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An Abandoned Firetruck in Old Zuoying

Location: Remains of Zizhu and Chongshi Village (自助新村 崇實新村), Old Zuoying, Kaohsiung, Taiwan

I was out on a bike ride today in old Zuoying and decided to check in on the remains of some of the villages that were once there. One of them, Zizhu Village, was famous for being decorated and graffitied by local students. It became a tourist attraction until it was torn down in 2011/12. Neigbouring Chongshi village is also gone. All that remains is the odd house, or wall.

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The Old Takao Signal Cabin

Location: Takao Signal Cabin (高雄臨港線鐵路北號誌樓), Gushan District, Kaohsiung, Taiwan

I was quite surprised to find the old signal cabin in the condition it was in. The upstairs was sealed off, but on the ground floor one room was open and a mess inside.

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Alley Cats

Alley Cats

Location: Yancheng Market (lanes/alleys that run parallel to Cisian Road), Kaohsiung, Taiwan

I recently bought a second hand bicycle. I can’t believe I’ve been in Taiwan for almost 9 years and only just bought one. It’s probably the thought of riding in the tropical heat that had put me off.

Second hand bicycle

Exercise was my main reason for buying it, but also for going out on photography “walks”. With a bicycle it’s easy to move quickly, but not lose touch with the city like you do when on a scooter. Bikes are perfect for nipping down alleys and small side streets, and places that you might not be able to go on a scooter.

Scooters are also noisy, and alert people to your presence. Take the alley cats photo, above. If I were on a scooter then the cats would have been easily scared away before I got anywhere near them.

So that’s my plan – cycle to the far corners and otherwise unseen places in Kaohsiung… while getting baked in the tropical sun.

Minxiong Haunted House

Location: Minxiong Haunted House (民雄鬼屋), Chiayi County, Taiwan

North of Chiayi city, in a small town called Minxiong, there’s an old abandoned mansion that’s well known in the area as a haunted house. The house, also known as the Liu Family Mansion, has been empty since the Japanese occupation of Taiwan and is now slowly being reclaimed by the jungle.

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The Foothills of Neishitou Mountain

Location: Foothills of Neishitou Mountain, Fangshan, Pingtung, Taiwan

Sometimes it’s good to get lost for a few hours, which is what I did during this trip to the southern coast of Taiwan.

There’s a place called Magic Cafe on the way to Kenting. It’s just off Highway 1, and the beautiful sea view makes a nice break from driving, but the hilly farmland behind is somewhere you’d usually not look twice at. This time during our visit, though, I decided to take a look over the road and hike some of the hills at the base of the mountain.

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Kaohsiung City Block

Apartment Blocks

There’s something really interesting about these massive blocks of concrete. They’re common place here in Taiwan, so much so that you don’t see them after a while, they hide themselves in plain sight. I think it’s the concentration of lives in such a small area that fascinates me. Everyone in their own world, but occupying the same small area.
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Zhutian Township, Pingtung

Location: Zhutian, Pingtung County, Taiwan

Zhutian, 竹田, literally ‘bamboo field’ is a small town just over the border from Kaohsiung in Pingtung County.

Zhutian is famous for its almost 100 year old train station. The actual station was modernised in 2013 and now uses an overhead railway system, but the old station building still exists, which was the reason for my visit. When I arrived, though, I found that the old station building was in the process of being renovated, and wouldn’t be open until mid-April 2015. A bit of a disappointment, but Zhutian is a beautiful little village, so I spent a few hours photographing the surrounding area.

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