When looking up travel information of Taiwan, one of the first results in your search will be the famous Night Markets. Night markets could be described as a maze of shops and stalls that sell a variety of goods: from clothing and shoes to snacks such as the infamous “Stinky” tofu (which I gave my try and did not really make it to my list of favorites) and delicious pineapple cakes. Night Markets are not only found in Taipei, but all around Taiwan and can vary in sizes, from a street block to many streets.

One of the staples of a night market is xiaochi which literally translates to “small eats”. It is said that they come from simplified versions of banquet dishes and became popular within the local elite, politicians and intellectuals. Some of the dishes include baozi, douhua, and dumplings (Boiled, fried, steamed, and filled with meat, seafood, cabbage, rice, rice and meat, sesame paste, sweet bean paste) … We can say that the possibilities are endless! So many food stalls, so little time to try them all. And don’t be surprised by big crowds and long lines, these markets are so popular that you will usually find them full!

Shilin is one of the most famous, biggest and oldest night markets in Taipei. With a carnival-esque feeling you can wander around and try delicious seafood dishes such as braised squid and oyster omelettes. It’s also easy to find good deals on clothing, shoes, hats, and pretty much every accessory you can think of.

My personal favorite is Gongguan Night Market, located outside National Taiwan University in Taipei. I can’t leave without buying some milk with tapioca pearls, baozi, fried chicken and dumplings. Taipei's night markets are a true experience of Taiwanese life.