Ximending Night Market

Another day, another night market in Taipei, this time Ximending in the Wanhua District where the lights shine bright and every other person was riding a bike! In comparison to Shida and Shilin night markets, Ximending had a more modern feeling and definitely seemed to be catering to a younger crowd.


Ximending attracts over 3 million people every month on average and has been called the “Harajuku” of Taipei (a fashionable shopping district in Tokyo) famed for the diversity of entertainment and activities on offer.

Mopeds Everywhere

The streets surrounding the area were full of moped riders which seemed to be the most popular form of transport in Taipei. Considering the speed at which they zip around it’s best to keep your eyes wide open when crossing the road!

California Fitness

Most of the people wandering about looked to be teenagers/students enjoying the abundant shops, stalls and small restaurants. The area is easily accessible by the MRT station of the same name.

Neon Crossing

As always I loved looking at all the neon signs glowing at night. It reminded me a lot of Seoul which I imagine could partly be put down to them both having developed in a similar fashion with foreign influences post World War II.

Taipei IMAX

There was also a cool IMAX cinema on the street but unfortunately we didn’t have enough time to watch anything. IMAX certainly seems to be having a resurgence in recent years with more and more mainstream releases coming to the massive 70mm format.

Taipei Taxi

If the locals thought they were cool then this taxi driver was clearly going out of his way to grab some of the attention. Given its surroundings, it somehow didn’t look out of place but I’m not sure who would want to risk a ride with this boy racer!

David avatar

23 responses

  1. Shuo avatar

    Ah~ Ximending is a familiar name to me although I have never been to Taiwan.I watched quite a few Taiwan TV programs so have heard the name “Ximendeng” for zillions of times!

    There’s a new zone in Dongmen named “Dongmending” which is a desperated simulation. I believe Ximending is as interesting as I’ve heard or as you’ve blogged about here. Thanks for sharing, David.^^

  2. Shuo avatar

    Oh, instead of a blank pic, finally did I get to display my Avatar here on you blog. Yay~ I like this cat in my Avatar! ^^

    1. Nice, thanks for your comments Shuo and cute gravatar pic! I didn’t realise Ximending was so famous…

      You’ll have to visit one day 🙂

  3. Great shots, David. You’re images are getting really good.

    I can’t wait to visit TW. Thanks for the preview.

    1. Thanks, I highly recommend Taiwan, even just for the food. It’s just a 1 hour flight from HK so there’s no excuse not to go!

      Looking forward to seeing your Dubai photos.

  4. Adeel Javed avatar
    Adeel Javed

    Hey there, how long were you there? And, darn that taxi :).

    1. Hi Adeel – I was only there for 4 days but went to a lot of places and took a lot of pics!

      How’s the US treating you? I hear PK has its own great firewall these days…

  5. Adeel Javed avatar
    Adeel Javed

    The US is treating pretty good actually, having a great time in Chicago. Planning to explore in the summer, started with the Arlington Horse Park, did some betting, lost like 20 bucks :).

    Yeah, heard about the Great Firewall, that’s why they say Pak-China Friendship Ja Yo!!!

  6. Adeel Javed avatar
    Adeel Javed

    And I am really liking the simplicity yet elegance of your new blog template.

  7. I really like these pictures. There’s a kind of bright cleanliness about them, like they came out of a computer game or something.

  8. Adeel, Brett – thanks for the comments!

    Interesting what you said about it looking like a computer game, now that you come to mention it, I can see the resemblance. I guess it has something to do with the area being so modern and all the cool lighting. They should definitely turn it into a level of GTA or something!

  9. Hi David,
    while I was researching into the newly restored Qianmen road in Beijing I stumbled into your older entries about cultural vandalism and was immediately drawn into your blog. I truly respect the effort and detail you put into your entries and have since bookmarked your site for future reference, since I also love traveling in East Asia. One point I feel inclined to add is that I’ve noticed your entries on Taiwan are placed under ‘China’. I understand the political situation and that there are different views to Taiwan’s current situation, and honestly I am not here to say one or the other. I would only like to suggest maybe adding a separate section for your entries on Taiwan, or even a subsection, in order to distinguish it from China since the two places currently have different systems of government and travel visas. I think that having a separate section for Taiwan can avoid possible confusion and allow easier navigation through your site, so people (like me) can easily find your entries on Taiwan without going through other entries on China.
    Just a suggestion.
    I would also like to add that you have great photography skills and I couldn’t believe this was a personal blog when I first stumbled upon your site cuz it looked so professional, I thought it was a section of some corporate website, lol.


    1. Hi Ted – thanks for your comments!

      The Taiwan issue is a complex one which I’m not going to take sides on but logically it does make sense to have them in separate categories for the purposes of navigation. You can see I’ve already done this in my Travel guide: http://www.randomwire.com/travel

      I’ll look to better categorize things properly in the near future.

  10. Erica avatar

    Everything look so bright and amazing. What type of camera did you bought or have? It’s just so amazing!

    P.S. I’ve to agree with Ted, China and Taiwan are two different country. Lol if you go to Taiwan and said that you like China and C+T should be one, omg you would hear lots of barking (:P) Did you get to go to colleges or older town to see the difference of each country. =)

    1. Hi Erica – I use a Panasonic Lumix LX3 which absolutely superb and so easy to use. There’s a new LX5 model or the GF2 is also worth considering.

      Regarding Taiwan as a country – I don’t have any issue with this but I don’t want to take sides and upset anyone 🙂

  11. ryrhien avatar


  12. Great post on Ximending, but I would not file it under “night market”. It’s more like a big pedestrian area designated for young urban people. There is not really a lot of traditional night market food here.

    And I agree with Ted, I would not file Taiwan under “China”, but this is your blog, do as you think is right.

    Great set of articles you have. I think we’re a bit alike, when it comes to blogging and traveling.

    1. Yes, I suppose its more modern shops than night-market per-say.

      Since posting this I’ve separated everything about Taiwan into its own category – don’t want to go upsetting anyone on either side 😉

      1. Lol.. you’re like that Hong Kong character in the infamous ad http://si.tc/rmb Don’t worry about offending people, it’s your blog. Even, if you believed Taiwan is part of China, that’s your right 😉

        I’m more thinking about how to take such great photos at night like you… You must have a great camera. I’m using my girlfriend’s Pentax K2000 DSLR and somehow I always have problems taking good photos in the evening. Maybe the lens is bad…, or my skill. Your photos are amazingly clear. I totally envy you. 🙂

        1. Thanks for the compliments – if you looked at my pictures 5 years ago they were pretty poor – it was just practice and learning how to edit them properly which led to the improvements. If you love taking shots at night as I do I’d strongly recommend considering getting a Panasonic Lumix LX5 or GF2 – they do great shots in low light and are very easy to use.

  13. Thank you for the tip. I will keep that in mind, next time I’m purchasing a new camera.

  14. RudyF avatar


    I agree the LX-3 or preferrably the LX-5 is a great camera for night scene and wide angle shots. And very convenient too because of its size. I will be visiting Taipei in the next weeks and I won’t forget to bring my LX-3 with me.

    Nice blog and beautiful shots.

    1. Thanks Rudy – if I was buying today I would definitely go for the LX-5 or GF3.

      Have fun in Taipei!


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