There are small lanes and alleys all over Kaohsiung. They run like veins between the main streets, and often you won’t even notice they are there. Traditional indoor markets are hidden from view, embedded in the middle of city blocks.
Location: 霊興殿十八人公祖, Gushan District, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
I found this view inside a temple next to the old British Consulate in Kaohsiung. As soon as I walked into the temple my eyes were drawn to the back corner where this doorway was – A mix of vibrant colours and line of trees leading the eye through the archway.
The temple is very small and otherwise not particularly special. If you do visit, though, the old British Consulate (now a tourist attraction) is next door and there’s also a great view of the harbour from atop the many steps you must climb to get there.
I love places with lots of character. So when I cycled past this claw game arcade the other night I had to stop and take some photos.
The last time I visited Beigang was new years day, and I spent the majority of my time photographing the hordes of visitors to the temple in the middle of town. This time it was the Qingming Festival, otherwise known as Tomb Sweeping Day, and I was determined to keep to the backstreets and see what life was like away from the tourist-oriented old street.
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.
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.
Location: Jade Market 十全玉市, Sanmin District, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Jade is extremely popular in Taiwan, and has historical significance in Chinese culture. It’s also very valuable, but the difficulty in distinguishing fakes from the genuine article means it’s best to avoid spending large amounts on it, unless you know what you’re doing.
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.
Location: Jin Di Ice Rink (金地溜冰場), Yancheng District, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
The thing I like most about street photography and urban exploration is that you often discover parts of the city that would normally go unnoticed. Pockets of history, or contained worlds, that you would otherwise never see, which is what I got with Jindi Ice Rink.