3 Best Hostels in Taipei, Taiwan – First-Hand Experience (+ 23 Things you need to know beforehand)

3 Best Hostels in Taipei, Taiwan - Design Hostels (+ 20 Things you need to know beforehand)

Word on the street has it you are traveling to Taiwan? Let us help you by bringing you the absolute best hostels in Taipei, Taiwan.

We have stayed here for two weeks, enjoying the sights, culture and the coolest hostels in Taipei Taiwan.

Your shortcut:

  1. Meander Taipei Hostel – best for solo-traveller and Backpacker
  2. Star Hostel Taipei Main Station – best for female solo-traveller
  3. Ximen Wow Hostel – best for small groups and young traveller
  4. Extra: WOW Poshtel – best for families

The quality is high, but they do vary a lot. Especially for Western travellers, looking for a social hostel to meet other backpackers – read this guide!! I also added my favorite night markets and insider tips for traveling around Taipei and Taiwan 🙂

We collected 23 things you should know before you go to Taiwan! We have also an article with fun things to do in Taipei.

This guide is perfect for YOU, when you…

  • are tired of crappy hostels!
  • want a social Hostel to actually meet people
  • are happy to spend $1 to $2 more for a much better experience

As we value your travel like our own, we only give you the best Taipei hostel options. From great locations to amazing facilities, and top-notch services. All these best hostels will make sure you definitely want to go back.

What we cover in this article:

You can find all 5 Star Hostels here with Hostelgeeks and all guides to “Best Hostels In” here.

Quick Introduction to Taipei

The average price for a bed: Hostels in Taipei cost 11€ – 24€ per night for a bed in a dorm. A private room starts from 31€ up to 43€ per night. This is a rough average just to give you an idea.

Prices always depend on season and holidays. Please always check Hostelz.com with all hostels in Taipei. They compare the prices for you on Hostelworld.com or Booking.com.

Check-In and Check Out: The average check-in time is from 15:00 (3 pm), while the Check Out time is before 11:00 (11 am). Hostels usually offer luggage storage in case you arrive earlier or leave later. Make sure you check if luggage storage is free or if there is an extra cost.

Hostel Types: There are many Taipei hostels to choose from. However, most of these “hostels” are actually just places to stay with no social vibes. You cannot meet anyone due to the setup of the hostel. In this guide we share with you the 3 best backpacker hostels in Taipei – to make sure you actually meet people!

🎁 New to Hostels? Read our guide to staying in a Hostel for the First Time here. We especially recommend reading:

The 3 Best Hostels in Taipei

So, let us find the answer to your burning question: What is the best hostel in Taipei?

Let’s jump right into it:

  1. Meander Taipei Hostel – best for solo-traveller and Backpacker
  2. Star Hostel Taipei Main Station – best for female solo-traveller
  3. Ximen Wow Hostel – best for small groups and young traveller
  4. Extra: WOW Poshtel – best for families

We put all three accommodation on the map, you will find the map at the end of the article.

Overview: Best Hostels by Traveler Type

🦸 Solo Traveler: Ximen Wow Hostel
🙎‍♀️ best for Female Solo Traveler: Star Hostel Taipei Main Station
🥳 Party Hostel:Meander Taipei Hostel
👩‍❤️‍👨Couple Hostel: Meander Taipei Hostel
👨‍👩‍👦 Family Hostel: WOW Poshtel
👩‍💻 For Digital Nomads: Ximen Wow Hostel
🧘 Cozy Hostel: Star Hostel Taipei East

1. Meander Taipei Hostel

Meander is one of the most beautiful design hostels in Taipei and Asia, for sure. If you want to take things to the next level, definitely best to go to Meander Taipei Hostel.

Just like us, we surely know you’ll love the bathtub. Nothing quite like a perfect bubble bath after a long tiring tour of the city.

Meander Taipei Hostel is a haven for travelers like us.

Offering a fancy style of stay yet at very affordable deals that are sure to leave our pockets happy.

Not only do they have amazing facilities from the kitchen to courtyard, but they also have very engaging activities and tours where people with the same thinking as ours are able to meet and socialize.

There is nothing more important than to win new friends and acquaintances from different parts of the world. Share a couple of beers, exchange stories and just feel the family vibes.

They have random tours that will take you to places you might not have included in your must-see list. You can also try renting bikes so you can tour around the streets of the city faster.

Good to know: Foreigners cannot rent motorbikes or scooters in Taipei – unless you have a Taiwanese drivers license!

Rooms are amazingly clean, modern and fancy. Even the dorms don’t feel like dorms. They have comfy beds with your own night light and sockets. We guarantee you will love the place.

Important to know: There are two Meander Hostels in Taipei. The one we recommend is Meander Hostel Ximen. The 2nd one is Meander 1948 hostel – a beautiful boutique hostel, yet not very social!

Book Meander Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Get welcomed by a smile at Meander Taipei Hostel Take a good night rest at Meander Taipei Hostel Take advantage of the large common area at Meander Taipei Hostel

Location: Located at the heart of downtown, you are conveniently within great access of the city. You are mostly nearby everything you need in Taipei.

And if you might think of cooking your own meal, there is also a big kitchen available you can use. Convenient stores are all over the hostel so it’s easier for you to buy what you need.

Amenities you can try at Meander Taipei Hostel:

  • Free and fast WiFi
  • Terrace
  • Big and useful kitchen
  • Huge common area
  • Dart and other games to play
  • Huge blackboard with things to do in Taipei and tours to check

And if you’re extra bored and just want to have fun, there are darts, board games and puzzles available in the games room. Might as well ask your friends to play so you guys can have friendly competitions.

Over 6,000 shops, cafes, massage and spa, theaters, tattoo parlors, banks, night market and of course what (most) girls love – shopping. A day wouldn’t be enough to go through all of this.

This is one of the best hostels in Taipei for

  • Solo-Travelers
  • Backpacker
  • Young Travellers
  • Couples

We dot not recommend this hostel for:

  • Older Travellers
  • Adults
Book Meander Taipei Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Cook your own at Meander Taipei Hostel Grab a beer or two and enjoy the rooftop terrace at Meander Taipei Hostel You will surely love the bathtubs at Meander Taipei Hostel

2. Star Hostel Taipei Main Station

Bagging last year’s 1st Best Large Hostel Worldwide Award from Hostelworld and one of our personal favorites, Star Hostel Taipei Main Station really is the star hostel.

Giving travelers the awesome experience of a quality stay with excellent hostel features. Not only does it have a big facility but it also has the STAR factor you are looking for in a hostel.

Star Hostel has proven that travelers can stay at the best yet at a very affordable cost.

They have a very famous Instagramable green lounge where you can feel the nature vibes.

Read: 33 gorgeous Instagrammy Hostels

Designed with glass and wood windows that perfectly combines with the plants and trees in the picture. It is so big but it feels warm seeing other hostel guests enjoy their own moments and hanging around.

The rooms are clean and cozy. Bright and very spacious. Their beds are just amazingly comfy. You probably won’t want the alarm on during your stay.

And for breakfast? Menus are different each day with unlimited juice and coffee, and all you can eat bread section.

But if you prefer to make your own meals, you are free to use the spacious hostel kitchen. Which we also love about the hostel.

You and your new found friends can contribute and create a group meal for cheaper expenses. And the food is much more satisfying when shared.

You can also look forward to their daily activities such as movies, cooking classes, bike tours, and pub crawls you can participate in during your free hours.

There are also Pop-Up Shops at Star Hostel where they support local talents and businesses.

From a hand-brewed coffee to wake up your morning, to home-made desserts to excite your taste buds during snack time, and good locally grown draft beer to end your day.

So look no further, choose to stay at Star Hostel. The hostel will give you two options: either you don’t want to leave or you definitely will come back.

Book Star Hostel Main Station here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

See for yourself the famous green lounge at Star Hostel Taipei Main Station Beds are installed with personal bed lights at Star Hostel Taipei Main Station Boost your day with the free buffet breakfast at Star Hostel Taipei Main Station

Location: The hostel location is just near Main Station Taipei and Airport MRT; seriously just a 3 minutes walk away. I mean, you cannot miss any train when staying here, that is almost impossible.

Also within distance from other popular destinations in Taipei namely Di-Hua Street, Ningxia Night Market, Shin Kong Life Tower and Museum of Contemporary Art Taipei.

It will be easier for you to take public transport and tour around the city since the hostel is just a walking distance to the metro.

A top place to stay in Taipei for:

  • Small Groups
  • Female Solo Travellers
  • Adult Travellers
  • Older Travellers
Book Star Hostel Main Station here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Meet new friends during your meals at Star Hostel Taipei Main Station Relax and lay back at the green lounge at Star Hostel Taipei Main Station Join cooking classes at Star Hostel Taipei Main Station

3. Ximen Wow Hostel – Central Hostel and 5 Star

We definitely guarantee you not only the wow factor for location but also for the superb service in Ximen Wow Hostel.

Just imagine yourself just a 2-minute walk away from Ximen MRT Station. In a matter of a few blinks and you are ready to delve amongst the great places of Taipei.

The hostel has highly favored your access to the city and to the popular destinations that Taipei has to offer. Plus, Ximending Shopping Center is just around the corner as well as food stalls and shopping stores.

In fact, you are staying IN the heart of the Ximen district. No worries though, you are high up in the building, so you do not have the noise from the street.

Staff is available around the clock to happily serve you with things you might need and help you out with your concerns. We promise they have friendly and very accommodating staff.

They also have a tour desk to give you free tourism information on the best places to go, what to do and what to eat in Taipei.

Amenities you can use at Ximen Wow Hostel:

  • Free and Super Fast WiFi
  • Terrace and Balcony to have a drink and smoke (great panorama too!)
  • Simple Kitchen to use
  • Laundry Machine
  • Tour Desk

Another great thing we love about Ximen Wow Hostel is the comfy bed capsules that you can avail at very cheap deals. A cheap hostel Taipei has to offer!

Lockers and luggage storage are also available for the safety of your valuables.

And don’t you worry about going hungry.

Since the hostel is surrounded by food shops and stores, you can take advantage of the hostel kitchen and make your own preferred meal.

But take note of the Free Asian Breakfast served every day between 7:30 – 10:00.

Vending Machines are also available at the hostel so snacks can be enjoyed 24/7. We told you, in Ximen Wow Hostel, you won’t worry about going hungry.

The hostel also has a terrace you don’t want to miss to check out the busy streets of Ximen.

You can also kill time in the lounge area where live broadcast sports events are played. They also organize movie nights you might as well try.

Book Ximen Wow Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Enjoy the modern vibe at Ximen Wow Hostel Sleep in clean and comfy beds at Ximen Wow Hostel Have a meal with your new friends at Ximen Wow Hostel Dining Area

Location: Again, you are staying in the super popular shopping and nightlife district of Ximen. Being at the best location, the hostel is just a few steps away from the popular destinations such as Taipei Tianhou Temple, The Red House, and Taipei Prefecture Capital North Gate.

The metro line is nearby, just a 5 minute walk away. You can also walk to the main station Taipei in around 15 minutes. It is actually a nice walk since you are passing a few sights, statues with parks and cafés along the way.

We have always walked – recommended 🙂

So if you’re looking for the best deal for location, look no further because Ximen Wow Hostel is the best there is.

This is one of the best hostels in Taipei for

  • Backpacker
  • Small groups
  • Young Traveler
Book Ximen Wow Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Vending machines are available at Ximen Wow Hostel kitchen Get an amazing view of the city at Ximen Wow Hostel

4. Extra: WOW Poshtel – Best for Families

Coming in #4 is WOW Poshtel.

It was the very first hostel we stayed at in Taipei. It is the absolute best for quiet-seekers and families.

The common area in the basement is spacious, equipped with TV, board games, long community tables and even a projector for movie nights.

Book WOW Poshtel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

A Twin Room with ensuite facilities at Beimen Wow Poshtel Beimen WOW Poshtel - 60s hotel turns into 5 Star Hostel

Comparing all 3 Top Hostels in Taipei

Here is an overview of our handpicked top hostels in Taipei. In this chart, we compare the main facilities and things to expect.

It will help you to take a decision.

  Ximen Wow  Hostel Meander Taipei Hostel Star Hostel Taipei Main Station
Recommended for…
  • Small groups
  • Young Travellers
  • Backpacker
  • Solo Travelers
  • Couples
  • Female Solo Travelers
  • Older Traveller
  • Adults
Kitchen Yes Yes (big!) Yes
WiFi Free (Fast) Free (Fast) Free (Fast)
Breakfast Asian Breakfast (included) Buffet Breakfast (included) Buffet Breakfast (included)
Location Only 2-minute walk to Ximen Shopping and MRT Station Downtown Taipei Datong District – night markets and street foods
Special Balcony View of the City Super Social – Western-Style Hostel Gorgeous Design Hostel
Activities Yes Yes Yes
Lockers – and safe? Yes Yes Yes
Facilities for disabled guests Lift available Lift Available No
How to book? Hostelworld Hostelworld Hostelworld

This information can vary by season and availability. Please take this into account.

What about the cheapest hostels in Taipei?

Of course, there are always cheap hostels.

We think it’s not worth it to go with the cheapest hostel out there.


The difference is usually 1-2€ ($1-2) per night, and a lot of amenities are not included. This can be breakfast or linen.

However, if you are traveling on a shoe-string budget and you wanna save every penny, there are ways to find the cheapest places in Taipei.

  1. Open Hostelworld with full list of budget places to stay in Taipei
  2. Order the listing by price

Simple as that.

Read: 15 hacks for booking hostels

Make sure you use than the other filters and rank per price.

Also keep a close eye on the ratings, especially the “extreme ratings”. Meaning, the best and worst. These ratings can give great insight into what to expect.

Remember: Please keep in mind, you should really check what hostel type you would like to have. If you want a more social hostel, make the price secondary.

It will completely change your experience. We have stayed in many Taipei hostels and hostels around Taiwan that are NOT social – it is almost boring!

“Instead of focusing on the price, focus more on the hostel type when travelling to Taipei and Taiwan!”

– Hostelgeeks

Best Hostels in Taipei for Solo Travellers?

What is seriously the best hostel in Taipei for solo-travellers? As said, make sure you actually look if the hostel is social, recommended for solo-travellers and backpackers to meet people.

Offering engaging activities you can definitely enjoy, Meander Taipei Hostel is best for solo travelers like you.

You can choose outdoor activities from bike rentals, walking tours or cycling events. But if you prefer to stay inside, they also have board games, puzzles and darts to keep the fun running.

Whatever your taste desires, Meander Taipei Hostel will make sure that you go home with every bit Taipei has to offer.

Rooms feature a shower, private and shared bathroom with hairdryers. Plus you get to take advantage of your own private bathtub.

Just imagine yourself lying in a bubble bath and a wine glass on one hand after a long tiring tour around the city. Definitely a must try!

And if you want to take things more simply and cheaper, you can make your own preferred meal in the hostel kitchen.

So if you’re travelling solo, best to stay at Meander Taipei Hostel.

Book Meander Taipei Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Soft and comfy beds are calling you at Meander Taipei Hostel Enjoy your free time at Meander Taipei Hostel playroom Kill time and mingle with other guests at Meander Taipei Hostel lounge

Party Hostels in Taipei

There is no crazy-striptease-get-wasted-party hostel in Taipei. Yet, you can still party with your hostel mates! Just keep in mind, these are not crazy party hostels like somewhere in Thailand or anywhere in South-East Asia really. To give your party experience a different twist, Star Hostel Taipei Main Station, offers locally brewed beers at the hostel cafe to start up your night.

To make sure you have a taste of Taipei, the hostel partners with local farmers to grow barley, wheat and corn. Brewed accordingly to feature the Taiwanese agricultural products.

Boosting your night with a Taiwanese beer like no other.

And if you wish to continue the party and take it to a different level, bars and cafes are just around the corner of the hostel. Making it more convenient for you to hop bars.

Meander Taipei Hostel also have a twist to be a party hostel in Taipei.

They offer Happy Hour, and it is so so easy to meet people. When we stayed here, we went out to the bars, not hanging out in the hostel itself.

In a nutshell, pick a social hostel to meet people and hit the bars. It is fun!

Book Star Hostel Taipei Main Station here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Staff are very friendly and accommodating at Star Hostel Taipei Main Station Be treated the best at Star Hostel Taipei Main Station Star Hostel Taipei Main Station conducts daily activities you can join

More Taipei hostels worth a mention

You probably want to book right away because we have listed such amazing hostels. But wait, there’s more! We have listed more hostels for you to check.

If this is your first time staying in hostel, believe us when we say it is a great experience. There are many hotels in Taipei for families luxury to budget but staying in hostels will give your experience an extra kick.

So, backpacker Taipei has a lot for you. Watch out.

Next Taipei Hostel

Next Taipei Hostel is situated in a district with lots of shopping, street food and night markets! You will truly experience Taipei by just staying here.

The area is lively and restaurants are just around so you won’t have a hard time finding one. Perfect for a day filled with activities.

Common area looks good and relaxing!

The staffs are warm, extremely enthusiastic and friendly.

Hostel Highlights:

  • Free WiFi
  • Non-smoking rooms
  • Airport shuttle
  • 24-hour front desk
  • Laundry
  • Lift

Location: Next Taipei Hostel-Ximen is located in Ximending Shopping Area, which is only 5-minute walk to Ximen MRT station or the Ximen Red House. It is 15 minutes’ walk from Taipei Main Station and 5 minutes’ drive to Presidential Office Building. Taoyuan Airport is 28 km away. It is 8 km away from Shilin Night market.

Book Next Taipei Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com

Next Taipei Hostel

Star Hostel Taipei East

Star Hostel Taipei East is a 1 star hostel that is stylishly furnished and located at the hippest east area of Taipei.

Both dorm and private rooms are elegant and very relaxing. It is perfect for backpackers who wants to have a nice sleep after a long tiring day from exploring the city of Taipei.

Hostel Highlights:

  • Free WiFi
  • Family rooms
  • Non-smoking rooms
  • Facilities for disabled guests
  • Lift
  • Luggage storage

Location: Situated in the east side of Taipei. MRT Zhongxiao Dunhua Station is just around the corner. It is 3 stops away from Taipei Main Station and 2 stops away from MRT Taipei City Hall Station. From Taipei City Hall, guests can easily walk to Taipei 101 within 10 minutes.

Book Star Hostel Taipei East here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Star Hostel Taipei East

Taipei City Home

Taipei City Home makes you feel at home away from home. That is why it is called Home, not Taipei City Hostel. Awesome, quiet place to stay in Taipei!

A great cosy place to stay, in a lovely neighborhood! Staffs are super nice and very helpful with anything you can need.

There are private rooms, female only dorm room and mixed dorm room. There are not too much beds so the common rooms are not crowded which is a good thing if you don’t want too much crowd.

Hostel Highlights:

  • Free WiFi
  • Non-smoking rooms
  • Terrace
  • Laundry
  • Luggage storage
  • Good breakfast/li>

Location: Taipei CT House is located in the centre of Taipei City, with 3-5 minutes’ walk from Taipei Main Station. It is 2 mins walking – Hua Yin Street, 5 mins walking – Museum of Contemporary Art, 10 mins walking -Taipei Train Station underground shopping mall, 10 mins walking – Taiwan famous Ningxia night market, and 15mins walk away – Famous Love Matchmaker & Taipei Xia-Hai City God temple.

Book Taipei City Home here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Taipei City Home

OwlStay Flip Flop Hostel – Garden

OwlStay Flip Flop Hostel – Garden never wants you to be hungry and get bored because since it has good location, you have easy access to local food and entertainment destinations.

You will feel comfortable with their beds and common area. It is spacious, clean and has a good interior.

Staff are so friendly and always ready for a good chat. They are really helpful on recommending where to go.

Hostel Highlights:

  • Free WiFi
  • Non-smoking rooms
  • Luggage storage

Location: Flip Flop Hostel is a 5-minute walk from the centre of Taipei city and Taipei Main Station. Ximending area is about 10 minutes’ drive away. Flip Flop is located in Datong District.

Book OwlStay Flip Flop Hostel – Garden here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

OwlStay Flip Flop Hostel - Garden

OwlStay Flip Flop Hostel - Garden Dorm

Bouti City Capsule Inn

Simple, clean and comfortable? These are the words to describe Bouti City Capsule Inn.

The hotel features 89 beautifully appointed guest rooms and they are quiet so you can really rest. It is also very clean and well-maintained.

Location: Bouti City Capsule is a 3-mintue walk away from Taipei Main Railway Station. It takes only 5 minutes on foot to 228 Peace Memorial Park. This inn is a 10-minute walk from Ximending Area and Ximen Shopping Area, a 15-minute drive from 101 Shopping Area with various dining options nearby and a 20-minute drive from Songshan Airport. Taipei Taoyuan Airport is a 45-minute drive away.

Book Bouti City Capsule Inn here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Bouti City Capsule Inn

Taipei Discover Hostel

Taipei Discover Hostel is a place to meet friends and explore the beauty of Taipei.

They have private rooms, mixed dorm room, and female only dorm room. Every room has its own air conditioning, a microwave, a fridge, a kettle, a bidet, a hairdryer and a desk.

Hostel Highlights:

  • Free WiFi
  • Non-smoking rooms
  • 24-hour front desk
  • Facilities for disabled guests
  • Terrace
  • Bar
  • Good breakfast

Location: Xingtian Temple is less than 1 km from Taipei Discover Hostel, while Ningxia Night Market is 2 km away. The nearest airport is Taipei Songshan Airport, 2.8 km from the accommodation.

Book Taipei Discover Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Taipei Discover Hostel

Taiwan Youth Hostel

Staying in a hostel with a capsule pod is worth trying. Taiwan Youth Hostel has capsule pod with a good storage space. It is a good Taipei youth hostel.

The amenities provided are top notch including the toiletries in the bathroom, laundry powder, snacks and drinks provided 24-7 and free breakfast.

Staffs are very nice and the hostel is always clean and well organised. The well-decorated common area is a treat for the guests.

Location: 2/28 Memorial Peace Park is a 3-minute walk from Taiwan Youth Hostel & Capsule Hotel, while Ximending Shopping Area is a 15-minute walk away. The nearest airport, Taipei Songshan Airport, is 6 MRT stations away.

Book Taipei Youth Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Taiwan Youth Hostel

Taipei Taipei Hostel

Taipei Taipei Hostel is another Taipei traveller hostel that you should take a look at.

The hostel has plenty of rooms. From private rooms to dorm rooms, they have it. Bathrooms and shower stalls are clean all day.

The staffs are helpful and accommodating. They can help you in booking beauty services to salons.

Hostel Highlights:

  • Free WiFi
  • Non-smoking rooms
  • Restaurant
  • Facilities for disabled guests
  • Lift
  • Bar

Location: Located 500 m from Presidential Office Building in Taipei. Taipei Bus Station is 600 m from Taipei Taipei Hostel, while Ximending Shopping Area is 600 m away. It is a 6-minute walk from NTU Hospital MRT Station (Exit 4) and a 10-minute walk from Taipei Main Station. The nearest airport is Taipei Songshan Airport, 5 km from Taipei Taipei Hostel.

Book Taipei Taipei Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking | Hostelworld

Taipei Taipei Hostel

Things to know before you go to Taipei (and Taiwan)

There are a few things we were surprised by when backpacking Taipei the first time. We think it is worth it to share this so you can set your mind right and know what to expect.

We wrote also a huge guide to best hostels in Taiwan – a backpacking guide.

  1. Free water everywhere
  2. Seven 11 will be your friend
  3. Hostels are not necessarily Social Hostels to meet people
  4. you need to prepare things
  5. This is not South East Asia – there’s lots of rules
  6. Avoid Weekend Travels if you can
  7. Night Markets are fantastic!
  8. Stinky Tofu deserves its name
  9. Coffee in Taipei is EXPENSIVE
  10. Vegetarian Food all over the place
  11. People are incredibly friendly
  12. Taiwan is super safe
  13. Scooter Rental in Taipei is not possible (unless…)
  14. How to travel around – Transportation
  15. Hitchhiking is safe (and common for travelers)
  16. No need to speak Mandarin – people will do their best!
  17. Forget Google Maps Opening Hours (they are not accurate!)
  18. Easy Card of Seven Eleven is your best friend
  19. Get off the Beaten Path
  20. Instagram Game and Queuing Up
  21. Taipei 101 – worth it?
  22. Visiting Jiufen – day Trip or Overnight?
  23. Get your Mobile SIM Data at the Airport

1. Free water everywhere

There is no need at all to buy plastic bottles of water anywhere in Taiwan. You will find free water all over the island and at all temples – again, for free!

That has two great advantages for you and all of us:

  1. you save money
  2. less plastic waste

Just bring a reusable water bottle and you are good to go!

Free Water Refill to save money and plastic - money saving tip for Taipei

2. 7/11 will be your friend

I have to admit: People told me this one before and I was like “naaaah, I don’t think so!!!”

Well, they were right! There is 7/11 all over the Island, on almost every corner. And they do have everything.

Including fantastic coffee – with the same coffee beans as Starbucks.

You can either pay 4$ at Starbucks or 1.50$ at 7/11 – for exactly the same coffee!

Besides, you can get drinks at the store, copy documents, eat actual good food – for 24 hours day and night. We are not saying you should be eating here from now on. But, keep in mind 7/11 is actually a great option to have!

Moving on to #3…

Starbucks Coffee in Taiwan - be smarter than me and better go with 7-11
Starbucks Coffee in Taiwan – be smarter than me and better go with 7-11

3. Hostels are not necessarily Social to meet people

Like in many Asian countries, many hostels here are actually not “Social” hostels. Meaning, many Asian people stay here to save money rather than meeting people.

Many Western people choose hostels for the price and especially to meet other backpackers and travellers.

We stayed in many Taiwan hostels that are not for meeting people. They are actually (almost) boring. Beautiful, but boring.

Therefore: Make sure you check you are picking a backpacker type hostel.

We said it already, but we have to say it again: read our best hostels in Taiwan guide!

Here we go into detail and share many amazing ones and cool places to stay.

Backpackers Hostel in Taipei - the WOW Poshtel

4. You need to prepare things

One thing we realized quickly: Taiwan needs actual preparation.

It is not at all like Vietnam or Thailand. You cannot just pop-up in a hostel in Bangkok or Hanoi, meet a bunch of people and travel with them.

Every traveller has different plans, time windows, and the transport and things to see actually requires preparation.

For instance, when you want to rent a scooter in Taipei, you can forget about this – unless you have a local drivers license.

For the rest of Taiwan you can rent scooters with an international drivers license.

The trains are super packed on the weekends. Locals love to travel on the weekends.  So be aware of that and avoid the weekends hotspots like Taroko Gorge near Hualien or Juifen.

It is also not easy to go off the beaten path really. Transport in-between main cities are easy, but the east part of the Island not as much.

National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall is easy to visit; some parts of Taiwan not so much
National Chiang Kai- shek Memorial Hall is easy to visit; some parts of Taiwan not so much

5. This is not South East Asia – there are lots of rules

Renting a scooter with no license? Forget that.

Endless beach parties? Beer for 50 cents? Jumping on a bus in the next 5 minutes and drive to the next destination? Forget all that.

Taiwan is great to travel, but there are rules to follow. Some people say it’s Asia’s Version of Germany. We can certainly see why.

6. Avoid Weekend Travels if you can

We have already mentioned this.

Locals love to travel on the weekends. Especially the trains from Taipei to Hualien are sold out fast over the weekend. You may be able to go anyways, but you won’t have a seat to sit during the train ride.

Our best recommendation here: Avoid travelling on the weekends if possible.

7. Night Markets are fantastic!

Taipei is known for their night markets. And yes, we can confirm the night markets in Taipei and Taiwan are fun, awesome, cool.

Do not miss that experience!

You can expect lots lots lots of different food, drinks and even games for kids, families and actually everybody. They have a game for little kids that looks a bit like beer-pong, the famous hostel game.

This may be a good chance to improve your beer-pong skills!

Best Night markets in Taipei
Best Night markets in Taipei

8. Stinky Tofu deserves its name

Talking about Night Markets, you will not find any night market that does not offer Stinky Tofu.

They go hand in hand like Italy and Pizza or Spain and Paella.

However, truth be told: Stinky Tofu smells like a full diaper…

Sorry to be graphic and direct. People love it, people hate it. Either way, at the very least you will smell it. You can also give it a try and actually eat it.

9. Coffee in Taipei is EXPENSIVE

How about a great cup of coffee for 5€ (5$)?

Expect to pay these prices in a cool coffee shop in Taiwan. Coffee in Taipei is super trendy and therefore expensive. Keep this in mind before you ruin your daily budget.

Coffee Shops in Taipei are with great interior design

10. Vegetarian Food all over the place

Vegetarians around?! You are in luck: Taipei and the whole country of Taiwan is a paradise for Vegetarians and even Vegan.

We used a lot Happy Cow to hunt down places to eat in Taipei.

You can also find many buffets. You usually pay per weight. Some of the buffets have a fixed price.

Our favorite vegetarian restaurants in Taipei are:

  • Minder Vegetarian – Q Square Mall
  • Sho Yuan Su Shih in Taipei

11. People are incredibly friendly

Before backpacking Taiwan many fellow travellers told us: Taiwanese people are soooooo friendly.

“Sure”, we thought, “like in many places!”.

Truth be told: Taiwanese go completely out of their way to help you. They absolutely love to help you out, even if it means they drive you 50km further because you were hitch-hiking and did not find another ride.

Yes, that happened.

Or, the local scooter rental did not rent us a scooter. So instead the restaurant owner gave us her scooter so we could go to a hot spring.

Another first-hand story? Sure, here you go. We were late for the free walking tour in Taipei. So we took a cab. The cab driver was – obviously – super friendly. He told us “next time you should take the metro, it is much cheaper!”

Okay, just think about this for a second. When was the last time a taxi driver told you that?!?!

Seriously, Taiwanese are incredibly friendly and helpful! You will love this, cherish it!

12. Taiwan is super safe

It does not come as a surprise really, but Taiwan is also super safe. Both traffic wise as well as pick-pocketing-wise. That is important to mention, since Taipei is a big city.

That is not to say you can now take down your defense and be completely clueless.

Still pay attention, always. However, it is more likely someone will run behind you to bring you your wallet you just dropped than anything else.

Again, cherish this!

A random photo of a Graffiit in Taipei Ximen District - Go Star Wars!
A random photo of a Graffiit in Taipei Ximen District – Go Star Wars!

13. Scooter Rental in Taipei is not possible (unless…)

It is safe, and Taiwan Citizens are so nice. Now, this part we did not like: You cannot rent a scooter in Taipei.

Even with an international license you cannot rent a scooter. The only way you can do so is by owning a locals drivers license.

In other cities like Kaohsiung it is different, here you only need an international drivers license.

Why is that?

We could not find any official sources, but we were told several times it is because of the mayor of Taipei. He does not want tourists to drive around the busy traffic of Taipei.

That may makes sense. Still, a pity in our eyes.

That brings us to other transport…

14. How to travel around – Transportation

Getting around Taipei is easy:

  • Walk
  • MTR
  • Bus
  • Taxi (Uber works great in Taipei!)

Get the Easy Card. You can top-up credit in all 7/11 Stores. Now you know that there is a 7/11 store on every corner.

We always took the MTR or actually walked. Walking is not to underestimate – both in distance and things you can explore.

The best things we explored without a printed guide was by walking. Our favorite area to wander around in Taipei is the Da’an District, around Yaboo Café.

15. Hitchhiking is Safe (and common for travellers)

Hitch hiking in Taiwan is not very common, really. However, it is super popular for travellers to do on the East Coast.

Everybody does it!

We did it too!

We asked our hostel to write down the name on a sign so we could actually hitch hike to our next city.

Great fun! Obviously, make sure you plan enough time.

Good to know: It works best on weekends, since more people are travelling by car. Once we tried to hitch hike on a Monday from Taichung to Hualien – no chance. Most people were back to work and there were not a lot of cars at all going in our direction. We ended up taking the train.

Hitch Hiking in Taiwan

16. No need to speak Mandarin – people will do their best!

You may have wondered: Do you need to speak Mandarin when backpacking Taiwan or visiting Taipei?

Like in any other city in the world: No!

Sure, the local language always helps. But there are more ways to communicate than the language itself.

Try to learn a few basics, and you are good to go.

The classic basics are:

  • Hello – Nǐ hǎo
  • Good Bye – 再见 Zàijiàn
  • Thank you – 谢谢 Xièxiè

There is also plenty of apps that help you to translate. In fact, many of the locals we met instantly used their phone to be able to talk with us.

17. Forget Google Maps Opening Hours (they are not accurate!)

We cannot believe this one. And quite frankly I am still a bit annoyed by this one.

Forget the google maps opening time for restaurants, bars and other venues: 80% of the time they were not correct.

Google said it was open, but it was closed.

And guess what.

Sometimes it said “closed”…and it was open.

It is not really a fault by google, since the local owners have to update their opening times in their Google Listing. Anyways, seems like no one seems to care about Google.

Facebook’s opening time on the Facebook page of the bar or restaurant was always more accurate.

I am just mentioning this in case you want to go to a specific tea house, coffee shop or restaurant. Keep this in mind!

18. Easy Card of Seven Eleven is your best friend

The Easy Card in Taipei and Taiwan is fantastic! You can top-up the card in many stores to take the bus, metro and even pay groceries in some shop.

It is super handy to have one!

The Easy Card even allows you to travel for free.

Here is how: In Taichung the first 10km you take per day are free – when you swipe the Easy Card.

If you do not have an Easy Card, you have to pay in cash.

Good to know: You have to have the exact price of transport in coins. There is no change!

19. Get off the Beaten Path

We spent a total of 2 months backpacking Taiwan.

Besides the obvious sights like visiting Taipei 101, Juifen, and Taroko Gorge, we had a great time getting off the beaten path.

Truth be told, there is no beaten path in Taiwan in the first place. The tourism of western travellers is not that high in volume.

However, trust your gut and see if you can find more things outside the box.

Taiwan offers island, mountain hiking, surfing, diving, gorges, tiny villages, national parks, lakes, numerous temples, museums, night markets, you name it.

For us it helped a lot to search for smaller blogs. Blogs we enjoyed are:

20. Instagram and Queuing Up

Taiwanese have a strange tradition: when they see a queue, they want to be in it.

At least, that is what it seems like.

The same goes for taking instagram photos from the “perfect point”.

We hiked up the Elephant Peak. There was a queue of 50 people waiting to take their photo. We talked to a couple and they told us they are waiting for 30 minutes. Most likely they had to wait another 30 minutes.

You do the math…

The insane instagram game in Taipei
Waiting 1 hour to take a Photo for Instagram? Of course, that sounds lovely!

21. Is it worth it to visit Taipei 101?

Is it worth it to visit Taipei 101?

Yes, it is worth it.

Here is why. We were not really interested in the beginning. We just got back from visiting a Temple Museum and it was a super sunny day. We had time that day and spontaneously decided to visit Taipei 101.

It costs around 15€ and the queue was not big at all. In about 20 minutes we were on the top, enjoying the panorama over this massive city.

We think for 15€ this is something we would definitely put on your bucket list for Taipei.

However, you might have heard already of the “cheaper” version of visiting the Starbucks instead of going up the Tower.

Here’s the thing: you need a reservation to go up the Starbucks Taipei. You need to do this with some time in advance, they say around two weeks before. You have to be on time for your reservation.

There is no way in knowing how the weather will be in 2 weeks from now. So you may go there when it’s cloudy.

Fair enough, you just would not go when the weather is bad, got it.

The second thing that bothers us: You have to drink something at the Starbucks. A coffee is around 5€. So the difference is “only” 10€ and not 15€.

My best recommendation: Be ready to invest 15€ in this sight and stay spontaneous. Weather in Taipei always changes and when it’s cloudy, it is not worth it at all to go up.

View from Taipei 101 - is it worth it to vist Taipei 101? YES

22. Visiting Jiufen – day Trip or Overnight?

You have heard of Jiufen for sure, right?!

The beautiful tiny pearl in the mountains. 98% of tourists come here as a day trip.

If so, you will hate not like Jiufen. There is basically one narrow street and it is PACKED!

The true beauty of Jiufen comes out at night, when the red lanterns are lighting up the streets, the tourists are gone from 7pm on, and the village is for you and only a few tourists left standing.

Therefore, book a hostel in Jiufen, go out at night to take photos and come early again back in to take photos. This is how we absolutely loved Jiufen.

Very good to know: The beautiful lanterns are turned off at 9pm! If you want to take photos, walk around before 9pm!

In a nutshell:

Is a day trip to Jiufen worth it? Not, it is not.

Should you stay 1 night in Jiufen? Yes, absolutely!

Jiufen Day Trip from Taipei

23. Get your Mobile SIM Data at the Airport

Last but not least, this is for everyone who needs and wants to stay online: Your Local Sim Card!

You can get is this 4G Sim Card with NO Gb limits. Starting from 6€, this is an incredible deal! You can pre-book this Sim Card and pick it up at arrival at the Airport.

We only found 1 shop in all Taipei selling the same deal. The same deal is usually much more expensive, starting from 30€ for 10GB (a ridiculous deal!)

Need an eSIM Card for Taipei?

Get your eSIM Card with Airalo.com instantly online. It is easy to set up and cheap! Read our review of Airalo here.

No more searching for mobile stores. Get your eSIM Card for now and enjoy it instantly after landing in your new destination.

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Need an eSIM Card for Taipei?

What about the cheapest hostels in Taipei?

Of course, there are always cheap hostels. But how do you actually find them? When you are traveling on a shoe-string budget and you want to save every dollar, there are ways to find the cheapest places in Taipei.

  1. Open Hostelz.com with a full list of all hostels in Taipei
  2. add your dates
  3. Order the listings by price

Simple as that.

Hostelz.com is a price comparison site for hostels. They list every single one in the world and tells you exactly which website is cheaper to use.

Another smart Tip: Check what is actually included, and what is excluded. Take a closer look at the location, too. A further location might mean more costs in transport.

Any Discounts?

You can find all our hostel discounts worldwide here. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the freshest hostel discounts directly in your inbox. We even have special discount codes we only share in the newsletter.

It is completely free to join!

How to book?

The most popular booking platforms are Booking.com and Hostelworld.com. On both platforms, your credit card is 100% protected and the booking 100% confirmed.

We included some handy links to each of the recommended hostel. Just click on the hostel name. The link will lead you to check prices and availability.

Read: Step-by-Step guide on how to book with Hostelworld

We recommend booking your hostel as early as possible! All of Taipei best hostels are popular; especially in high-season. To make sure you end up in those stylish and good hostels, secure your room/bed as soon as you have your travel dates fix.

The coolest Hostel App you need comes as well from Hostelworld. It gives you super cool features like you can contact your hostel mates beforehand, ask questions, and make plans together. Find more details in our review of the app.

Download the Hostelworld App here

QR Code to Download your Hostelworld app with one scan
Scan the QR Code with your Smartphone to download the Hostelworld App from the App Store - like a real Hostel Geek!

The best way to find hostels: Hostelgeeks website and Hostelworld App

Our Favorite Hostels in Taipei put on a map + sights

Let us have a look on the map. Below we list all three best Taipei hostels on a map.

Personally, we love to plan our trips with a map having all sights and potential hostels on it. We thought this map will help you with planning your trip too.

We also included the main tourist Taipei attractions adults should see:

  • Xiangshan Trail
  • Miniatures Museum of Taiwan
  • Daan Forest Park
  • Ximending Night Market
  • The Red House
  • Lungshan Temple

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This article is a great Taipei Solo Travel Guide for backpackers! We have listed a pretty good amount of hostels that you might want to consider and if you have questions, we are still here to help you out.

Flights to Taipei?

Our best recommendation: Check for flights all over Taiwan!

All cities like Taichung, Tainan, Kaohsiung, Taipei and Hualien have airports with great and cheap connections. Therefore, you might consider flying into a different city than Taipei, explore that one and head with the train or bus to Taipei.

We use Skyscanner and Omio.com to find cheap flights and good connections all over the globe.

Skyscanner has a bunch of cool features like Multi-City Trip. Instead of doing this research step-by-step, Skyscanner offers this flight planning tool.

Our Step-by-Step Guide to Skyscanner

review of Skyscanner flight searches

More guides

Alright, this is your answer to where to stay in Taipei.

Make sure you read our extensive guide to best hostels in Taiwan with a backpackers map.

Besides Taiwan, we travelled all over as well to bring you more guides. We did the leg work for you for following destinations:

You can find all our new and updates articles for Best Hostels in here.

We also created a huge guide to hostels. Here we cover how to build lifetime friendships in hostels, the perfect packing list and more.

Over to you

Do you have any questions left, maybe doubts? Then please leave it in the comment below. We are very keen to help you - and actually you would even do us a favor!

Your question will help us to improve this Taipei guide.

Last note: Our commitment

This is a genuine article to help you travel a bit smarter, and find the best place on a budget! We will never recommend you any place we haven’t evaluated or are not convinced by. We are constantly updating all our guides to keep them as fresh and accurate as possible.

Safe travels,
The Hostelgeeks

CLOSED: Backpackers Inn Taipei

Update: This hostel is closed. We leave here this content for your information.

Backpackers Inn Taipei is a good place to stay in Taipei. They are all about fun, fun and fun!

This is indeed one of the cheap hostels in Taipei.

The have private rooms and dorms rooms. Note that their dorms are for female only and male only! They do not have mixed dorm.

Location: Backpackers Inn Taipei is a 10-minute walk from Ximenting MRT Station (Exit 6) and a 20-minute walk from Longshan Temple. It will take only 3 minutes by MRT to Taipei Train Station. Taoyuan Aiport is about 40 minutes’ car journey away.

CLOSED: Uinn Travel Hostel

Update: This hostel has permanently closed. We’ve kept this content here for your information.

Uinn Travel Hostel

Certified one of the best hostel Taipei Zhongshan has to offer!

They have space capsules and regular dorm rooms. You will feel secure and the blinds that they have in the dorm beds will really give you privacy. Also, they have a separate floor for female guests.

The staffs are very helpful and friendly.

Hostel Highlights:

  • Free WiFi
  • Non-smoking rooms
  • Airport shuttle
  • 24-hour front desk
  • Facilities for disabled guests
  • Bar

Location: Uiin Travel Hostel is a 9 minute’s walk from MRT National Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall. MRT Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall Station is only 2 metro stops ride from Taipei Main Station, while Taipei 101 is 5 metro stops away. Guests can also take Bus 262 to Taipei Main Station, Bus 706 and 243 to Ximending shopping area.

Uiin Travel Hostel

CLOSED: Come Inn Taipei

Update: This hostel has permanently closed. We’ve kept this content here for your information.

Come Inn Taipei is a warm and friendly hostel that welcomes the backpackers from all over the world.

All rooms are decorated and has air-conditioners and reading lights. You will surely love the ambiance of this hostel!

Hostel Highlights:

  • Free WiFi
  • Non-smoking rooms
  • Facilities for disabled guests
  • Laundry
  • Lift

Location: Come Inn is 2.2 km from National Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall and 2.2 km from Liaoning Night Market. Presidential Office Building is 2.3 km from the homestay, while Dihua Street is 2.5 km from the property. The nearest airport is Taipei Songshan Airport, 5 km from Come Inn.

Come Inn

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Our Favorite Travel Resources 2024

👏 Booking Hostels: Always find better deals for Hostels on Hostelz.com. They compare prices from Hostelworld and Booking.com.

✈️ Cheap Flights: The first websites we always check are Skyscanner and Google Flights.

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