Taipei City Tour: Songshan Cultural Park, Xiangshan, Tonghua, Raohe Night Market (Day 6)

Day 6 of my Taipei’s 8 Days Tour brought me to Xinyi District, where I would cover Songshan Cultural & Creative Park (松山文創園區), Xiangshan (象山), Tonghua Night Market (通化夜市) and Raohe Night Market (饒河夜市).

View of Taipei 101 from Xiangshan
Xiangshan

The good thing about staying in a proper accommodation as compared to a cubicle (Neosoho) was 自然醒 or waking up naturally. For the first time in this trip, I’ve had 8 hours of undisturbed sleep. The bad thing as mentioned earlier, was how late I woke up and how little time I’ve had left for the day.

Travel and Save: Enjoy S$45 off your first Airbnb stay

After waking up at 9.30am, I idled for a long time watching TV show before setting off at 12pm. Yes, half a day gone by then. LOL.

 


Songshan Cultural & Creative Park  (松山文創園區)

I was famished when I reached Songshan Cultural & Creative Park and was disappointed when I found only a few quiet cafes around. I recall that the prices in these cafes weren’t cheap, and food option was limited.

Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park

Thank god, I decided to walk into a modern-looking building called The Eslite Spectrum. It is a shopping mall located within the park and you would find a small food court at B2.

the Eslite Shopping Mall in Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park

Look at my orders – Set Meal comprising 蚵仔麵線 (Oyster Vermicelli), 甜不辣 (Fish Paste) and Fried Tofu (NT150).

Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
My Lunch!

If it wasn’t obvious, I was starving badly! This was my first meal of the day at 2pm.

Photo Opportunities at Songshan Cultural Park

If you are into arts and culture, Songshan Cultural & Creative Park may interest you, though it didn’t fascinate me, since I wasn’t an art & culture buff.

Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Songshan Cultural & Creative Park
One of the Exhibitions – Golden Globe Awards

Still, if you have some time to kill and happened to be around the vicinity, you could pop by to visit various galleries and exhibitions (not all are free entry though), stroll around the small Baroque Garden or relax by a large eco-pond.

Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Barosque Garden in Songshan Cultural & Creative Park
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Eco Pond within Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Can you spot the swans?

To those who love selfies, you can capture nice photos of yourself at the outdoor area, with the historical tobacco factory serving as a cool backdrop.

Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Tobacco Factory as backdrop
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park
Songshan Cultural and Creative Park

Getting to Songshan Cultural and Creative Park

Alight at Taipei City Hall. The park is within easy walking distance – follow google map.

TIP: If you like to get lunch, walk to Hankyu Department Store, which is linked to City Hall Station (Basement 2).  There were plenty of food options, including restaurants and a food court at B2.

Taipei City Hall
Taipei City Hall MRT linking to Hankyu Department Store


Xiangshan (Elephant Mountain) (象山)

(4pm)

My love for walking or hiking meant I would definitely squeeze in some trails or mountains. As a solo-traveller, Xiangshan was the only mountain I found safe to climb, because it was located within Taipei City and was very popular.

Xiangshan
Xiangshan

It’s far from being challenging, but beggars can’t be choosers. The climb took only 15 to 20 minutes. But the view was highly rewarding. Definitely out of my expectation! Highly-recommended!

TIP: Mid-way through the climb, a local advised me to take the right fork which was a steeper climb recommended for young folks like me who craved for a good workout. Elderly like him would take the left fork.

Xiangshan
Left or right fork?

The end point was a platform which offered fantastic and panoramic 360 degree view of Taipei City. So many photographers had their professional camera stand set up, probably waiting to capture the sun setting.

TIP: If you prefer a sweat-free way of getting a bird’s eye view of Taipei City, you can join most tourists by visiting the Taipei 101 Observatory. The admission ticket is quite pricey though. You can enjoy significant discount by getting Taipei 101 Observatory Ticket online.

Xiangshan
Photographer capturing a shot of Taipei 101 on Xiangshan 
Xiangshan
Great panoramic view of Taipei City
Xiangshan
Clear direct view of key Taipei Landmark from Xiangshan

Beware of mosquitoes – the only irritant on Xiangshan. Bring insect repellent! 

Getting to Xiangshan

I actually walked from City Hall, then to Taipei 101, and then further towards Xiangshan MRT.

This is only recommended for those who have a love for walking. Those who don’t, please just take a train to Xiangshan Station, follow exit 2, pass by a park (with a basketball court). The entrance to the climb is near a temple. It wasn’t difficult for me to locate, with the help of google map. Click here for map direction.

Xiangshan Direction
Direction to Xiangshan
Xiangshan
Entrance to the climb (Xiangshan)

Tonghua Night Market (通化夜市)

(6pm)

I have only one thing to say about Tonghua Night Market (通化夜市). It was a waste of my time travelling here!

I finished combing Tonghua Night Market within 10 minutes. And I did two rounds. The street was short and uncrowded. There weren’t much varieties of food to choose from and the few stalls in operation were without queues. Without queue as a gauge, how would I know which food/stall was good? 

Tonghua Night Market
Tonghua Night Market – Where’s the queue? 
Tonghua Night Market
Tonghua Night Market – So quiet!

I’d even asked a stall owner if that was all that was to Tong Hua night market, like did I miss a turn? “That’s all!” He said with a big smile. 

After ordering a Lily Bubble tea (NT35), I decided to take a train back to Raohe Night Market (饒河夜市) for a more fulfilling dinner.

 


Raohe Night Market (饒河夜市)

Back to the ever happening Raohe Night Market, I got myself a bowl of Pork Rib Soup (NT70).

Raohe Night Market
Pork Rib Soup

It wasn’t that great. First of all, there weren’t much meat as compared to Singapore-style Bak Kut Teh. Secondly, whatever little meat that was attached to the ribs were TOUGH! Thirdly, the soup wasn’t unforgettable. Definitely can’t beat Singapore’s Bak Kut Teh! I also suspected their use of MSG as my lips felt really sensitive and uncomfortable after the meal.

The next item was a pack of six mini pancakes (NT50). These pancakes tasted great even overnight and came in handy as next-day’s in-room breakfast.

Raohe Night Market
Making the pancakes!
Raohe Night Market
Mini Pancake

The Japan Omelette stall was the second outlet, other than Black Pepper Bun, in which red queue poles were used. Yes, people actually queued patiently to get a taste of these mouth-watering omelette. With prawn, egg, bacon and cabbage fillings topped with Japan teriyaki sauce and bonito flake, it was yummy (NT60). You’ve gotta try it! 

Raohe Night Market
Japan Omelette
Raohe Night Market
Japan Omelette at Raohe

Last but not least, I decided to try bite-sized abalone. It was quite pricey by night market’s pricing standard – NT100 for three tiny pieces.

Raohe Night Market
Escargot and Bite-sized Abalone 

I remember feeling a little short-changed when I saw how tiny the abalone was without its shell (served without shell).  It’s really bite-sized, maybe half a bite…LOL. Three bites, and NT100 was gone. 

It wasn’t remarkable, but I’m glad I’d tried such unique street snacks. Oh, this stall also sold Escargot (see photo above). “I would try it tomorrow”, I’d thought. 

Raohe Night Market
Really tiny!

There were lots of other great food options such as grilled Angus Beef, cakes and BBQ assorted mushrooms. How I wish I could restart with an empty stomach…..

Raohe Night Market
Angus Beef!
Raohe Night Market
Grilled assorted Mushrooms!

29k steps conquered today! A good rest was needed badly! Look out for my next post – Day 7 of Taiwan Travel. 

Essential Info:

This post may contain affiliate links. Read mfull disclosure for more info.

  • Accommodation:  Airbnb near Houshanpi Train Station
  • Month of Travel:  October
  • Itinerary for the Day:  Songshan Cultural Park >> Xiangshan >> Tonghua Night Market >> Raohe Night Market 
  • Mode of Transport:  Metro, Walk
  • Free Taiwan ‘Must-Buy’ ChecklistDownload
  • Get Printables: 8D/7N Taiwan Itinerary

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