The Complete Traveler’s Guide To Best Souvenirs From Taiwan


Taiwan has a plethora of souvenirs to offer travelers. This guide outlines the best traditional food items, handmade crafts, snacks, clothing, and artwork that can be found in Taiwan for those seeking a unique and memorable reminder of their travels.

It provides an overview of the types of souvenirs available, as well as tips on where to find them and how to incorporate them into one’s daily life.

Key Takeaways

  • Traditional Taiwanese food items like pineapple cakes and stinky tofu make for unique and delicious souvenirs.
  • Handmade crafts, such as embroidered purses and carved wooden sculptures, offer a glimpse into traditional Taiwanese culture and make for meaningful souvenirs.
  • Taiwanese snacks like taro balls and peanut candy, made with local ingredients, are popular and easily accessible souvenirs.
  • Traditional clothing like Hanfu and Qipao represent Taiwan’s history and traditions and are popular souvenirs for travelers.

Traditional Taiwanese Food Items

Traditional Taiwanese food items are widely regarded as a unique and integral part of the country’s culture. For those looking to take home a taste of Taiwan, there is much to choose from. Popular souvenirs include various types of tea such as oolong and jasmine; rice crackers made with dried shrimp, mushrooms, seaweed and other ingredients; and popular snacks like pineapple cakes.

Some travelers also enjoy bringing back traditional delicacies such as stinky tofu, oyster omelet or beef noodle soup for friends or family to sample. Taiwanese food items can be found in many markets throughout the country, making them easily accessible for anyone wanting to take some home.

While these items represent an important part of Taiwan’s culture, it is recommended that tourists purchase their souvenirs from reputable vendors in order to ensure authenticity and quality.

Handmade Crafts

Handmade crafts are a common form of souvenir available in Taiwan. From embroidered purses and cloths to carved wooden sculptures, traditional Taiwanese crafts make for great gifts that will be treasured for years.

While some items may have modern twists on traditional designs, many artisans follow time-honored techniques passed down from their families. With a wide range of colors, materials, and styles available, it can be difficult to choose just one item!

To ensure the craftsmanship is up to par and the item is ethically sourced, shoppers should look for items with certifications from local government or reputable organizations.

Additionally, shopping at night markets provides an opportunity to support local artisans directly by bargaining or making custom orders.

Whether looking for something unique or a classic design, handmade crafts make perfect souvenirs from Taiwan that are sure to bring joy and appreciation.

Taiwanese Snacks

Taiwanese snacks are renowned for their unique flavors and textures. Pineapple cakes, taro balls, and peanut candy are among the most popular of these treats.

Made with local ingredients, these snacks provide both a taste of the culture and an enjoyable snack experience.

Pineapple cakes

Popularly known as a gift, pineapple cakes are a type of pastry originating in Taiwan. Their distinctive flavor and unique texture make them a special treat for Taiwan’s visitors:

  • Taste: A crusty exterior gives way to the softness of fresh pineapple jam, offering an addictive combination of sweet and savory flavors.

  • Memories: Pineapple cakes have become synonymous with nostalgia for many Taiwanese, evoking fond memories of home and family.

These treats also serve as symbols of Taiwanese culture, representing freedom and independence from oppressive regimes.

Enjoying pineapple cakes is an opportunity to celebrate the proud spirit of Taiwan’s people while taking home an unforgettable taste experience.

Taro balls

Taro balls are a traditional Taiwanese snack made from the root of the taro plant. They are usually steamed and served warm with sugar, or they may be boiled and then flavoured with soy sauce or sesame oil. The texture is dense and chewy, and it has a sweet taste. Taro balls can be purchased at most night markets in Taiwan, as well as supermarkets and convenience stores.

They are also commonly found in bubble tea shops, where they are served alongside tapioca balls, puddings, jellies and other toppings. As an alternative to eating them plain, many people enjoy adding taro balls to their drinks for added flavour and texture. Additionally, some restaurants serve taro balls as part of larger meals such as soup noodles or lunch boxes.

Taro balls make excellent souvenirs for travellers looking to bring something unique back home from Taiwan. They have a long shelf life when stored properly either in the refrigerator or freezer, allowing them to be enjoyed at any time even after returning home.

Peanut candy

Peanut candy is a traditional Taiwanese confectionary made from ground peanuts and sugar. This sweet treat has been a favorite among locals and visitors for many years, with its unique blend of crunchy texture and subtle sweetness. It can be served as a snack or dessert, enjoyed with tea or coffee. It is also often found in gift boxes as part of Chinese New Year celebrations or other special occasions.

  • Preparation:

  • Peanut candy is usually cooked on the stovetop using simple ingredients such as sugar, peanuts, sesame oil and salt.

  • It is stirred continuously until it forms a thick paste which is then rolled into small balls before being set to cool.

  • Taste:

  • The finished product has a chewy texture with a slight hint of nutty flavor that comes from the roasted peanuts.

  • The sweetness of the candy varies depending on how much sugar was used in the recipe, allowing for different levels of sweetness to suit individual tastes.

Traditional Clothing

Traditional Taiwanese clothing includes a variety of items, such as Hanfu, Qipao, and tribal-style garments. Each piece reflects unique characteristics of the country’s culture and history, making them popular souvenirs for travelers.

Hanfu is a type of Chinese robe that has been worn for centuries by the people of Taiwan. It is characterized by its long flowing sleeves and intricate embroidery patterns on the fabric.

The Qipao is another traditional outfit that originated in China but has been adopted by Taiwanese culture over time. It features a slim-fitting silhouette with Mandarin collar and frog closures along the neckline.

Local Artwork

Local artwork in Taiwan often features traditional motifs and symbols that reflect the country’s rich culture and history. Visitors to Taiwan can find a variety of beautiful pieces of art, from paintings to sculptures and other works. Here are some suggestions for local artwork souvenirs:

  1. Hand-painted woodblocks – with intricate designs depicting scenes from Taiwanese folklore or landscapes

  2. Porcelain vases – decorated with blue-and-white motifs inspired by traditional Chinese painting styles

  3. Ceramic figurines – featuring characters from myths or famous historical figures

  4. Stone carvings – crafted into shapes that represent blessings of luck and prosperity

Local artwork is a great way to bring home a one-of-a-kind souvenir that reflects the unique culture and traditions of Taiwan. It is also an opportunity to support local artists, whose works have been passed on through generations for centuries.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best places to buy souvenirs from Taiwan?

Taiwan offers a wide range of souvenir options, from traditional ceramic items to modern gadgets. Popular places to buy souvenirs include Ximending, Taipei 101 Shopping Mall and Shilin Night Market. Additionally, many local markets in cities like Taichung and Tainan are great for finding unique gifts.

Are there any discounts available for tourists buying souvenirs?

Many shops in Taiwan offer discounts for tourists buying souvenirs. Tourists should ask shopkeepers if any discounts are available, as some may not openly advertise them. It is also advised to compare prices between different stores to get the best deal.

What are the customs regulations for bringing souvenirs into my country?

Customs regulations for bringing souvenirs into a country vary by jurisdiction. It is important to research prior to traveling in order to understand the restrictions and any fees or taxes that may apply. Understanding these rules will help ensure a smooth return home with your souvenirs.

Are there any online stores that sell Taiwanese souvenirs?

Yes, there are various online stores selling Taiwanese souvenirs. These stores offer a wide range of products, including traditional handicrafts, clothing items, and mementos. Customers can purchase these souvenirs from the comfort of their own homes.

Are there any stores that specialize in souvenirs from Taiwan?

Yes, there are many stores that specialize in selling souvenirs from Taiwan. These stores can be found both online and offline, offering a wide selection of traditional Taiwanese items such as tea sets, decorative fans, and art pieces.

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