taoyuan's unique shinto relic (china post)

Posted by deaguero at 2020-03-23

Taiwan was ruled by Japan for half a century until the end of World War II. Dozens of splendid examples of architecture from that era can be found in Taipei and other cities, yet very little evidence of Shinto – the official religion of Japan throughout the colonial period – has survived.A torii gate, part of a Shinto shrine, can be seen on the roof of what used to be the Hayashi Department Store in downtown Tainan. But a far more interesting relic of Shintoism exists in North Taiwan – Taoyuan Martyrs Shrine. Made largely of cypress, the structure is classically Japanese in that it reflects the massive influence on Japan of China's Tang dynasty. It stands on the slopes of a forest-covered hill that's alive with birds and butterflies. Unless the weather is very bad indeed, you can look down over Taoyuan...