Travel & Explore, a Photowalk & Guide to the National Palace Museum, Taipei, Taiwan (國立故宮博物院)
Encompassing a collection of more than 600,000 historical and ancient Chinese artefacts, the National Palace Museum remains to be one of the museums that hold the most extensive collections in the world today.
Having visited the National Palace Museum many years ago, it was once again an eye-opening experience to revisit the museum many years after. Why is the Palace Museum a worthwhile visit?
First Things First:
- What to bring? MRT/Public transport easy card! Cash/Card for entrance fee to Museum.
- Pro Tip! Organising your cards, notes, coins, SIM card and everything in between can be done effortlessly with a T&G Haru Wallet.
Cultural and Historical Significance
The National Palace Museum has had its beginnings inside the Forbidden City in Beijing. Originally founded in 1925, the Palace Museum, the museum was ordered by then General Chiang Kai Shek of the Nationalist Party were relocated different cities and places within China due to the Japanese invasion during the 1930’s. Following the surrender of the Japanese at the end of WWII, the Chinese Civil War resumed and thus the National Palace Museum was then evacuated and moved to Taiwan in the late 1940’s.
The National Museum houses arguably some of the most treasured items in the world. The collections and artefacts encompass over 8,000 years of Chinese history. Some of the items that are displayed include: books and documents, scripts, paintings and calligraphy, ceramics, bronzes, carvings amongst others. Of particular significance are items the: meat-shaped stone (piece of jasper stone carved to look like a piece of cooked pork), the mao gong ding (bronze vessel from the Zhou Dynasty) and the Jadeite Cabbage (piece of jade carved to look like a cabbage).
Only once when you personally sight these artefacts do you begin to appreciate the craftmanship and wit of the ancient and historical Chinese people.
How to Get There?
The most convenient way to get to the National Palace Museum is by MRT then transfer to either taxi, bus or walk.
Take the Red Line (Tamshui Line) on the MRT to Shilin Station. Transfer to bus outside the MRT station and catch any of the following buses: 255 Shuttle, M1, S18, S19, 300, 304 or 815. Get off at National Palace Museum stop and the fare is NTD$15.
However, we recommend to walk from Shilin Station to the Palace Museum via Zhongzheng Road and stopping by the Chinag Kai Shek Shilin Residence which is on the way.
Since it does take a good portion of the day to explore most of the museum which spans four levels and two branches, your visit may span into the late-afternoon/evening and thus is a perfect time to head back down to Shilin Station and check out the hustle and bustle of the famous Shilin Night Market.
In Summary, Recommendations:
- What to bring? Easy transport card, wallet (we recommend something like this), light jacket
- When to go? Best to start heading over by the late-morning
- How long to go for? Depends on how quickly you like to explore, but expect half a day
- Where to go after? Shilin Night Market for food and games