See our itinerary here

After almost 5 weeks in Japan, we flew to Taipei with Tiger Air.  Immediately, we felt much more in (South East) Asia, than in Japan.  The motorcycles, the pollution, the noodle restaurants, the night markets, the food stalls reminded us of Malaysia.
We rented an AirbnB apartment on Minsheng East road (for a week) and used this place as a base to explore the many sightseings around Taipei: Yingge ceramics, tea plantations, city hot springs, Taipei 101, and much more.

We spent a day in Tamsui and ate fried squid while having our feet cleaned by fishes!  The breeze was somewhat refreshing as it was above 45 degrees in Taipei during our stay! On August 7th, we took a train to Hualien where we stayed 2 nights at Parkview
(5 star) hotel.  

This break was welcomed after being 6 weeks on the road traveling with our backpacks. We visited the cool (new) night market and ate too much local food.  We rented a car and drove along the East coast to the tropic of Cancer marker and spent a day in Taroko national park. Taroko was infested by Chinese tourists (from organized tours), but the hiking trails were calm, beautiful with relatively few people walking. 
Left Taiwan on August 15th for Cebu, Philippines.