Friday, December 24, 2010

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Guangzhou Street Night Market, Taipei

12/24/2010 Taiwan Explorer
One of the traditional night markets in Taipei


Taiwan Night Market List
Guangzhou Street Night Market 廣州街夜市 is one of Taipei's older night markets and very popular with the locals, however less so with tourists. It's basically next to the popular Huaxi Street Tourist Night Market (famous for its Snake alley), so that most tourists visit that one, while locals prefer the one in Guangzhou street. The night market is actually one of 4 old night markets, that build the so called Longshan Temple Night Market Area. So if you make it to this night market, you have 3 others to explore, they are right near by and make this one of the most interesting street food areas in Taipei.

MY IMPRESSION: I have to say the night market was not too bad. Compared to some other ones I have visited, this one was not very crowded that day. I barely saw any tourists and that may be due to the lack of information. In all brochures and websites they only mention the famous Huaxi Street Night Market, which is located next to it. But if you ask me, the he food is better here, if you wanna have a snack, the Guangzhou Street is a better choice. Besides the food, the night market is full of cheap stuff from China. I remember buying socks and a small lamp for a very cheap price. Most of the things are of course not good quality, but the small LED lamp is still working, so it's not so bad. Just check the item well, before you buy it. There are also many toys sold, some of them however are sex toys. I'm not sure if it's because of the proximity to the former red district nearby, but you can find various toys for your pleasure and a whole variety of adult videos. From what I saw by passing by, the sex toys are of very cheap quality, I would not recommend you to buy them there.

WHAT KIND OF FOOD IS COMMON: Besides the usual food found in most Taiwanese night markets like fresh fruits, various finger food and oyster omelettes, you can also find some interesting dishes such as pig feet 豬腳 (zhū jiǎo), the frog soup and glutinous rice with peanuts stuffed in an intestine 大腸圈 (dàcháng quān), two dishes I have tried (more below).

MUST-TRY FOOD AT GUANGZHOU STREET: Try the glutinous rice dish, but if you're bolder, try the frog soup. It will be a nice story to tell to your friends when you return.

Let me show you some of my photos of Guangzhou Street Night Market (5/2010, 3/2011):

The Guangzhou Street is really long, longer than Huaxi Street.

This part is crowded. Stalls are located in the center.

On the right: Pig blood is sold.

A man browsing videos.

This is the king of fruits, the famous durian.

POPULAR SNACK: BIG INTESTINE RINGS 大腸圈

Traditional Taiwanese food: Glutinous rice with peanuts stuffed in an intestine, in Chinese 大腸圈, literally meaning big intestine rings.

The dish from close. My girlfriend and I didn't like it. She said there are other stalls that make a better one. This dish is very fulling, so we couldn't finish it. If you have this one, you probably won't be able to try something else, unless you share it with more people.

This section is reserved for adult videos, mostly Japanese.

POPULAR SNACK: FROG SOUP

And then we went to try the frog soup. It was my first time to eat frog.

The beheaded frog in a soup. Not bad, if you ask me. If you wanna know more...

Read my post about eating frog soup here>>

These are sex toys for women.

And more sex toys for women. Interestingly, Taiwanese (esp. older) are very conservative.

A happy vendor.

This area is full of things to buy.

More things.

And this is when we were leaving, the crowds became less.

HOW TO FIND GUANGZHOU STREET NIGHT MARKET? SEE MY MAP:

Longshan Taipei Map
Finding the market is very easy. Take the Blue Line train and exit at Longshan MRT Station. Walk to the temple and then turn left. (Map by Google, click on it for a Google Map).

IN CONCLUSION: This is a decent night market, but it probably won't be my favorite night market in Taipei, if it comes to food. If you wanna do something crazy, try the frog soup, it's not so bad and it will give you and your friend many funny moments. If you're braver, go to the nearby Huaxi Street Night Market and try the snake blood or snake soup. Honestly, I can't. For me, frog is the limit. My advice is: Visit both night markets and the famous Longshan Temple together. The whole area is very vibrant. Although during the day, mostly old people hang out around the area, but in the evening, young and old come to try the food or shop for some cheap goods. The latter is something I would recommend you, too: Go and get some cheap stuff here. Some things are of decent quality and the prices are really low. And that's about it.


[This post was UPDATED on 31. July, 2011]