The town of Jiufen was founded during the Japanese Occupation. It wasn't until gold was discovered in the mountains surrounding the town that the Jiufen developed into a busy area. Nowadays, Jiufen is a tourist destination where visitors can still see many of the remnants of Japanese architecture. Due to its location on the side of a mountain, the views of the ocean below are spectactular. Visitors can wander the tiny alleys fulls of vendors selling great foods and Taiwanese crafts.
Jiufen is mainly a collections of tight alleys that climb up the side of a small mountain. When you turn around and look out, you can see some amazing views of the ocean and small outcropping below. Jiufen can be very foggy and rainy, so any view is a good one.
The alleyways can be tight, especially when on busy tourist days. There is a lot of character to this area which is why it's very popular.
Below is the road up to Jiufen before entering the market area.
If you are not driving or scootering, the best way to Jiufen is via bus. There is also a train, however, it's a little slower and there aren't as many times as the bus.
The bus leaves from the intersection of Zhong Xiao and Fuxing Roads. You can can either the MRT Brown or Blue Lines to this stop and exit at Exit 1. You will see a bus stop sign for bus # 1062. (The bus route is Taipei-Jin Gua Shi Town which is next to Jiufen)
The bus to Jiufen takes about 1 hour. It can take longer on weekends with more traffic. The price is 90NT. At the bus stop, some touts may try to sell you a package and tell you the bus ride is 2 hours. Don't believe it and just wait for the bus which comes about once an hour.
The sign for Bus 1062 at Jiufen. The bus will let you off below the market entrance. Just follow the hill up to the entrance. However, the bus stop back to Taipei is in a different location. When you exit the market, go right up the hilll and you will see the bus stop (pictured below) on your left.
After you get off the bus in Jiufen, head up the hill and around the curve. You will see a 7-11. The entrance to the market is here.
Below is the sign for the entrance to the Jiufen market area.
There are a few sites to see in Jiufen as you walk through the market alleys. The Shengping Theatre was built in the 1930's. It was also shown in a famous old Taiwanese movie called "City of Sadness". Shuqi Road is a small section of cobblestone walkway.
A view of the upper section of Jiufen.
Jiufen has a lot of things for sale mostly catered to tourists.
Jiufen is also famous for its "Yu Wan Tang". This is translated as taro ball soup. It's a hot, sweet soup, with chewy taro and sweet potato balls inside. It's a must try. Read more about WHAT TO EAT IN JIUFEN.
There are other snacks like barbecued sausages.
If you haven't tried an ice cream spring roll in Taiwan, you can get one here at a few locations.
Some handicrafts hang at one shop.
Many tourists like to buy Chinese style gifts. This store sold only calligraphy brushes.
As usual, there is Taiwan tea for sale. Jiufen is famous for its teahouses. READ ABOUT THE JIUFEN TEAHOUSE HERE.
A picture of the upper levels of Jiufen. Visitors can keep walking beyond the market and explore the quiet area.
Higher up the market, there are several places to sit down, enjoy some food, and admire the great views.
Visitors enjoy tea and snacks in a teahouse on Jiufen.
More signs directing to the famous Jiufen Teahouse. You can read about it HERE.
Head on out to Jiufen if you have the time. It is a very cool and unique part of Taiwan and a favorite of many visitors.