As a Chinese idiom goes: “Fortune comes with blooming flowers (花開富貴).” Many Chinese people believe that floral decorations in a household during the Lunar New Year Festival can bring prosperity and good fortune in the coming year. Flowers are therefore something that most Chinese people cannot do without on the Lunar New Year.
In Taiwan, it is not uncommon to see floral shops, floral stands, and floral bazaars packed with customers in the run-up to the Lunar New Year’s Eve. The Taipei Jianguo Holiday Flower Market (台北建國假日花市) is the most famous floral bazar in Taiwan. In fact, it is one of the largest outdoor flower markets in the world.
Please watch the following video of the Taipei Jianguo Holiday Flower Market:
The Taipei Jianguo Holiday Flower Market came into existence in 1982 as a joint effort between the Taipei City Government and the Taipei Farmer’s Association. Stretching a full block between Taipei’s two major boulevards, Ren-Ai and Xin-Yi, the market is located beneath the Taipei Jianguo overpass.
Spanning over 2 acres (8,000 m2) and stretching almost half a kilometer (0.3 miles), the market is divided into 14 areas featuring different plant offerings, with an area designated for the exhibition of different themes each week.
There are about 200 vending stalls scattered along the two sides of the walking area, making the market seem like a colorful tunnel. Snack food and traditional drink stands are in the middle of the market, allowing visitors to taste genuine traditional Taiwanese snacks and drinks.
The market is vibrant with a massive array of beautiful flowers, plants, bonsai trees, and other necessities related to flowers, gardening, and the Lunar New Year Festival at affordable prices. Some stalls even offer tall cherry trees full of blossoms.
The market is open on weekends from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and visitors can buy any amount as they like. It is also a nice place to browse and to appreciate all the colorful varieties and arrangements of flowers, bonsai trees, house plants, and other interesting items.
Another striking feature of the Jianguo Holiday Flower Market during the 2018 Lunar New Year Festival is the exhibition of peonies from Daikon Island (大根島) in Japan’s Matsue City (松江市). There are 250 peonies and 10 different varieties on display.
There are also popular local flowers, such as the Moth orchid (Phalaenopsis 蝴蝶蘭), Cat-Tail willow (銀柳), Dancing-Doll orchid (Oncidium 文心蘭), Pineapple flower, and Chrysanthemums. The entire area is decorated as a spectacular garden.
Actually, there are three holiday markets spread out under the Jianguo overpass, and the flower market is located between the jade market and the art market. Due to the fact that these holiday markets are in close vicinity to the Daan Forest Park (大安森林公園) and Yongkang Commercial District (永康商圈), and are easily accessible to Taipei 101, this neighborhood has become a unique holiday shopping destination for people from Taiwan and abroad.