Tainan Night Markets (Tainan Yeshi 台南夜市)
Anyone will tell you that the essential Taiwanese cultural experience is a visit to any of the island's
numerous night markets. Pubs and night clubs are mere subcultures compared to the mass-assembly of
nightlife in Taiwan's night markets, and many Taiwanese never tire of braving the crowds. Tainan is no excep-
tion when it comes to night market culture. In fact, much of the street market food you find all around the
island originated at Tainan's night markets. While you no longer have to travel to Tainan to eat danzai
noodles or coffin bread, many visitors still make Tainan's night markets a priority in their visit.
Night markets are essential to Chinese culture and have been around for more than a thousand years. They
have a long and storied tradition, both on the mainland and on this side of the Taiwan Strait. In fact, much of the
political and social history can be found in the bends and curves of night market culture. Under the Japanese, night
markets were highly regulated. During the 1950's, they boomed in Taipei due to the increase of migrant workers
from the south. During the 70's, merchandise like handicrafts and herbal remedies were replaced by off-sales of the
Made in Taiwan boom. These days, those same light industry products are sold, but they usually come from China.
Traditions involving night markets have changed with the seasons, but they have always been meeting grounds in
which people have gathered to socialize, shop, and eat.
For newcomers, night markets are a lot to take in. On the one hand, they are crowded, hot, noisy, and unsani-
tary places. On the other hand, they are a vibrant sense-explosion, offering a multitude of affordable eating, shop-
ping, and entertainment experiences all in one place.
Most markets are divided into separate sections for food, merchandise, and games. These sections all
consist of small vendor stalls lined up in rows, competing with each other for the attention of the hoards of people
trying to pack through the lanes. The food is usually of the xiaochi (literally: small eat) variety. Many food stalls offer
Taiwanese staples, but many others are vying for business with foreign delights or anything new. You can find fruit,
iced drinks, candy, pastries, wraps, food on stick, or even steak, just to name a few things on offer. Purses, costume
jewelry, and T-shirts with bad English printed on them are the basics at the shop stalls, but like the food vendors,
many sellers branch out to cover all manner of things. Most food and goods are cheaper here than in restaurants or
stores, but don't expect high quality. As far as entertainment goes, it's usually off to the side or in the back of most
night markets. There, you can find old-fashioned fairground games for kids or the young at heart. Try your hand and
catching gold fish, dart-throwing, Mahjong Bingo, or any number of simple chance games.
Most markets are geared towards students, but families and people of all ages attend them. In
fact, they are often the one place you can find people from all economic classes and walks of life.
※ Hua Yuan Night Market (Huayuan Yeshi 花園夜市)
Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays; Haian Road, Section 3, between Lixian Rd. and
Hewei Rd., North District. This is the largest night market in Tainan, and the largest
fully-outdoor night market in Taiwan. Ample parking is provided here.
※ Da Dong Night Market (Da Dong Yeshi 大東夜市)
Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays; Linsen Road, Section 1, near Chongde Rd., East District. This
is the second largest night market in the city. It is very popular on Friday nights, especially
with NCKU students.
※ Wusheng Night Market (Wusheng Yeshi 武聖夜市)
Wednesdays and Saturdays; Wusheng Road, a few blocks west of Wen Xian Rd., North
District. Not easy to find, but it's one of the longest running night market in the city.
※ Yonghua Night Market (Yonghua Yeshi 永華夜市)
Thursdays and Sundays; Yonghua Road, Section 2, at Yonghua 4th St., Anping District. Prob-
ably the newest night market. It's a few blocks past the Anping Carrefour.
※ Kaiyuan Night Market (Kaiyuan Yeshi 開元夜市)
Wednesdays and Saturdays; Kaiyaun Road at Linsen Road, Section 3, North District. On the
northeast side, not far from NCKU.
※ Xiao Bei Night Market (Xiao Bei Yeshi 小北夜市)
Tuesdays and Fridays; Ximen Road, Section 4, at the intersection of He Wei Rd., North District.
One of the oldest night markets in the city.
This article was originally post in Tainan City Guide (http://tainancity.wordpress.com) by
Karl Bergman and is carried out here under his permission.
House-rental reminders for foreigners in Taiwan
One of the first priorities for foreigners who have just arrived in Taiwan is
housing, which can already be a headache for the locals, not to mention newcom-
ers from abroad. Thus, we are offering some additional useful tips on house-
renting, in the hope of making this an easier process for foreigners settling down
Rents vary according to the location, size and type of house, nearby convenient
facilities and so on. Generally speaking, houses in downtown areas will be more expensive
than those in suburban neighborhoods. After a prospective tenant decides to rent, it is
mandatory that they sign a lease agreement with their landlord, regardless of how long
they plan to live there. In turn, landlords are required to present documents verifying
their ownership of the residence, in a step safeguarding the basic rights of foreign ten-
Home rental information can be found via relevant websites, student service cent-
ers at schools, online forums for foreigners and similar places. Among all of these
options, the Tsuei Ma Ma Foundation for Housing and Community Service (TMM) is a
recommended choice for foreigners. TMM, which has earned praise over the years for its
services for foreigners, provides a wealth of rental information in Chinese and English.
After signing up for membership on the TMM website, visitors can immediately navigate
their way to ideal housing options by entering their various needs and requirements.
TMM also offers Chinese-English bilingual contracts for those who may encounter com-
munication difficulties when signing rental agreements. In addition, TMM recommends
home movers and provides legal rental counsel to further assist landlords and tenants.
We offers a friendly reminder to landlords and tenants that, in addition to obliga-
tions and responsibilities indicated on leases, showing respect and consideration for
each other’s cultures and living habits will go a long way toward not only minimizing
unnecessary conflicts but also maintaining a pleasant landlord-tenant relationship.
※Online forums for foreigners:
※ Home rental information website with basic English service:
※ Website for Tsuei Ma Ma Foundation for Housing and Community Service:
※Website/hotline of information for foreigners:
※Foreigner Service in Tainan
This article was post in the latest version
of Taiwan What’s Up by the
Hot Spring, cuisine and leisure at Guanziling
No.6, Sec. 2, Yonghua Rd., Tainan City
Tainan Foreigner Assistance Center
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