Sunday, May 08, 2011

Taiwan: Longshan Temple 艋舺龍山寺 & Huaxi Street Night Market 華西街夜市 in Taipei's Wanhua District 萬華區

On the evening of our second day in Taipei, we visited Taipei's Longshan Temple 艋舺龍山寺 and another night market, the (in)famous Huaxi Street Night Market 華西街夜市 or Snake Alley in Taipei's Wanhua District 萬華區.

Known as the Mengjia Longshan Temple 艋舺龍山寺, it was built by settlers from Fujian in 1738. Longshan is a fine example of Taiwanese classical architecture. It has actually gone through a lot, having been destroyed by several earthquakes and fires, and the finally, the Second World War when it was hit by American bombers. A symbol of Taipei's resiliency, residents have consistently rebuilt it. It's one of those traditional Taiwanese temples you shouldn't miss when you visit Taipei.

From the temple, we proceeded to the Huaxi Street Night Market or Snake Alley. It's a two-block long night market that is quite notorious for serving almost anything from snake and turtle blood and meat, and deer penis wine among many others. Animal lovers need not visit since I myself was quite shocked seeing a turtle being cut up into pieces while alive and moving.

But not everything served there is exotic as there are also normal food stalls in the area, especially at the entrance of the market. And just like in any market, the hawker food there is also worth visiting. More photos of day 2 in Ivan About Town FB page. Also check out Raohe Street Night Market 饒河街觀光夜市 in Taipei.

Note: This familiarization tour of Taipei, Taiwan was organized by China Airlines. Book online at the China Airlines website.
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