Being the oldest city in Taiwan, Tainan used to be the capital city for over 200 years.

The historical Chihkan Tower

Tainan A city not to be missed
The oldest city in Taiwan

Being the oldest city in Taiwan, Tainan used to be the capital city for over 200 years. Tainan is also known as the culinary centre of Taiwan for the best local street foods are found here. Tainan is also home to many historical artefacts, charming heritage & culture, rustic scenery and centre of creative art.

Spend some time to browse through the Tainan Heritage building and get to know more about the history of Taiwan. Firstly, I would like to recommend you to start from Fort Provinta which is referred as Chihkan Tower (赤崁楼) by the Han Chinese. This name literally means ” red haired tower” because the tower is built by the Dutch in 1653. However, it is now a place where students worship the goddess of literature and pray for good results in examinations.

A short distance across the street is the Grand Mazu Temple (大天后宫) or the Queen of Heaven in Taiwan. As Taiwan is an island and most of the people who live at the coastal region are fishermen who make a living on the sea, they worship this Goddess of the sea. While there are hundreds of Mazu Temples in Taiwan, this is one which has existed for more than 300 years since the Ming Dynasty. The most interesting part in this temple is that there is a God of lovers known as Yue Lao (月老). Devotees worship this god to help them find the right match. Yue Lao is highly respected in the Taiwanese society. The other Yue Lao that is also very famous is found in the Sacrificial Rites Martial Temple (祀典武庙) which is located next to the Grand Mazu Temple.

This particular Yue Lao is quite interesting that you may write a letter to him, telling him who you have fallen in love with. There are envelopes prepared for devotees and before you leave don’t forget take with you the red thread so that your wish will come true. I was told that there is another Yue Lao that specializes in the case of husband and wife relationships. If find your spouse having affair, you may ask for help from the Yue Lao at Chong Qing Temple ( 重庆寺). if you want to sum up your visit of the four most famous Yue Lao in Tainan, then you should also visit the Grand Guan Yin Temple which is located at Cheng Gong Road. This Yue Lao is supposed to be a good match maker. Interesting isn’t it, but how true it is, you have to find out by yourself.

Grand Mazu Temple

Chuan Mei Theater

Night market

Du Hisao Yueh Dan Zai Noodle

While you are at Chong Qing Temple, do not miss the Old Hayashi Department store (林百货). It is located in the building which was built in 1932 by a Japanese called Hayashi. It used to be the biggest department store in Tainan and installed with the first elevator in Tainan. It is now a Taiwanese cultural creative art product department store. If you are there, head up to the roof top and you will find the one and only Japanese Shrine in a department store.

Just about 500 meters away, you will come to the antique cinema Chuang Mei Theater (全美戏院).

it has retained its old charms with the chairs, the ticketing counter and the set up but the shows are all recent movies. Even the movie posters are still hand-drawn by an old artist Yen Chen Fa (颜振发)。

Take a night stroll on Hai An Road, the night club street (海安路), you may find traditional snacks, artistic food and also BBQ. Do not forget to drop-by the Flower night market and Wusheng night market too. The night market here is fun, not only do they have food and shopping, they also have a section for little games like the funfair we used to go in our hometown when we were young.

Local food is everywhere in Tainan city, like milk fish soup, coffin toast, shrimp meatball, shrimp roll, squid mihun, just to name a few. The famous Du Hisao Yueh Dan Zai Noodle also originates from Tainan.

Blueprint Cultural & Creative Park

Ten Drum

Tainan city has put in a lot of effort to build up the culture of creative art by utilising the old or abandoned buildings. I would like to recommend the Blueprint Cultural & Creative Park (蓝晒图文创园区) which is a nice place to visit at night when all the blue lights are switched on. There are cafes, shops, etc which are very comfortable in a nice environment. With this they have gave new life to the old city view.

The most signature Cultural Creative Art theme park should be the Ten Drum (十鼓仁糖文创园区). This beautiful theme park used to be an abandoned sugar mill. A drum art Percussion group took over and refurbished the place. Now it comprises a theatre for drum show, restaurant, cafe, drum making class, drum classes and also amusement park. I enjoyed the huge spiral slide, the abseiling, etc. To enter the theater we pass through the factory, as the stage is build inside the factory. With the rusty machines, gears, pipelines and huge tanks that render a classic look.

The sound effect for the theatre is really great. After the show, taking a walk on the skyway on top a tank to another is also interesting, especially for a look over the whole park. Take a seat on the greenery creative grass land while watching the sunset, it is just nice end ta a day with a romantic view.

Jing Zi Jiao Tile the paved salt field

Recommended accommodation:
FUQI TAIWAN Backpackers guest house(福憩背包客栈):

ShenNong147 (神榕一四七):

Tainan Silk Place (台南晶英酒店):
Enjoy the 5 stars luxury stay in Tainan.

If you have an extra day, i would recommend you to venture further out of Tainan city in the morning to visit Anping (安平) to for the delicious local street food, and the amazing Anping Tree House and Anping Fort. Followed by the Sicao Green Tunnel (四草绿色隧道)for a boat cruise at 2pm, enjoying the 30 minutes cruise through the greenery mangrove and beautiful reflections on the river, you will be amazed by the beauty of nature.

Boat Information:
Weekday: 10.00am , 2.00pm
Weekend: 08.30am untill 16.30pm
Fees: Adults NTD 200, Children NTD 100
After the boat ride, drive to Jing Zi Jiao Tile (井仔脚瓦盘盐田) the paved salt field located 30km away. It is really worthwhile to travel this 30 minutes journey to end the day with a beautiful sunset reflection on the salt field while watching the “old ladies” working with the very traditional way.

Recommended accommodation:
Wikid Design Hotel (我小时候设计旅店)

Travelution #53 OCT/NOV/DEC