Only an hour away from Hong Kong, Taipei makes the perfect place for a short or long trip. Taipei is best known for its food markets, where you can experience the local culture and food. Whether you are looking for places for dinner or dessert there’s a place for you! Markets in Taipei also sell a lot of interesting stuff, you can get your friends and family some souvenirs there too! Here’s a list of some of the must visit food markets in Taipei. What are you waiting for? Fly to Taipei with Cathay Pacific now!
Shilin Night Market
Shilin Market is definitely king of Taipei’s night markets. Even if you have never visited Taipei before, you would have definitely heard of Shilin Night Market at one point. Shilin Night Market is divided into two areas: general merchandise and a food market. You get the best of both worlds! You can snack away while shopping for unique pieces. Trust me you’ll never get bored, but maybe a bit tired, because Shilin Night Market has over 500 stalls. The market is open from late afternoon to midnight, it’s also located near to the local train stations, so it’s very easy and convenient to get to or head back to your accommodation if you stay out a bit too late. One thing you wouldn’t want to miss when visiting Shilin Night Market is the supersized fried chicken cutlet! Seriously, it’s bigger than your palm. But don’t get stuffed with just fried chicken cutlets, share it with your friends so you still have space in your stomach to try other delicious food in the market. If you want something healthier after that whole chicken cutlet, there are a lot of fresh fruit stalls in the market. You can either get fresh fruit juices or fruits cut up for you!
Raohe Night Market
Raohe Night Market is one of the oldest markets in Taipei. Located near the Keelung River, Raohe Night Market attracts a lot of visitors especially to appreciate the beautiful scenery at night near the river and to experience the vibrancy. If you do visit the Raohe Market at night, don’t forget to take a short walk to the shore of the Keelung River and appreciate the breathtaking 167 metre long Rainbow Bridge that spreads across the river. Next to the Raohe Night Market is a temple built in the Qing Dynasty – the Ciyou Temple. Now let’s talk about what not to miss in this traditional night market. The top seller in the market is the pork pepper buns, crispy on the outside and soft and savoury on the inside, a treat you definitely don’t want to miss! As Raohe Night Market is located near a river, Raohe Night Market offers a selection of seafood, grilled, fried or a cold platter. Raohe Night Market is a bit smaller compared to Shilin Market, but it might still be a bit crowded during weekends. Don’t worry, that’s part of the fun!
Ningxia Night Market
NingXia Night Market is not one to miss if you wish to try authentic local Taiwanese cuisine. Though a lot smaller in space, this 150 metre long night market holds some of the treasures your hungry stomach is longing for. One of the most famous one is oyster omelettes. Oyster omelette is a batter mixed with fresh oysters, starch flour, spring onions and other seasoning then deep-fried. It is very crispy on the outside but nice and chewy on the inside, you can get a taste of fresh Taiwanese oysters in every bite! There are multiple places that sell oyster omelettes in Ningxia Night Market, feel free to try different shops to see which one is the best for you. Some shops also take a creative spin in the oyster omelettes, so make sure you try as much as you possibly can. If you want something sweet after all that delicious oysters, you can find a stall that makes traditional Taiwanese dessert – mochi balls! They are usually stuffed with either black sesame or crushed crispy peanuts, every single bite is a delightful sensation in its texture.
Shida Night Market
Though one of the markets in the smaller scale, Shida Night Market has got to be the trendiest one, as it is located in Taipei’s university districts. Not only an attractive tourist site, it is the go to place for young locals to hangout at. You can find places to buy well-made fashion in a bargain as well as trendy bars and cafes. Definitely a perfect place for you young travellers out there! Braised meat (滷肉 ), especially braised pork rice, is the national dish of Taiwan. Here in Shida Night Market, you can’t get even one of it and at a cheap price too! The market sells all sorts of braised products, from the popular braised pork to tofu, from rice dishes to noodle dishes. Each stall’s braise sauce is unique; they all have their own secret ingredients or cooking methods. Another celebrated Taiwanese street food is egg crepes. These egg crepes are usually savoury, usually stuffed with ham or tuna. Be sure to have a taste.
Linjiang Night Market
If you want to stay away from the crowds and visit a more low-key local night market, you can try out Linjiang Night Market, it is more spacious too. When visiting the market, you may walk past a number of stalls with a pungent smell, because Linjiang Night Market is a famous place for stinky tofu. It tastes better than it sounds. Stinky tofu is usually served in small cubes topped with different sauces or fried cabbage. Another well-celebrated street food in Linjiang Night Market is one that Hong Kongers are very familiar with – Shanghai steam fried buns. You can get freshly made Shanghai steam fried buns in the market. Try talking to the stall owner and get a recipe for these buns! Another must try in the market is a Taiwanese bun called Gua bao. These are fluffy steamed buns stuffed with pork bellies or chop suey, pickles, spring onions and all sorts of tasty seasoning. Located near Taipei 101, be sure to pay this night market a visit after your daytime sightseeing.
One friendly reminder for you: Let’s pay an effort to be environmentally friendly and bring our own reusable utensils when eating in night markets to avoid using too much plastic or non-reusable products. Now, stop scrolling and go ahead and plan your trip to Taipei! You will be able to recharge from the busy Hong Kong life while being a complete foodie and indulge on all the mouth-watering cuisines, enjoy!