My Happy Place in Taipei: Songshan Cultural and Creative Park

The Songshan Cultural and Creative Park is one place that you wish you had visited much earlier in your trip so you can go back again and again and again.

After spending my mornings reading and writing at the Starbucks at Kunming St. I wish I had spent it here instead. The cool air, leafy suroundings, and peaceful setting will definitely keep the intellectual juices flowing.

See this red pavilion?  Perhaps the next conference paper will be written here . . .

… or here . . .                                                           

. . . or here.

Being a weekday mid-morning, there weren’t too many people.  There were small groups of school children out on an education trip but the place was still quiet and peaceful.  

The park was a former tobacco factory in the 1940s and which has been turned into a complex that incorporates creative spaces for exhibits, design shops, and commercial purposes without detracting from the heritage architecture and layout.  On one side fronting a huge open space used for events is Eslite hotel and the Eslite mall, the only modern sttuctures in the park.  

The original factory structures such as the warehouses and the offices have been retained and re-purposed to house shops, exhibit areas, offices, etc.

I’m a fan of windows, especially large ones; hence, I was taken in by the tall windows of the factory buildings which make them look and feel airy and light.

The buildings have been left as they were but retrofitted thereby preserving the design.

Even the restrooms are consistent with the scheme. I love the tiles and wooden cabinets.

The factory buildings look out to a lovely Baroque garden.  I just wish there were benches near the fountain.  It would have been nice to just sit.  

Design is the heart and soul of the park so expectedly, there is a design museum.  

Creativity runs high at this place.  Taipei, after all, is one of the most creative places on this side of the world.

Nice and quirky stuff, albeit pricey, can be bought at a couple of shops which also double as cafes.

One of the structures was converted into a cozy bookshop-cafe.  Wouldn’t you want to go in a bookshop that looks like this?  

There was an exhibit called, “Wake up Taiwan” in one of the galleries which showed roosters of all shapes and designs.  Rooster crowing = Wake up!  Get it?

Check-out the mirrored toilet in the gallery.  I could piss here forever!

There are cafes such as Luili and Cafe Sole.  The latter had a delicious Ginger and Brown Sugar Latte.

I really enjoyed the wide open spaces of the park and could have easily spent the entire day here if it weren’t for the cold weather and my lack of a jacket.

TIPS

Take the Bannan Line to Taipe City Hall MRT. Take Exit 1.  Upon exiting,  turn right and cross the road.  Walk straight ahead and then turn right (you’ll see a sign).  The park will be on the left. 

There is no entrance fee but the exhibits do have. I paid NT50 for the Wake Up Taipei exhibit.

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