Shifen Old Street
Shifen Old Street
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Duration: 1-2 hours
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  • Orator11
    Singapore, Singapore5,357 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Sky Lanterns
    It is quite a small street, but is extremely popular because it is along the narrow train tracks where trains from Taipei come, and it is also the place where people send skylanterns with wishes into the skies. You can buy a skylantern from $200, depending on the colours, and write messages to departed loved ones etc on all four sides. The staff will then light joss paper inside to heat up the air, before the lanterns are released to soar into the sky. It is good that they try to recycle the lanterns when they burn up and return to earth - locals are encouraged to find these and are then given a small financial reward to return these to the authorities. The shops lining the train tracks are mostly souvenir and snack shops.
    Visited November 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written November 17, 2023
  • Sallye4510
    Brisbane, Australia37 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Write your wishes on your lantern then set it free!
    Such fun! We took the train from Taipei - the view was mainly of the river, mountains and waterfalls. At Shifen Old Street we enjoyed great food, and loved choosing the colours for our lantern as each colour represents a different aspect of life. Then we painted words and pictures on each side of the lantern before it was lit and rose into the air. It was lovely to take part in this cultural tradition, and even though hundreds of people did the same, we never had to wait more than a couple of minutes for any part of the process. The Street is a mix of modern and traditional, and set each side of the railway line. There are lovely waterfalls about 20 mins walk away if you have time. Highly recommend a visit.
    Visited March 2024
    Traveled with friends
    Written March 14, 2024
  • Jeff K
    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania2,111 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Unique Experience
    The main (perhaps only) reason for stopping here is to make a lantern and send it high in to the sky. We had a lot of fund doing it and it was a unique experience. You put your wishes on the sides of the pre-made lantern and the shopkeeper lights it for you and you let it fly off. Surprised that they don’t burn the woods down but they claim that the rainy climate minimizes the risk. They also pay people to bring them back so that they don’t litter the countryside. A great activity if you’re in the area.
    Visited March 2024
    Traveled as a couple
    Written March 16, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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Jeff K
Pittsburgh, PA2,111 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
The main (perhaps only) reason for stopping here is to make a lantern and send it high in to the sky. We had a lot of fund doing it and it was a unique experience. You put your wishes on the sides of the pre-made lantern and the shopkeeper lights it for you and you let it fly off. Surprised that they don’t burn the woods down but they claim that the rainy climate minimizes the risk. They also pay people to bring them back so that they don’t litter the countryside.

A great activity if you’re in the area.
Written March 16, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sallye4510
Brisbane, Australia37 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Friends
Such fun! We took the train from Taipei - the view was mainly of the river, mountains and waterfalls.
At Shifen Old Street we enjoyed great food, and loved choosing the colours for our lantern as each colour represents a different aspect of life.
Then we painted words and pictures on each side of the lantern before it was lit and rose into the air.
It was lovely to take part in this cultural tradition, and even though hundreds of people did the same, we never had to wait more than a couple of minutes for any part of the process.
The Street is a mix of modern and traditional, and set each side of the railway line.
There are lovely waterfalls about 20 mins walk away if you have time.
Highly recommend a visit.
Written March 14, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

IndySig
Indianapolis, IN3,844 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
We enjoyed a quick stop here on our way to Jiufen. Lots of balloons being launched on the tracks. Since this is quite a pollutant to the area, we just watched. There are biodegradable balloons that they could be using instead of trashing the forest.

Good food and interesting shopping.
Written March 6, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Yonah
Seattle, WA30 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2023 • Family
We lit a lantern and had a lot of fun sending it off into the sky. There are a lot of cheap souvenirs and the area is beautiful, but there’s nothing to eat besides street food.
Written November 30, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Orator11
Singapore, Singapore5,357 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2023 • Friends
It is quite a small street, but is extremely popular because it is along the narrow train tracks where trains from Taipei come, and it is also the place where people send skylanterns with wishes into the skies.

You can buy a skylantern from $200, depending on the colours, and write messages to departed loved ones etc on all four sides. The staff will then light joss paper inside to heat up the air, before the lanterns are released to soar into the sky. It is good that they try to recycle the lanterns when they burn up and return to earth - locals are encouraged to find these and are then given a small financial reward to return these to the authorities.

The shops lining the train tracks are mostly souvenir and snack shops.
Written November 17, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Abovetheclouds
2,489 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2023 • Solo
I have travelled the world and this was a highlight for me. I could have cried. Writing a personal message or decorating a sky lantern, releasing it into the sky and watching it float away was magical. Yes, it is crowded. Yes, it is touristy but ignore the others and get lost in the moment. We did it in the day, blue skies. Perfect. I am guessing night will be even more spectacular. Don't worry, one of the staff from the shop will take your photographs and help with releasing the lantern. A few things to note. I was a little concerned with safety and the environment especially after I saw another sky lantern burning even before it was released. Once the sky lantern is lit, it becomes warm quite quickly so just release it as soon as the member of staff tells you to do it. Don't mess around with photographs as you don't want to burn yourself. Keep children if you have any aside when the lantern is lit. It will be too warm for them. You are standing on a railway track that is active! Two trains passed in the hour that we were there. You are warned and trains come slowly but move as soon as you are told. Do not wait. The second train that came, we didn't hear the warning nor the train but luckily a local told us! It was lovely otherwise. There is the usual array of food stalls and souvenir shops to feast your eyes on after you have finished your sky lantern experience. With regards to the environment, I am told there is little damage and the sky lanterns are recycled!
Written November 3, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mike W
Mountain View, CA306 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2023 • Couples
The highlight was decorating a lantern with wishes for our family and launching it skyward from the train tracks. The staff helped suggest decorations, staged the launch photographs and took stills and videos of the launch.
Written September 15, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

harlemfamily
New York City, NY738 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2023
We had not really known what to expect but figured we would check it out. We just loved it!!! Sounds hooky but it is so fun!! First, you pick your lantern color - which has to do with the wishes - and then you write on it - all over it actually - and then you LAUNCH it - what a blast... And also fun to watch others launch theirs.
Written August 5, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Derrick Aw
Singapore, Singapore817 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2023 • Family
The best thing to do at this street is to 放天灯, otherwise what’s the point of coming here right? All the shops sell for about the same prices, so doesn’t matter who you go to. A tip is: if you buy in large quantities you can get a discount, and stand by it!

The lanterns are released on a railway, which is fully operational! So once a while a train will come by, and it’s so close to you and the shops!

Other than these, seriously nothing else here. So plan about 1.5-2 hours if you include lunch. Seriously, the thing to see is the Shifen waterfalls!
Written June 19, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Charlie S
Victoria, Australia953 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2023 • Friends
This street has many shops offering to sell you a large paper lantern, assist you to paint your wish/message on it, and then heat the inside to launch it into the sky - a great spectacle! All this takes place on the railway track that runs through the main street ... with a brief interuption for the train to come and go about once an hour.
Written May 6, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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SHIFEN OLD STREET: All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

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