Most visitors to the island of Taiwan stay in Taipei, the cultural, financial, political and commercial center of the Republic of China. Located at the center of the Taipei Basin of the Taiwan Island and to the right bank of Danshui River, Taipei also has the country's international airport and a majority of the island's main tourist attractions. Thus, a stay at one of the many fine Taipei Taiwan hotels is almost a given for those traveling to the main island.
Once a tiny valley town, Taipei has sprung from its roots and grown into one of the most modern, industrialized cities in the world. While this is a boon for business, it can also be off putting for travelers looking for a more relaxing vacation. Luckily there are plenty of Taipei Taiwan hotels to make up for this: Many five star offerings that boast the ultimate in style and the opportunity for guests to pamper themselves in this complex and fascinating capital city. There are many competitors for the title of the best hotel in Taiwan, but the winner just might be Shangri-La Far Eastern Plaza Hotel Taipei. Located in a pair of enormous towers and near many of the main shopping centers, the hotel has the best in deluxe amenities, not to mention the fine restaurants, bars and entertainment facilities found below the hundreds of elegant guest rooms.
But, on the opposite end of the spectrum, another draw of the island are the cheap hotels in Taiwan. Most of these options are found, unsurprisingly, in and around the outskirts of Taipei. When it comes to value, the best hotel in Taiwan might just be the Chun Chuai Han She Hotel. In a converted building left over from when Japan ruled the island, it is near much of the city's nightlife, while exuding a style all its own—the Chinese antiques in the midst of the Japanese architecture on the island of Taiwan—the culture clash is subtle but adds to the hotels' mystique. What really sets it apart from other Taipei Taiwan hotels is the price, however.
Another of the great cheap hotels in Taiwan is the Chrysler Hotel. Though some visitors have openly wondered if the hotel was a converted brothel, the Chrysler is a charming, fifth-floor hotel that offers cheap prices and a great location. The dimly lit hallways and strange ambiance make the hotel almost romantic, even. Other cheap hotels in Taiwan include the Fortune and Emperor Hotels, found near the old town in Taipei.
Taiwan was traditionally a getaway, from farmers to exiled Chinese nationals to religious leaders, and the mountains on the island still afford travelers the chance to leave everything behind. The best places to do this is in Alishan, a mountain resort known throughout the country for its panoramic views and dense cypress forests.
The city of Taichung, on the west coast is another fine place to find some of the best hotels in Taiwan. The further south you travel along the western coastline, the more beach resorts you will find, too. On the island's southern tip, Oluanpi is the closest you will get to a stereotypical tropical getaway on Taiwan, though the cheaper hotels in Anping, just to the north, are more in line with the desires of budget travelers.
Top image: Toomore (flickr)