On Sunday my sister and I took the 8:30am slowwww train down to Taichung for the day. We had to go to the station Xinwuri, which is where the Taichung High Speed Rail station is as well, and we took bus number 56 straight (15 minutes) to the most amazing place.
THE RAINBOW VILLAGE.
Wow. I’ve heard tourists talk about this place before but I guess they never really portrayed it properly because this place is absolutely fantastic. The colours are mesmerising and so captivating.
I felt myself spinning around in circles to make sure I hadn’t missed an inch of the walls.
It’s a collection of old houses that have been painted top-to-bottom, inside and out in the most amazing colours, adorable pictures and patterns. Even the floors are painted! There are little rooms where people sell ice cream, coffee and fresh juices, and others that sell souvenirs and there are so many photo opportunities. However, it is a tourist attraction and there will be plenty of people there! So you have to prepare yourself for that.
A little history of the Rainbow Village:
It was painted by a former solider, named Huang Yung-Fu, who was actually from Hong Kong. He joined the KMT army in 1946 to fight against communism, but then followed Chiang Kai-shek to Taiwan. Soldiers were provided with temporary shelter, many of which became permanent. Unfortunately, many of these shelters weren’t looked after or they were bought out by big companies who wanted the land. Most of the ex-soldiers and their families moved on. But not Huang, eventually there were 11 houses left from the original settlement and so he was fairly lonely. This is when he began to paint, and he didn’t seem to stop!
Even when the money grabbers tried to persuade him to move on, he refused. Eventually local students started a campaign to save Huang and his little village – and it worked! The government decided to leave the 11 houses and agreed to keep it as a cultural site. Apparently the site gets more than one million visitors every year!
From here we went to the West District via a local bus, because my sister wanted to take me to the original Chun Shui Tang. Sorry Nat, but I wasn’t impressed. The building was attractive but the service wasn’t and I didn’t really feel like I gained anything from going there.
We walked North-wards to this literature museum which was set in a number of beautiful wooden houses. It made me feel calm just looking at them.
They often have talks or lectures that you can visit and you can go into the houses and read, relax or have a coffee. If you’re wanting to go, it’s Chinese name is “Taizhong Wen Xue Guan” and the address is Lequn Street (Opposite Lequn Street Lane 35) and it’s also in the West District.
Did you know?
The buildings were originally police dormitories during the Japanese rule (1934) and weren’t considered a cultural site until 2009. The Museum opened to the public in 2016 in an attempt to promote Literature in Taiwan.
And just a 10 minute walk from the museum is Animation Lane. When my sister told me about it I thought it was going to be huge (I don’t know why I thought so?) but it’s not. However, it’s absolutely brilliant! There’s a little lane (duh, animation lane) and it’s painted both sides with all cartoons. There’s Pikachu, Mario, Anime, Minions, Bugs Bunny and a few others I didn’t recognise.
It was just a lovely sight. I’d definitely recommend heading over there!
Bus 25 goes there and back into the city from the end of the road (along the river) so we jumped on towards the main Train Station. To be honest, I wasn’t keen on going there because I knew it would be absolutely heaving but my sister insisted. So we went, and it was packed.
But, one good thing was that we found this old library that has been renovated into a restaurant / chocolate shop.
It’s a gorgeous old building that was also built during the Japanese rule, by a doctor named Miyahara Takeo. It was originally an ophthalmology clinic (what’s that?!) but after the Japanese rule ended it became an unused, and later, dangerous building. Years later a pastry company bought and renovated the building to look like Hogwarts, with really high ceilings, full of wooden books and beautiful ribbons and gift boxes (I must admit, I didn’t get the HP vibe when I was there).
You can buy really fancy chocolates, moon cakes, cookies and more. I had to buy a coffee and almond cookie (NT$85!). It’s totally worth a visit!
We really wanted to check out the Fengjia night market so we found a bus and headed out! It took nearly an hour (I even fell asleep!) but once we arrived it was totally worth the wait! It’s not a night market guys. It’s a night TOWN! It’s absolutely enormous and there must be 40 lanes of food, clothes, music, phone cases and pretty much whatever you want! I was a greedy pig and had waffles and sweet potato balls, fresh watermelon juice and little pancake puffs #noregrets
There was no way we would have made it onto the train coming home because the station was like an extra-filled tin of sardines. It was actually shocking! So we ran around to the bus station and got on a nice, comfy, quiet bus home!
Hope you enjoy the post everyone xo