New Taipei Travel Guide

person in taipei city, taiwan
Theodore
Travel Writer

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This is a guide to traveling in New Taipei City, Taiwan. Keep reading to learn more.

I’ve lived in New Taipei for over 5 years now. I wish when initially traveling here that I had more resources. Due to the lack of information, I decided to write this piece.

September through November are the best times to visit most areas in New Taipei. The weather isn’t too hot, students are in school, rain is mild, and you won’t encounter typhoons.

Consider these souvenirs specific to New Taipei City:

  • A-Po iron eggs from street vendors in Tamsui Old Street
  • Miniature sky landerns in Shifen
  • Pottery from Jiufen Old Street
  • Loose-leaf oolong tea from Pinglin Old Street

Summary

  • New Taipei City is adjacent to Taipei, but more affordable to stay in.
  • The best way to get around is by using the Taipei MRT.
  • Popular attractions include Houtong Cat Village & Tamsui.
  • New Taipei City has many beaches.

New Taipei City Traveler Information

CurrencyNew Taiwan Dollar
Power Socket110V or 220V
Time ZoneGMT+8
Tipping Required?No
City-wide Wi-Fi SSIDiTaiwan

iTaiwan doesn’t work all the time in New Taipei. I mostly find it available in Taipei. To connect to it, open your Wi-Fi settings and select the iTaiwan network name. Your phone will automatically open your default browser and ask whether you agree to the Terms of Service.

Agree to them, and you’ll have Wi-Fi. Practice caution when using any public Wi-Fi network. Don’t log into sensitive sites. Want alternatives to accessing internet? Here are some that I recommend.

Tipping isn’t required or encouraged in all of Taiwan. Many more upscale restaurants will charge a service fee on your bill. But mom-and-pop shops won’t.

Keep an eye out for stores clearly labeled “Taiwan Tax Refund.” They’ll offer a tourist tax refund if you spend NT$2,000 in said store. You’ll mostly find these at cosmetics stores and shopping centers.

Just ask the staff whether you can get a tourist tax refund.


Useful Phone Numbers in New Taipei City

Here’s a list of important phone numbers in New Taipei:

Ambulance / Fire119
Police110
Emergency Rescue112
Travel Information Hotline(02) 2717-3737

New Taipei City Districts: Best Place to Stay

Here are all the districts in New Taipei City and whether I recommend staying there:

  • Banqiao / 板橋區: A hub that connects New Taipei to the rest of Taiwan
    • Most recommended district
  • Bali / 八里區: Tourist hotspot, but far away from Taipei City & the rest of New Taipei
  • Pingxi / 平溪區: Known for their sky lantern festivals, but far from Taiwan’s cities
  • Tamsui / 淡水區: Historical tourist hotspot that’s better for day trips than for staying in
  • Xindian / 新店區: I recommend visiting Bitan lake; though, it’s out of the way.
  • Yonghe / 永和區: Visit here if you have extra time; otherwise, opt for the above districts

Here are residential areas I recommend avoiding, unless you don’t mind being far away from the main cities:

  • Luzhou / 蘆洲區
  • Sanchong / 三重區
  • Zhonghe / 中和區
  • Yingge / 鶯歌區

Based on my experience, staying in the residential areas will save you money accommodation-wise. But they often require buses to reach. And require much more time to reach tourist destinations.

If you have the extra money, I recommend staying in Banqiao District or in Taipei City. Both offer the most convenient access to northern Taiwan.


How to Get to New Taipei City

Whether you arrive at Songshan or Taoyuan International airports, you can reach New Taipei via the Taipei MRT, bus, taxi, or Uber. The latter airport requires you to take the Taoyuan Metro to New Taipei Industrial Park or Sanchong in New Taipei.

Or you could reach Beimen and Taipei Main Station in Taipei City, then transfer to New Taipei.

Songshan International Airport connects directly to the Songshan Airport Taipei MRT station within the Brown line. Upon using this line, you could transfer to any of these stations, which will take you to New Taipei:

  • Nanjing Fuxing: Transfers to the Green line.
    • This will take you to Xindian, where the Bitan Tourist Area is.
  • Zhongxiao Fuxing: Transfers to the Blue line.
    • Take this line to reach Banqiao & Taipei Main Station.
  • Daan: Transfers to the Red line.
    • Take this line to reach Tamsui & Taipei Main Station.

New Taipei City doesn’t have its own airport. However, it’s less than an hour from Taoyuan and Songshan airports.


Where to Exchange Currency in New Taipei City

Here are all the places to exchange currency in New Taipei City:

  • ATM: Opt for ATMs (e.g., Bank of Taiwan) that don’t charge NT$100 ATM fees
  • Shopping centers: These have bad exchange rates.
    • Shin Kong Mitsukoshi
    • SOGO
  • Banks: You’ll need to wait 10+ minutes to exchange currency.

You could also exchange currency at whatever airport you landed in. I don’t recommend doing this. As you’ll get the worst exchange rates.


How to Get Around New Taipei City

TransportationAvg. Price (One-Way)Best For
City BusNT$15; 1 segmentBudget
Car RentalVariesRoad Trips
Bicycle rentalNT$5–NT$40 per 30 minExercise
WalkingFreeCities
FerriesNT$819–NT1,700Navigating outlying islands
Taiwan Railway AdministrationNT$11–NT$836Budget inter-city travel
Taiwan High-Speed RailNT$35–NT$2,500Quickly navigating different cities
RideshareNT$120–NT$1,200 per tripComfortable city travel
Taipei MetroNT$20–NT$65City travel
TaxiNT$16–NT$25 per kmTravel to specific destinations
Taiwan public transportation mediums compared.

Taipei Metro: Best Way to Get Around

Taipei’s Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) is an underground and above-ground train that’ll quickly take you through New Taipei and Taipei without costing much.

They have 131 total stations spread throughout 6 lines. Then there is the light rail transit (LRT) in Tamsui. Though, the places it transports you to are under construction.

I recommend taking the MRT above any other public transportation method. The MRT carts and stations remain cool on hot days. And the stations are always clean.


Bus: City, Intercity, Inner-city, & Shuttle Buses – Cheapest Way to Get Around

Here are the costs of city bus trips in New Taipei:

  • 1-segment: NT$15
  • 2-segment: NT$30
  • 3-segment: NT$45

Pay by cash or smart cards like EasyCard, icash 2.0, and iPass. I recommend the latter because you’ll need to be quick when getting on and off the bus. When paying using these cards, tap it against a sensor when getting on the bus and once you depart.

Bus drivers in Taiwan are always in a rush, so they’ll abruptly stop and won’t give you much time to depart.

The most popular bus station is in Banqiao. It serves as a hub that’ll allow you to transfer to the Taiwan Railway Association (local train), High-speed Rail, and Taipei MRT. They also have an intercity bus station that’ll allow you to take a bus outside Taipei and New Taipei.

Otherwise, you’ll find bus stops everywhere throughout New Taipei.

They’re easy to spot. But you’ll likely need to wait at least 10 minutes for your bus to arrive. Not ideal if it’s rainy or hot. At that point, I’d recommend taking a taxi or MRT.

However, you must take a bus to reach mountains, places like Wulai and Houtong, and other areas throughout New Taipei’s outskirts.

Shuttle bus pricing will vary and requires you to find individual providers.


Taxi & Uber: Most Expensive

The average start price for a taxi in New Taipei City is NT$80. From there, you’ll pay NT$25 per 1 km [1]. When you see a taxi, wave them down and wait for them to pull over. Then show them the address of where you need to go.

In my experience, no taxi drivers in New Taipei City spoke English. However, that’s no issue. Pay attention to the meter and give them the required cash upon reaching your destination. Unlike other countries I’ve visited, I haven’t encountered taxi drivers who scammed me in Taiwan.

Taiwan doesn’t offer many rideshare apps. Uber and LINE Taxi are the 2 most popular. Both offer similar rates, since in Taiwan they’re considered taxis.

However, I prefer Ubers because the vehicles are often nicer.

And since you’re in Taiwan, tipping isn’t mandatory or encouraged.


YouBike Bicycle Rentals: Best for Sightseeing

PriceDuration
NT$5 ($0.17)First 30 minutes
NT$10 ($0.34)Per 30 minutes (for the next 4 hours)
NT$20 ($0.68)Per 30 minutes (for the next 4–8 hours)
NT$40 ($1.36)Per 30 minutes (after 8 hours)
Rates for renting a YouBike in New Taipei City.

YouBike is a bicycle rental service offered throughout Taiwan. You’ll find 2 different YouBike variations in New Taipei City, 1.0 and 2.0. The latter has improved ergonomics and handling without costing more. And most of the country is transitioning into using these bikes.

There’s also 2.0 E, but New Taipei doesn’t have them.

Find YouBike docks in parks, by MRT stations, and often in random spots. But to use them, you must register online or at a YouBike kiosk with an EasyCard or iPass smart card. From there, you place the smart card on the bike dock, withdraw the bike, then ride it to your destination.

Find YouBike docking stations nearby your destination ahead of time. Otherwise, you’ll waste a long time finding somewhere to dock it.

You must return the bike to a docking station. You can’t leave them anywhere like many similar renting services abroad.


Things to Do in New Taipei City

Here are a bunch of things to do within New Taipei City:

Tamsui Old Street

Daytrip, for families

Yehliu Geopark

Daytrip, for families

Shen’ao Rail Bike

Rail bike trail

Juming Museum

Museum

Jinguashi Gold Museum

Museum

Sanxia Manyueyuan National Forest

National park

Jiufen Old Street

Daytrip, for couples

Wulai

Aboriginal village

Fuhong Beach

Beach

Eighteen Wang Gong Temple

Religious site

Baisha Bay

Beach

The Lin Family Mansion & Garden

Historic site

Laomei Green Reef

Beach

Tamsui Fisherman’s Wharf

Waterfront view

New Taipei City Hakka Museum

Museum

Fort San Domingo

Historic site

Houtong Cat Village

Daytrip, for families

Banqiao Christmasland

Seasonal


Times to hike each path will vary by person. As will difficulty, the stated difficulty is based on what the average person declared each path as.

Mount Keelung Trail

Hard
Length: 1.8 km
Time: <3 hr
Location: Ruifang

Yinghan Ling Trail

Moderate
Length: 1.6 km
Time: 37 m
Location: Wugu

Wuliaojian Mountain

Hard
Length: 4.5 km
Time: 2 hrs 38 m
Location: Ruifang

Taoyuan Valley Trail

Hard
Length: 8 km
Time: 3 hrs 24 min
Location: Gongliao

Yehliu Geopark Loop

Easy
Length: 3.1 km
Time: 58 min
Location: Yehliu Geopark

Teapot Mountain Trail

Moderate
Length: 3.5 km
Time: 1 hr 39 m
Location: Ruifang


Best Food to Eat in New Taipei City

Here are a bunch of restaurants I recommend trying while in New Taipei:

Restaurant NameDescriptionChinese Name
Wanli CrabBest place for crabs萬里蟹
Jinshan duckFamous duck meat restaurant金山庙口金包里鸭肉
Shenkeng Shiding TofuAny tofu shop in Shenkeng Old StreetNA
Any restaurant in WulaiA great way to try indigenous peoples’ dishesNA
Tamsui Ah GeiStir-fried cellophane noodles淡水老街正宗阿給老店
Lai Ah Po Taro BallsGreat place to get taro balls in Jiufen Old Street賴阿婆芋圓
Yonghe Soy Milk KingFantastic breakfast shop, though these shops are everywhere永和豆漿大王

Night Markets in New Taipei City

Taiwanese night markets are excellent places to try local cuisine. Some markets have specific foods you must try while there (e.g., soy milk at Lehua). Most are meant to provide the locals a quick, affordable snack after work.

Here are all your options in New Taipei:

Night MarketFood To TryChinese Name
Linkou Night MarketBraised foods林口街夜市
Luzhou Night MarketNothing noteworthy蘆洲夜市
Datong Night MarketScallion pancakes大同夜市
Nanya Night MarketSesame oil chicken soup南雅夜市
Shalun Night MarketNothing noteworthyNA
Lehua Night MarketSweet soy milk樂華夜市
Ji Ying Miao Night MarketNothing noteworthy集應廟夜市
Sanxia Night MarketNothing noteworthy三峽夜市
Tamsui Yingzhuan Night MarketPermanently closed淡水夜市
Xinzhuang Night MarketGreen onion cakes新莊夜市
Xingnan Night MarketDuck head興南夜市
Sanzhi Night MarketNothing noteworthy三芝夜市
Sanhe Night MarketOyster vermicelli三和夜市
Zhongyang Night MarketNothing noteworthy中央夜市
Every night market in New Taipei City, Taiwan.

New Taipei City Travel Tips

Follow these tips when navigating New Taipei City:

  • Get a smart card: Preferably an EasyCard, it costs NT$100 plus the value you add.
    • It’ll make using public transportation & cashless transactions easier.
  • Stay in Banqiao District: It’s the most convenient area.
  • Withdraw money from Bank of Taiwan ATMs: They don’t charge ATM fees.
    • If you have a bank that reimburses ATM surcharge fees (e.g., Charles Schwab), ignore this tip.

New Taipei City vs. Taipei

New Taipei City used to be a part of Taipei County, but upgraded to a special municipality status in 2010. That’s because its population exceeded 2 million—the legal limit for county status. It now has over 4 million people, making it Taiwan’s most populated county/city [2].

Technically it’s a region, but many call it a city. It surrounds Taipei City and has many tourist hotspots like:

  • Jiufen Old Street
  • Tamsui / Danshui
  • Wulai
  • Yehliu Geopark
  • Most beaches

Unlike Taipei City, it doesn’t have as much English-speaking support. You’ll find plenty of English speakers and signage in tourist areas and public transportation centers (e.g., MRT station). But not much elsewhere.

And apartments are much more affordable compared to its popular neighbor. Meanwhile, depending on your location, you could reach Taipei within 10–25 minutes. For instance, it’s a 12-minute MRT ride from Banqiao Station to Taipei Main Station.


Additional Guides for New Taipei City

Photo sources:

  • necoast-nsa.gov.tw
  • newtaipei.travel/zh-tw/attractions/detail/402887
  • newtaipei.travel/en/attractions/detail/111451
  • newtaipei.travel/en/attractions/detail/111608
  • hakka.ntpc.gov.tw
  • recreation.forest.gov.tw/EN/Forest/RA?typ_id=0200001#trave_explore_1
  • newtaipei.travel/en/attractions/detail/402354
  • newtaipei.travel/en/attractions/detail/402847
  • northguan-nsa.gov.tw/user/article.aspx?Lang=2&sno=04007347
  • newtaipei.travel/en/attractions/detail/111800
  • newtaipei.travel/en/attractions/detail/111429
  • en.tshs.ntpc.gov.tw/xmdoc/cont?xsmsid=0G292396897604829770

Even More Guides

Sing Ren Garden Night Market – A Visitors Guide

Houtong Cat Village – Visitors Guide

Yehliu Geopark – Visitors Guide

vector image of traditional lanterns

Jiufen Old Street – Visitors Guide

A photo of the entrance gate to the Dizang Temple in Xinzhuang Night Market, Taipei, Taiwan. The gate is intricately decorated with red and gold accents, and the entrance is surrounded by lush greenery and trees.

Xinzhuang Night Market – Visitors Guide

Lehua Night Market, Yonghe District, New Taipei City, Taiwan

Lehua Night Market – Visitors Guide

person standing on top of Taipei 101 tower in Taiwan City, Taiwan

About Theo

Theodore began first experienced the wonders of traveling when visiting Vietnam. Afterward, he went crazy and ventured to at least… More about Theo