Find out Taiwan's weather in December (mild, damp, showery, averaging 16°C or 60°F in Taipei), what to wear and what's good to do: pro travel tips.
Weather: Winter starts from December, but weather is generally mild, with average low and high temperatures of 13 °C (55 °F) and 18 °C (64 °F) for Taipei, and damp with occasional showers.
Clothing: There is a big difference in temperature between day and night. During day time a long-sleeve shirt is adequate, but in early morning and evening a coat is needed, sometimes also a sweater. If you visit mountainous areas, a sweater and a water-proof coat is recommended.
Things to Do
The most spectacular New Year's Eve event in Taiwan happens next to Taipei 101. 100,000s of people gather to hear the concerts and watch the countdown and the spectacular midnight fireworks that stream off the building itself and pop around it. It is the 5th tallest building in the world as of 2013. There is an observation deck on the 89th floor and restaurants and shopping at the mall.
Elephant Hill Park: See the New Year's Eve event from Elephant Hill (象山) Park. It is a scenic vantage point a 20-minute walk away from the Taipei 101.
Tropical Warmth at Kenting Beach: Enjoy Taiwan's tropical beaches and warm currents. December temperatures range between 25°C (77°F) during the day and 18°C (64°F) at night at Kenting, and the water is usually warmer.
Ximending Night Market: Eating hot Chinese and Japanese food is a fine way to spend a cold evening. Ximending is a popular night market in Taipei near the Taipei 101. This will be a taste and cultural experience and give you an opportunity to find gifts and souvenirs. A Taipei local favorite noodle shop called A Zong Mian Xian Restaurant has a great reputation (45 TWD per bowl (1.60 USD)). See how many of Taiwan's favorite foods, beverages and desserts you can eat.
Skiing and Snow Scenery: Hit the ski resort on Yushan Mountain. It is the second tallest mountain in Taiwan with a 3,886 meter (12,750 feet) high peak and large forests.
Christmas in Taiwan
Christmas is an unofficial holiday in Taiwan. While its 5% Christian population celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ in churches and homes across the island, the majority enjoy the decorations and displays in shops, and general commercialism.
The big hotels and Western restaurants offer Christmas dinner, and the malls and shopping centers are dressed up in holiday decorations to entertain Taiwanese shoppers.
The Taiwanese have evolved their own peculiar Christmas traditions, isolated in the Pacific and subjected to cultural currents from the West and East. In Taiwan, celebrating Christmas isn't really so much an affair for parents and their children, but its for romantic couples. It is sort of like a Western Valentine's Day holiday.
Couples meet and spend the day together. Then they go out for dinner in the evening. Singles meet up with their friends, and they go out for a good time. Then after dinner, people want to go and watch a movie. How the collision of cultural winds produced this social custom is at yet not understood by scientists.
More on Christmas in China>>>
A Busy Travel Month
December is a busy travel month due to Christmas and New Year travel. Tickets for flights to Taiwan and between Taiwan and Chinese mainland may be difficult to get.