This is part of an on-going series about living in Taiwan. Check out the previous article here.
If you haven’t been in Taiwan for the summer yet then I have only two words for you, ‘brace yourself’. Taiwan is hot and that in itself is an understatement. Some days, when the sun is at its strongest and the humidity is at its highest, a layer of skin can feel like one too many. You’ll find yourself in a state of perpetual perspiration, desperately seeking out any hub where there might be air con. You’ll need to shower more than once a day and any outdoor activity needs to be accompanied with gallons upon gallons of water. Those clothes that claim to wick away sweat will be useless within moments of stepping out into the heat and just throw away any intention of arriving anywhere looking as put together as you intended, you’ll be looking like you’ve just run a marathon within a two-minute walk.
That being said, I’m from the UK and that means that whenever I see the sun, my natural instinct is to go and have fun in it, because who knows when you’ll see the sun again in the UK. Of course, here in Taiwan, braving the scorching sunny days means that you have to go in prepared so there are always a few things I am sure to do. Obviously, the first is going armed with liquid, all the liquid in the world if you can. You have a perfectly reasonable excuse to drink excessive milk tea or fruit tea and you are allowed to eat all the shaved ice available if you see it as being necessary.
Secondly, wear a lot of sun cream. Fortunately, I have skin that doesn’t burn too easily, but my skin is no match for the strength of the Taiwanese sun and nearly every Monday I head back to work with a bright red nose. Finally, any destination that you are heading to should have a large body of water for you to jump into at any given moment. If at all possible, you should just be in it entirely for the hottest part of the day, whether it is the Pacific or a fresh mountain river. In summer, I scootered up into the mountains to find a river or a waterfall to play in every single weekend because it seemed like the only way to combat the heat sometimes. Fortunately, Taiwan is home to hundreds of waterfalls and natural pools for you to seek out and the bonus part is that they’re usually incredibly beautiful too.
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About the Author
Ella is an English teacher in Taiwan and has been living and teaching in Asia for the last two years. She has loved seeing kids enjoy learning English. In her spare time Ella has been learning Chinese, climbing mountains and finding hidden waterfalls in Taiwan’s beautiful countryside. You can check out her adventures on her Instagram https://www.instagram.com/ella.watson93/ or read about them on her blog www.byebyeblighty.wordpress.com.