TAOYUAN City — Places to Visit

Daxi, Taoyuan
(桃園大溪)

Daxi was the earliest area to develop in Taoyuan.In earlier times, flourishing river trade made many local merchants rich. Some ofthese well-off merchants spent heavily on building ornate and gorgeous housesfull of classical beauty to display their social status, leading to theformation of the best-known distinctive streets in Taiwan. Visitors to Daxi canadmire the traditional buildings on Daxi Old Street and Xinnan Old Street andsavor some well-known local snacks or buy gifts such as wooden tops and driedtofu. Not far from Daxi Old Street stands Li Teng-Fang Historic Mansion, atraditional Hakka residence that is well-worth visiting.

Daxi Bridge over the Dahan River

Daxi Old Street
(大溪老街)

Daxi Old Street refers to the area around today’s Heping Road and Zhongshan Road. As well as the Old Street buildings, other well-known attractions include Daxi Bridge, Li Teng-Fang Historic Mansion, old temples and historic sites, and the Daxi Wood Art Ecomuseum. Of course, Taiwanese snacks and children’s toys are another reason to visit. The Old Street has many snacks that are loved by locals and visitors alike, such as Daxi dried tofu, moonlight cake, peanut candy, tofu pudding, rice cake, and tangyuan rice dumplings. The wood industry once prospered in Daxi and today quite a few long-established wood working tool shops remain. The wooden tops sold by toy stores originated from the children’s toys that carpenters once made in their spare time. The annual Daxi Cultural and Art Festival features a large-scale wooden top performance.

Daxi Old Street

Getting There:
From Taoyuan Bus Co. Station in Taoyuan take bus no. 5096 and get off at Xinjiewei (新街尾) bus stop.
From HSR Taoyuan Station take a Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus (501, Daxi Express) and get off at Xinjiewei/Heping Old Street (新街尾/和平老街) bus stop.

Daxi Wood Art Ecomuseum
(大溪木藝生態博物館)

Turn onto Puji Road from Daxi Old Street; this area was the administrative and police affairs center in the Japanese Colonial Period and quite a few Japanese style buildings remain. In recent years, these buildings have been restored and reopened in succession to form the Daxi Woodart Ecomuseum. The Ecomuseum is not a single building, it spans the entire old center of Daxi, with displays on local culture, industry, and course of development, making the entire town a museum. Entering a historic building such as No. 1 Hall, Budokan Hall, and the Four Joined Houses that have been opened after restoration, visitors can quietly view the exhibitions in each building, experiencing a nostalgic atmosphere and learning in depth about everything from the story of Daxi’s wood art to the culture of the ordinary people.

No. 1 Hall
Budokan Hall
Exhibit inside the Four Joined Houses

Add: Puji Rd., Daxi Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市大溪區普濟路)
Tel: (03) 388-8600
Hours: 9:30-17:00, closed on Monday

Xinnan Old Street
(新南老街)

Xinnan Old Street is also called Zhongshan OldStreet. In contrast to the bustle of Daxi Old Street, Xinnan Old Street is alow-key, quiet residential area that was once home to many rich merchants. OnXinnan Old Street visitors can view the ornate carvings on the old arches andenjoy the leisurely atmosphere while strolling along a red brick arcade.Visitors might have a chance to enter an old house to see the layout ofold-style luxury building. When tired, spend some afternoon time in a tea shopenjoying fine tea.

House lining Xinnan Old Street
Red-brick arcade

Lantia
(蘭室)

This century-old building was originally theresidence of Lu Ying-yang, a member of the local gentry during the late Qingdynasty. The front area is used for culture and history displays and the rearfor tea drinking and lectures. Visitors can enjoy tea unhurriedly in the atriumor soak up the peaceful old-time feel in a private booth in the old house.

Facade of Lantia
Entrance
Dining room
Tea and dried persimmon

Add: No. 13, Zhongshan Rd., Daxi Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市大溪區中山路13號)
Tel: (03) 387-3711
Hours: Wed. to Sun. 11:00-18:00
Website: lantia1918.com (Chinese)

Sin Nan 12
(新南12文創實驗商行)

This restored almost 100-year-old house is now anintegrated space that combines food and drink, cultural and creative productsand books. Art events and various kinds of lectures and activities are andperiodically held. Every second Saturday there is a small-scale market wherevarious products designed by young creators can be purchased.

Inside Sin Nan 12
Backyard play area for children

Add: No. 12, Zhongshan Rd., Daxi Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市大溪區中山路12號)
Tel: (03) 388-4466
Hours: Wed. to Sun. 11:00-18:00

Old Residence of Li Teng-fang
(李騰芳古宅)

Completed in 1864, this was the home of the Lifamily, a prominent local family; it is now a national historic site that isopen to visitors. The Li family were Hakkas who migrated from Zhao’an in FujianProvince. After making their fortune in business, the family built the house intypical Zhao’an style. As Li Teng-fang was an accomplished calligrapher, theinterior is decorated with many works of calligraphy. The building is ornate,elegant, and has a distinctive layout and decorations; it is also wellpreserved. It is worth a visit to learn about old houses and see how peoplelived long ago.

Old Residence of Li Teng-fang
Inside the residence

Add: No. 32, Ln. 198, Yuemei Rd., Daxi Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市大溪區月眉路198巷32號)
Tel: (03) 388-8600
Hours: 9:30-17:00, closed on Monday
Getting There: From Taoyuan Bus Station take bus No. 5096 and get off at Guanyin Temple (觀音寺) bus stop; from there, it’s a15-min. walk.

Siang kháu Lū ( 雙口呂), a rescued traditional Taiwanese family house.
Siang Khau Lu Cultural Kitchen No. 277, Sec. 1, Nanxing Rd., Daxi District, Taoyuan City
(桃園市大溪區南興路一段277號)

Daxi Tea Factory
(大溪老茶廠)

First built in 1926, the factory was later rebuiltafter a fire but it retains the architectural style and marks of history of theoriginal building. The factory is still a working tea factory and a 70-year oldtea rolling machine can be seen in the tea production area. There is a shop atthe factory entrance where local tea products and fine tea ware can bepurchased. The cultural relic display area was created by transforming astorehouse and has cultural relics and old photographs on display. Thefactory’s tea book house with its pu-er tea-decoratedwall is a good place to enjoy tea and try some of the distinctive tea dishesserved.

Daxi Tea Factory
Old tea-processing equipment
Inside Daxi Tea Factory

Add: No. 80, Ln. 732, Sec. 2, Fuxing Rd., Daxi Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市大溪區復興路二段732巷80號)
Tel: (03) 382-5089
Hours: 10:00-17:00 (weekends until 17:30)
Website: www.daxitea.com
Getting There: From Taoyuan Bus Station take bus no. 5104 and get off at Shuiliudong (水流東) bus stop.
From Taoyuan Bus Station in Zhongli take a Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus (no. 502; Xiaowulai Route/only operating on Sunday) and get off at Daxi Tea Factory (大溪老茶廠) bus stop.

Recommended Restaurant

Xi You Yuan Delicacies Restaurant
(溪友緣風味料理店)
Add: No. 9, Ren’ai Rd., Daxi Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市大溪區仁愛路9號)
Tel: (03) 387-7769
Hours: 11:30-14:00, 17:00-21:00 (closed on Tuesday)

Longtan, Taoyuan
(桃園龍潭)

Longtan is one of the main Hakka settlements ofTaoyuan. Many visitors are familiar with Sankeng Old Street. It isn’t very longand doesn’t have many businesses; in fact, time seems to have stood still andthere is no sense of much commercial activity, but, for these very reasons,visitors can see traditional houses and how people used to live here. As wellas wandering down the Old Street and buying some traditional Hakka foods,visitors can go to nearby Shimen Reservoir to eat tasty fresh fish dishes oradmire the scenery from a café on the banks of the reservoir. Lingtan Street isa new attraction in Longtan that is worth visiting; quite a few young peoplehave opened a business here, bringing new vitality to an old community.

Sankeng Old Street
(三坑老街)

At just over 100 meters long, Sankeng Old Street isknown as the shortest old street in Taiwan. On one end of the street standsYongfu Temple; 100 years old it’s the local belief center. Most of the peoplein the Longtan area are Hakka. The stores on the Old Street mainly sell localproducts and most of the restaurants serve authentic Hakka food. On weekdays,the street has few people and only a few stores open, allowing visitors to seeits quiet side. On weekends and holidays, crowds of people pour in, smallfarmers from nearby set up stalls, and the scenes are bustling, just like inits heyday. There is an area of farmland at the rear of the Old Street whererelaxing countryside scenery can be viewed. Visitors can also take a walk onthe trails through the woods that border the farmland and discover the CherryBlossom Trail, Tung Blossom Path, ‎Formosan Sweet Gum SacredTree, and other minor local attractions. You can also rent a bicycle (onlyavailable on weekends) and explore places such as Sankeng Natural EcologicalPark and Daping Red Bridge.

Sankeng Old Street
Old houses on the Old Street
Shop selling organic vegetables
Yongfu Temple

Getting There:
From Taoyuan Bus Station take bus no. 5055 and get off at Sankeng (三坑) bus stop.
From Taoyuan Bus Station in Zhongli take a Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus (no. 503; Xiaowulai Route/only operating on Sunday) and get off at Sankeng Old Street (三坑老街) bus stop.

Lingtan Street Creative Hub
(菱潭街興創基地)

Lingtan Street is in downtown Longtan not far fromLongtan Lake. High hanging lanterns and colorfully painted walls here are thebackdrop for many people to take photos and check in. Businesses include cafés,small restaurants, dry-flower shops, antique general goods stores, performancespaces, and studios. Stalls run by vendors offering sketching and street artperformance can often be seen on the side of the road, giving Lingtan Street anair of creativity. As not many visitors go to Lingtan Street on weekdays,visiting at weekend or holiday time is recommended.

Getting There:
From Taoyuan Bus Station in Zhongli take bus no. 5055 and get off at Longtan (龍潭) bus stop.
From Taoyuan Bus Station in Zhongli take a Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus (no. 503; Shimen Reservoir Route/only operating on Sunday) and get off at Longtan (三坑老街) bus stop.

Yi Ren Sit Down
(一人食堂)

Natural foods made without preservatives andartificial additives are sold, including jam, fruit vinegar, grains, fermentedglutinous rice and sauces, and vegetables grown by small farmers. The aim is tolet people grow to like zero-burden, healthy and toxin-free foods.

Yi Ren Sit Down shop
Vinegar and popped rice

Add: No. 29, Lingtan St., Longtan Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市龍潭區菱潭街29號)

Cao Mu Jian
(艸木間)

Various styles of Taiwan high-mountain and distinctive teas are available. As for tea snacks, gua bao (Taiwanese hot pockets) are sold; they are more creative and diverse than the usual ones, with flavors that can’t be found anywhere else such as Three-cup Chicken, and peanut butter and cheese.

Cao Mu Jian
Gua bao

Add: No. 44, Nanlong Rd., Longtan Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市龍潭區南龍路44號)

Shimen Reservoir
(石門水庫)

A famous scenic spot in northern Taiwan, ShimenReservoir is surrounded by a beautiful natural environment. As well as viewingthe imposing dam and spillway, visitors can take a leisurely boat trip on thereservoir. This is also a good place for flower viewing, with peach blossom,cherry blossom, and chrysanthemum in spring and a sea of maple leaves turningfrom green to red and snow-white plum blossom in winter. When the damdischarges excess water during the rainy season, people flock from all aroundto view the magnificent sight. The good water quality and plentiful food supplyallow the freshwater fish here to grow plump and tasty. There are many restaurantsthat specialize in fresh fish dishes on Wenhua Road and around the reservoir.There are also scenic cafés on the banks of the reservoir where visitors canhave a coffee while enjoying the fine view.

Dam of Shimen Reservoir
Tourist boats on Shimen Reservoir

Getting There:
From Taoyuan Bus Station in Zhongli take bus no. 5055 and get off at Shimen Reservoir (石門水庫) bus stop.
From Taoyuan Bus Station in Zhongli take a Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus (no. 503; Shimen Reservoir Route/only operating on Sunday) and get off at Shimen Reservoir (石門水庫) bus stop.

Recommended Restaurants

Dayang Plum Goose Village (大楊梅鵝莊)
Add: No. 2, Ln. 96, Shenlong Rd., Longtan Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市龍潭區神龍路96巷2號)
Tel: (03) 480-6330
Hours: 11:30-14:00, 17:00-21:00

Da Jiang Wu Hakka Restaurant (大江屋客家料理)
Add: No. 65, Ln. 1998, Dabeikeng St., Longtan Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市龍潭區大北坑街1998巷65號)
Tel: (03) 479-4547
Hours: 11:30-14:30, 17:00-21:00

Heng Wei Restaurant (亨味食堂)
Add: No. 25, Ln. 87, Minzhi 16th St., Longtan Dist., Taoyuan City
(桃園市龍潭區民治十六街87巷25號)
Tel: (03) 411-1000
Hours: 11:00-20:00, closed on Tuesday

Also read
Josh Ellis Photography:
Zhongli Police Dorms (壢景町)
Xianguang Second Village (憲光二村)