Skip To Content

Synapticism

An experiential journal of synchronicity and connection

East Tainan 台南市東區 is the part of Tainan City 台南市 immediately to the east of the railway line. It encompasses NCKU and is home to a great many restaurants, cafes, and breakfast shops.

Dong’an Theater 東安戲院

An abandoned theater in East Tainan
Across the street from a derelict theater in East Tainan.

Recently I added yet another theater to my growing catalogue of old school cinemas in Taiwan 台灣: the derelict Dōng’ān Grand Theater 東安大戲院 in East Tainan 台南市東區. This theater opened in 1969 and closed its doors not long after the turn of the millennium, another victim of changing consumer habits. I wasn’t able to find a way inside this theater so this post only features a handful of exterior shots and some links I chanced upon after conducting preliminary research.

Xiaoximen and the Eastern Walls of Tainan

Tainan’s little western gate on the east side
Tainan’s little western gate on the east side.

Not much remains of the original Qing dynasty era defensive fortifications of Tainan 台南. The Japanese tore almost everything down in a bid to modernize the city in the early 20th century. Xiǎoxīmén 小西門, the small western gate, is one of three inner gates that remain. It was originally located near the traffic circle at the intersection of Xīmén Road 小西路 and Fǔqián Road 府前路 but was moved the opposite side of the city in 1970 to accommodate a road widening project. Nowadays it can be found amongst the ruins of Tainan’s old city walls next to what remains of Xiaodongmen (little eastern gate) on the main NCKU campus in East Tainan 台南市東區.

School’s Out Forever

An abandoned school in Tainan
An abandoned school in East District, Tainan.

This is an abandoned school at the eastern terminus of Qingnian Road 青年路 in Tainan 台南. I can tell many people have been inside this ruin as graffiti—a rarity in Taiwanese abandonments—is visible from the street. I don’t have much more to say about this photo for a change—I’m posting it simply because I appreciate the brutal concrete inelegance of it all. No more teachers, no more books!

Taiwan bicycle tour: Tainan to Kaohsiung

The right side of the tracks in Tainan
Crossing the railway tracks that run through Tainan.

My ninth day on the road was short and sweet. Tainan City 台南市 is less than 50 kilometers from my destination, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan’s great southern metropolis. I knew it would be an easy ride so I woke up late, checked out of my hostel at the very last minute, and went wandering through the nearby laneways in search of breakfast and a decent place to get some work done.

Tainan working cafes

Room A in Tainan
Room A is a great co-working cafe in the western part of downtown Tainan.

What follows is a short list of serviceable working cafes in and around downtown Tainan 台南. What do I mean by a “working cafe”? I mean a cafe where students, freelancers, and remote workers will find the things they need to dig in for an extended period of time and get some work done. My criteria for a good working cafe: decent coffee, the availability of snacks or light meals, comfortable seating, wireless connectivity, unobtrusive music, reasonable prices, long opening hours, welcoming staff, and an ambiance conducive to creative work, especially programming. Of course, it helps if a cafe looks nice too!