Talking about life and travels in Taiwan, hoping to help people who want to visit Taiwan, and encourage those who haven't came yet to pay a visit.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Towns and villiages: Sansia(三峽)

Last week my friend Tomoko and I visited Sansia. It was the second time to be there, and the experience was as well as the first time.

Sansia is an old town located in Taipei county, centries ago,it was once a prosperous town producing dyed cloth. I'm not going to go on with the whole history, people could check out the Sansia township website, it has some brief introdution about the town, in English too.

I remember my last time here, it was "zhong yuan jie"(中元節), the festival in the middle of the ghost month. There were ceremonies arround the temples, we could see some really fun stuff going on, like people worshiping the gods, and preparing food for the ghosts' visit. But the main streets were still under construction, we didn't have the chance to have a glance of the old ages. This time, the construction was done, the houses showed their faces, what I call "Japanese-Baroque" style.

But this time we didn't spend a lot of time in the most renowned place in Sansia: The Sansia Qingshui Zushi Temple. I heard about artworks and music compositions about this great temple, all the carvings and paintings inside the temple has a story behind, I remember reading a book about the temple, and it was just writing out what stories the crafts are talking about. It is a beautiful temple, definitely worthwhile for someone that is interested in it, but probably not easy for others to understand. But that's ok, there's no reason not to visit a beautiful temple.

Walking down the Sansia old street, it's hard to not notice the people playing the whirling top. Obviously this kind of traditional sport is quite popular here, people play in magnificent skills, they could make the top to spin on Coke bottles, strings, very small surfaces, and all sorts of stuff. I can't even make it spin. People seem to play for fun, they don't have a jar to throw coins in or something to earn money, maybe they think it's just cool to show-off in front of tourists.

Of course there was plenty of eating (Come on, we're in Taiwan...), also some traditional shops to see, I even saw some old fashion grocery stores, which I haven't seen for a long time. As I grew up, 7-11 gradually took place, and most grocery stores disappeared before I noticed. It was an interesting day to see everything so old fashioned, and Tomoko told me Sansia was her favorite place we went together.

Thanks for the pictures from Tomoko.


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