Hsinchu City God Temple, or Chenghuang Temple, dates back to the Kingdom of Tungming and was built in the middle of the old bamboo-walled city of Zhuqian. Currently, it is the religious center of the city and also has its own night market. It is one of the most impressive historical sites in Hsinchu and is worth a visit for anyone in the area.
After the settlement of the area by Han Chinese farmers in about 1711 during the Kingdom of Tungming, what was then known as Zhuqianshe became the most important economic area in northern Taiwan. By 1723, a walled city was built here out of bamboo, because brick walls were forbidden for fear of a revolt against the Qing authorities. The name Zhuqiancheng (竹塹城) literally means bamboo moat city. The bamboo-walled city had four gates and its perimeter was about 1.4 KM long. In 1806, the city was upgraded with earthen walls. In 1748, the Chenghuang City God temple was completed, being built in the center of the city.
The temple was refurbished and restored in 1792, 1799, and 1924.
In 1891, the Guangxu Emporer visited Taiwan and held a prayer meeting here. He left a plaque that still stands today which reads "Golden Gate Protection (金門保障)," which is meant that the temple would provide protection to the entire island of Taiwan. The temple also features six different halls. Parades and activities are held regularly at the temple.
There is also a night market that surrounds the temple known as the Chenghuang Temple Night Market (新竹市城隍廟夜市).
24/7, but I recommend visiting at night when the night market is open.
How to get there:
The temple is within walking distance of Hsinchu TRA station.
Please see below:
I have been to Hsinchu's City God Temple a few times. It is a unique piece of cultural and historic heritage within Hsinchu, but the thing I enjoy the most here is the market that surrounds it.
View of the temple in the morning. You will notice there are a bunch of night market stalls here which are active in the evening.
There is also a square across from the temple.
Entrance to the temple.
Another view of the side of the temple.
When I was there, there was a line of pigs being offered up for sacrifice.
Closer view of the pigs.
Behind the pigs here is a puppet theater.
View of the main shrine.
Smoke rising from the main shrine.
Another view of the main shrine.
The shopping district that surrounds the temple.
The night market extends to the north along this road.
Closer view of the night market and shopping district.
Another view of the sqaure and Singapore-like fountain here.
Chenghuang Temple Night Market (新竹市城隍廟夜市)
I have been to Chenghuang Temple Night Market at night, but this is the only photo I have. 40 NT for a boba milk back in the day was a steal, and completely unheard of today.
View looking down at an event at City Hall.
View of Beimen Street.
View of the East Gate, the last surviving gate of the old city of Zhuqian. For our full blog on this area, click here.
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