In May and April of 2018, my partner (and Formosa Moon co-author) Stephanie and I were invited down to Tainan to take part in a unique project with some other talented writers living in Taiwan.
Tainan is the cultural heart of Taiwan, home to scores of historically significant temples dating back to the earliest days of the Qing dynasty.
The project was a multi-temple tour encompassing nine of Tainan’s most important temples. Our little band of writers were each assigned a temple or two (and a local guide), which we were expected to explore as thoroughly as possible before returning home to write up scripts for audio tours lasting about 20 minutes each.
Since Stephanie and I have radio and voice work experience, we were given the additional job of recording all nine of the tours once all the writers had finished their work. It was a fun gig, and we learned a great deal about Tainan, temple culture and Chinese history in the process.
With the blessing of the Tainan City Government I’ve gone ahead and posted the audio files for the temples we visited.
My temple was the Guan Gong Temple, which in my mind may be the most important one of them all, at least as far as inter-dynastic history is concerned.
Remember a bit earlier when I referred to a nebulous period in time as the earliest days of the Qing Dynasty? Well, the Guan Gong temple was originally constructed as a temporary abode for one member of the Ming Royal household who, along with Koxinga had high-tailed it to Taiwan rather than accepting the inevitable. So early days indeed! Anyway, you should be able to hear my dulcet tones on your next visit to the Guan Gong Temple, which is definitely worth visiting, or you could click on the file below (courtesy of the Tainan City Government).
Guan Gong Temple Audio Tour
Stephanie’s Temple was the historic Taiwan Prefecture City God Temple, home of one of the main city gods of Tainan. The deity worshiped here is the Governor of the Underworld, so hers is a bit more spooky.
Taiwan Prefecture City God Temple Audio Tour
Enjoy, and thanks again to the Tainan City Government!