Wanting experience life outside of Taipei, I researched other cities in Taiwan that would fit my adventurous spirit. Taichung, Taiwan’s 2nd most populous city, caught my interest right away because of its Rainbow Village and picturesque Sun and Moon Lake which are both accessible by bus from the central station.
The bright and beautiful colors of this village immediately caught my eye–plus I was curious to know the origin of how it became so psychedelic–so I wanted this place to be my first destination in Taichung. I took the MRT from Taipei to reach Taichung Station within 2 hours, then I took a local bus to reach Rainbow Village within 15 minutes. I was greeted by these crazy-colored murals painted on a neighborhood of cozy houses. The village was a bit smaller than what I had expected, but there were literally so many things to see here!
This village was designated as a home for refugees that fled to Taiwan during the Chinese Civil War, but was sadly planned to be demolished after the war ended. Not wanting to see his home destroyed, Huang Yong-Fu (who was drafted for the war but still resided in the village), started painting the entire village in rainbow colors in hopes that it would be preserved. Though not many other refugees were living there at the time, his artwork was noticed by nearby university students and they formed a petition to keep the 11 houses intact. Fortunately it was successful, and the village has become a popular tourist attraction for everyone to enjoy and learn about the history of the war. Yong-Fu is nicknamed the “Rainbow Grandpa” of the village, and his murals will always be an important part of Taichung’s history.
This village is literally a photographer’s paradise! I was really happy to capture a lot of quality footage on my GoPro even though there were a lot of people around. The murals seem to have cultural influences from all around the world. There are a number of animals and humans depicted in them with interesting symbols so your interpretation of them completely depends on you.
After spending a good hour here, I decided to take a taxi back to Loosha Hotel where I was staying for the night (I chose it because it was cheap and centrally located). Taichung can be done as a day trip, but I would recommend staying here 2-3 days if you can see everything. I will be covering the famous Sun and Moon Lake in my next article this week! Thank you for reading.