14 October 2014

Taiwan Street Food Tour ~ Let's Railway Bento Box!

Taiwanese railway bento boxes and a bunch of boring photos taken from the train.

Taiwan has a fast, modern and affordable railway network making it a pleasure to get around.

Part of the choo-choo fun are the railway lunch boxes, prepackaged lunch boxes available on trains as well as on and around train stations. These appear to be part of Taiwanese food culture, we saw a specialist railway box restaurant in Hualien and there was even a food court stall in Sydney that offered railway boxes on the menu.

This one is a beauty. This one was from a 7-Eleven, not bad for convenience store food eh? We think the 7 Elevens get it from local mum'n'pop shops, it would be almost impossible to make and ship these around and keep them so fresh.

Taiwan's east coast south of Taipei is green and rugged with mountains along a narrow coast dotted with small towns. Rather purdy and very different to the industrialised west coast.

We saw a few of these  huge flat dry river beds that must flood regularly.

The old factories with bright red Chinese characters against a wild green backdrop look like something out of an apocalyptic movie or video game.

Roller disco.

Down south heading into Kaohsiung we saw mile after mile of these irrigated ponds which we guess were prawn or fish farms.

The bento boxes available on trains are pretty good but get same-same very quickly. So in Koahsiung we get some takeaway boxes from an economy rice shop near the station.

Fish and veggies, somebody's trying to be healthy.

Fried fish, veggies, tomato and egg and popcorn chicken.

Yep, the popcorn chicken is awesome - deep fried and crunchy, bite sized pieces made to pop in your mouth.

Love those factories...

This is one of the bentos you can buy on the trains. Mastery in elastic band closure.

Isn't the packing lovely?

Pork chop with rice, googie egg, tofu and some greens. It's a wonderful country that gives you pork chops on trains.

We thought we'd try a different style of bento...

And voila! It's pork chop again.

Here's where we accidentally left the fresh pressed chilli squid we bought at Tainan station. Man that stuff was good.

Taichung has a classic old railway station, located in an older part of town.

Buskers outside Taichung station.

Mr Shawn went hunting for train snacks around the station as we leave Taichung. This lady was making super duper looking egg rolls but we didn't have enough time for them to cook. The little bloke in the corner was equally as impatient.

We grabbed a couple of ready-to-go sambos instead.

Mr Shawn's sambo looked pretty good - a triple decker with the works.

But Alison's sambo has the added goodness of tonkatsu - deep fried pork (or chicken) schnitzel. Yeah baby, now that's breakfast.


On the way back to Taipei from Lukang, looking forward to getting back to the big smoke.

Super purdy lunch box.

Alas, another pork chop. We never thought we'd say this, but we grew tired of pork chops by the end of the trip. Most of Taiwan and all of Homer Simpson would be ashamed of us.

We love Taiwan.


  1. This post reminds me that I have all the great bento boxes to look forward to during our Japan train travels next year...totally forgot about that!

    1. The Japanese ones are so much bigger and very elegant at times too. There are some magnificent ones, and some simple ones to try. Don't forget udon noodles on the train station platforms, you will be in heaven!

  2. Glad Thang of Noodlies did a list of Australian Bloggers as I have found your food hangout here in the net. Love love love how you write your food adventures, now you got yourself a lurker...lol!


Thanks for your comment joy - please keep your musings happy - if you want to complain about a restaurant please do it on a restaurant review site (or your own blog) - we're all about celebrating cultural diversity and the great eats that come along with it :-)

Our ethics: We pay for all our own meals and travel (though sometimes Mum shouts us).