Taipei wasn't really on my travel must-visit list, but cheap airfare and good word-of-mouth reviews from friends made me decide to finally visit this city.
Here's a detailed look at how much I spent during my five full days trip. (Everything's in Taiwanese Dollar)
*The exchange rate is TWD 1 = PHP 1.6 (rates vary)
125 - Bus to Taipei Main Station from the airport
1295 - Transportation expenses
800 - 2 nights at a dorm bed at Easy Mind Guesthouse
1046 - Food and drinks
100 - Card for buses and trains
80 - Entrance fee for Yehliu Geopark
76 - Train rides to Ruifang
80 - 1 day pass for the Pingxi Line
325 - Postcards and stamps
479 - Souvenirs
80 - MRT ride to the airport
TWD 4486 - Total (excluding airfare)
*Approximately PHP 7200
Taipei is an inexpensive city to explore relative to Tokyo, Singapore and even Seoul. It has the same level of development and transport system, but not as expensive. It is easy to get to destinations because they are within walking distance from train and bus stations. Food is also affordable and good value for money.
Since I was traveling alone, I took public transportation to all of the places I visited, since they were all accessible by train or bus. I went during spring, late February to early March, hence the cold weather clothes and jackets.
I didn't get to do much on the first day since I arrived at Taipei Main Station at around 4am. I decided to sleep for a few more hours and left the hotel just before lunch time. I then went to Yehliu Geopark, the bus that goes to the park is near Taipei Main Station. The trip takes around an hour. There are a lot of different mushroom-like rock formations in the park.
It was raining most of the day during my second day in Taipei, but it didn't deter me from exploring the city. I went to Shifen Railroad Town and the waterfall.
On the third day I explored the city and went to places such as the Sun-yat Sen and Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Halls, different night markets (Shilin, Xichang and Guangzhou Street) and Longshan Temple.
When the sly cleared and it looked like it wouldn't rain, I finally decided to visit Yangmingshan National Park. It was on the itinerary but I kept pushing it to another day because of the inclement weather, but, thankfully on the 4th day, it didn't rain. The park has different trails and areas that are distinct from each other. There are buses that go to various places in the park for TWD 15 per way. Bring your transport card because the buses don't give change.
On the 5th day I just went to Jiufen and explored Ximendi, I didn't do much this day because I just wanted to relax and buy souvenirs.
I would definitely return to Taipei and other parts of Taiwan in the future, because there are plenty of other things to do and see.