Monster-Village

XiTou  Monster Village (溪头妖怪村), an interesting Japanese style attraction, one of the hottest tourism spots in Nantou (南投). The place full of creativity, from concepts, buildings, foods, souvenirs, to the “creatures” staying there… Monster Village was located at the entrance of Xitou Nature Education Area (溪頭自然教育園區), with address No. 2-3, Xingchan Rd, Lugu Township Nantou County, 558 (南投縣鹿谷鄉內湖村興產路2-3號). The place open daily from 1000 to 2000, with free admission. Here is the webpage of XiTou Monster Village, currently available only in Chinese version.

Getting to XiTou  Monster Village (溪头妖怪村)

We took Sun Moon Lake – XiTou shuttle bus line from JiJi Train Station (集集火车站) to Monster Village, you can refer to my post on JiJi Train Station for more details.

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Sun Moon Lake - XiTou shuttle bus service

Sun Moon Lake – XiTou shuttle bus line timetable, connecting several main tourism spots in NanTou.

Other than that, Taiwan Tourist Shuttle service (台灣好行) also offered XiTou route, travelling between Taichung Railway Station (台铁台中站 ) and Xitou. One way ticket cost NT175 per person, but with promotion for round trip of NT330. Do take note that last bus from XiTou to TaiChung was 1720, and normally will be very crowded. The 1st thing we did once reach Monster Village was to buy the 1720 bus ticket to TaiChung, and I strongly recommend you to do the same if you are to take this service back to TaiChung on the same day.

You can find more information about Taiwan Tourist Shuttle service, and also the timetable below in their website. There are a lot other routes available too.

Taiwan Tourist Shuttle service XiTou route - weekdays

Taiwan Tourist Shuttle service XiTou route – weekdays timetable.

Taiwan Tourist Shuttle service XiTou route - weekends and holidays

Taiwan Tourist Shuttle service XiTou route – weekends and holiday timetable.

We arrived bus stop of Xitou Nature Education Area around 1500, and saw a big group of visitors queuing. A staff asked us to follow the queue for getting numbers to secure our seats on Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus back to TaiChung. Wao! I felt lucky talking to the staff, if not we might just left for Monster Village after got off from bus without knowing the need to queue for numbers.

Finally we got our numbers for 1720 bus from XiTou to Taichung Railway Station after 30mins of queuing, and our numbers were 1 and 2, yeah!

Xitou Nature Education Area bus stop

Phew… Luckily I tried to understand from the staff, if not we might missed the last bus back to Taichung Railway Station.

Ok, transportation set, time for Monster Village!

Monster Village

The store street (松林町) of Monster Village was just 3mins walk away from the bus stop, we started exploring from there instead of the main entrance with a big red Torii.

There were numbers of mascots in Monster Village, the main 2 were Kuma (枯麻 – a sun bear) and Badou (八豆 – a clouded leopard), let see how many could you spot.

 

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This area selling a lot of snacks and local cuisines, some with very funny names to attract customers.
 
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A quick lunch at open air roadside stall, ordered black dry noodle (黑意面) with extra tea egg, and meatballs soup (贡丸汤), total NT100. The noodle was pretty good.

It was Tuesday when we were visiting Monster Village, not much tourists there. I am not sure if that was reason why a lot of shops were closed on that day, whole place was a bit quiet.

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A few shops and stalls in Monster Village were closed when we were visiting, here are some of the interesting one.

It started to rain after our lunch, more visitors were leaving. The village getting foggy, looked more mysterious and matched its theme.

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It was raining and getting foggy, the village looked mysterious with blurred background and bright red hanging lanterns…

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Kubota bakery was the most famous landmark in Monster Village, Kuma was there stuck in the chimney.

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Restaurant next to Kubota bakery.

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Badou was taking break on top of a stall selling chicken cuisine, after finished its fish…?
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Found this stall selling roasted sweet potato on our way to Monster Village’s main entrance, tried a small one (NT15), it was good worth trying.

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Here was the entrance to store street (松林町), the lantern monster reminded me of Spirited Away (千與千尋).
 
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山大王 literally translated as Mountain King was my favorite mascot in Monster Village, a store selling buns which named after him.

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Sign boards that are telling the stories about Mountain King, an unlucky but kind man who eventually became a mountain guardian protecting the goods but punishing the bad.
 
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The Lucky Lion (招财狮), money money come!

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The only monster that I found scary…

 

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Ming Shan Hotel (明山森林會館), Kuma was having a great time reading newspaper with a cup of hot drink, such a clever sun bear…

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Monster Train is here, anyone want a ride?

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A souvenir shop at the main entrance, second floor was selling snacks.

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Heavy rain out there, while I was focus and busy stamping my postcards, wanted to bring back the good memories and those unique logos that representing this interesting place that we have visited.

It was 1700 after finish stamping my postcards, no time to waste, we quickly headed to the bus stop which was 5mins walking distance from the main entrance of Monster Village.

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The last Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus to Taichung Railway Station started moving at 1720, payment via EasyCard (悠遊卡) at NT175 per ticket.

Buildup area of Monster Village wasn’t big, visitors could actually finish covering the place within 30mins. But the fun part was actually to go deeper into those details of this interesting place, and that was the most fascinating portion, for me. If you would like to know and explore more about the charms of this place, I suggest to allocate around 4 hours to slowly feel it. That was my second visit, but it wasn’t enough, I will definitely visit again!

Estimation of 1.5 hours from Monster Village to Taichung Railway Station, we took that opportunity to take a nap before another amazing race to catch 19:39 HSR at TaiChung HSR station to TaiPei. Sounds exciting isn’t?

Again, I was amazed by the accuracy of public transportations’ estimated arrival times, we arrived Taichung Railway Station at 1850 sharp! After collecting our luggage from Taichung Railway Station’s baggage service, without further ado we bought the train tickets (NT15 per ticket) and rush to the platform to take 1910 train to HSR TaiChung Station.

Taichung Railway Station

Taichung Railway Station, luckily there wasn’t any crowd when we were in hurry. Look at the clock, it was 1900 when we finish buying 1910 ticket  to HSR TaiChung Station, had to run with all luggage, woohoo!

We reach HSR TaiChung Station at 1925 and managed to catch the HSR to TaiPei (total NT1220 for 2 HSR tickets), well done! Later on, we checked in accommodation Color Studio 2nd Branch (調色盤2館), followed by dinner at LiaoJiao Rice Noodle Soup store (廖娇米粉汤) and a short shopping at XiMenDing (西門町). I will cover more of these in other posts, click here (Coming Soon!) and will bring you to my post on XiMenDing.

The itinerary of day 4 was pretty packed and rush, with the intention to cover 3 train stations, XiTou Monster Village and eventually reach TaiPei by 2100. With well research and planning, we were able to prepare an organized and detailed itinerary, by executing the plan correctly and do proper time check at every spot allowed us to cover all these places with limited time, managed to enjoy and stress- free.

We had an enjoyable and fun day, you can consider referring to our plan if you find rushing around isn’t really too bad, in fact I found it quite interesting and joyful :)

Tips:

  1. Talk to staffs at Xitou Nature Education Area’s bus stop, to find out when will they start distributing numbers to passengers, to secure your seats of Taiwan Tourist Shuttle (台灣好行) bus service XiTou route, from XiTou to Taichung Railway Station.
  2. Fully utilize the Sun Moon Lake – XiTou shuttle bus line cover attractions in NanTou.
  3. Start queuing at least 20mins before 1030 & 1430 at Kubota bakery, if you would like to try “biting cat bun” (咬人猫面包).

 

Do share my posts if you find them useful, interesting and entertaining :)

 

You might also want to checkout my other Taiwan Trip Day 4 Posts, just click on the links below to have a look, enjoy:)

Taiwan (台湾) – Day 4 Itinerary: ShueiLi Train Station (水里火车站), CheCheng Train Station (車埕火车站 ), JiJi train station (集集火车站 ), XiTou Monster Village (溪头妖怪村) & XiMenDing (西門町)

The Grand ShueiLi Train Station (水里火车站) [Nantou (南投)]

CheCheng Train Station (車埕火车站 ), The Last Stop [Nantou (南投)]

JiJi Train Station (集集火车站) [Nantou (南投)]

XiMenDing (西門町) Accommodation – Color Studio 2nd Branch (調色盤2館), TaiPei (台北), Taiwan (台湾)

Alec Chan

Alec Chan is an intrepid traveler, travel writer, author, speaker, serial entrepreneur and self professed Asia travel ambassador. Traveling all around Asia since 2003, and still traveling, Alec is an accomplished and passionate traveler seeking to bridge the cultural gaps in Asia. Through his unique perspective as a Canadian born Chinese, Alec shares his special insights on Asia to help others around the world to have a better understanding on Asian culture so that they can have a more meaningful, fun, and stress free trip to Asia. Alec has written numerous travel guides on several destinations in Asia and is the editor in chief of AlecTravelGuide.com

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One Response to Taiwan (台湾) – Day 4: The Scary XiTou Monster Village (溪头妖怪村) [Nantou (南投)]

  1. Hi! i read your review and want to go to monster village too
    but that day i have limit time so I think I have to go from SML to Xitou and carrying all my luggage with me then I will take bus to Taichung after
    Do you think its possible to have some place that I can safely leave my luggage while Im walking around the place

    Thank you

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