Thursday, July 10, 2014

Ningxia Night Market (宁夏夜市) @ Taiwan [Taipei]

From google map, it seemed rather straightforward for me to get to Ningxia night market; exit Zhongshan MRT station and walk straight till you reach a roundabout. 

What i didn't expect was that the brisk walk took us roughly about 15 minutes before we reached its entrance! For one who had been walking the entire day, even 10 minutes can be a torture! 

Ningxia Night Market was similar to the Guangzhou Street Night Market; both were said to have a nostalgic atmosphere although to be honest, once is usually enough for most visitors.

Even the old school games that were available in Ningxia could be found in Guangzhou Street but the latter had the benefit of having a bigger space (a longer street actually) for more stalls to be set up.

Alex wanted to play the mahjong game again! That unforgettable memory of hauling back a jumbo toy from Genting Highlands still remains fresh in my mind and to see so many plushies on display can be rather disturbing! 

The night market is more renowned for its food and this can be seen from the large number of food stalls along the Ningxia street. My estimate would put food stalls at roughly about 75%.

Some of might remember the deep fried taro balls blog post i did yesterday. Want to know what i feel about the most famous stall in Ningxia? Click here lah. 

Visit with an empty stomach as there were plenty of foods to fill it up! It's a pity that i already had too much tofu at Shenkeng Old Street and hardly anything at Ningxia appealed to me. Braised products are usually a no no for me. 

I decided to get a hot cup of ginger tea from the fruit stall instead given the chilly weather but it was too spicy for me!!! Heard from the Great Kon that the bitter tea is a must-try. 

Barbecued prawns appeared to be available at every night market i had been to so far. I am not a great fan; to me, steamed prawns with a dash of liquor taste the best! 

Note: there is only ONE narrow lane, flanked on both sides by stalls. 

Should you wish to walk back to the MRT station yet didn't want to squeeze with the crowd, take the routes behind the stalls. It might not be as visually tempting but you do save some time and would also mange to reduce the unstoppable food intake! 

I regretted my decision to squeeze with the crowd. The terribly nice aroma from the smelly tofu from the stall above (王記一品香臭豆腐) was simply too irresistible and i knew i MUST get my hands on them! 

At NT$20 a box, this paled in comparison to all the stinky tofu i had in Taiwan. They were not crispy, the tofu wasn't obviously not on the same level as the ones i had in Shenkeng and the preserved vegetables were more like lightly seasoned cabbage. 

A disappointment, no doubt! The best thing about eating the stinky tofu was that i finally managed to rest my feet at the makeshift dining corner right behind the food stalls. 

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Of all the Taiwan night markets i visited, Ningxia is my least favourite. It's like a younger brother of Guangzhou Street Night Market and hence loses out in terms of historical vibe and character.

Location Map
As above (exit from Zhongshan MRT Station)

Map of the Night Market
As above with indication of available washrooms. 

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