Taiwan: Jiufen Real Life Spirited Away

Note: All photos are mine unless otherwise stated                                                                               Disclaimer: I’m not commissioned by any businesses or services mention below

Jiufen is a village sits on the mountain at the northeast side of Taipei, Taiwan. The name Jiufen in Chinese means “Nine Portions”, which comes from back in time when this village was inhabited by nine families, so every time the goods brought back from the market were divided into nine portions. Jiufen was a gold mining town from the late 1800s well into 1970s. I have to make a statement here, although Jiufen resembles the town in Miyazaki’s film Spirited Away a lot, however, contrary to popular beliefs which you see everywhere on the internet, Jiufen did not inspire Miyazaki for his Spirited Away. Miyazaki said it himself in an interview. The streets of Jiufen are filled with restaurants, eateries, hawkers, stores selling unique retail merchandises, and what Jiufen is known for, tea houses.

Jiufen (Photo courtesy of travelandescape.ca)

Jiufen (Photo courtesy of travelandescape.ca)

Rows of endless mountain view from Jiufen

Rows of endless mountain view from Jiufen

Small entrance into the narrow but quaint Jiufen Old Street

Small entrance into the narrow but quaint Jiufen Old Street

Red lanterns line on both side of the streets in Jiufen. Many stairs like this in Jiufen allow people to travel up and down the town

Red lanterns line on both side of the streets in Jiufen. Many stairs like this in Jiufen allow people to travel up and down the town

You can see the ocean at the far

You can see the ocean at the far

Some houses on the side of the mountain. My friend who had been to Istanbul saw this photo and said this reminds her of Istanbul

Some houses on the side of the mountain. My friend who had been to Istanbul saw this photo and said this reminds her of Istanbul

When I saw this view I thought in my head "Wow, this must be what drinking tea in heaven is looks like"

When I saw this view, I thought in my head “Wow, this must be what drinking tea in heaven looks like.”

Fog rises up along the mountainside

Fog rises along the mountainside

Jiufen at Night

Jiufen at Night

This is it for today’s post about Taiwan. Stay tuned for more to come!

Your boy,

-Chuck

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