Taiwan: Exploring Shilin Night Market

Travel Period : 30th Oct – 6th Nov 2012

{ Previous Post:  Taiwan: To Taipei & Miramar }

After eating dinner at Miramar and having nothing much to do there, we decided to proceed to Shilin Night Market which is nearby for the famous street food.

Shilin Night Market士林夜市

<<Visited>> Aiyu Drink Stall > Watch an outdoor movie at the temple > orange juice stall > clam omelette shop in underground Shilin > salty fried mushroom stall

#1: Aiyu Drink Stall

Shilin Night Market is a famous landmark in Taiwan, so we made sure we would not miss this place during our trip.

We were dropped off by the roadside near Shilin by the cab we took and had to jaywalk across the road to the other side.

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The place was crowded with a lot of people and we had to stroll through slowly. However, it was cooling in Shilin and we didn’t break a sweat regardless how crowded it was.

The first stall we patronised was the ‘frog eggs’ – Aiyu drink stall, which Cat had read about it from websites. We didn’t know exactly what to order so just told the lady that we wanted the ‘signature drink’. It tasted like the ‘Grass Jelly’ drink in Singapore, plus the pearls (aka ‘frog eggs’ as Taiwanese call them).

We didn’t really have much things we wanted to buy, so it was more of a sightseeing and exploring trip for us. We did check out some shops for Dar’ new backpack but none caught our eyes. Cat also wanted to buy some nice iPhone covers unique to Taiwan but surprisingly, the variety we came across was much lesser than in Singapore. Perhaps that wasn’t the place to look for them?

When we needed to look for the restroom, we headed through an alley to get into a large sheltered area, supposedly a more ‘modern’ part of Shilin Night Market. We checked out the stalls there and the games stalls caught our attention, something we would hardly see in Singapore since our night markets locally focus more on food and items. The Taiwanese seems to enjoy them though, with most of the stalls having brisk businesses. The ‘Guess the Mahjong Tiles’ stalls left quite an impression to us though we didn’t try any of those stalls out.

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Fresh fruits. Allowed trying and owners kept wanting to give us samples to eat
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Game/ toy stalls
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Actually saw this stall on a few blogs before we came Taiwan…we didn’t try. 😛

After walking through the older streets of Shilin again, a scene in front of a temple caught our attention immediately, where a number of people were sitting on the stairs of the temple and watching a free movie being played on a screen just opposite, using a projector or something. This reminded me of my olden days where we could catch movies during such screening along the streets too. We then joined in the crowd to enjoy the nostalgic feeling, though we didn’t stay long due to the limited time we had (it was getting late and we wouldn’t want to tire Dar).

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Bruce Lee Movie Outdoor Showing

Later on, we came across a drink stall selling ‘Orange Juice’ drinks and decided to give it a try. It tasted great and Dar loved drinking it non-stop too.

We then returned back to the sheltered area again and headed for the basement, another part of the Shilin Night Market, where a large eatery was. We were overwhelmed by the variety of food and couldn’t decide what to try.

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In the end, we decided to try the ‘Clam Omelette’ which we had read about before, to find out what made it so famous and what the difference was from the Singapore’s version. (read the ‘food‘ post)

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We also bought some 鹹酥蘑菇 (salty fried mushroom) since we couldn’t find the chicken version of it (we have those in Singapore and wanted to find some authentic ones in Taiwan) and they tasted nice and perhaps healthier than the meaty version.

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When we felt we had covered enough of Shilin for the night, we started to walk along the road and came across more stalls and some interesting items. There was this particular shop with unique name where the staff do massages for people on their neck using something like a knife chopper. We actually stood there for quite a while to observe as it was quite ‘odd’ to us.

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Also, one could donate their receipts which is a form of ‘lottery’ in Taiwan to this type of donation box so there might be a lucky win for the society to help homeless people.

Later on, we came across a stall with Korean iphone covers and Cat bought a cute cat cover. The  friendly female owner gave her two bow-tie ornaments which she could put on her headphone jack of her phone.

With that, we got back to Jiantan Station and headed back to our hotel for a good rest. At the metro station, Dar discovered a nice picture of the metro train along the walls and ran to it happily.

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