You only have to tilt your head up to see one of Taipei's leading attractions. Named after the 101 floors that soar above the city's downtown, Taipei 101 was, from 2004 until 2010 (when the Burj Khalifa in Dubai overtook it) the tallest structure in the world. With a traditionally inspired exterior design, the tower's outside is built to look like a giant stalk of bamboo. Inside it's an ultra modern affair and the design is built to withstand even the most ferocious typhoons and earthquakes.
Though the queues to get to the observation decks can be off putting, once you make your way to the front of the ticket line it's only a 37 second ride up 382 metres to see what all the fuss is about. Yes that quick, so quick that despite Taipei 101 losing its crown as the tallest building in the world, the ride you'll take to get to the Indoor Observation Deck on the 89th floor is on the fastest lift in the world.
While the Indoor Observation Deck is the most popular destination for tourists, if weather permits it's well worthwhile heading a further two floors up to the 91st floor too. There you'll find the Outdoor Viewing Deck where, as you can probably imagine, the views on a clear day are absolutely stunning.
Much closer to ground you'll find the Taipei 101 Mall. Taipei certainly has no shortage of places to shop but further expanding on Taipei 101's theme of everything to the maximum, the mall in the adjoining towers has few competitors for sheer range of goods. Look out for Gucci, Prada and Shiatzy Chen alongside smaller independent boutiques. After the dizzying heights you might be in need of a drink and thankfully there's an equally mammoth range of restaurants and bars.