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New Guidebook: Taiwan: The Bradt Travel Guide (3rd edition)

The third edition of Bradt’s guide to the beguiling island of Taiwan, written by yours truly, is now available from online and bricks-and-mortar bookshops in the UK, US and several other countries. Few destinations are as fast-changing as Taiwan. Moreover, the island’s government has been investing heavily in tourist facilities. Consequently, every part of this book has been thoroughly refreshed.

The new edition includes coverage of headline-grabbing new attractions ideal for culture vultures like the Southern Branch of the National Palace Museum (page 229) plus renovated sites such as Taipei’s Nishi Honganji (page 96), once a Buddhist temple built by and for Japanese colonists. Among places now covered in considerably greater depth are Lake Mercy (pages 122 and 123), the seaside town of Nanfangao (page 127) and the pioneers’ community of Beipu (page 154). There are also a few spots which I’d never myself heard of until the last few years. One is Qiding (page 151), a delight for gricers near Hsinchu; another is the indigenous-themed Roman Catholic church Kiokai Ni Santo Josef (page 300). Even after a quarter century of exploring Taiwan, every now and again I have a first-time-visitor experience!

Public transport throughout Taiwan continues to make major strides. After years of construction delays, Taoyuan Metro (page 44) now connects Taipei with the main international airport and Taoyuan’s high-speed railway station. Tainan (page 203) and Taitung (page 295) have smart new bus stations consolidating individual companies’ scattered outposts.

At the same time, the true charm of Taiwan lies in characteristics which haven’t changed an iota since the second edition of the book: The warmth of its people, the excellence of its street food, and the stunning diversity of its landscapes.

The book, which has 360 pages, 32 maps and 51 colour photographs, was published on July 26, 2019. ISBN-10: 178477622X; ISBN-13: 978-1784776220; dimensions: 5.3 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches.