Wanhua District, known in Taiwanese as Bangka a.k.a. Monga, is a district in Taipei
. It is Taipei's oldest district. The district is home to historic buildings such as Longshan Temple, an iconic historic temple, and the Red House Theater
, the first and largest teahouse and playhouse in Taiwan. Taipei's oldest, but decaying, garment district is also here.
As Wanhua District was Taipei's first district to undergo economic development, there are many old buildings and cultural sites. The large number of temples in this area is attributed to its prosperous past originating from the Qing Dynasty. The district can be divided into three sections: northern, central, and southern. The northern area, including Ximending
, has become home to many shopping centers and is popular among the younger generation. Central Wanhua is known for its historical sites (like Longshan Temple, Qing Shui Temple, Qing Shan Gong, Bopiliao), traditional shopping, and local snacks. Southern Wanhua is mainly a residential area with a wide city park, also known as the Youth Park.
Near the famous Longshan Temple is the Huaxi Street Tourist Night Market (Snake Alley
). The market once served snake and turtle delicacies, but changed its focus to seafood upon protest from animal and environmental groups. The area is also the site of Taipei's former "red light district". The place has been largely cleaned up since prostitution was outlawed in the 1990s, though prostitutes can still be readily found. Today, the night markets are famous among both tourists and locals alike as it presents a wide array of Taiwanese local delicacies at affordable prices.
Ximending (Hsimenting), another main attraction of Wanhua, serves as a counter-culture, trendy shopping center and as Taipei's main movie theater district.
Night markets, a staple of Taiwanese culture, are everywhere. Night markets in the district include the Huaxi Street Tourist Night Market, Xichang Street Night Market, Guangzhou Street Night Market, Wuzhou Street Night Market, and Nanjichang Night Market. In addition, the district has many specialized streets that specialize in different items such as herbs, jewelry, hardware, and home furnishings.
The district is also home to three wholesale markets: the Taipei First Wholesale Fruit and Vegetable Market, Taipei First Poultry Wholesale Market, and Taipei Fishery Wholesale Market. It can be said to be Taipei's center for fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats.
Wanhua is served by the Taipei Metro Banqiao Line and Xiaonanmen Line. The Taiwan Railway Administration's Western Line has one station in the district (Wanhua Station
Important roads, highways, and bridges include: