Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Taiwan National Palace Museum

I'm not much a museum fan honestly. Hardly go to them on my own, and I remember the forced times in school when we had to go for those expedition trips. I could walk in-and-out of a museum in no time!

But again, like any tourist to Taiwan, one of the must-see places is the National Palace Museum (國立故宮博物院) in Taipei. I've heard a bit about the museum prior - that this Taiwan museum is supposedly one of the top 10 museums in the world... and apparently has a very good Chinese artifacts, even better than the ones in China.

So, I decided to give this museum a try.

The location of the Taiwan National Museum is on a hill which makes it quite grand. A good nice journey passing the trees lead to a very quiet and unassuming building.
national palace museum, taipei, taiwan
Looks quiet from the outside

But don't be mis-fooled, as the crowds are mainly inside. And they keep coming in, many of them Japanese.

We could rent the audio earphones in English which guided some parts of the tour, explaining the story behind the exhibits. This came in handy with good description, though a lil limited as not many exhibits were mentioned.

Anyway, this museum rotates its exhibits every 3 months as there are really a lot of artifacts in the museum (said to take 12 years to complete the cycle). Wow!

But some of them are permanent displays. And I was lucky to see 2 of its more prominent displays:

1. A cabbage carved from jade which looks rather real, and has a samll grasshopper on its leaves. This is interesting for how the colours of the jade is used from white to dark green.

2. The pork shaped stone which is used from different minerals to form it. Looks real to be eaten lol.

We also had the opportunity to view the video which was shown at the next theatre building. This was a semi cartoon/animation like video filmed in the museum with narration of the exhibits & artifacts in the museum. The story is about a museum artifact (a boy) who were finding for the grasshopper from the jade cabbage. Along the way, he meets & stumbles upon the other interesting artifacts in the museum (each of them can talk as well).

I must say that this was very well done & gave a good insight of the museum, and especially for people like me who prefer to see a video lol.

Museum Architecture
Btw, the main museum building from this building seems pretty grand.

national palace museum, taipei, taiwan, main building

Another interesting thing which I could take photo is this glass panel with Chinese characters facing the sky taken at the lobby of the museum.

national palace museum, taipei, taiwan, glass panel

Museum Restaurants
The museum has some cafes & restaurants for the public. The one we went was quite modern & served good food as well. Seems weird, but yes, this museum (restaurant in the national museum) can also be known for its good food apart from its exhibits!

national palace museum, taipei, taiwan restaurant
The modern interior of the restaurant

national palace museum, taipei, taiwan restaurant soup
One of the better soups I've tasted

national palace museum, taipei, taiwan restaurant food
Delicious preserved dates which Taiwan is famous for

If you are into arts or history & ancient works, then this is definitely a place for you. However, even if like me where museums are just ok and not in top list, but still don't miss out on visiting this acclaimed Taipei museum - the Taiwan National Palace Museum. Afterall, you can claim, you've been to one of the world's greatest right here in Taiwan, Asia! :)

*As you can see, I like food, and that's coming up next!


  1. I feel like going to Taiwan too.. Ahww.. I love art and I can see how they design their stuff..
    Btw, you're making a book? What kind of book is it? Curious to know..
    Hehe.. Quachee's book!

  2. From what I know, the artifacts of this museum were taken from Beijing when Chiang Kai Shek fled mainland in 1949. Yeah, they are better than those in China.

  3. hey, non-stop traveling eh? after thai then taiwan...

    u soon become a travel writer.. haha

  4. A praying mantis followed me to work two days ago but it didn't come home with me. Hope it's doing well in its new environment.

    Thanks for sharing more of the beauty of Taiwan.

    Your Malaysia book is completed? Congrats!!

  5. i find the glass panel with writings on it to be very attractive. definitely don't see those everywhere. ;)

  6. When I was there, I had so little time to explore the museum.

  7. the way you write is as if taiwan has the best museum in the world. Now, i'm tempted to go to taiwan...

  8. curryegg,

    i guess a lot of young ppl will love taiwan for it really is quite a creative island (esp taipei) :)

    on my book, yes, its due sometime this month (31st July!) haha. its on malaysia - called 50+1 Malaysia.

    will keep you & fellow bloggers posted on how you can get a copy free hehe

  9. khengsiong
    yes, ur right - makes it even the more grand haha

    well that can be an aim :)

    yes, oh u saw one recently too? used to see more of them last time, but not now.

    on the book, yes, it will be launched 31st july! and ill let u & fellow bloggers know how to get a free copy :)

    makes a good reason to go back hehe. i would definitely go back to this island of taiwan :)

    it really is one of the best from articles & sources ive read & heard :) and yes, i think one should go visit the museum when have the chance :)


Oh hey, thank you for commenting! :)