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Ju Ming Museum 朱銘美術館: Sculpting Memories

Hundreds of incredible sculptures await at the Ju Ming Museum 朱銘美術館 in New Taipei City.

Hundreds of incredible sculptures await at the Ju Ming Museum 朱銘美術館 in New Taipei City.

I’m always impressed at the quality and diversity of Taiwan’s museums.  Some people find museums to be too droll, but I love exploring them.  The Ju Ming Museum 朱銘美術館 in New Taipei City may sound like a typical art museum at first, but it is a far cry from many others.  The museum houses the sculptures and artwork of Taiwanese sculptor Ju Ming, whose career has spanned nearly 50 years.  In that time, he has created hundreds of sculptures from bronze, metal, stone, and probably dozens of other materials.  Not only are the pieces ambitious and stunning, but the museum also serves as a nice outdoor activity on a clear day.  Check out more info after the jump.

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National Center for Traditional Arts 國立傳統藝術中心: A Cultural Grab Bag

Classical Chinese architecture is just one of the many things to see and do at the National Center for Traditional Arts 國立傳統藝術中心 in Yilan.

Classical Chinese architecture is just one of the many things to see and do at the National Center for Traditional Arts 國立傳統藝術中心 in Yilan.

If you’re looking for a Taiwan-centric museum, Yilan’s National Center for Traditional Arts 國立傳統藝術中心 should top the list.  It isn’t just a simple museum however, but a multi-acre park complete with an old street, restaurants, boat rides, temples, ponds, and more.  It’s almost like a traditional theme park, but without rollercoasters.  Check out more info after the jump.

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Republic of Chocolate 巧克力共和國: From Cocoa Bean to Your Hands

Museum or giant piece of chocolate?  It's hard to tell at the Republic of Chocolate 巧克力共和國 in Taoyuan.

Museum or giant piece of chocolate? It’s hard to tell at the Republic of Chocolate 巧克力共和國 in Taoyuan.

Taiwan isn’t exactly known for chocolate, so it’s a bit strange to find a chocolate museum in Taoyuan.  Republic of Chocolate 巧克力共和國 (also known as the Chotty & Cotty Republic of Chocolate) is run by Hunya, a chocolate company in Taiwan.  While you probably won’t see their products abroad, you’ll see 7-11s stuffed with their sweets.  Not only can you learn how chocolate goes from bean to bar, but you there are also DIY workshops that let you go hands-on with everyone’s favorite snack.  Check out more info after the jump.

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National Museum of Natural Science 國立自然科學博物館: Dinosaurs in Taiwan

There are more dinosaurs than you can count at the National Museum of Natural Science 國立自然科學博物館 in Taichung.

There are more dinosaurs than you can count at the National Museum of Natural Science 國立自然科學博物館 in Taichung.

One of Taichung’s most famous attractions is the immense National Museum of Natural Science 國立自然科學博物館.  The expansive museum is one of the most revered in Taiwan, and it is overflowing with exhibits ranging from geology to archeology to space travel.  I cannot overstate how much there is to see here, and that’s not including other complexes the museum has throughout Taiwan.  Check out more information after the jump.

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Pinglin 坪林: A World of Tea

Tea is everywhere in Pinglin 坪林.

Tea is everywhere in Pinglin 坪林.

There are few places in Taiwan as tea crazy as Pinglin 坪林 in New Taipei City.  I don’t think I saw a single building that didn’t have the Chinese character for tea on it while I was there.  What better place for a tea museum?  Pinglin is a definite must-do for anyone obsessed with the beverage.  Even if you’re not, you will be wowed by the beautiful scenery.  Check out more from my visits.

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Beitou Museum 北投文物館: A Walk Through History

The interior of the Beitou Museum is the real treat.

The interior of the Beitou Museum is the real treat.

Watching over Xinbeitou is the Beitou Museum 北投文物館, a beautiful Japanese hotel turned Taiwanese cultural hub.  Though small, the traditional Japanese architecture and fascinating exhibits make this museum a must-see.  I do think the best time to visit would be in summer or spring when the flowers around the grounds are in full bloom, but either way I doubt you’ll leave disappointed.  Check out some pictures from my visit.

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Yingge Ceramics Museum 鶯歌陶瓷博物館: From the Kiln

A photo op awaits.

A photo op awaits.

 

Yingge District in New Taipei City is famous for ceramics and pottery, so what better place to have a museum for just that?  The Yingge Ceramics Museum 鶯歌陶瓷博物館 is one of the many specialized museums in Taipei, and it may be one of the larger ones as well.  Below are pictures from my recent trip.

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Lin Liu-Hsin Puppet Theatre Museum 林柳新紀念偶戲博物館: A Different Museum Experience

A colorful cast of characters at the Lin Liu-Hsin Puppet Theatre Museum

A colorful cast of characters at the Lin Liu-Hsin Puppet Theatre Museum

One of the most interesting museums I’ve visited in Taiwan is the Lin Liu-Hsin Puppet Theatre Museum 林柳新紀念偶戲博物館 in Taipei.  Even if you don’t know anything about puppetry (I sure don’t), the creative design of the museum and the quirky atmosphere makes it a place worth visiting.  Check out some photographs of the place after the jump.

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