For over 150 years, the neighborhood of Dadaocheng has been the heart of old Taipei. From a small settlement founded by those fleeing strife, it blossomed, first into a thriving town in its own right, and then becoming the cultural and intellectual center for the new city of Taipei. Today, the skyscrapers, the financial district, and the tech hubs of the city lie elsewhere. But if you want to find Taipei’s soul, this is one of the best spots to start looking. Today, we’re looking back on Dadaocheng’s rise and examining its place today as one of the seeds from which the modern city has grown.