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Half-day Trip: Visiting temples and old towns in Taipei – Part 1

Visiting Longshan Temple, Qingshan Temple, Qingshui Temple, Taipei Mazu Temple and Dadaocheng old street.

Highlights:

Trip duration: Half-day (Starting from 7:00 – 12:00), from Tuesday to Sunday. (Except Mondays)

Taipei is a city with a long history, going through many different periods, from the West, Qing Dynasty, Japan to the present. Besides, this land is very open in terms of religion and belief. So, there are many places for tourists to explore and learn about Taipei.

In the afternoon, you can continue your journey by “Half-day Trip: Visiting temples and old towns in Taipei – Part 2”

Travel Tips: 

Main destination in this itinerary (8:00 – 12:00)

1) Longshan Ancient Temple (龍山寺 / Longshan Temple) – 8:0
Visiting time: 30 – 45 minutes

Longshan Temple is an ancient sacred temple in Taiwan, built by the Hokkien people in the 18th century. This area, also known as Bangka, was once a vibrant trading port. Each day, the temple welcomes a large number of locals and international tourists who come here to pray for peace, work, life, and love.

How to get there: MRT Longshan (BL10) – Exit 1

You can use the MRT or just walk from the hotel if you stay in Ximending or Taipei Main Station area.

2) Qingshan Temple (青山靈安尊王) and Qingshui (艋舺清水巖) – 8:45
Visiting time: 15-20 minutes / 1 temple

Qingshan and Qingshui Temple are located very close to Longshan Temple and were built in the same period. Both temples have unique ancient architecture.

Qingshan worships Qingshan King, a general in the Three Kingdoms period. He was worshiped as a god of justice, with the power to dispel disease, respect virtuous people, and punish evil. So, people hold a midnight procession ceremony yearly, commonly known as the Grand Worship of Bangka. It is one of the three important religious ceremonies in Taipei.

Meanwhile, Qingshui Temple has bold Qing Dynasty architecture with carved motifs on the stone wall. This is traditional worship from Fujian province, China following in the footsteps of migrants to Taiwan. According to Legend, Qingshui was a Buddhist monk who lived more than 1,500 years ago. Through his rigorous practice, the Master attained supernatural powers and saved the people from a terrible drought. The statues of Grand Master Qingshui were all brought from China.

How to get there: From Longshan Temple, walk along Xiyuan Road and turn left at Guiyang Road, section 2. The distance between Longshan Temple and Qingshan is about 500 meters (7 – 10 minutes).

After visiting Qingshan Temple, you go right on Guiyang Road, section 2, pass Bangka old town and turn left along Kangding Road about 300 meters (5 minutes).

3) Taipei Mazu Temple (台北天后宮) – 9:20
Visiting time: 20-30 minutes

Thien Hau is a prevalent belief in the Chinese community in Taiwan and other countries worldwide. Taipei Mazu Temple or Taipei Tian Hau temple is an ancient temple built around the same time as the 3 temples above. This temple is located in the most vibrant nightlife of the city. When visiting Grandma, you can go to the main building to get 6 incense sticks and light them in different areas according to the map.

Start by praying to the Jade Emperor (Yu Huang Da Di) on the second floor. Then, go down to the ground floor to worship Lady Thien Hau in the middle, Guan Yin (Guanyin Pusa) on the right, Guan Gong (Guan Sheng Di Yun) on the left, and other gods, respectively. (6 points in total)

How to get there: Walk along Changsha section 2 road, turn left, take Xining Road, and turn right onto Chengdu Road.

4) Dihua Old Town or Dadaocheng Area (迪化街) – 10:30
Visiting time: 2-3 hours

Dihua Old Town is a neighborhood associated with the development of the Dadaocheng trading port. You will see ancient buildings with a mixture of Eastern and Western architecture. 

This neighborhood sells a lot of specialties such as dry goods and tea. The old quarter is preserved and has become a walking street attracting domestic and foreign tourists.

You can visit the old town information center (Dadaocheng Visitor Center), Yongle cloth market to try local dishes like sticky rice box with chicken thighs (林合发油饭店)* and the famous Tainan mackerel noodle shop (永樂台南土魠魚羹).

In addition, you can visit ancient temples such as Taipei Xinhai City God Temple (大稻埕霞海城隍廟), Dadaocheng Cisheng Temple (大稻埕慈聖宮), try street food, cakes, tea, and coffee.

*Chicken thigh sticky rice is only sold from 7:00 to 12:00.

How to get there: Take bus number 9 or 660 at Ximen Bus Stop (Ximen Station) and walk into the old town.

Continue your journey: “Half-day Trip: Visiting temples and old towns in Taipei – Part 2”

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