Cemetery City - Taipei
For families with enough money, building a tomb for ancestors and recently departed family members is considered a grave responsibility in Taiwan (ba boom boom tish).
Yesterday, on our way to Gongguan, EVA and I decided to cut out the traffic and get there via a backroad out from Academia Sinica. The lovely weather and absence of many other people on the roads really made the ride very pleasant and it was so refreshing to get out of the city and motor traffic commotion and bask in the tranquility of the Taiwanese countryside.
As we came over the mountain we started our decent through what I am now calling ‘Cemetery City’. The following pictures give you an idea of the style, size and location of this mass of tombs strategically sprawled across the side of the mountain.
In this first picture, I’ve added shading to highlight about 95% of the area covered by the cemetery:
This is a Google Earth image at an angle showing the cemetery bottom right running parallel to the No. 3 Freeway.
This Google Earth image gives you an idea of the geological features. Putting a tomb on a hillside with a view is considered good Feng Sui but it’s a complicated process involving many factors such as deciding exactly which is the best direction for the tomb to face. You don’t just slap your tomb on any old mountainside. This picture also indicates how far out of the city center Taipei 101 actually is. Xinyi district is in the south east of the city and is one of the most recently developed parts of the city, having been pretty much farmland up until about 20-30 years ago.
A small glimpse of the cemetery from the tiny road that wound its way through it.