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Hwashi Street Tourist Market ThingsAsian: TravelTip Icon -- Sightseeing


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(Snake Alley)
Lungan MRT Station
Taipei, Taiwan Taiwan




The Hwashi Street Toursit market, or Snake Alley, is perhaps one of the most famous tourist streets in Taipei. However, the market, and the surrounding alleys, have a lot more to offer than animal cruelty and a glimpse into the neighborhood that was chocked full of sleaze back in those heady days when prostitution was still legal.

The area is noted for the number of fortune tellers who ply their trade along the main thoroughfares, people who will, for a nominal service charge, offer you a glimpse into your future simply by reading your palm, feeling the bumps on your skull, or through a variety of other methods. The neighborhood is also an excellent place to shop for items you won?t find at Sogo. A walk down Sanshui street is a veritable lesson in herbalism, selling all manners of stems, leaves, roots, seeds, nuts, and other assorted items reputed to have medicinal value.

While a bit touristy, the market is worth a visit. Try the snake soup, if you dare.

(authors note: The snake in this picture is a pet, not meat!)

Published on 9/7/03

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