Questions about Taiwan and Japan tour



Hello, I am planning an international tour to Japan and Taiwan. This will be a long tour and will cover multiple cities Taipei, Kaohsiung, Hsinchu, and Taichung. In Japan, I will be going to Tokyo, Kyoto, Hiroshima, Nagoya, Osaka and Ginowan.

First I am going to discuss Taiwan:

  • First I will be going to Taipei and will be staying at Okura Prestige. I will be visiting national palace museum, Shilin Night Market, Daan Forest Park, Yangminggshan and Taipei zoo.

  • In Kaohsiung, I have booked Howard Plaza Hotel and will be visiting Love River, Fo Guang Shan Budha Museum, Dragon and Tiger Pagodas.

  • For Hsinchu and Taichung, I will be staying at Forte hotel and Tempus hotel respectively.

To travel to Taiwan, I have booked economy class and using China Southern flights.

After that, I am focusing on Japan. For Tokyo, Kyoto, Hiroshima, Nagoya, Osaka and Ginowan, I have already booked Prince hotel, Mystays Kyoto, Mitsui Garden hotel, Hotel Wing, Monterey La Soeur, moon ocean hotel. Also, I will be spending most of the time on historic places. I will be using Japan Airlines from Taiwan to Japan travel.

As this forum is related to Taiwan, most of the people are able to comment on those places and hotels. What are the improvements needed for this whole tour? What are the important destination, I am going to miss? As I am interested in history, mentioned museums, forts, castle, antique designs and towers that are used in the past.

I have an important question about Japan too. My father was serving in US army and he was posted to Japan for 3 years during last years of his life. He has told us multiple marvels, he uses to pull in that base. And always keep on telling us jokes. I want to visit that place, but I can’t get the permission. On contacting the superior authorities they are providing answering in complex circles. At the end, time is wasted and no result obtained. If anyone has visited in the past. It would be good, if someone could describe pinpoint procedure to go inside and properly see the base. I am leaving for Taiwan on 21st of November (there is no time left). so, reply ASAP here. Also, if the procedure is complex, then refer to public documentation available online. At last, I am totally depending on your answers here.

In advance, thanks for reading the thread and providing useful information.


First off, please be polite. This is not a travel service.

Given your interests, I am surprised you are not visiting Tainan. Honestly I would just skip Taichung and head straight there to see the sites of the old Dutch forts.

In Kaohsiung, you might check out the former Takao British consulate (“Takao” is the Japanese reading of the characters for “Kaohsiung”). For a while it was overrun by tour groups from the PRC. Perhaps now it has settled down. There are nice views over the harbour. You can also take the small ferry across to Cijin. It’s lovely in the evening.

In Taipei, I see no reason to plan a trip to Daan Forest Park. You might consider taking the MRT up to Danshui (aka “Tamsui”) to see the historic sites there instead.

Happy travels!



For Kaohsiung, the Howard hotel is an older hotel not near the subway lines or the Love river (you need use Taxi), there are much better choices and lot of newer hotels in the same price range. In Taipei your hotel is also an older one, for me I would also choose a more central modern ones.


The Okura Prestige is a brand new luxury property in the Zhongshan district. The location is excellent–though certainly this will not be cheap!



I live in Okinawa. Most people have never heard of Ginowan, although that is the correct location of the Moon Ocean Hotel, as you mention. It is right next to the marina and almost waterfront. Big rooms, nice place. not quite downtown, but not far.

As for going on base, forget it. Unless you actually have business on base, and a military sponsor who will meet you at the gate, sign you in, and escort you around, you simply will not be allowed on. And yes, the guards all have guns.

also, nationals of many countries will not be allowed on at all, even if they have an appointment. and they don’t say in advance which countries are on the banned list, or why you are blocked from entry, so it’s all a bit of a mystery.

Enjoy the rest of your trip! (Apart from China Southern airlines: my guess is that won’t be the highlight.)


Daan Forest Park is at most a 2 or 3 hour visit, unless you plan to sit out and read a book. Check out the memorial halls to fulfill the rest of the day, Sun Yat Sen and Chang Kai Shek Memorial Hall are both easily accessible via MRT.

I would suggest you skip Shilin night market and head to Rao He Night Market. Shilin is the most well known and you’ll really feel like it’s touristy there because every other person will be speaking a non-native language, but if you want a more local experience, Rao He is here it’s at!

I usually suggest the zoo to people if they have no other plans, but I have never seen someone actually put the zoo into their itinerary. If you have extra time before or after visiting the zoo, go up the Maokong Gondola and experience a tea ceremony. The Taipei Zoo Gondola Station is right around the corner from the zoo’s main gates.

For Yang Ming Shan, you need almost a full day to get up, around and down the mountain via public transportation. Plan accordingly.

Good luck and welcome to Taiwan!


Thanks for your advice .

I have added Tainan,Cijin and Tamsui to my list.


Thanks. What if you are from US?


Thanks Ranlee. I have added Rao He Night Market and Taipei Zoo Gondola Station. Also, I will be managing time as you have described.


[quote=“ranlee, post:6, topic:156465, full:true”]
Daan Forest Park is at most a 2 or 3 hour visit, unless you plan to sit out and read a book.[/quote]

Two or three hours? Talk about leisurely! :whistle: If you want to read a book while you’re there, you can try the library on the East side of the park, about ten minutes from the station.


Very veeeery leisure.


Makes no difference to base access. Are you at present allowed into military bases in the USA, just by being a US citizen? Most likely not.

If you have an arranged meeting with a person living or working on base, then you won’t be refused entry if you are a US citizen (unless you’re also on some other watch list). That’s about the only benefit.

do go to the Churaumi aquarium here, and while you are up there visit the nearby Nakijin Castle ruins. Best looking castle ruins for my money (free entry, too) are the Katsuren castle, located in the central-east of the island.

poor bus services around Okinawa, you will need to rent a car for most places, and for that, you definitely WILL need an International Driving Permit along with your US license. A car will allow you to access the important battlefields of WWII, almost all of which are off-base (apart from Kadena airfield, originally a Japanese fighter base and the launch site of so many kamikaze planes.)


You seem to have planned your Taiwan trip around major West Coast cities. However, Taiwan’s East Coast, central mountain ranges, Northern and Southern coastlines are major tourist attractions.

If this is your first trip to Taiwan, some of the greatest hits include Kenting, which is hard to get to and back from Kaohsiung, Taroko, which is on the East Coast, Sun moon lake, which is at the center of Taiwan.

There are a lot to see in Kaohsiung and Taipei, those cities are great to visit. My favorite Kaohsiung site is Xizhiwan, Shoushan, and the Former British Consulate. Go for a little hike in Shoushan and you will encounter Taiwanese macaques.

However, if city tour is your thing, I think Tainan is a must see. It’s the most historically significant city, with a lot of great historical and natural sites, plus an unique food culture.

As for Hsinchu and Taichung, there are plenty to see if you head for the mountains, but since it’s your first trip to Taiwan, don’t spend too much time in these cities. If there is a natural attraction nearby, stay in hotels next to the natural attraction.

The marine base is in Okinawa. Don’t think civilians can get in.