Snake Alley! This is how the Taipei locals refer to the Hwahsi (Huaxei) tourist night market. Just the name was enough to take me to this place that is situated close to the famous Longshan Temple. I had heard a lot of stories about this place. It’s snake soups, the ability to taste all kinds of exotic meats and more. Personally, I am a vegetarian, but I was keen on saying how the place got its name.
And when I went there, I saw a typical tourist market that served all kinds of meats, had all kinds of reptiles on display, had many sex toy stores and sold Taiwan’s favorite stinky tofu that would make you cringe when you walked past those stalls. As a wildlife lover, it hurt me to see turtles, pythons, cobras, crocodiles and many other reptiles being served on dinner plates. But, since there is demand here, these poor reptiles get captured and eaten. This alley is also good for getting great deals on hardware accessories and shoes. Even though this place is technically a tourist night market, you will find more locals here than tourists.