Sanxia, New Taipei City

We・re on a half day tour of Yingge and Sanxia, New Taipei City today.
Sanxia is in southwestern New Taipei City, where three rivers and streams converge. Conveniently, in these rivers, people who worked in the dye houses that Sanxia is so famous for, would rinse and wash newly dyed textiles.
On the Taiwan Tour Bus・s Sanxia and Yingge Folk Arts tour, Sanxia is the first stop. On the Taiwan Tour Bus, you get insurance, free wifi, a tablet that has audio guides in English and three other languages, and sometimes an English speaking guide too.
Here we are at Tsushih Temple, built in the mid 18th century. This is the center of worship for people in Sanxia, and the resident deity・s name is Chen Zhaoying, a man who lived around the second half of the 11th century.
He was a general in the Sung Dynasty. He led Sung troops to fight against the Mongolian Genghis Kahn・s invasion. Unfortunately he failed, he was arrested, but he refused to surrender so he was burned to death by Genghis Kahn. That・s why his face is black.
A few other special things about this temple: there are 156 stone columns, each sculpted by hand. In addition to dragons and phoenixes, you・ll see lots of cranes and turtles, which symbolize longevity. Cranes are supposed to live a thousand years, and turtles, ten thousand years.
What I like about Tsushih Temple is that if you go up the more recent additions to the temple, you can walk right up to the wood carvings that are normally so high up, and have a really close look at the craftsmanship and the design.
Earlier I mentioned that Sanxia was famous for indigo dying. You can learn all about how it was done and even have a little bit of fun with the DIY activities.
In its heyday, a fourth of the shops on the main street were dye houses. This by the way is a jinniujiao, a croissant shaped sweet bread that people like to eat when they come here. So what do I like about Sanxia? I like walking around here. It・s beautiful. Look at these arches. Next we・re off to Yingge. You should come.
xW[ぺ Tlvq.妥V