We should have written this post weeks ago but we never had time to do it… anyway Hsinchu is always on my mind because it was one of the last places we visited in Taiwan, so I finally managed to talk about it on our blog. We arrived in Hsinchu after our workaway experience in Taichung looking for a relaxing, cheap and small town where to spend new year’s eve and few more days. Hsinchu has interesting museums and pleasant gardens, so it was definitely a good choice on our itinerary.
What to see in Hsinchu
The Glass museum is the top attraction in town thanks to its beautiful temporary exhibitions, a permanent collection and some interesting videos showing the different techniques used for creating glass decorations and items. The museum is located in Hsinchu park, close to a zoo, a confucius temple and some shops selling glass souvenirs.
Another interesting visit was the City military dependents’ villages museum. The name itself describes the place: this museum is about the villages where soldiers from China, during the civil war between Kuomingtang and communists, fled following Chiang Kai Shek. These villages were supposed to be a temporary home while waiting for the war to be over; unfortunately for the soldiers, those houses became their permanent residence when the communists won and there was no more chance of going back to motherland. Over the decades the villages became the place where the chinese communities gathered and some of them are still inhabited today.
New year’s eve
While walking downtown on the 31st of december, we noticed that something was going on in front of the station. People were setting a stage and doing soundcheck, so we rushed to the tourist office to ask about that. “Are you planning a concert tonight?” “No concert, you have to go to Taipei for it”. “Oh but we saw something going on just outside the station, any plans for tonigh?” “No you have to go to Taipei”. Going to Taipei was definitely NOT in our plans so we left feeling a bit frustrated and confused… but there was really something going on (maybe the tourist office was unaware of that or just wanted to keep the secret) because from 5pm some students’ bands started the show playing songs and alternating on the stage. Watching people gathering, listening to music, strolling under xmas lights… everything was so perfect that we enjoyed new year’s eve for the first time in so many years! There were almost no fireworks, no firecrackers, just music and people waiting for the countdown. At midnight we all clapped and then everyone went back home.