A fun and vibrant city, Taichung is located along the West Coast in Taiwan. It is a place where the Northern and Southern Taiwanese culture meet. The weather here has a reputation for being the most stable, meaning most days are sunny and warm, compared to Northern Taiwan’s frequent rain and Southern Taiwan’s heat. It is well worth a visit if you will traveling to Taiwan because it is more laid-back here, and the atmosphere is just casual. You’ll also get to experience the exciting and unique culture of Central Taiwan here. Good thing we were able to explore this city for 24 hours.
From Taipei, we took the fastest and most efficient High-Speed Rail in Taiwan. It is quite expensive, but it is the quickest way to reach Taichung, which takes only about 1 hour.
I booked a one-way ticket going to Taichung via Klook and a one-way ticket going to Zuoying for the next day. We had a hassle-free experience in redeeming it at the station. It only took us less than 10 minutes to queue and to get the physical tickets. You can also buy tickets at the station, but during peak hours or national holidays, seat availability is not guaranteed, so I suggest to book them in advance.
When traveling with a one-way ticket, just like what I did, you have to bring the original copy of your passport for verification purposes. If you don’t have it, you will not be allowed to board the train.
The seats are comfortable, and the travel time was indeed fast. We left Taipei City at 10:46 AM, and we arrived at Taichung Station in an hour. Usually, it would take 2.5 to 3 hours if you will be traveling by bus and 2 hours for TRA. The train is so spacious, and there are restrooms, vending machines, room for breastfeeding, and staff that will walk around after every stop to offer some food to the passengers.
To save time, we decided to eat an early lunch inside the train. For 100 NTD, you’ll get to eat a rice meal with a large portion of pork or chicken, plus veggies, eggs, and mushrooms on the sides.
Upon arriving in Taichung, we left our luggage at the hotel, and we started our adventure by trying the famous ice cream at Miyahara – a popular dessert shop that was renovated from an old clinic. It is located in a red brick building with an interior design that resembles Hogwarts in Harry Potter movies!
This ice cream that is served with waffles and 3 kinds of toppings attracts a host of tourists lining up.
So we gave it a try! I ordered 3 scoops of ice cream ( Blueberry Yogurt, Chocolate, Black Assam Tea) with Pineapple Cake, Cheese Cake, and Bread Sticks.
The next stop is Chung-She Flower Garden.
Located in Houli, Taichung, Chung-She Flower Garden, or Zhong She Guan Guang Flower Market is definitely a great place where you can feast your eyes on these blooming flowers! The vast field is planted with a wide array of brilliant colorful flowers by professional growers.
It was already 5:00 PM when we entered the flower garden, so we only had a limited time to take pictures because their closing time is 6:00 PM. The entrance fee costs 120 NTD ( 200 PHP or 4 USD), but during peak season (January to March), the entrance fee will cost 150 NTD.
Chung-She Flower Garden is the only flower market that succeeded in growing tulips in low altitude areas of Central Taiwan. The blooming flowers attract large numbers of visitors to enjoy the masses of color.
To get here, we took a train from Taichung Station, going to Tai’an Station. Travel time is 30 to 40 minutes, and to reach Chung-She Flower Garden, you have to walk 30 minutes from the station because no Taxi will pass by.
But after some research, I’ve found out that you can also get off at Houli Station, then take a taxi to the flower market. (Too late. Huhu) If you are coming from Taipei, you can also take Fengyuan Bus and get off at Chung-She Flower Garden.
Chung-She Flower Garden is definitely a beautiful sight! They also have a wedding photo backdrop zone that will bring you the best wedding photography experience possible.
Since it was too late to visit other attractions, we went back to Taichung City. Btw, there are Taxis outside the flower garden that can take you to the train station. We had our dinner in a Japanese Restaurant near the hotel, and we just did a little shopping around the city.
The next day, after eating our breakfast at the hotel, we checked out at around 8:30 AM to visit another stunning attraction before we travel to Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
From the hotel, we walked for 5 minutes to the bus stop and took Bus #40, going to Ling Tung University. From there, we took a taxi going to the Rainbow Village.
Rainbow Village is a tiny, old settlement for ex-soldiers in the Nantun District of Taichung. It is one of the most colorful spots in Taiwan, and it is famous for its vibrantly painted houses and streets.
This is immensely popular with tourists and, as a result, the place can get a little overcrowded at times. I recommend going here in the morning to avoid a bunch of tourists.
This village was preserved by Huang Yong-Fu, also known as the Rainbow Grandpa, who was a retired serviceman and the last resident of the town. He hand-painted the whole village with colorful murals featuring comic characters, children, and animals in protest to save the village from the demolition.
He began painting his own house, and his neighbors requested to decorate their homes too. The story of Rainbow Grandpa trying to save the village gained traction, and 11 of the original houses in the town were saved.
Despite his age, Huang Yong-Fu lives nearby, and he gets up early every day to maintain his artworks. So if you are an early bird, you can get to see him and take a picture.
There is also a small cafe inside the village and souvenir shops where you can buy merchandise such as hats umbrellas, notebook, magnets, and other crafts with Huang Yong-Fu’s artworks. I bought some postcards, ref magnets, and stickers for my journal.
After our visit to the Rainbow Village, we took a taxi going to Wuri District to get our THSR tickets to Kaohsiung City. Travel time from Taichung to Kaohsiung is 45 minutes to 1 and a half hours via bullet train, depending on the train schedule because some are just 1-2 stops from the final destination (Zuoying), and some trains will stop every city.
We were supposed to go to other attractions such as Gaomei Wetland and Sun Moon Lake, but we don’t have enough time because these tourist destinations in Taichung are far from each other. I will definitely come back because I fell in love with this place! Taichung is indeed a great city. It is less busy than Taipei, but there are cool spots that you can visit.
If you’ve been to Taichung before, you can suggest some places in the comment section, so that I can visit them the next time I go here and to help other readers too 🙂