Glamorous Ximending

16 11 2007

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!

KFC in Ximending

Ximending is less glamorous and more quiet during the daytime.





6 responses

17 11 2007

Hi Sandy,
ximending is a nice place to hang out. I go there frequently for shopping some cheap stuff 😉
I have witnessed the police officer and food carts drama. Its quite funny to see. Even the police officer knows they would be back in 2 mins lol
thanks for great post abt ximending

23 11 2007

Terrific post Sandy. I like this area quite a bit. There’s always something going on and you’re absolutely right in your comparison with Tokyo’s Shibuya.

4 12 2007

Thanks for the kind comments! In my opinion, Ximending is a must-see for those who want to see what youth culture is like in Taipei.

12 12 2007

Ha – you got a picture of the doll stand! (5th photo) I can never find that place when I get the big idea to go get a doll made. I’m thinking I ought to start mapping out Ximending so I won’t forget where everything is. It’s just got too much to remember!

12 12 2007

I was there on my last trip to Taiwan. thought it was a really fun place to be. Kind of like SOHO meets Time Square.

12 12 2007

Holly – For some reason your comment was in my spam folder, but you should be fine commenting from now on. Not sure why it did that! Anyway, I think the doll stand was in the main drag down the pedestrian street if I remember correctly. The dolls are quite good copies of the photos!

Owshawng – Ximending is fun! I really liked poking around the little boutiques and seeing all the trends. Btw, what does your name mean?

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