It's no secret Taiwanese people love foreigners in general. Taiwan is one of the most foreigner friendly countries on earth, especially when it comes to western foreigners, and it has constantly been named one of the best places in the world for expats. Here we will list the main reasons why Taiwanese people love foreigners.
Before we get started, please note that this list is not scientific in nature and is written from the perspective of a long term American expat in Taiwan. If you have any different viewpoints or comments, please leave them in the comment section below.
Basic Taiwan Travel Tips:
Hotels in Taiwan:
Looking for a hotel? We recommend booking through Booking.com here, which provides the best quality selection of accommodation in Taiwan.
Find out where to stay in our Taiwan hotels guide or search for the best hotel deals in Taiwan here.
Tours in Taiwan:
There are many tour itineraries that you can enjoy in Taipei that will take you to multiple destinations and arrange transportation. For more information, you can check out Tripadvisor here, KKday here or Klook here, which are both great tour websites that can connect you with the right tour and tour guide for you.
Here are some of the most popular tours of Taiwan on TripAdvisor:
How to get around in Taiwan:
Taiwan's transportation system is convenient and safe. There are many options you can consider to get around in Taipei below:
By Train: Gets you to the city center of all major cities in Taiwan. It is about 800NT to get from Taipei to Kaohsiung. Roughly half the price of the HSR. Book tickets via the normal train (TRA) on Klook here.
By HSR: (High-Speed Rail) – Gets you quickly from north to south. Besides Taipei and Kaohsiung, most of the stations are far from city centers. It costs about 1500NT to get from Taipei to Kaohsiung. You can book tickets to the high-speed rail (HSR) on Klook here or KKDay here.
By MRT: (Mass Rapid Transit, Metro train, subway) – Easily gets you around Taipei and Kaohsiung. You can purchase a discount easy card to use on the MRT from Klook here or KKday here. You can also book an MRT travel pass on Klook here.
By Bus: Buses can be tricky. Long-range buses such as Ubus and King Bus are easier to understand and cheaper than the local train. They can take you to the city center of every city throughout Taiwan and to remote tourist destinations such as sun moon lake. A long-range bus from Taipei to Kaohsiung is about 500 NT. You can also book tickets to travel to Shifen via inter-city bus on Klook here. You can also book a Taipei Sightseeing: Hop On, Hop Off Open Top Bus on TripAdvisor here.
By Taxi: You can take short rides for about 150 NT, or hire a Taxi for a day for around 150 USD.
By Car: If you are looking for car rentals, you can also search Qeeq here, Klook here, or KKday here. You can also check out our car rental guide here.
By Scooter: Looking for scooter rental in Taipei? You can search on Klook here or KKday here to search for options. You can also check out our scooter rental guide here.
By Bicycle: Cycling is the best way to enjoy Taiwan's landscapes if you have the time and energy. Looking for bicycle rentals in Taiwan? You can use Taiwan's many Youbike sharing stations, or search for rentals on KKday here, and search for tours on Klook here. You can also check out our Taiwan cycling guide here. You can also book a Sunset Riverside Bike Ride and Historical Tour, 4 Hour Cycling in Taipei, Ultimate 8-Hour Cycling City Tour, or Taipei City Bike Tour with Night Market Experience on TripAdvisor here.
For more information, check out our Taiwan transportation guide here.
Let's get this list started.
1. Learning English 學英文
Taiwanese people don't have a good English learning environment yet and many of them can't speak English well, even though they want to learn in order to improve their career development. In addition, the most common job for western foreigners in Taiwan is English Teacher, and learning English is a big business in Taiwan. Taiwanese people love to practice their English with and learn from foreigners.
2. Physical Appearance 外觀
Taiwanese people love the appearance of foreigners, from the clothes they wear to their physical traits such as big eyes, big noses, light skin, dark skin, body hair, or any physical characteristic that are different from their own. You get bonus points if you look even remotely similar to any Hollywood movie star.
3. Foreign Food 外國食品
Taiwanese people love food, and they are willing to travel to your country just to try your delicacies. There are also many foreign restaurants in Taiwan that do quite well. But this author wishes there were more Mexican food options here.
4. Travelling to foreign countries 出國玩
For some reason, Taiwanese people love to travel to foreign countries. Before the pandemic, international travel in Taiwan was booming. The main holiday vacation for people in Taipei was not a trip down south to the countryside, but a trip to a foreign country.
5. Money and opportunity 賺錢,工作機會
Another reason Taiwanese people like foreigners is if they think you can help them get rich, or find opportunities overseas. Many Taiwanese people have a dream to go overseas "崇洋媚外" because they think there are better education programs and jobs overseas, which may be true. However I wish more Taiwanese people would realize that Taiwan actually has a great standard of living now compared to other countries and it is only getting better.
6. Foreigners are open and honest 外國人很開放
In general foreigners are open and honest about their feelings and thoughts. This can be good or bad, but when interacting with Taiwanese friends, it can be seen as a unique trait because the education system in Taiwan teaches students to be more passive and subordinate. Many of my Taiwanese friends have told me that they appreciate my open and honest way of communicating.
8. Foreigners are frank and passionate 外國人很老實,熱誠
Going along with point number 7, foreigners can be frank. Compared to the average Taiwanese person, they like to complain and say what they are thinking on the spot. At the same time, passionate foreigners are also well beloved by Taiwanese. Even if you say something really offensive, Taiwanese people seem to be more forgiving to foreigners, and they especially value feedback from foreigners.
9. Foreigners are creative and expressive 外國人很有創意
Unfortunately, the Taiwanese education system is not good at teaching students to be creative and expressive. Asking questions in the classroom is usually not allowed. Children are not encouraged to think outside the box. These are traits that some people in Taiwan lack, and foreigners in Taiwan are helping to fill the gap, like my friend here in the photo above who is trying to teach more people how to surf and enjoy the waves in Taiwan.
10. Foreigners love eating stinky tofu 外國人愛吃臭豆腐
There is nothing that will garner the love and affection of Taiwanese people faster than scarfing down some Stinky Tofu and shouting that you love Taiwan. Stinky Tofu is the most beloved delicacy of the Taiwanese, and any well meaning Taiwanese person will take their foreign friends to try it. If you pass the test by eating the poop flavored fermented tofu and shouting "Taiwan #1!" then you have made friends with most of the people in Taiwan. Bonus points if you make a YouTube video of your family trying it.
Attractions in Taiwan:
There are many attractions that you can enjoy in Taipei such as Taipei 101 Observatory, Taipei 101 460 Skyline Observatory, Taipei Children's Amusement Park, Maokong Gondola, National Palace Museum, Yehliu Ocean World, Yehliu Geopark, National Museum of Marine Science and Biology, i-ride 5D cinema, Astronomical Museum, Miniatures Museum of Taiwan, Double Decker Sightseeing Bus, Miramar Ferris Wheel Ticket, Taipei Zoo, Heping Island Park, Ju Ming Museum, Yuanshan Hotel Secret Road, National Taiwan Museum, New Taipei Gold Museum, Futian Leisure Farm, Chiang Kai-shek Shilin Residence, Chi Po-lin Museaum, Beitou Museum, Tsao Wonderland, Railway Museum, Fort San Domingo, 13 Levels Archaeology Museum, Austin Land, Museum of World Religions, Formosan Aboriginies Museum, ASE Parent-child Park, teamLab Future Park, Yukids Island, VR Experience, Bat Cave, Neidong Waterfall, Candlestick Islet, Jurassic Snow Park, Zhonghe High5 Amusement Park, Longshan Temple, Xingtian Temple, Ningxia Night Market, Yansan Night Market, Meteor Garden, Yingge Old Street, and many more attractions on Tripadvisor here, Klook here, or KKday here.
Activities in Taiwan:
Don't forget that there are many activities available in Taipei such as Indoor Skiing, Rock Climbing, Hiking, Wakeboarding, Surfing, Speedboat Surfing, SUP / Paddle Boarding, Diving, Snorkeling Kayaking, Canoeing, Water Biking, River Tracing / Canyoneering, ATVing, Horse Riding, Cooking Class, Archery, Ice Skating, Roller Skating, Tree Climbing, Urban Camping, Glamping, Motorcycling, Motorbike Tour, Dragon Boat Racing, Escape Room, Shen'ao Rail Bike, Laser Gun Experience, Batting Cages, Bowling, Paintball, Flight Simulation Experience, Taipei Tram Driving Experience, Rail Simulation Experience, Taipei 101 Observation Deck activity, Strawberry Picking, Professional Photo Shoot, Body Relaxation SPA, Night Tour, Calligraphy Workshop, and more on Tripadvisor here, Klook here, or KKday here.
Please like and share! If we forgot something, please tell us in the comments below!
You can also check out our full travel guide to Taiwan here.
We are US Expats that have extensive experience living, working, and travelling in Taiwan. In our day, we had to learn many things about Taiwan the hard way. But we have come to learn that Taiwan is one of the best places in the world for Foreigners to live. Our blog does not represent the opinions of every foreigner in Taiwan. We are just trying to help others learn more about this beautiful country.