This small East Asian country may seem inconspicuous, but it’s popular with Southeast Asians for a reason. The fair blend of East and West, abundance of delicacies, and the allure of affordable and tasteful shopping are just a small part of the charm Taiwan brings. While the language barrier may seem daunting, the locals are overall very accommodating to foreigners. After spending 18 months exploring and living in this country, I easily declared it my second home. The only thing left for me to do is to learn how to ride a scooter, one of the ways to properly get around like a local.
Nonetheless, I keep coming back here, always to visit friends and discover something new. Much has changed in ten years, but much has also stayed the same, which puts me at ease. I once wondered whether my constant return is just me being overly nostalgic and hung up on a past that was very dear to me. It’s not that my life here had been all rosy and lovely; there were plenty of moments I wished to forget. But maybe that’s why this place holds so much meaning for me—because I became who I am today from those experiences. Such is life, and such should travel be, experiences that shape me.