About Hsinchu City
Hsinchu City, literally translated as ‘New Bamboo’, is Taiwan’s seventh largest city. A coastal city, it used to be called Chuchang by aboriginal peoples in the old days. By 1711, the area was populated and founded by Han people. The city earned its present name in 1875 and became a provincial city in 1982. Present Hsinchu City now has a population of 446, 701 and covers an area of approximately 104 square kilometers. The city, fondly called ‘The Windy City’ for its regular gusts of wind coming in from the Taiwan Strait, is also called ‘The Garden City of Culture and Technology’ for its accomplishments in preserving its cultural identity and innovative technology. A major industrial park, Hsinchu Science Park, calls this city its home. Characterized by a humid subtropical climate, the months of October to December are blessed with pleasant cool weather, with June to September being hot and humid. Rainy season happens from February to September.
The Charm of Hsinchu City
1. Home for Industry and TechnologyHsinchu City, known for having the highest income level in the country, is recognized around the world as the home of one of the most significant hubs for the manufacture of semiconductors, as well as a pivotal area for the development of manufacturing, computer technology, and other industries. The city’s Science Park is a significant economic hub, which is complemented by the presence of premier research institutions sich as National Chiao Tung University and National Tsing Hua University. Among the 350 technology companies located at the Science Park include world-famous brands like Acer Inc., Philips, and Logitech. The city is working towards making the Science Park an ‘economic center for the information industry’, at the same time maintaining world-class research and development, sustainable work, high quality of life, with lots of options for recreation.
2. City of Important Cultural SignificanceIn spite of Hsinchu City’s advancements in technology and industry, it hasn’t forgotten its historical roots and continues to be the country’s significant cultural center. With almost half a century of history, this growing metropolis is northern Taiwan’s oldest city. Visitors naturally flock to its ancient temples to show their devotion to their faith, and enjoy watching a traditional Taiwanese opera regularly staged at these old, expansive courtyard. Likewise, they tour historic ancient gates constructed from granite and carved in their traditionally designed arches. Apart from museums, visitors are also regaled by renovated vintage buildings, including old movie theater buildings where contemporary movies and theater plays are mounted.
3. A City Steeped in Natural SceneryIt’s not difficult to find and commune with nature in Hsinchu City. For many visitors, the city’s large swaths of lush parks and greenery, as well as hilly and mountainous areas, are a welcome break from the city’s modern-day hustle and bustle. Nature seekers have a variety of activities to choose from — leisurely strolls along long stretches of parks, comfortable forest walks through stepways and paved paths, trekking through botanical gardens while admiring over 300 varieties of indigenous plant species, biking through 17 kilometers of scenic coastal view, or spotting wild migratory birds and other fowls at a scenic lake. Summer and spring months offer flower festivals, which are very popular among both local and international visitors.
Hsinchu City Tourist Spots
1. Chenghuang Temple Night Market: Tasty Treats for TouristsAfter a visit to the Chenghuang Temple, the natural go-to for many tourists is the Chenghuang Temple Night Market located in front of the temple, which was constructed in the 1700s. Visitors will have lots of options, looking over at the goodies being sold by market stalls and showcasing a huge variety of Taiwanese sweet and savory street treats. Considered the ‘best night food market’ in this city with a history of over 100 years, the market is steeped in traditional flavors with tasty selections ranging from hot meatball soups to popular fried noodles, as well as fried rice and fried chicken. On a crowded day, the place is a cacophony of sights and sounds, of aromas and tastes, the kind of which will take a while to forget.
2. Hsinchu Moat Park: An Experience of the City’s Bygone DaysOffering a quiet respite from this busy, thriving city is a park that was built surrounding Hsinchu’s oldest moat. The Hsinchu Moat Park was designed with the comfort of people in mind, as it is filled with shady trees and colorful blooming shrubs. Two small stages built along the canal offer regular short concerts and cultural performances to entertain the crowds. The park also mounts art exhibits with pieces displayed all over the area. It’s a favorite spot for friends meeting up, or a quick stopover for a snack or lunch, or for residents to just relax and unwind. Cafes are also found around the park for those craving for a hot or cold cuppa.
3. Beipu Old Street: A Journey Back in TimeConsidered a major tourist attraction, Beipu Old Street is a perfect getaway for those who want to learn more about Hsinchu’s past. This small village has a population of about 10,000 majority of which are of Hakka descent, now considered an aboriginal minority of Taiwan. Upon arriving at the village, visitors can stroll through the Old Street filled with well-preserved, impressive historical buildings. Among these are Jinguangfu Mansion, Ci-Tian Temple, and Tiansu Hall, all of which are considered structural masterpieces. Also popular among tourists are the souvenir shops and stalls offering authentic Hakka cuisine, including persimmon cakes and ground tea. Nearby attractions are the Beipu Cold Spring and mountainous areas that are great for hiking and firefly viewing especially around the end of April and early May.