It was pouring with rain when we arrived at the Jiufen Qingyun Temple. We we’re standing in front of the entrance in our yellow rain ponchos when the staff at the temple looked a bit puzzled.
To our surprise, there were no other tourists at the temple when we visited. ”How did you find this temple?” A very kind volunteer asked us.
”I found it on the map and it seemed very beautiful” is what I replied.
There was hardly any information to be found about this temple on the internet. This always makes it extra interesting to visit a place, as you don’t really know what to expect.
That’s why I’ve written this article, to write down my after thoughts and to tell you how to get to Jiufen Qingyun Temple and what you can expect.
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- The Jiufen Qingyun Temple is a hidden gem located in Taiwan’s northeast mountains, stepping inside feels like you’ve entered a secret sanctuary.
- The temple honours Emperor Shennong, an ancient deity important in agriculture and medicine within Chinese culture.
- Visit between 9 AM and 6 PM daily to experience this beautiful temple.
History of Qingyun Temple
Located in the lush mountains of Taiwan’s northeast, you’ll find this secret sanctuary called Jiufen Qingjun Temple. Read on to find out more about the history of this beautiful temple.
Dedicated to Emperor Shennong
At Jiufen Qingyun Temple, you’ll find a deep connection to the legendary Emperor Shennong, important for his foundational role in Chinese culture. Known as the “God farmer,” his influence stretches beyond agriculture into the realms of medicine and healing.
The temple honours him not just as King Yan or God of Five Grains but celebrates him with grandeur fitting for Shennong the Great Emperor. His fabled discoveries in herbal medicine laid down the roots for traditional Chinese medical practices that persist to this day.
Throughout Qingyun Temple you’ll find homage to this ancient figure through intricate carvings and dedicated altars. Shennong’s teachings were revolutionising farming and health care techniques across China.
Each detail within these walls tells a story of respect for nature, knowledge and innovation linked closely to Taiwan’s local customs and traditions that continue shaping lives centuries later.
Before visiting Jiufen’s Qingyun Temple, it’s good to know some essential information, such as how to get to the temple and where to stay in the area. This will make your visit a lot smoother.
How to get to Qingyun Temple
Getting to Jiufen Qingyun Temple is easier than you might think, and the journey there is as rewarding as the destination itself. Let’s dive into how to get to this hidden gem of Taiwan.
- If you begin your adventure in Taipei, then head to Taipei Main Station. Taipei Main Station is the central station in Taipei.
- Purchase a train ticket to Ruifang Station; the trip typically takes about 40 minutes and offers scenic views along the way.
- Once at Ruifang Station, make your way outside to find local buses or taxis waiting near the entrance.
- Look for bus number 827 or 788, as these will take you directly to Jiufen Old Street, close to Qingyun Temple.
- Enjoy a winding bus ride up mountain roads with breathtaking views of the ocean.
- From Jiufen Old Street there are a couple of ways to get to the temple: by car, by taxi or by walking. There are lots of parking spaces available here.
- By car or taxi from Jiufen centre it will take around 5 minutes, while walking along the winding roads will take around 20 minutes. If you want to take a taxi, Uber works here. Our Uber cost us around 120 NTD for one way.
Opening times of the temple
Jiufen Qingyun Temple welcomes visitors to explore its historical charm and spiritual serenity from 9 AM to 6 PM daily.
You need around an hour or more to fully admire the temple. The harmonious blend of culture and history at Qingyun makes it an unmissable experience during any day trip from Taipei.
Where to stay in Jiufen?
Although it’s possible to visit the temple on a day trip from Taipei, I highly recommend staying in Jiufen for at least two nights. Jiufen is such a lush and green place to visit and it’s definitely worth exploring for more than just a few hours.
If you’re wondering how to spend your days here, here are a few suggestions: wander around Jiufen Old Street, visit a tea house, hike Mount Keelung trail, visit Sandiaoling Waterfalls, admire Shifen Waterfall and visit Houtong Cat Village. There are even more things to do in the area.
As you can see, you can easily spend a couple of days here and see lots of impressive sights. It’s also a good way to escape the crowds, as you can wander around the Old Street in the morning or later in the evening, when most of the crowds have left.
So, where should you stay in Jiufen? I’ve personally stayed at Wangyuku B&B and can highly recommend this local guesthouse.
The owner of the guesthouse gave us free rain ponchos, free noodles and free snacks. It’s not the most luxurious place ever, but that didn’t matter.
The place is affordable, has great views filled with greenery and breakfast is included in the price. Click here to view its latest rates and availability.
What to expect at Qingyun Temple
As there’s not that much information about Jiufen Qingyun Temple to be found on the internet, it’s difficult to know what to expect. That’s why I’ve written this article, to give you a better insight of whether the temple is worth visiting and what you can expect.
Magnificent Taoist architecture
What makes Jiufen Qingyun Temple really worth visiting is its Taoist architecture. Every detail of the temple captures centuries-old traditions. The temple’s large complex spans over 3000 square meters and is a testament to architectural mastery.
Its grand main hall invites you in with its calm. There’s a certain kind of energy here that immediately makes you feel at peace.
Notice the elaborate roof decorations that illustrate stories from ancient mythology; these carvings are not just decorative but hold significant spiritual meaning.
Step into the halls behind the main area and feel transported through time within these sacred walls. Each structure reveals an incredible attention to detail.
These spaces resonate with a serene atmosphere that is the essence of Taoist thought: harmony between humanity and nature.
However, it’s good to know that a part of the temple is under construction (in November 2023). A few of the upper levels are being built back up again, yet you can still visit the 6th floor.
You can take the elevator up to the 6th floor and you’ll be greeted with amazing views of Jiufen and Taipei.
After you’ve taken the lift to the 6th floor, you’ll see panoramic views of Jiufen and Taipei. This is one of the most beautiful sights of the temple, and perhaps even in Jiufen itself.
The scenery of the lush mountains and the ocean in combination with the details of the temple make it a sight you won’t quickly forget.
After taking in the panoramic views, you’ll find that the atmosphere of Jiufen Qingyun Temple extends beyond its stunning scenery. The temple’s environment embraces you with a sense of peace and spirituality as soon as you walk through its doors.
We even got some tea from the volunteers at the temple while we we’re here. Hence, not only the beautiful architecture and the panoramic views make the temple worth visiting, but also the kind atmosphere.
If you want to explore a real hidden gem in Taiwan, then head over to the magnificent Jiufen Qingyun Temple. This temple, dedicated to Emperor Shennong, has to be one of the most beautiful temples I’ve ever visited. Marvel at its spectacular Taoist architecture, with every glance offering more intricate details to admire.
Don’t forget to take the lift to the 6th floor, where you’ll have breathtaking views over Jiufen and even Taipei. Experience a slice of Taiwan’s spiritual heritage in the historic charm of Jiufen – it promises to be a highlight of your journey.
Away with Danae
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