21 best Taichung attractions: these are the top things to do in this city

If you are planning a trip to Taiwan, you definitely cannot leave Taichung out of your itinerary.

The modern city located one hour from Taipei is especially well-known for being the birthplace of new food trends (bubble tea was said to originate from Taichung!), home to some of the best night markets, and the best place for artistic minds to gather in Taiwan.

Can’t wait to find out what are the Taichung attractions to visit? Read on to see what tourists and locals alike recommend to do in Taichung!

1. Rainbow Village Taichung

One of Taichung’s most famous and most highly visited attractions is Rainbow Village – in fact, we’re pretty sure that you would have seen it popping up on your feed before, and the inspiring story behind it will definitely motivate you to come, if not for the IG-worthy architecture.

Rainbow Village was originally a low-cost village built for veteran soldiers in the city, but as time passed, developers wanted to buy the properties and demolish the village. One of the residents, Mr Huang, did not want to leave his home, so he began painting his house with images of comic characters and animals in vibrant colours in protest. Many of his neighbours requested that he painted their homes as well in order to save their homes.

Over time, the story of Grandpa Huang trying to save his settlement gained traction and the remainder of the village was saved. Just 11 of the original houses remain from the original 1,200, and the settlement has now become a must-see in Taichung as a celebration of one man’s gallant efforts to save his home.

If you’re lucky, you may even get to meet Grandpa Huang in person – fingers crossed!

Address: No.56, Chun’an Road, Taichung City, Taiwan 408

2. Sun Moon Lake

Although Sun Moon Lake is not exactly located in Taichung city, it is easiest to get to this popular attraction from Taichung via a 90-minute bus ride.

Sun Moon Lake‭ is the largest lake in Taiwan, and its surrounding shore area has been home to the Thao aboriginal‭ ‬tribe‭ (‬邵族‭) ‬since the Qing Dynasty‭. ‬Today‭, ‬the Thao ‬number less than 1,000‭, ‬making them one of the smallest of Taiwan’s officially recognised aboriginal tribes‭.

The best way to admire this lake is by viewing it from above either by cable car or from Ci’en Pagoda, although you also have the option of taking a ferry ride on the lake and getting close to Lalu Island, in the middle of the lake, which is a sacred ground for the Thao tribe that only tribe members can step foot on.

Address: Yuchi, Nantou County, Taiwan

3. Miyahara Ice Cream

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If you only have time to visit one attraction in Taichung, we highly recommend Miyahara Ice Cream.

During the Japanese occupation, the Japanese government modelled Taichung after Kyoto. Miyahara Takekuma, a Japanese ophthalmologist, founded the Miyahara eye hospital in Taichung, and this place was later taken over by a Taiwanese company called Dawn Cake, which makes Taiwan’s most famous pastries and pineapple cakes.

Today, Miyahara is a conserved building where it is a retail store for typical Taiwanese pastries and goods, a restaurant, and an ice-cream parlour – as well as one of the most popular Taichung attractions to visit.

The first thing you may notice when you arrive here is the long queue for the delicious customisable ice cream, and when you enter the building, you’ll be wondering if you’ve accidentally stepped into the filming set for Harry Potter – remember to snap lots of photos of the beautiful high ceiling and checkered marble floors!

Address: No. 20, Zhongshan Road, Central District, Taichung City, Taiwan 400

4. Chun Shui Tang

You can’t say you’ve been to Taiwan if you don’t drink at least one cup of bubble tea, and you definitely can’t say you’ve been to Taichung if you haven’t tried the OG bubble tea.

Chun Shui Tang is founded by a Mr Liu Han-Chieh, who had the idea of serving Chinese tea cold in the early 1980s, after a visit to Japan where he saw coffee served cold. His manager is said to have included Taiwanese tapioca pearls into the drink, hence creating what is now known as bubble tea.

Although most bubble tea outlets function out of small kiosks, Chun Shui Tang is actually a Chinese teahouse that not only serves your favourite drink, but also mains like noodles and fried chicken.

In addition, you’ll find that Chun Shui Tang’s version is just the right amount of creamy and sweet, served in a HUGE cup, which is no wonder why even locals will travel to Taichung to patronise this.

Address: No. 30, Siwei Street, West District, Taichung City, Taiwan 403

5. Feng Chia Night Market

In Taiwan, the streets come to life when the sun sets, and Taichung is no exception, especially when it is home to what is arguably the best night market in Taiwan – making it a popular Taichung attraction you can’t miss.

Tuck into appetising street snacks like fried taro balls, fried chicken cutlet, small sausage in large sausage, scallion pancakes, and stinky tofu – if you have the stomach for it. You can also check out the fashion & accessories shops littered around the night market for affordable and trendy clothes.

P.S. There are many bubble tea outlets located around the rim of the night market, such as Jenjudan, Xing Fu Tang, Tiger Sugar, and The Alley!

Address: Wenhua Road, Xitun District, Taichung City, Taiwan 407

6. Totoro Bus Stop

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Remember the scene in My Neighbour Totoro where Satsuki waited at the bus stop for her dad in the rain and Totoro gave her shelter? You can now recreate that iconic scene at Taichung’s Totoro Bus Stop!

Created by the owner of Home Doctor, an interior design and housing design repair company located next to the fixture, this self-made attraction even features No Face on the subway, so you can take a seat there and pose for some cute photos.

If you have the time, hop over to Home Doctor and have a chat with the owner, who is described as a soft-spoken and humble man passionate about creating props, figures, and models!

Address: No. 133, Qiaocheng Road, Dali District, Taichung City, Taiwan 412

7. Taichung Second Market

The Second Market dates back to the Japanese Colonial Era, where it was once a gathering place for trading commodities.

Today, it is one of the best places to hunt for delicious local food in the day, but take note that this is just as popular with the locals as it is with tourists, so many food vendors close as soon as they are out of food.

Some types of food you’ll find here include traditional breakfast food, Braised Minced Pork Rice (or lurou fan 魯肉飯), soup noodles, dry noodles, Japanese cuisine, and also desserts like sweet tofu and tapioca.

A must-try is this little restaurant called Arashi Braised Minced Pork Shop. They make a few signature dishes with their own Arashi sauce, a Taiwanese braised minced pork sauce, which goes well with rice, noodles, meatballs – anything! You can even buy a jar of the sauce to recreate the simple, yet addictive, flavours back at home.

Address: No. 87, Section 2, Sanmin Road, Central District, Taichung City, Taiwan 400

8. Cingjing Farm

Craving for fresh air, green pastures, and azure blue skies away from the bustling city? Take a one-hour bus ride from Taichung and head to Cingjing Farm, otherwise affectionately called “Foggy Eden”.

Here, you not only get to soak in amazing views of nature, but also see animals like sheep and cows up close, as well as feed them – just be a little careful because they can get a little aggressive when they’re hungry!

If you’re craving a little adventure, you can also try your hand at horseriding, made even more epic by the fact that you’re galloping in the midst of a fog!

Address: No. 170, Renhe Road, Ren’ai Township, Nantou County, Taiwan 546

9. Gaomei Wetland

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Not a fan of sheep but still want to reconnect with nature? Gaomei Wetland will stick all the right boxes.

Located on the south of the mouth of Dajia River, this wetland is mixed with both sand and soil textures, and is home to a vibrant wetland ecological system. Every year around fall and winter, large flocks of migrating birds would come here for either short or long stay over the winter, serving as the best spot for bird-watching.

You’ll find many locals coming here on the weekends and sitting on the boardwalk, either recollecting their thoughts or chatting with their family and friends – feel free to do the same.

Address: Qingshui, Taichung, Taiwan

10. Xitou Monster Village

There is a quirky village located a short distance away from Taichung that makes you feel like you’ve wandered into Japan by accident, and it was created as such for a very touching reason.

During Taiwan’s time under Japanese rule, there were two good friends, a Taiwanese man and a Japanese man, who worked together in Xitou. After Japan lost WWII and the Japanese man had to go back to Japan, he wanted to give his Taiwanese friend a wooden sculpture as a present.

Unfortunately, the two never managed to meet again after the war, but their descendants brought the sculpture from Japan to Taiwan and kept it in Ming Shan Resort.

To commemorate the beautiful friendship between the two, Ming Shan Resort built a village right in front of the resort. Its original name is Matsubayashi, the name of the Taiwanese man, but has since been more commonly called Monster Village due to the many Japanese monster statues with various strange shapes seen there.

Take the time to stroll down this Japanese-style street, wait for freshly-baked bread at the bakery named after the Japanese man (Kurota), and play nostalgic games from your childhood.

Address: No. 2-3, Xingchan Road, Lugu Township, Nantou County, Taiwan 558

11. Zhong She Flower Market

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With its manicured gardens and Instagram-worthy props, Zhong She Flower Market in Taichung is a span of colourful flower fields that are flower-lovers’ heaven.

Located a short drive from central Taichung, you’ll surely squeal in delight when you see a variety of colourful blooms set among beautiful water features, musical instruments, flower arches, and life-sized photo frames.

Look out for the lavender field with a piano as its centrepiece – people will queue just to get a good Facebook profile photo here!

Address: No. 333, Section 5, Sanfeng Road, Houli District, Taichung City, Taiwan 421

12. Guguan Hot Spring

Taiwan is just as famous for its hot springs as Japan, and you’ll definitely want to have a good, relaxing soak in this one set against Bashan Mountain and facing Dajia River.

If you are looking to conceive, Guguan Hot Spring is a must-visit: rumour has it that after the Japanese Emperor Meji was bathed in Guguang Hot Spring, he successfully got a baby boy. This hot spring is also nicknamed as “Hot Spring that Helps Mothers to Give Birth to Boys” – no harm trying your luck!

Address: Lane Wenquan, Section 1, Dongguan Rd, Heping District, Taichung City

13. Dajia Jenn Lann Temple

Think that temples are boring and quiet places? This temple in Taichung will surely change your mind.

With over 200 years of history, Dajia Jenn Lann Temple is one of the most famous Matzu Temples in Taiwan and welcomes many devotees daily.

The inspection tour held in March every year is a world-famous religious ceremony that attracts visitors from all over the country (and world!), but if you’re visiting at other times of the year, you can still marvel at the temple’s treasures: the violet jade Matzu of Jenn Lann Temple and the Golden Matzu in the basement of Matzu cultural museum.

Address: No. 158, Shuntian Road, Dajia District, Taichung City, Taiwan 437

14. Lavender Cottage

Once upon a time, two coffee-loving, herb-loving young women quit their office jobs in the huge cities of Taipei and Kaohsiung to be farmers in Taichung. They bought a hill in the middle of nowhere and grew lavender, eventually bringing their dream of a hillside coffee shop surrounded by lavender to life.

While this is no Provence, Lavender Cottage is a cosy retreat in Taichung that welcomes all fatigued visitors to take a break and soak in the relaxing lavender fragrance. Take an afternoon off to indulge in afternoon tea, and then check out the little market selling lavender products, for a memory of your beautiful time here.

Flower Bloom Seasons: November~April – lavender, June~August – salvia

Address: No. 20, Zhongxing Street, Xinshe District, Taichung City, Taiwan 426

15. Wufeng Lin Family Mansion

Peek into Taiwan’s rich history when you pay a visit to the family residence of influential Lin Family of Wufeng – different members of the Lin family played pivotal roles in several events of Taiwan history of the last 200 years.

Members of the Lin family still live in the rest of their ancestral residence, so only the Great Flower Hall and Gong-Bao-Di (located in the Lower House section) are currently opened to the public. The former was often used by the Lin family to host grand banquets and performances in the 19th and 20th centuries, so be prepared to be wowed away by the splendour.

Take note that you have to join a guided tour to visit the mansion itself. Tours start by the hour at the ticketing-info kiosk, in front of Gong-Bao-Di.

Address: No. 26, Minsheng Road, Wufeng District, Taichung City, Taiwan 413

16. Shenji 368 New Village

Renovated from old residential housing, Shenji New Village in Taichung is now a vibrant creative and cultural hub where many different art studios gather and organic markets take place from time to time.

Head to the Protest Studio to shout out your anger from everyday life in a fun way, marvel at the dinnerware and car stands made from wood scraps at Carvy, and be sure to have a chat with the creative minds behind Letian Hero (expert in packaging designs) and Blossom (creations inspired by quaint window grills).

With a multitude of cafés are also in proximity, there is so much to check out in Shenji New Village that you’ll never be bored!

Address: Lane 368, Minsheng Road, West District, Taichung City

17. National Museum of Natural Science

Those with kids in tow or are avid science-lovers themselves must make a trip to this popular attraction in Taichung.

As one of the most heavily attended museums in Taiwan, and one of the most attended venues in Taichung, National Museum of Natural Science is a massive six-venue complex with permanent exhibits covering everything you can think of: astronomy, space science, paleontology, ecology, gems and minerals, tropical plants, and even Taiwanese Aborigines!

The museum often plays host to rotating special exhibits, so there’s always something new to check out even if you have been here before.

Address: No. 1, Guanqian Road, North District, Taichung City, Taiwan 404

18. National Taichung Theater

Taichung residents fondly call this theatre the ‘pride of Taichung’.

For starters, this attraction in Taichung was designed by Japanese super-architect, Maestro Toyo Ito.

He wanted to build an inviting and welcoming place for people from all walks of life to congregate and spend time together, while creating a space where people can fully appreciate the beauty of artistic performances. Hence, The Theater is designed around superior sound acoustic, with the internal layout supposed to mimic caves with an internal river running through it.

Besides the beautiful architecture, you can also check out the activities happening in the space – there is always something to do!

Address: No. 101, Section 2, Huilai Road, Xitun District, Taichung City, Taiwan 40756

19. Dali Art Plaza

As you can tell by now, Taichung is heaven for artistic souls and creative minds.

If you can’t get enough of the bustling art scene, here’s one more Taichung attraction to check out: Dali Art Plaza!

The Dali Art Plaza is an art-focused complex that houses dozens of art galleries and shops – a little like Insadong’s Ssamziegil in Seoul. They also host a lot of activities for kids, so remember to come here with your little ones for a fun-filled afternoon.

Address: No. 1, Keji Road, Dali District, Taichung City, Taiwan 41267

20. Guangfu Village

Similar to Rainbow Village, Guangfu Village was constructed for veteran soldiers and their families, but has since been converted into a cultural-creative hub that locals visit on the weekends for good photos, good vibes, and good art.

That being said, what is really impressive is the effort to marry the old and the young. Although artists and other cultural-creative types have been invited to move into the village, the original residents still inhabit the outer sections!

Adress: No. 2-3, Heping Road, Wufeng District., Taichung City

21. 921 Earthquake Museum

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Although we are fortunate to be in a country that is well-protected from natural disasters, it is still important to take a look at and understand the damage that earthquakes can cause.

At 1:47 AM on September 21, 1999, Taiwan experienced one of its worst natural disasters of the past century – a 7.3-magnitude earthquake that devastated the central part of the island. This museum is a showcase of the actual damage caused, as well as an opportunity to learn how earthquakes occur.

Address: No. 192, Xinsheng Road, Wufeng District, Taichung City, Taiwan 413