Xibenyuan Temple Square

Square in Ximending & Wanhua

This odd square is the site of a former Japanese temple, which was built at the end of the 19th century for the Japanese military, and which offered medical and spiritual care for wounded and dying soldiers. If you come on a weekday (between 9am and noon or 1.30pm and 5pm) you can visit the Taipei City Archives, the small building next to the site of the temple; otherwise there's not much to see here now apart from a small hillock with a wooden bell tower.

With the arrival of the KMT in 1949, the site was converted into living quarters for Chinese soldiers. A fire in 1975 destroyed the temple, leaving only the shell of the mausoleum and the Rinbansyo, now a lovely teahouse, where the head priest lived.