The last day in Taipei was very lively. In the morning we went to a random breakfast place by our hostel. There were a lot of people in there so we decided to give Taiwanese breakfast a try.
I ordered Dan Bing which is a crepe rolled with egg and scallions. My friend, Oullie, ordered a Youtiao (donut fried in oil) and Dou Jiang (soy milk soup). She was a lot more adventurous than I was but didn't end up liking what she ordered and I loved what I ordered.
After breakfast we headed to Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall. The subway station was really interesting. It had art that children made all over the walls. They were a lot better then I would ever be able to do. These were the two I like the most.
Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall
Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall is a national monument and tourist attraction. It was build in memory of Chiang Kai-Shek, former President of The Republic of China It was a rainy day so we had our umbrellas once again. The memorial park was huge, there were 3 large buildings here but we only went inside one building.
We went straight to the memorial hall because it was the most interesting looking building.
There is a lot of significance in this large building. Inside the memorial hall the ceiling has an octagonal pattern. In Asian culture eight is associated with abundance and good fortune. There are 89 steps going up to the entrance of the hall which symbolizes Chiang Kai-Shek's age when he died.
Here is a large Statue of Chiang Kai-Shek in the main hall. There is also a library and museum which documents the former presidents life and career. There is also photos documenting the development of Taiwan and the memorial hall. Luckily for us we got there right on time for the guard mounting ceremony. There are always two guards that stand on either side of the former president's statue and are not allowed any movement. Luckily they change positions every hour and there is about a 15 min long change which is quite interesting.
After checking out the building and watching the guard changing we headed out. We weren't really interested in going into the other building because we didn't see other people going in there.
We did however stop at the Chinese Garden to take some pictures while it was raining.
At the front of the memorial hall there is a huge white and blue arch called Freedom Square Memorial Arch. There is a large promenade separating all of the building which is the major site for public gatherings.
Longshan Temple was one of the only things on my list for Taipei so I had to visit here. This temple has a BEAUTIFUL exterior. It is everything you expect when you visit a Chinese Temple. Longshan Temple is one of the most popular temples in Taipei. The temple was founded in 1738 although it is not original. This temple has been rebuilt several times due to bombings, earthquakes and typhoons. To enter it is free but donations are welcome.
Once you enter the temple there is a waterfall to the right. The monkey sculptures are all lanterns and light up.
This temple actually has more than one entity here. You will see both Buddhist and Taoist deities which is actually very uncommon.
Here you can see the donations left by worshipers.
Even the ceiling is beautiful.
The large golden urn is actually an incense burner. Burning incense is a way of purifying the surroundings to bring forth Gods which is why Buddhists do it.
This area is used as an entrance and a worship area. The black columns with the dragon carvings are quite impressive.
More worshipers leaving donations and praying respects to Buddha.
This temple is quite large. There are many different halls with various entities in each.
This is one of the halls towards the back of the temple with Taoist deities.
How to get to Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall:
-- Take the red or green line to Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall and follow the signs. Or just go upstairs, you will end up right in the Freedom Square.
How to get to Longshan Temple:
--Take the blue line on the MRT to Longshan Temple, take exit 1. Walk through the park to the right. There are also signs there.
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