Once the sun sets, the Shilin district comes alive with hundreds of stalls selling souvenirs and Taiwanese fare. As the most famous of Taipei’s night markets, Shilin Night Market draws large crowds of adventurous eaters, who want to be the first in line to try delicacies such as stinky tofu and braised pork intestines.
Most full-day Taipei tours—and almost all Taipei evening tours—visit Shilin Night Market and give travelers ample time to explore and sample weird and wonderful Taiwanese dishes. You can combine a visit to the market with stops at Taipei 101 and Longshan Temple, or focus on the market’s offerings during a food tour. Exploring the market with a guide helps you to navigate the crowds with ease and discover lesser-known dishes.
Things to Know Before You Go
- If you don’t want to commit to a full portion of food, ask a vendor for a sample—they’re usually more than happy to oblige.
- The night market is a must for food lovers and travelers looking to pick up souvenirs.
- Be prepared to brave large crowds and to wait in line at popular food stalls, especially on weekends.
How to Get There
On the Taipei MRT, take the red line to Jiantan station (not Shilin station). From the station, the market is a few minutes’ walk and clearly signposted. If you have trouble finding it, just follow the smell of stinky tofu.
When to Get There
Shilin Night Market is in full swing from 6pm until midnight, when all of the vending stalls are open. Expect to encounter the largest crowds on weekends, and on weekdays at around 7pm, when many locals drop by the market to pick up their evening meal.
Must-Try Foods at Shilin Night Market
The market’s most famous dish is oyster omelette, a crispy dish that’s usually topped with chilli sauce mixed with lime. Other must-try items include Taiwanese-style fried chicken, bubble tea, and, if you’re feeling adventurous, the pungent stinky tofu.