You've heard of Taipei (Tainorth 臺北) Taichung (Taimiddle 臺中) Taitung (Taieast 臺東) and Tainan (Taisouth 臺南), but what about Taixi (Taiwest 臺西)? It exists. It's a small coastal township in Yunlin County, with the main industry there being oyster harvesting. There isn't much to see here besides oyster farms and wetlands, but I still recommend going there at least once for bucket list checking purposes.
Taixi was first colonized by Chinese people in the 1800s, first by the Ting family, which were Muslim Chinese that immigrated from Fujian province. They built a mosque there, but over time the family all converted to Taoism, and the mosque has since been converted into a Taoist Temple. Now, over 70 percent of the people living in Taixi are descendants from the Ting family.
The main industry here is oyster farming, but radish farming and eco-tourism of the local wetlands and Taixi Seaside Park also bring in some income.
A large section of sea off the coast of Taixi also has been planned for land reclamation for industrial use.
Currently there are 24,212 people living in the township, which is divided into 15 villages.
How to get there:
By Car: Take National Highway 1 to Yunlin, then take wither Freeway 61 or 78 west to Taixi.
Scooter: Take Freeway 17 along the west coast of Taiwan until you reach the town, which is on the northern coast of Yunlin.
By Bus: From the Yunlin High Speed Rail Station, you can take the city bus to Taixi, which is about an hour bus ride away.
Please see below:
Like many travelers to Taixi, I came just for the sake of its name. I had no idea what to expect when I arrived.
So apparently there is a "Central Taixi" although there is nothing really there except some noodle shops and one or two convenience stores.
One thing you will notice here are the piles of sea shells everywhere.
Another pile of shells, the town's main export. Taiwan needs to get its oyster omelette ingredients from somewhere.
A run down oyster market at the end of town.
One of many abandoned farm houses in the area.
And that place is right offshore, where they hang the oysters on strings. The tide will come and bring nutrient rich water for the oysters to filter feed.
Oyster harvesting as far as the eye can see.
Near the oyster farm were also quite a few people fishing.
Piles of oysters in cube form.
Windmills along the muddy coast.
The restaurant pictured above is nothing but a stall in front of someone's house selling noodles and fish balls in front the Taixi Junior High School at Zhongshan Road.
Obviously I didn't go and discover everything in this town, but that means there is always a reason to go back!
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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.