So, what should a visitor to Danshui do, see and eat?

So, what should a visitor to Danshui do, see and eat?

Postby Dragonbones » Fri Jul 19, 2013 19:12

The inlaws went to Danshui and were disappointed with the touristy main street as well as with the meals they got. Did they just go to the wrong spots? What highlights in Danshui would you recommend for the next day trip?
“To cook for the pleasure of it, to devote a portion of our leisure to it, is to declare our independence from the corporations seeking to organize our every waking moment into yet another occasion for consumption." --Michael Pollan
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Re: So, what should a visitor to Danshui do, see and eat?

Postby Beaker » Fri Jul 19, 2013 19:55

Red fort has some great views. The old British consulate is very interesting. As for food, nothing spectacular... Unless you want foreign food, then there is Kooks.
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Re: So, what should a visitor to Danshui do, see and eat?

Postby John Ross » Fri Jul 19, 2013 20:00

Beaker wrote:Red fort has some great views. The old British consulate is very interesting. As for food, nothing spectacular... Unless you want foreign food, then there is Kooks.

Yes, the old fort and adjacent Brit consulate are good - historically interesting in themselves but as Beaker says you have the added bonus of great views. That's what Danshui is about - history and a great river view across to Guanyinshan. And the grounds are a nice quiet place to sit and take it all in (plus a few slurps from a hip flask).
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Re: So, what should a visitor to Danshui do, see and eat?

Postby Dragonbones » Fri Jul 19, 2013 20:51

Thanks, guys! But isn't there supposed to be good seafood there? All the inlaws (and wee wifey) encountered was mediocre night-food-type stuff, but during the day.
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Re: So, what should a visitor to Danshui do, see and eat?

Postby LostInTaipei » Fri Jul 19, 2013 20:58

Ed of Eddy's Burrito has told me great things about Golden Pizzeria, but good luck finding it open: I've yet to try it. There's an Alleycat's across the street from Golden Pizzeria; in the same building as Alleycat's is Catsup Bar and Diner, which serves brunch dishes. Beaker's mentioned Kooks, which has good sandwiches and burgers. A-gei of course is one of the local famous dishes, and they're ... well, I find them better than most of the famous local dishes in Taiwan, but that's not saying much. They're sold everywhere along the old street, with some establishments being more famous than others for reasons that are beyond me.

Further down the waterfront, at the beginning of the boardwalk stretch, La Villa (新北市淡水區中正路261號) is a lovely restaurant on the water and has pretty good pasta dishes (I wouldn't recommend the meat main courses).

Long long ago, I thought quite highly of the food at the Red Fort, but gave up on eating there about 5-6 years ago. Who knows - maybe it's improved now. It's still a lovely building, and would be a good place for a refreshing beverage.

Up near TKU/Tamkang University, there's a restaurant called 五花 (新北市淡水區大忠街115號) which does very interesting things with traditional Taiwanese dishes and ingredients. You'd need to take a taxi to get there, and while you are getting good food, you're missing the location that is to be honest the main reason to visit Danshui. TKU's pretty to walk around as well.

The area around Alethia University is also nice - really the whole area is just good for strolling. Basically, there's the old street/waterfront, which is where everyone goes, but you can also climb up the hillside in numerous locations, and that can be more picturesque.

The ferries across to Bali, and to Fisherman's Wharf, are nice. I like walking around Bali - Fisherman's Wharf, um, well, some people like it. There's a big hotel there with a few different restaurants: that place may be your best bet for Chinese-style seafood in a nice environment.

Basically, stroll around, eat/drink, stroll some more, eat/drink, repeat. Try hard to avoid the place on the weekends, but if you are here on the weekend, just press through the crowd - after about 500 meters the crowd becomes more manageable.

The bicycling from Danshui MRT station, and down to the Guandu area, is lovely - mangrove forests, the river, lots of egrets and ibises and herons. There are places to rent bicycles, and I believe you can also rent "one way" from some of them - i.e. ride to Guandu or Bali, and then leave the bicycle there.

Taking the ferry across to Bali, and walking to the top of Guanyinshan, is a possibility but I wouldn't recommend it at this time of year.

Seafood: Britshake has the best fish and chips I've had in Taiwan! And damn good milkshakes too. But I guess that's not what you're after. Back in the day when my wife was willing to have the blood of wee little fishes on her hands, we did try numerous seafood places, but I don't believe we went to any of them twice.

These users gave kudos to the author LostInTaipei for the post (total 3):
Taffy (Sat Jul 20, 2013 21:13) • Dragonbones (Fri Jul 19, 2013 23:44) • John Ross (Fri Jul 19, 2013 21:18)
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