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Taoyuan is an industrial city in northern Taiwan.
Taoyuan is primarily an industrial city and has few distinctive features. However, if you get stranded at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport overnight and don't want to pay over the odds at the airport hotel or travel the extra kilometers into Taipei, you might consider spending the night here.
Taoyuan is about a 25 minute taxi ride from the international airport and around 30 to 40 minutes from Taipei.
There's also a 60NT bus that leaves from the bus terminal of Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TPE). It is clearly marked with English and traditional Chinese characters.
The is a shuttle bus from the airport to Tao-Yuan HSR station at 30 NT.
The down town area is small enough to cover on foot.
The city has its own bus system which is decent and covers the major parts of town, but no where near as convenient as Taipei's MRT/bus system.
The train station is in the downtown, and fares are more than affordable.
What to do
shopping - the city has some good department stores.
Tigerhead mountain (Hu Tou Shan) is a popular spot for first dates and also has well-maintained hiking trails. Watch out for snakes if you're hiking. There are a few snack shops at the top of the mountain.
Popcorn chicken is a local speciality sold from street corner stalls.
Bistrot Latini, No. 128 Shin-pu 6th Street, recently renovated, Latini offers simple but well-cooked Italian food. The owner and head chef, Dan Wu, speaks English and is very helpful and friendly. Try the pumpkin soup and panini. Also offers a good selection of fancy coffees. including espresso with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Cong dra bing (pronounced tsong draw bing) is a scallion pancake that the vendor cooks on a griddle and fluffs up before searing on scrambled egg and a variety of toppings like bacon and fresh basil. The traditional sauce they put on top is soy-based, but you can ask for spicy. Absolutely delicious. Usually a daytime snack, sold on the side of the street by SK II downtown or by Nova computer store.
Carrefour, Jing guo road (near Da Xing on Jing Guo). In addition to the obvious groceries, this French-owned grocery store has a food court on the top floor with good options. Sushi express, 8 things (Japanese with 7 small side dishes), a Thai restaurant, Meet Fresh, McDonalds and several noodle soup and fried chicken places.
The 3 Baboons Sports Bar & Grill, Taimall Shopping Center, 112 Nankan Rd, Sec 1. Luchu Hsieng, Taoyuan County. A sports bar and grill featuring western specialties, draught beer, wines and spirits, and a large screen TV for live sports and other events. Foosball, darts, and billiards table. Saturday Night Live Music, Happy Hours, Weekday Lunch Menu. Located on the 1st floor of Taimall Shopping Centre.
Yuankuang. Founded in 1917, it is the earliest Buddhist academy in Taiwan. Yuankuang is located in the country-side near Taoyuan.
Yingge. Located between Taipei and Taoyuan is the interesting pottery town of Yingge. 'Old Street' is lined with stores selling the works of local potters and is a pleasant place to pass a few hours.