Travel & Culture

Restless in Chiayi

In “Restless In” series, Annie and Juliet talk about what they did in a particular city – good and bad. This includes places they visited, restaurants they tried, and activities they did, as well as what they thought of them. Check out other city reviews here.

There’s still so much of Taiwan I haven’t explored so I took the opportunity to do that during the 228 Peace Memorial Day public holiday. My friend and I drove down south to Chiayi 嘉義 for the first night and then Tainan 台南 for the second night.

Always look up freeway traffic controls if you plan to drive during long holidays. There are certain hours that only allow vehicles with three or more occupants to make sure traffic does not clog up. Because it was just my friend and me, we had to leave much earlier in order to get on the freeway.

Chiayi is pretty big and separated by county and city. This posts consists of places from both so just be aware when planning your trip!

1. Guanyin Mountain 圳北休閒步道

This trail was a nice and easy walk up some concrete stairs. There wasn’t anything too special about this trail but I enjoyed getting some fresh air. There’s a big parking lot with a bathroom so it’s easy access. Depending on how you plan your trip, this can be included as a place to swing by if you’re traveling from the north to Chiayi city.

Address: 603, Chiayi County, Meishan Township, 圳北社區

2. Southern Branch National Palace Museum 國立故宮博物院南不院區

This is definitely a place worth checking out. A permanent exhibition I really enjoyed is called “Imprints of Buddhas: the Buddhist Art in the National Palace Museum Collection”. It contained a wide selection of buddha exhibits where you could see the similarities and differences of buddhist art from different regions during the same period. I recommend getting the audio guide because it gives you more in-depth information about certain exhibits. There is an entrance fee and audio guide fee but they’re reasonably priced. You also have to go online and reserve a time to enter (free).

Check their website for more information:

Address: No. 888, Gugong Boulevard, Taibao City, Chiayi County, 612

3. MingZu Turkey Rice 民主火雞肉飯

It might have been the atmosphere or that I was really hungry, but I liked the turkey rice. Chiayi is known for their turkey rice and this place had a ton of good reviews so we decided to try it out. There were so many people lining up when we got there but table turnover is high so we got a seat pretty quickly. I don’t think it’s necessary to come to this specific turkey rice restaurant but it’s okay to check out if you are keen and want to see what all the buzz is about.

Address: No. 149號, Minzu Road, East District, Chiayi City, 600

4. YongDa Gelato 永大義式冰店

I randomly found this gelato shop on google maps when we were looking for places to eat in Chiayi. It is conveniently located on the same street as the turkey rice restaurant. They close at 8:30PM so try to get there earlier if possible – especially since by the time we got there at 8PM, they only had three flavors left. I ordered their 70% Ghana chocolate and oreo cookies; both were quite delicious! I like gelato that is more on the firm side and this place delivered.

Address: No. 346, Minzu Road, East District, Chiayi City, 600

Check out other posts in our Restless In… series!

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