Great! You’re heading to Taiwan! Taiwan is an amazing country jam-packed with loads of amazing things to do, places to see, and incredible experiences to be had. However, before you jet off on a whirlwind adventure, you’ll need to figure out what to pack for Taiwan. Knowing what items to include on your packing list for Taiwan is crucial for planning the perfect trip.
If you’re not sure where to start, this super-detailed Taiwan packing list will undoubtedly come in handy. While you certainly don’t need to pack everything on this list, it will give you a good idea of what you need (or don’t need) to pack for your trip.
Ready? Let’s go!
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What to Pack for Taiwan: Essentials for Your Taiwan Packing List
First things first. Travel cover is one of the most important items to include in your Taiwan packing list, and you absolutely do need it. While Taiwan is particularly safe to visit, you simply cannot predict what will happen on your trip. Unless you have a crystal ball, of course.
As with any other trip, it’s always best to be over-prepared for unforeseen circumstances. Getting sick or injured, losing your valuables, or missing a flight are just a few things that can completely ruin your trip.
The best way to avoid this is to get comprehensive travel cover. World Nomads has loads of different plans to match any budget and traveling style. The best part? Applying online is super easy, and you’ll be covered in a few clicks!
Luggage & Bags
- Suitcase: The next must-have item on your Taiwan packing list is a reliable suitcase. Taiwan has an excellent transportation network connecting you to all corners of the island. Bus, train, and metro stations are modern, and there’s really no need to carry around a heavy travel backpack (unless you’re headed to SEA afterward). As a result, a spinner suitcase will be the most practical. Check out this gorgeous DELSEY Paris Chatelet Hardside suitcase that is lightweight and durable.
- Carry-on Luggage: If you’re only spending a few days in Taiwan or a light packer, then this 21-inch American Tourister carry-on is a great choice.
- Day bag: A small backpack is a must if you’re planning to hike all the wonderful trails in Taiwan. However, if you’re only sticking to urban areas, this Modoker Vintage Backpack is ideal. It has multiple compartments and an external USB charging port.
- Dry bag: Taiwan is a mecca for adventure sports – river tracing, canoeing, boating, cliff jumping, waterfall chasing, you name it – Taiwan has it all. If you’re going to spend lots of time near the water, it’s a good idea to include a dry bag on your Taiwan packing list.
- Packing cubes: If you didn’t know this yet, packing cubes are a real game-changer. Not only will they help you stay organized, but you won’t have to worry about overpacking. This DIMJ Cube Set includes pouches for your clothes, shoes, laundry and even electronic accessories.
- Jewelry organizer: There’s no need to pack any flashy jewelry pieces for your trip. But if you do want to bring a few essential pieces, this tiny Vee Travel Jewelry Box is a great option. It fits in your handbag and is perfect for keeping your jewelry from getting tangled up.
- Toiletry/cosmetics bag: If you’re not a big fan of hanging toiletry bags, then this lightweight, translucent toiletry bag is just what you need. Another great way to pack lighter is to invest in refillable travel bottles or jars.
- Travel wallet: If you like to keep your passport and all your travel documents in one easy-to-find place, then it’s worth getting a Zoppen Multi-purpose Rfid Blocking Travel Wallet.
Electronics & Gadgets
- Portable power bank: A rechargeable power bank is a huge must to keep your phone juiced up so that you can access all your favorite apps on the go. This slim Mophie portable charger can power up to three devices at once.
- Kindle: To be honest, there are oodles of awesome things to do in Taiwan, and you’ll never be bored. But if you need to catch up on some reading, this Kindle Paperwhite is super lightweight and waterproof.
- Travel adapter: The standard voltage in Taiwan is 110V with a frequency of 60Hz, and the typical plug types are A and B. Unless you’re from America or Canada, it’s a good idea to pack a good travel adapter. This travel plug works in 150 countries and has four USB sockets, so you never have to worry about keeping your devices all charged up.
- Airpods: If you are a minimal packer and don’t like carrying around bulky headphones, then a good pair of Apple AirPods is just what you need. Not only are they super lightweight, but they have excellent sound quality.
- Camera: Taiwan is a beautiful country with loads of photo ops around every bend. Don’t forget to pack a good camera to document all your favorite bits. I never go anywhere without my Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II mirrorless camera. It takes gorgeous photos and weighs a lot less than a bulky DSLR.
- Action Camera/ drone: If you’re looking for a good action camera, you can’t go wrong with a lightweight Go Pro Hero, while this DJI Mavic Mini will take your videography skills to the next level.
Clothing & Accessories
I’m not going to tell how many pairs of jeans or how many t’s or sundresses to pack for Taiwan, as I’m sure you can figure that out independently. Instead, I’ll share all the essential items you’ll need to make your trip easier.
Before we get to that, it’s important to understand the climate. Taiwan has a subtropical climate, so the weather can vary greatly depending on when you visit. Here’s a quick look at the seasons:
- Summer (June – Aug): Summers are scorching hot and humid, with temperatures often hitting 35°C or more during July and August. Make sure you pack light, breathable clothing.
- Winter (Dec – Feb): Winters can be cold, so pack lots of layers and a warm outer coat. Chances are extremely low to see snow in the city, but if you’re going to mountainous places like Taipingshan or Hehuanshan, expect to find a winter wonderland.
- During spring (March – May) and autumn (Sept – Nov), expect mostly pleasant temperatures ranging between 20-25°C. Evenings can get chilly, so make sure you pack some long sleeve shirts and a jacket or two.
- However, no matter when you visit Taiwan, be prepared for the rain. May marks the arrival of the plum rains, and it can rain for days! June to October is typhoon season, so don’t rule out torrential rain.
What clothes to pack for Taiwan
- Raincoat: Although you can buy a dirt-cheap throw-away raincoat at just about any convenience store in Taiwan, it’s not good for the environment. If you’re a conscientious traveler, rather invest in a durable eco-friendly raincoat that will last you ages. This L-Raincoat is made of TPU, which means it’s not harmful to the environment. Besides being waterproof and tear-resistant, it also dries in a jiffy and has adjustable sleeves.
- Shoes: When planning what footwear to pack for Taiwan, you’ll need to plan according to your itinerary. With that said, you’ll definitely need to bring along comfortable walking shoes. A good pair of New Balance sneakers will do. However, if you’re looking for something a bit more stylish, check out my post on cute travel sneakers for women. Make sure also to pack some flip flops if you’re hitting the beach and nice sandals for hot evenings.
- Hiking shoes: If you’re going to hike Taiwan’s gorgeous hiking trails or pop by its epic waterfalls, then you’ll also need a good pair of slip-proof hiking shoes.
- Sun hat: Whether you’re going hiking in Taroko Gorge or hitting the beach, you’re going to need a good hat to protect you from the harsh rays. A beautiful straw hat is perfect for beach days, while a Trailheads women’s cap is a must-have hiking accessory.
- A scarf/ light pashmina: It is not necessarily a must-have item on your packing list for Taiwan, but it can be handy on breezy evenings or if you need some extra shade in the sun.
- Swimsuit: There are loads of beautiful beaches in Taiwan, and many hotels have dreamy pools perfect for cooling off after a day out exploring. With that said, Taiwanese are quite modest in their beach attire, and you’re likely to stick out in your favorite string bikini. Opt for a nice one-piece or a high-rise bikini to blend in more.
- UV jacket: With temperatures reaching up to 35°C, Taiwan’s summers can be relentless. If you’re going to spend lots of time outside or get sunburnt easily, pack a light UV jacket to protect you from the sun’s rays.
- Sweater/ light jacket: The best time to visit Taiwan is during spring and autumn. While you’ll miss most of the heat, evenings can be cool. Pack a light sweater or jacket for the occasional cloudy day or breezy evening. Also, if you’re going to use public transport like the THSR, expect the AC to be cranked up!
- Down jacket: If you’re visiting Taiwan during winter, you’ll need to pack a good coat to keep you warm. January is the coldest month, and temperatures can dip into the single digits. A UNIQLO down jacket will keep you warm, while this Columbia Women’s Long Hooded Jacket is perfect if you’re looking for something that offers more warmth and is water-resistant.
Essential Travel Accessories & Toiletries
- Refillable water bottle: It’s not safe to drink tap water in Taiwan, so having a reusable water bottle that you can refill at your hotel or hostel’s water dispenser is key. I always travel with a Hydy Stainless Steel Thermo Water bottle, but you might prefer a collapsible bottle to save some space.
- Bug spray: You’ll need a good bug spray no matter where you go in Taiwan. This Greenerways organic mosquito spray is DEET-free and fits into your handbag.
- Sunscreen: You’ll find sunscreen almost everywhere in Taiwan (Watsons, Poya, Cosmed, 7-11 – you name it). But it’s important to know that most sunscreen brands in Asia contain whitening agents that could change your complexion. Moreover, most of them aren’t waterproof or reef-safe. Therefore, it’s best to pack this reef-safe Banana Boat sunscreen spray to keep you and the environment safe.
- After-sun or aloe vera: It can be hard to find decent after sun or aloe vera in Taiwan. This TONYMOLY Aloe Chok Soothing Gel is my favorite go-to multi-purpose hydrating gel. It’s formulated with 99% aloe extract and can be used to relieve everything from sunburn and irritated skin to moisturizing damaged hair and dry lips!
- First Aid kit: It’s always a good idea to pack a small first-aid kit no matter where you go.
- Microfiber Towel: Unless you’re staying at a luxury hotel or beach resort, it’s highly unlikely that your accommodation will have beach or pool towels handy. Pack a lightweight microfiber towel like this gorgeous Dock & Bay towel. The best part? It won’t weigh you down because it dries in a jiffy.
- Deodorant: Most deodorant brands in Taiwan contain whitening agents, so make sure to bring along your favorite brand.
- Hand sanitizer: It’s always a good idea to have hand sanitizer handy no matter where you go. This Purell hand santizer gel will be a real lifesaver when hitting the beach, hiking, or stuffing your face at Taiwan’s epic night markets.
- Hairstyling products: You’ll have no trouble finding an array of hair care products in Taiwan, but it’s best to bring your own styling products if you have frizzy hair.
- Oral Care: There are loads of oral care products in Taiwan, but finding your favorite brand might not be as easy. Colgate toothpaste is practically everywhere, but if you prefer Crest, it will be a bit more tricky (although not impossible). Pack your favorite brand of toothpaste, dental floss, and mouthwash for a stress-free trip.
- Feminine hygiene products: Like elsewhere in Asia, tampons aren’t very popular in Taiwan, and there are only a handful of brands available. Best to bring your favorite brand along.
- Pain killers: If you suffer from migraines or frequent headaches, it’s a good idea to bring along pain killers.
Useful Apps to Download Before Your Trip
- Google Translate: The official language in Taiwan is Chinese. English is not spoken widely everywhere, so it can be hard to ask for directions or even order food at times. Make sure you download Google Translate on your phone and check out these 70 essential words & phrases to make your trip easier. It’s also important to note that Taiwan uses Traditional Chinese and not Simplified Chinese like in China. iOS | Android
- Google Maps: If you’re an independent traveler, download Google Maps so that you can plan your stops, check transport modes, and have easy-to-follow directions right at your fingertips. iOS | Android
- Uber Taxi: If you’re only sticking to Taiwan’s bigger cities, Uber is a great way to travel short distances at reasonable prices. iOS | Android
What not to pack for Taiwan
- Umbrella: Many packing lists for Taiwan include travel umbrellas. So let me just set the record straight. While Taiwan’s weather can be downright unpredictable, and you’ll definitely need an umbrella, you do not necessarily need to pack one for your trip. The reason for this is that many hotels have umbrellas that you can borrow for free. You can also buy an umbrella (and even UV protective umbrellas) at any convenience store islandwide. Umbrellas usually cost between NT$100 to NT$350.
- Lots of makeup: Definitely pack makeup, but don’t overdo it. Taiwan’s weather is hot and muggy, and there’s no way your makeup will stay flawless throughout the day. Instead, opt for BB cream, blush, neutral eyeshadow, eyeliner, mascara, and a nice lip gloss.
- Shampoo: Most hotels and hostels have shampoo, so keep this space for other things unless you have unmanageable hair that needs some extra love. I always travel with my fav Kerastase shampoo that keeps my hair in check.
- Soap/body wash: Unless you’ve got a special brand, you really don’t need to pack soap or body wash. Similar to shampoo, most hotels will take care of this for you. If not, pop into any convenience store or supermarket where you’ll find an array of products.
- Face masks: If you love a good face mask, you’re in for a real treat! Face masks are probably one of the easiest things to find in Taiwan. Poya, Watsons, and Cosmed all have a wide variety of masks. But, for the best K-beauty masks, head to Innisfree or Etude House.
Well, that’s all I’ve got on what to pack for Taiwan! If you think I’ve missed any must-pack items, let me know in the comments below so that I can keep this Taiwan packing list updated!
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