The Jiji Wuchang Temple (aka 921 Earthquake Museum 九二一地震紀念館) in Jiji Township of Nantou County is a monument to the 921 earthquake that hit Taiwan in 1999, which killed thousands of people. The temple stood near the epicenter of the earthquake, and the first floor of the temple collapsed. Now a new temple has been built but the old one has been left untouched, a testament to the power of the 921 earthquake.
Wuchang Temple's beginnings can be traced back to1903 when a statue was built here to the God Xuan Wu (玄武), and was later built into a full temple in 1923. It was later expanded starting in 1990, and not long after the renovation was completed in 1999 the 921 earthquake hit, toppling it.
The 921 earthquake hit on September 21st, 1999 at 1:47 in the morning, shaking for 102 seconds, registering at 7.7 on the Richter scale. In total 2,415 people died, and 51,711 homes were destroyed. It was the worst natural disaster in Taiwan since WWII. The earthquake was also known as the Jiji earthquake, because its epicenter was inside Jiji township.
However, the God Xuan Wu's Statue inside the temple was not damaged. Other God's statues were also rescued from inside the temple. The beards of some of the Gods were said to have grown longer after the collapse, which added interest and donations for the construction of a new temple.
A new temple was rebuilt next to it with the same name, completed in 2013.
You can book a tour to Jiji and Nantou Sky Bridge on Klook here.
We have stayed at and recommend Jenq Yang Hotspring Hotel (you can book on Agoda here, Booking.com here, Trip.com here, or Klook here), a hot spring hotel near the mystical Lushan hot spring, and Maple Leaf Holiday Villa (you can book on Agoda here, Booking.com here, Hotels.com here, Expedia.com here, Trip.com here, or Klook here), a lodge with a great view and within walking distance of Cingjing Farm. I also have stayed at and recommend Kirin Villa (you can book on Agoda here or Booking.com here), a mountain resort in Puli near Sun Moon Lake.
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How to get there:
By Car/Scooter: From Mingjian, take provincial highway 16 east toward Jiji. Turn left on Bazhang Street in Jiji and you will see the temple on your left. If you are looking for car rentals, you can also search Qeeq here, Klook here, KKday here. You can also check out our car rental guide here.
Looking for scooter rental in Nantou? Search Klook here or KKday here to search for options. You can also check out our scooter rental guide here.
By Train: Take the Jiji train line from Yuanlin all the way to Jiji Station. The temple is about a 1KM walk northeast from the station. You can book tickets to travel to Nantou via inter-city bus on Klook here.
You can book tickets to Taichung via high speed rail (HSR) on Klook here or KKDay here, or book tickets via the normal train (TRA) on Klook here.
Bicycle Rental: Cycling is the best way to enjoy Taiwan's landscapes if you have the time and energy. Looking for bicycle rentals in Taiwan? You can search on KKday here and search for tours on Klook here. You can also check out our Taiwan cycling guide here.
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We are US Expats that have extensive experience living, working, and travelling in Taiwan. In our day, we had to learn many things about Taiwan the hard way. But we have come to learn that Taiwan is one of the best places in the world for Foreigners to live. Our blog does not represent the opinions of every foreigner in Taiwan. We are just trying to help others learn more about this beautiful country.