Go see the big statue of the founding father of modern China in Zhongshan Park in downtown Taipei and learn more about the history of Taiwan.
The Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall is a Chinese palace-like building with a colorful slanting roof that nicely contrasts to the modern, gray Taipei 101 skyscraper in the background. It’s as much as a memorial hall as it is a cultural center and there is always something to see and do.
The Memorial Hall in downtown Taipei is dedicated to the country’s revolutionary leader Sun Yat-sen (Sūn Zhōngshān) who, on January 1, 1912, proclaimed the establishment of the first Republic of China (ROC).
Upon your arrival in Zhongshan Park, cross the square to admire the enormous statue of Dr Sun Yat-en inside the hall. Witness the formal changing of the guard ritual, which takes place every hour in front of the seated statue.
Browse the exhibit about Dr Sun Yat-sen, who was born as Sun Wen in 1866 in the countryside near Macao. After studying and working in Hawaii as a doctor, he established the Revive China Society on three continents. Inspired by Abraham Lincoln, Sun Yat-sen fought for the Three Principles of the People: nationalism, democracy, and the livelihood of the people.
He first explained these ideas during a speech in Brussels in 1905. Just 6 years later, his movement led to the fall of the almost 300-year-long rule of the powerful Qing Dynasty.
The “Founding father of the ROC” died in 1925 in Beijing (then Peking). His successor, Chiang Kai-shek, fled to Taiwan in 1949 to escape the communist troops of Mao Zedong. It was “Generalissimo Chiang” who commissioned the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, and when he died in 1975, a service was held here for him too.
The complex is also home to a massive library, a spacious concert hall for music performances and cultural shows, and a parkland with fountains and Lake Cui. Once a year, the auditorium hosts the Golden Horse Film Festival and Awards.
The National Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall is easy to find due to its proximity to the Taipei 101 tower and the MRT Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall Station. The complex is free to visit any time of day.