Located near the Confucius Temple in the Datung District of Taipei, the Bao-an Temple in Taiwan offers a glimpse at a historic Taoist temple. This temple, which is dedicated to the god of medicine, was built in 1830. In the late 18th century, immigrants from Fujien Province brought a statue of the god to the temple.
When the Japanese occupied Taiwan, the Bao-an Temple in Taiwan was used as language school, as well as a factor. Once the Japanese no longer had a use for the temple, it was disregarded and left.
Later, in the early 1900s, the Bao-an Temple in Taiwan required some major refurbishing to get it back to its original state. In 2003, the Bao-an Temple of Taiwan won the UNESCO’s Asia-Pacific Heritage Award. Today, the temple continues to be a historical landmark for all of the area.
The most important aspect of the Bao-an Temple in Taiwan is that it is one of the least visited attractions in Taiwan three-fourths of the year. Often overlooked for other attractions, those that do visit it are astonished by its Taoist reverence and beauty.
If you show up at the right time, though, you will find many people enjoying the temple. Should you be at the Bao-an Temple in Taiwan during the third lunar month of each year, you will be able to bear witness to, as well as enjoy, the celebrations and festivities that occur. During that time, the birthday of Baosheng Dadi, the main deity of the temple, is celebrated.
The celebration lasts for almost two months, from early March to early May, and involves the local community in a number of entertaining and respectful activities. Over the years, those celebrations have included opera performances, birthday ceremonies for the gods, lectures, voluntary medical care, art competitions, and much, much more.
While the celebrations serve as a religious activity to local residents, the Baosheng Cultural Festival is also an important tourist opportunity for the area. Not only does it provide tourists with information on folk customs, but it also provides the local economy with an opportunity to thrive during a short period of the year.
Anyone who is near the Bao-an Temple in Taiwan is invited to join in the festivities. Even those who know relatively little about the festival, the history, or the culture, will immediately find themselves immersed in a full schedule of tour activities and the traditional culture in no time at all.