We had a four day long weekend which leaped us from 2012 into 2013, 4 days seem too short to go abroad yet too long to stay in Taipei so I decided to go to Taiwan’s oldest and fourth largest city: Tainan.
Tainan was initially established by the Dutch East India Company as a ruling and trading base called Fort Zeelandia during the period of Dutch rule on Taiwan. As the ancient captial of Taiwan, Tainan is rich in culture, historical sites and traditional dishes, also known as the city of snacks.
One of the most popular destinations in the Tainan area is the Anping District which is the historical center of Tainan. We visited the Anping Tree House which was originally a salt warehouse under the Japanese occupation yet got deserted after the industry declined and gradually intertwined with the banyan tree over the the years.
Tainan represents the depth of Taiwanese culture with the highest concentration of temples, perhaps the most traditional city in Taiwan. Its a wondeful destination for a local culture immersion.
The Qigu Salt Field was once the largest solar salt field in Taiwan, yet through changes in time, solar salt was no longer economically viable so Qigu Salt Field ceased production in May 2002 and marked the end of 338 years of solar salt history in Taiwan and turning the place into a recreational area for tourism.
The booming cafe culture is also prominent in Tainan, many old style apartment buildings are being refurbished into modern cafes or bed and breakfast with a story of their own, all very charming to explore and experience.
Hai An Road is a lovely area to stroll around, filled with chic shops with strong individual characters and personalities, small interesting bars and open air cafes, reminiscenced a bit of SoHo NYC.