We have been to Taichung twice so far and have really liked the city. It’s like the busyness of Taipei but with a mix of Kaohsiung’s laid back vibe. This article is a complete Taichung travel guide to help you with your upcoming trip to the western side of central Taiwan.
HOW TO REACH TAICHUNG
From Taipei Main Station, we took a 2 hour and 15 minute train ride to Taichung. Our tickets cost TWD 375 ( USD 13, PHP 670). It was a pretty convenient and comfortable ride. Just don’t sleep endlessly because there isn’t any loud announcement to wake you up and would probably make you miss your stop. We suggest you travel during the day to enjoy the sceneries you’ll pass by.
WHERE TO GO
Taichung is not a very big city so the spots to visit are not that far away. Give or take 2 hours max, that’s what you’ll need to reach the farthest destination from Taichung city proper.
1. RAINBOW VILLAGE
I would honestly like to say this place looked so much bigger and more beautiful in photos. Probably because some of the paint faded already and also because there were just too many people in every photo spot!
Quick back story of the Rainbow Village:
An old soldier who served Taiwan in the world war was relocated to Taichung where he retired. Rainbow Grandpa, the soldier and painter, bought a land in the city and with the help of 9 retired soldiers, they built walls and roofs to complete the property.
From 2010, Rainbow Grandpa started painting his house with people and animals depicting happiness, love, humour, and playfulness, which eventually led to a sudden rise of fame, both online and offline. And with the help Taichung’s then mayor and his people, they protected Rainbow Grandpa’s village and even made the area a cultural property of Taichung. Now, it is one of the top tourist spots in the city.
2. 美仁里彩繪村 MeiRENLI PAINTED ALLEY
A newcomer in the spots to see and visit in Taichung, it was only last 2016 when this lane was completed. The 3D art and paintings in the alley express nostalgia as they were modelled from how Taiwan was 50 years ago. This lane is still not known to many tourists so have fun taking all the photos you want, without the crowd. More info here.
3. GAOMEI WETLANDS
We weren’t able to visit because the weather wasn’t clear on that specific day – which is not too common in Taichung. Photos online are so beautiful though so if you have a chance, spend a sunset there. Found a website that might have all the info you need — Taichung Guide.
4. xinshe suMMIT RESORT
Heavily inspired by European architecture, you might easily be tricked into thinking this castle was built by Europeans centuries ago. The place is very instagrammable and nice to walk around complete with stone castles, bridges, a large lake, a waterfall and beautiful gardens. Not to crowded too probably because aside from picture taking, there isn’t anything else to do here. Plus, there’s an entrance ticket of TWD 200 which entitles you to redeem TWD 100 worth of merchandise.
5. Fengchia Night Market
The most famous night market in Taichung is Fengchia, located just beside Fengchia University so you’d expect a lot of students frequenting the area. It is right in the middle of downtown Taichung, with a lot of hotel accommodations nearby.
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WHERE TO EAT
Taichung offers food and snacks that are not found elsewhere in Taiwan. Included in the list is the popular Taichung Meat Ball and Mazu Restaurant run by a Mazu local who has moved to Taichung, serving family recipes that were passed on from generations.
1. 台中肉圆 taichung meat ball
2. 龍涎居雞膳食坊 台中逢甲店 (herbal chicken soup shop)
3. 吉蜂蒸餃 dumpling RESTAURANT
4. 三食六島馬祖料理餐廳(黎明旗艦店) Mazu traditional cuisine Restaurant
5. fengJia night market
WHERE TO STAY
We stayed in I Love Taichung for a few days and loved our stay. They have 4 different buildings which all walking distance from each other, just around Fengchia Night Market. Here are some photos we took of our room and other rooms available.
The buildings are actually sort of AirBnb type because they don’t have lobbies. You book the rooms online and get a door key password, which you will just simply enter upon arrival, and expect the rooms are all ready for you.
I Love Taichung is suitable even for family travellers who want a little bit of privacy by booking the whole building which have 8 rooms max. There is a common area for everyone to chill and chitchat after a long day of walking around.
Special thanks to Save Money in Taiwan for sponsoring our trip to Taichung.
We did not receive any payment to publish this article. All photos and words are our own.
There you have it! What do you think of Taichung? Planning a visit soon?