Image from http://blog.roodo.com/ellacf/archives/949493.html
“Taipei must be one of Asia's most overlooked cities. It may not be the most beautiful, but its parks and squares offer welcome respite from the summer heat, and its temples provide colorful reminders of its heritage. Its people are among the most hospitable in Asia, the food is excellent and the nightlife is vibrant. http://www.iht.com/articles/2004/06/09/trlang_ed3_.php
“Taipei's charms as a tourist attraction tend to be lesser known than other Asian cities, due most likely to the city's less-than-ideal environment for travelers unable to speak Mandarin Chinese (especially when compared to former colonial outposts-cum-business/tourist cities like Hong Kong and Singapore). Despite the language shortcoming—or perhaps, because of it—most visitors leave with the impression that the Taiwanese try harder to make their guests' experiences as pleasant and trouble free as possible. http://www.gayot.com/travel/business/businesstravelguide/taipei.html
Taipei is interesting n bizarre at the same time (eating from toilet bowl, your waitress dresses as a nurse etc) , read excerpts below to get a glimpse of Taipei and Taiwan.....
“One thing that stuck me the most was the punctuality. I interacted with a cross section of people and they all were 'on-time' and expected us to be as well. Numerous taxis I engaged, my office colleagues all kept time. The conferences and press briefings I participated all started on time. In fact, one of my colleagues called to apologize in advance that she will be delayed by 10 minutes. I was simply bowled over.. http://ram.viswanathan.in/2005/11/travel-notes-taipei.html
Images from http://amphibios.seesaa.net/category/3077683-2.html and http://islaminchina.wordpress.com/2008/01/07/islam-in-china-pictures-taipei-grand-mosque/
“...Still, interesting traces of Islamic practices are preserved by the present-day descendants of the Muslim followers of Koxinga. The Kuo family in Lukang, for example, does not include pork among its offering at the family shrine even though the family is not Muslim. Two families in Keelung place copies of the Holy Koran before the tablets of their ancestors. The present owners are not Muslims and do not read Arabic, but they honor a book held sacred by their forebears. Two or three families in Tainan observe funeral customs of Islamic origin including the ceremonial washing of the body and wrapping it carefully in white cloth—though in all other respects they are culturally Taiwanese. http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/197004/islam.in.taiwan.htm
“....Public hot spring etiquette requires that bathers thoroughly wash and rinse off their bodies before entering the bath, do not wear clothing (including swim wear) in the bath and tie up their hair so that it does not touch the water. Finally, people with high blood pressure, heart disease or open wounds should not enter the baths. http://wikitravel.org/en/Taipei
What to Eat??
Image from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beef_noodle_soup
"What is there to eat in Taipei?"
Quick answer: "What isn't there to eat in Taipei?"
In Taipei, eating is not so much a bodily necessity as it is a passion, or even a way of life. There is no cuisine known to man that isn't available in some form or another somewhere in or around Taipei city. http://www.thingsasian.com/stories-photos/1781
“D.S. Music Restaurant in Taipei, Taiwan is a medical-themed restaurant with crutches on the wall, waitresses dressed a nurses, and drinks served from an IV drip bottle!
Have you ever heard of people eating out of a bathroom toilet and having great fun? A restaurant named Marton Theme Restaurant, in Kaohsiung (Taiwan) has a toilet theme...” http://www.oddee.com/item_96463.aspx (If you find weird restaurants interesting visit this site http://weburbanist.com/2008/08/10/15-of-the-strangest-themed-restaurants-from-buns-and-guns-to-cannabalistic-sushi/ )
“Nasi Lemak at Taipei 101 - ...But i have to admit that, this nasi lemak is TOTALLY different from those in Malaysia or Singapore. This dish is supposed to be Muslim food, but I found pork in my plate” http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Asia/Taiwan/Taipei_Shih/Taipei-1074413/Restaurants-Taipei-BR-4.html
Hotel with on site vegetarian restaurant
Hotel near vegetarian restaurants
7.Persian Heaven Halal write up http://www.taiwanfun.com/north/taipei/dining/0509/0509persian.htm
10.Shao Shao Ke (call to check for halal status) http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/feat/archives/2001/12/28/117654
11.Indian restaurant review (Call to check on halal status) http://wannderer.wordpress.com/2006/09/20/indian-restaurants-in-taipei/
12.Pakistani snack http://www.forumosa.com/taiwan/viewtopic.php?f=39&t=66779&p=804590
13.Chinese Islamic beef noodle cuisine http://world.wikia.com/wiki/Taipei/Restaurants#Chinese_Islamic_beef_noodle_cuisine_.28Halal.2F.E6.B8.85.E7.9C.9F.29
Image from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stinky_tofu
“When local media reported last week that 70 percent of Taipei's vegetarian restaurants were using animal by-products in their food, it was reminiscent of the UK scandal a decade ago when a consumer discovered pork in their Linda McCartney brand veggie sausages. While a lot of vegetarian food prides itself on having the same consistency, smell and taste as meat, many vegetarians are uneasy about eating substitutes that taste like the real thing -- and past and present transgressions suggest why. http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/feat/archives/2004/06/18/2003175611
“Although vegetarian restaurants in Taiwan do not aspire to vegan principles (http://vegetarian.about.com/od/glossary/g/Vegan.htm ), due to the fact that Taiwanese do not have a tradition of eating dairy products, almost all dishes at Chinese style veggie restaurants will actually be vegan.” http://www.taiwantravelguides.com/what-to-eat-in-taiwan-food.php
“The Lonely Planet Guidebook to Taiwan unfortunately greatly exaggerates the availability of vegetarian food in Taipei. They tell you to look for the Buddhist symbol, which is a reverse swastika, and vegetarian restaurants will magically and plentifully appear. This is not so.” http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/396191/vegetarian_restaurants_in_taipei_taiwan.html
1.Useful dual language list http://veg.thejamies.com/taiwan/
9.Hui Liu review http://www.taiwanfun.com/north/taipei/dining/0509/0509hui.htm
10.Spring Natural Vegetarian Restaurant write up http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/feat/archives/2005/08/26/2003269261
11.Kuan Shih Yin http://www.kyotojournal.org/10,000things/103.html
Image from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taroko_Gorge
9. interesting food blog from Taipei (not necessarily halal) http://hungryintaipei.blogspot.com/