The Shung Ye Museum of Formosan Aborigines (順益台灣原住民博物館; shūnyì táiwān yuánzhùmín bówùguǎn), 100m up Zhishan Road from the Palace Museum, is one of Taipei’s most appealing museums, providing a thorough introduction to Taiwan’s indigenous population. As of 2010 there were fourteen formally recognized tribes, though the museum focuses on the nine most prominent: the Ami, Atayal, Bunun, Paiwan, Puyuma, Rukai, Saisiyat, Tao and Cou (Tsou). The collection isn’t particularly large, but it’s well presented in English and Chinese, and videos covering the origins and current social situation of the various tribes on the first floor are excellent – just make sure you avoid school parties and tour groups because you’ll miss most of the commentary. The basement is the most intriguing part of the museum, highlighting festivals, myths and rituals, with a special area dedicated to head-hunting and a selection of ceremonial weapons.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Taiwan features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Cool Taipei: 8 tips for exploring the city

Cool Taipei: 8 tips for exploring the city

As the only democracy in the Chinese speaking world and the most progressive city for LGBTQ+ rights in Asia, a legacy of artists and activists have worked to ma…

19 Oct 2016 • Colt St. George insert_drive_file Article
10 street foods you need to try in Taiwan

10 street foods you need to try in Taiwan

Taiwanese xiǎochī, or “small eats”, are justly famed, and no trip would be complete without several street food feasts. Night markets are among the best …

11 Nov 2015 • Rough Guides Editors insert_drive_file Article
The best of the world's smallest countries

The best of the world's smallest countries

Qatar Jutting northwards into the Persian Gulf, Qatar is one of the world’s smaller nations (about the size of Yorkshire, England), but it is also the world…

29 Oct 2014 • Greg Dickinson camera_alt Gallery
View more featureschevron_right

Weekly newsletter

Sign up now for travel inspiration, discounts and competitions

Sign up now and get 20% off any ebook