Wanhua 萬華

Wanhua's Night Markets

Wanhua’s Night Markets (Huaxi Night Market 華西街夜市) 

Wanhua is well-known for its night markets. In particular, Hua Xi Night Market, once known as the “Snake Alley” is most popular as it is Taiwan’s first official Night Market catered to tourists. This market is located just around the Longshan Temple and along Hua Xi Street.

Entrance to Huaxi Night Market
The night market is famous for its local delicacies, including pig organ soup, danzi noodles, cuttlefish soup, glass jelly, stinky tofu and desserts such as peanut/ redbean mochi soup. Among the extensive choices of food available, the most famous remains as the Snake and Turtle Soups. 

Stall selling Snake Soup
In fact, their presence explains the market’s initial name, “Snake Alley”. This is because Wanhua was once a red light district, full of brothels. Therefore, many local men patronize these food outlets as the soups are regarded as effective traditional remedies that treat or stimulate male potency. Nevertheless, after former President Chen Shui Bian took over, he made prostitution illegal. Subsequently, this resulted in a sharp decline in not only the number of brothels, but also these food outlets, thereby improving the overall safety and order of the night market. At the same time, other food stalls, such as those stated above, blossomed in order to cater to the tourists’ needs. Some locals also believe that the bustling night markets in this area can be attributed to the regulations that prohibit locals from cooking openly in indoor shopping centers. Hence, these stall owners end up setting up stalls along the streets such as Hua Xi in order to continue their business.

Seafood stall
Pork selling stall including feet, intestines, etc.
Today, Huaxi Night Market is linked to other night markets such as Xichang Street Night Market, Guangzhou Street Night Market and Nanjichang Night Market. The entrance of Huaxi Night Market is represented by traditional Chinese post stands while Chinese laterns are hung across the entire street. A recommended time to visit this night market will be after 6p.m. as that is when crowd starts accumulating.

Map of Wanhua's Night Markets

1 comment:

  1. I been here before. and i really enjoy the foods in the market!