The Taichung MRT was originally expected to open to traffic on December 19th, but trial operations were recently publicly suspended due to vehicle failure.
Taichung Mayor Lu Shiow-Yen (盧秀燕) subsequently held a press conference on December 14th to announce the delay.
The reasons being touted for the delay as raised by the Taipei Department of Rapid Transit Systems and Kawasaki Heavy Industries of Japan center on safety concerns.
The estimated repair period was too optimistic Lu said. “I would rather be scolded. But the safety of citizens is paramount,” she added, and it was officially announced that the opening date was postponed.
Official Taichung MRT website: https://www.tmrt.com.tw
Photo: Taichung MRT
Delays aside, when the long awaited Taichung MRT does get off the ground the route will run from Beitun along Wenxin Road to the Taichung High Speed Rail Station.
Along the way, it passes through Daqing Station (115) and Songzhu Station (104) at which passengers can transfer to Taiwan Railway lines, while City Hall Station (110) will allow travellers to transfer to Taichung City.
It will ultimately be a very convenient way for tourists who come to Taichung by high-speed rail and Taiwan railway routes to get around Taiwan’s second largest city.
One-Day Tour Attractions
So, if you are looking forward to taking the Taichung MRT when it starts running, here are a few things those wanting to travel to Taichung – and around the city by MRT – might want to do while in town; station by station.
Taichung City Hall Station(110)
Nearby attractions: National Taichung Theater
Best time to visit: Any time
[National Taichung Theater]
After disembarking at the Taichung City Hall Station, you can walk to the National Taichung Theater in about 10-15 minutes.
The concept of the National Taichung Theater is as a venue where art and life coexist.
To this end, in addition to many wonderful opera performances – traditional and from overseas – there are also many spaces to visit, such as an exquisite stationery store -meets coffee shop called “VVG LABO” on the first floor, and a bookstore on the fifth floor.
One floor higher is the restaurant “café crotchet” and the Sky Garden.
Enjoy a performance of “T.A.P. Project” at 1pm daily (Tuesday to Sunday) on the second floor, as beautifully illuminated sculptures are projected on the specially designed interior walls.
Photo: National Taichung Theater
Starting from December 16th, in response to the advent of Christmas, there is a light / sculpture show created by Bao Dashan, and if you photograph ‘the grandma in the light sculpture’ you will win a special discount! (For detailed screening information and how to shoot granny, please refer to the official website): https://www.npac-ntt.org/NEWS/c-OTk5fdPEwNp#時間表)
Wenhau Senior High School Station (108)
Nearby attractions: Taichung Central Park
Best time to visit: Afternoon
[ Taichung Central Park ]
Taichung Central Park combines the three principles of wisdom, low-carbon and innovation, and covers an area of 67 hectares of green space, referred to as the “Lung of Taichung.”
There are multiple experience areas in the park, including a ‘discussion’ area, dynamics, taste, touch, self, hearing, balance, life, temperature, thinking, smell and visual zones making it an idea outing spot for the whole family to go out together.
The visitor center in Taichung Central Park is integrated with the local Family Mart, with the design making this Family Mart one of the most popular local attractions at which people take pictures to post on Instagram and Facebook.
There is also a comfortable resting space for visitors to take a rest after walking around.
In the park near Huanzhong Road, there are also ‘hidden’ areas called “Matcha Lake” and “Keyan Love Bridge”.
If the weather is sunny – and it often is in Taichung – the dark green lake water and the body of the bridge will be reflected in the lake at the same time which makes this a must-see attraction in Central Park.
There are clean public toilets in each area, but because of the large area of the entire park, if you want to visit all the listed areas it is recommended you set aside at least one to two hours.
Wenxin Yinghua Station (109)
Nearby attractions: FairyPuff, Feng Chia Night Market
Best time to visit: Afternoon and evening
Fancy a fairy puff? Then head to the reasonably priced “Fairy Puffs” near Feng Chia Night Market.
There are chocolates and original flavors to choose from throughout the store, and a box of 10 puffs costs NT$95.
After choosing the required amount, the staff will fill up the puffs on site. But don’t worry, if you are not a fan of puffs, there are other desserts to choose from.
And the size of the puff is of course just right as an appetizer before a meal – one perhaps, not all.
After the appetizer, continue to the night market~
[ Feng Chia Night Market – Gekiuma Yakitori ]
There are many well-known snacks here in one of Taiwan’s most famous night markets.
You can find pretty much everything and anything you would like to eat in Feng Chia Night Market, but today I will introduce you to one nearby late night supper spot locals love!
Hidden in the alley next to Feng Chia Night Market is Gekiuma Yakitori – a barbecue restaurant despite the name.
It has many branches in Taichung, but the Feng Chia store is the ‘head office’ in Taiwan.
In addition to special fried items to chow down on, the seats are set in the open areas to enjoy the balmy nights we often have here in Taichung.
The store itself is very much Japanese in style, with high lanterns and live bands.
And a recommended food combo from yours truly is mochi pork skewers, with a few deep-fried dishes, and beer!
After your meal, it is the perfect place to relax and end your day’s travel plans, while looking forward to tomorrow.
Fingers crossed that after the MRT officially opens, everyone can take the Taichung MRT to some of these spots and have a great day out in Taichung.
(all images supplied by the author unless otherwise indicated)