrance of Yongkang Street), ☏ . Famous for its steamed pork dumplings. Worth a detour. Several locations in Taipei and worldwide. Gets very crowded even on weekdays so book in advance, or go to other branches such as the one under Taipei 101
- 5 Niu Ba Ba (688 Beef Bowl) (牛爸爸牛肉麵), No. 149, Section 6, Minquan East Road, Neihu District, Taipei City, Taiwan 114, ☏ . 11:00-21:00. The most expensive beef noodle soup to be had in Taiwan. On average this dish costs N$120. Owner Tony Wong has bowls ranging from a few hundred all the way to $10,000. The simple decor belies the intricate process Wong uses to deliver beef noodles for Taipei's foodies.
- 6 Shinyeh's Table (欣葉蔥花), 2F 201 Zhongxiao East Road Sec.4 (Near the MRT Zhongxiao Fuxing Station, located right inside the Tongling Department Store.), ☏ . Taiwanese food. Menu has English.
- Flavors restaurant, Ren Ai Rd. Sec.4 No.13 Alley 26 Lane 300, ☏ . Located on a back street of busy Renai Rd with a lush garden in front and warm and cozy atmosphere inside. Flavors serves great grilled steaks including rare meat like venison, amazing selection of appetizers in a casual fine dining way.
- 7 Jimmy's Kitchen, 77 Ren Ai Rd, Sec. 4 B1, ☏ . Kobe steak, rib eye, filet mignon, and many other cuts.
- Pearl Liang (漂亮中式海鮮餐廳), 2 Songshou Rd 2F (Grand Hyatt Taipei), ☏ . Offers unique, fresh, live seafood and dim sum.
- Peking Do It True (北平都一處), 506 Renai Rd Sec. 4, ☏ . This is the place to go if you crave good Beijing cuisine. Visitors may be surprised to see a large photo of former U.S. President George H.W. Bush on the wall, taken when he ate at the restaurant during his trip to Taiwan in 1994.
- Shang Palace (香宮), 6F, 201 Dunhua South Rd Sec. 2 (Far Eastern Plaza Hotel), ☏ . Specialize in Cantonese and regional Chinese cuisines. Dim sum is available for lunch only.
- San Niu, Da An Rd, Sec. 1, Alley 169 #3, ☏ . Fresh sashimi and tempura shrimp. Less expensive than most Japanese restaurants of this quality. Clean, comfortable environment.
- Whalen's, No. 145, Section 2, Ānhé Rd, Daan District (right across AnHe road from Carnegie's Bar), ☏ . 10:00-22:00 (Final order). Whalen's offer delicious Canadian cuisine such as Poutine and Quiche Lorraine, as well as breakfast omelets and waffles. They also offer a variety of beers. Reservation is recommended since the restaurant is considerably small.
There are a numerous cafe in the lanes around Yongkang Street.
- 1 [formerly dead link] Cafe Moda Taipei, 1F, No 11, Lane 49, Sec 1, Anhe Road, Daan District (Zhongxiao Dunhua MRT Station exit 3, turn right on the first lane, after 4 blocks you will find it on your left side)), ☏ . 11:00-23:00. For people who prefer the new concept of a boutique cafe, the specialty of this place by far are the 100% Organic Guatemalan quality coffee beverages they offer in a cozy ambient mixed with art fashion and great music. A small but fancy terrace is perfect for enjoying beverages on a fresh day. They also have imported beer, wine, tea, juices and other snacks in their menu, including cheese and Italian fruit cake. They have a multicultural staff fluent in Chinese, English, and Spanish (German and Japanese depending on the day you go), so feel relaxed if Chinese is not your mother tongue as this place is geared for expats and locals that prefer a stronger kind of gourmet organic coffee. Coffee beverages between NT$120 and NT$200.
- Green Steps Cafe (永康階), No27, Lane 243, Jinhua Street (From Yongkang Street, walk through the left side of Yongkang Park and enter the lane in front. The cafe is a one minute walk the left.), ☏ . A pleasant and airy cafe in the Yongkang Street area. Good coffee and desserts. Outdoor seating.
- 2 Minimal Cafe, 106台北市Taipei泰順街2巷 Tai4Shun4 Jie1 Lane 2, #42, Daan District, ☏ . This cafe is famous for having many resident cats living inside of it (49, according to the wait staff). In fact, the owner of this cafe loves cats so much, stray ones are adopted, spayed/neutered, then allowed to live in the cafe. Thus, as you drink your beverage, don't be surprised if cats are checking you out. This cafe is indeed clean despite all the cats, and has tasty mid-range priced desserts and coffee, as well as salads/meals. The cats are friendly, if not always looking for a warm lap to sleep on. The younger cats might jump from lap to lap, just to find a playmate, even if the wiser, older cats do not care for such shenanigans.
- Carnegies, 100 Anhe Rd Sec 2, ☏ . With an outdoor patio, it's perfect for those who prefer a quieter and less smoky atmosphere. The scene is geared toward the 30+ expats and locals.
- [dead link] Club Myst, No. 12, 9F, ATT4FUN Building, Song Shou Rd, Xinyi Dist (near Taipei 101 station), ☏ . Su-Tu 22:00-02:30; W-Sa 21:00-04:30. One of the hottest night club in Taipei. Often cited as having the best view of the Taipei 101 building. Large and active dance floor. Open all nights, Wednesday night is ladies night with free entry. NT$700.
- Elektro, 6F, ATT4FUN Building, Song Shou Rd, Xinyi Dist (near Taipei 101 station). W-Sa 22:30-04:00. Another large and popular nightclub, previously was called Spark but was closed down due to some police controversy.
- Fourplay Cuisine, 67 Dongfeng St (台北市大安區東豐街67號), ☏ . M-Th 18:00-01:00; F Sa 18:00-02:00. A quiet bar/restaurant with creative drinks. Your shot may include a helium balloon, a water pipe, fire or dry ice.
- Luxy, 5F, 201 Zhongxiao E. Rd Section 4, Daan District (near the Zhongxiao Dunhua MRT station). One of the most well-known clubs in Taipei. Luxy has two levels: the lower level has a side room playing house/techno and a main room playing hip-hop; the upper level is a lounge with a small dance floor overlooking the main room. Cover charge goes up after 23:00. Get there early to avoid a line.
- Ziga Zaga, No.2, Song Shou Road Grand Hyatt Taipei. This club specializes in cocktails and Italian cuisine - both the service and food are excellent. It's popular with locals and expats. Ladies Night is on Wednesday nights.
- Hui Liu (回留), No 9, Lane 31, Yongkang Street (Next to the small and verdant Yongkang Park), ☏ . Hui Liu is a modern style tea house. In addition to serving Chinese tea, Hui Liu is also famous for its organic vegetarian meals and hand made pottery.
- Teng (藤居), 29, Lane 61, Linyi Street (Between Renai Road, sec 2 and Xinyi Road, sec 2), ☏ . A rustic tea house and art studio in the heart of Taipei.
- Wisteria House (紫藤廬), 16 Xinsheng South Road, Sec 3, ☏ . Wisteria is set in a traditional house, complete with tatami mats, and is a great place to spend an afternoon relaxing with friends and soaking up the atmosphere of Taiwan.
- 3 Happy Fruit Juice Bar (水果樂園), 53 Yongkang Street (Next to the California Grill burger place on Yongkang Street near JinHua intersection), ☏ . Happy Fruit Juice Bar is a fresh fruit juice bar decorated with a Greek cafe interior. The store is family owned and run by a mom and four sisters. They serve tea, fresh fruit juice, milk pearl tea and other drinks. It's a great place to grab something cool and refreshing on a hot day. Also, Happy Fruit Juice bar's right beside the Mofo burger joint, so it's a perfect place to get a healthy drink to wash down that burger afterwards, or to simply sit down at after a trek through Yongkang St!
- 1 Fu-Hau Hotel (富濠飯店), No.9, Sec. 2, Fuxing South Rd (close to Da-an MRT Station), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com.
- KDM Hotel, No.8, Sec. 3, Jhongsiao E. Rd., Da-an District, ☏ . Decent, standard budget hotel without trimmings, but in a desired location, near all the commercial businesses and entertainment avenues.
- 2 Les Suites Daan Taipei (台北商旅大安館), 135 Daan Road Sec. 1 (short walk south from the Zhongxiao Fuxing MRT station), ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Calming ambiance is felt throughout this hotel, with soft lighting and muted colour palette adding to the mood. Staff are helpful and professional, and a complimemtary afternoon tea is served downstairs in the internet terminals, making it a perfect stay for the business traveller.
- Royal Best Suites (Royal Best Hotel), 385 Xinyi Rd, Sec. 4 (5 minutes walk west of Taipei 101 MRT station), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Spacious and comfortable rooms decorated in a Victorian style decor.
- 3 Taipei Fullerton Fu-Xing South (台北馥敦), 41 Fuxing South Road, sec. 2 (short walk from the Daan MRT station), ☏ . Tastefully decorated and geared toward business travelers. Very polite and attentive staff. Free wifi in the lobby only, not in the rooms (but rooms do have ethernet ports and cables for laptops, and there is a good business center in the lobby). Surrounded by restaurants and convenience stores.
- 4 Le Méridien Taipei (台北寒舍艾美酒店), 38 Songren Rd, ☏ . One of Taipei's newest international hotels.
- 5 Grand Hyatt Taipei (台北君悅大飯店), 2 Songshou Rd, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Next to Taipei 101 and Taipei World Trade Center, at the very heart of the New Taipei, a burgeoning business, shopping and entertainment district. Stunning, top end hotel with sleek and modern furnishings. Room service is prompt and delicious. From NT$9000.
- 6 Howard Plaza Hotel (台北福華大飯店), 160 Renai Rd, Sec. 3, ☏ . Centrally located and convenient for MRT. Rooms are spacious with walk in closets and fresh fruit and water is provided for daily. Internet access is fast and free.
- 7 Shangri-La Far Eastern Plaza Hotel (香格里拉台北遠東國際大飯店), 201 Dunhua South Rd, Sec. 2., ☏ . Asian-inspired interior design that impresses with the attention to detail. 5-star hotel.
- 8 W Taipei (台北W飯店), 10 Zhongxioa East Road, Sec. 5, ☏ . Opened in 2011.