Temples, markets but not Thai
Trip Start Jan 02, 2011
83Trip End May 09, 2011
First settled by the Chinese in 1590, the Dutch quickly colonized the island and used Tainan as a base for their trade with both China and Japan. Chihkan Towers, one of the best preserved (or perhaps reconstructed) historical sights in Tainan is testament to this history. The old fort has gone through many masters – Ming, Qing, Japanese, KMT and China Nationalist Party – with its foundations being laid by the Dutch in 1653. The walled compound houses a pretty temple and nationalist statue. The base of the temple is surrounded by large carp ponds, seething with multicolored marine life
Wondering the streets of Tainan we were able to visit a variety of similar Confucius and Buddhist temples before ending our day at the itinerant night market, held in the west of the city on a Thursday. The largest outdoor night market in Taiwan we were once again availed of a vast montage of strange food and a plethora of cheap Chinese imports both plastic and textile.
Our greatest disappointment whilst in Taiwan came that evening. Spying a very modern, chic looking Thai restaurant (a rarity in itself) we were eager to sample spicy food made from identifiable meat parts. Unfortunately, our excitement was short lived. With no English menu, no one who spoke Thai and none existent mandarin Chinese ourselves our time in the restaurant was short lived. Yet from disaster we managed to salvage an excellent sushi restaurant with a wide variety of nigiri sushi for 1USD each. Needless to say we stayed at this establishment a little longer.