Ximending is the Shibuya/Harajuku of Taipei. Every night, and even more so on the weekends, throngs of young people flock to the pedestrian area right outside the Ximen MRT stop to shop, eat, and socialize. Giant ads and screens light up the night sky and bursts of pop music fill the air while young men and women browse the boutiques and shops wearing the latest trends.
We decided to stay in the Ximending area because of its convenient location in the Wanhua district. The hotel in which we stayed, Ta Shun Hotel, was also highly recommended on the Taiwan tripadvisor forums. I will review the hotel in another post. But most importantly, we stayed in Ximending because it is very “re nao.” “Re nao” is a Chinese term that literally means “Hot Noisy” and refers to a place that is exciting, loud, and busy.
Although there is a branch of the Eslite bookstore/department store here, the main attractions are the little shops and boutiques selling cute trinkets and clothes.
Food carts line the boulevard, but they are technically illegal. Every hour of so, a police officer walks down the street, dispersing all the food stands. The owners of the food stalls quickly wheel away their stands. Within 2 minutes of the police officer’s departure, the food stands are back selling their edible wares. You can see the police officer in the picture below.
Since this is a trendy, hip area, there are many American fast food joints. They even had Dunkin Donuts. This is the largest KFC I have ever seen!
Ximending is less glamorous and more quiet during the daytime.
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