Songshan District

Songshan District

Songshan is where the business heart of Taipei booms. Overall, Songshan is more of a commercial district than anything else. It's home to thousands of businesses of all kinds, as well as serving as the home base for several large corporations. Songshan is also known for being a hub for the airline industry, thanks in part to it also housing Taipei International Airport. Once purely a domestic terminal, the airport now offers flights to a few stops around Asia, focusing mainly on Tokyo, Seoul, and China, in addition to serving as the base for units of the R.O.C. Air Force.  The airport is also where tourists can catch flights to Taiwan's outlying islands

One of the main landmarks of the Songshan District, and a focal point for shoppers, is the Core Pacific City, a.k.a. Living Mall. Somewhat resembling the Death Star from Star Wars, with its partially spherical design, the mall might lack the star power of the malls in and around the Xinyi and Da'an Districts, but its unique architecture is a sight to see and the shops are numerous and diverse enough to keep a shop-a-holic fully occupied. The closest MRT station is Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall, but it's about a 20-minute walk northward out of exit five. Turn right once you hit Bade Road, and look for the giant sphere on the right-hand side. You can't miss it. 

Raohe Street Night Market

Not far from yet to be completed Songshan Station on the MRT line of the same name is the Raohe Street Night Market, a 600 meter long collection of food stalls, souvenir, and clothing shops. You'll find the market at the intersection of Bade Rd. section 4 and Fuyuan St. The entrance to the market is marked by the grand Ciyou Temple, which dates back to the 18th century and, like many city temples, is dedicated to Mazu, goddess of the sea. Check out the temple, and then walk through the market. It's not the largest night market in Taipei, nor the most famous, but nonetheless it's an excellent place to try some cheap but delicious street food such as meat buns, pork rib soup (prepared with herbs used in Chinese medicine to promote robust health).

Taipei Arena

Another Songshan Landmark is Taipei Arena, known colloquially, and perhaps confusingly, as Xiao Jiu Dan, or “Little Giant Egg.” The arena is a multipurpose center that plays host to major concert and sporting events, having over the years seen major pop stars pass through its doors, in addition to having NBA exhibition games held within its confines. What's more, the Taipei Ice Hockey League, an amateur association with teams made up of expats and locals alike, holds its games at the facility's ice rink, which is also open for public skating. This is one of just a handful of ice surfaces in the entire country. The easiest way to get to the Egg is to take the MRT to Nanjing East Road Station and proceed on foot east along the road of the same name for a few minutes.