No.36, Sec. 3, Beixin Rd., Tamsui Dist., New Taipei City 251, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
The following fact is a common sense of travellers all over the world: the price of no matter flight ticket and hotel to Japan will be a double during March and April annually, because of the nation-wide flowering season of cherry blossom - the national flower of Japan. Only few of travellers (especially rare among Asian) know the lower-priced Taiwan also has cherry blossom flowering from January to March, from plains to mountains and from urban to suburb. The hottest spots of admiring cherry blossom are undoubtedly Yangmingshan and Alishan. However, when in terms of the convenience and number of visitors, this Wuji Tianyuan Temple in Tamsui/Danshui shall come to light.
In this Taoism temple worshipping Yu Huang Dadi (玉皇大帝, Jade Emperor, one of the three greatest deities in Taoism), the most appealing structure within is the five-stories Tiantan (天壇, Altar of Heaven) at the middle. Yoshino cherry trees are planted all around the building. People would meet with a sea of pinky petal here in every year’s mid-March. With pleasure weather, you can easily take a nice and stunning picture, no matter when you are circling outside Tiantan, on second floor which is at the same height of branches, or on the top floor to have a overlook on the whole temple and sakura wood. Nevertheless, due to its extreme popularity, once the flowering news is released, the place would be soon packed with Taipei residents. Even in very morning of weekdays, you will need a bunch of luck to find a place for parking. In weekends’ daytime, public transportation to the place is full-loaded and you might take 20 minutes to squeeze through a 100-meter long pathway to Tiantan from the entrance. Currently, the place is still seldom known amongst foreigners, but the crowd attracted by annual cherry blooming already requires government to control the traffic by deploying vehicles and police forces.Among the crowds, girls in kimono accompanied by photographers take pictures here; sometimes newlyweds take the advantage of morning to take their pre-wedding photos; amateur photographers just cannot stop shooting; but the most common scene is madams in group using their newly-bought smartphones for a close shot in front of cherry blossoms. This view frankly reveals the love of Taiwanese towards sakura, and we believe such a passion would not fade away in decades.