Wed, Feb 26, 2014 - Page 4 News List

US pop-culture travel guide touts Taiwan’s appeal

Staff writer, with CNA, LOS ANGELES

A US-based Internet pop-culture travel guide, Jaunted, said on Monday that Taiwan is one of the easiest options for travelers, based on three major advantages.

After a visit to the “heart of Asia,” the staff of Jaunted reported that Taiwan’s popularity and appeal as a tourist destination are growing, in tandem with its increasing flight connections and reputation as a food mecca.

Taiwan’s foremost advantage in the region is ease of access, particularly compared with China, according to the Web site.

“Unlike China, you won’t need to deal with complicated visa paperwork in order to visit,” Jaunted said. “Aussies, Americans, Canadians and Brits are among the many nationalities able to enter Taiwan without a visa, provided the individual doesn’t have a criminal record.”

It said Taiwan is also well-connected to major US cities, with nonstop flights to New York and Los Angeles, as well as to Honolulu, Hawaii.

Second, Taiwan is easy to navigate, given its relatively small size and efficient public transportation, the Web site said.

“Taiwan’s train system is extremely well-organized and easy to follow, even if you don’t speak Mandarin,” it said.

“Announcements are made in four languages — Mandarin Chinese, two Taiwanese dialects and English — and tickets are printed in multiple languages as well,” Jaunted said.

It added that Taiwan can be combined with a trip to another Asian destination since it feels close to almost everywhere else.

Taiwan’s third advantage is its family-friendly environment, Jaunted said.

With one of the lowest birthrates in Asia, Taiwan makes a big effort to accommodate children and their parents, it said, adding that there are breastfeeding rooms in most of the nation’s major buildings, including train stations.

At tourist sites, most people will smile and wave at children instead of seeing them as a bother, the Web site said.

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