Whilst in Taiwan, it was mentioned to me that the city of Danshui was very popular for shooting sunsets. Taking into account a typhoon had recently passed through Taiwan, I was keen to be out photographing, capturing the after-effects from the typhoon. Danshui was the centre for shipping and commerce in the 19th century; now it’s more popular for viewing sunsets into the Taiwan Strait. It is named after a river whose name means ‘Freshwater’, offering both river and mountain views.
I caught the train from Taipei main station directly to Danshui, which takes approximately 45 minutes. The MRT(Municipal Rapid Transport) system is clean (due to not being able to eat, drink or chew whilst on the train), quiet and relatively fast – I was really impressed and enjoyed using the metro rail system.
A storm was brewing upon my arrival into Danshui, heavy clouds filled the sky and it was evident rain was not too far away. After 30 minutes of one of the heaviest downpours I have ever witnessed, the clouds began to break and brief glimpses of sunshine where seen throughout the day.
After spending the rest of the day visiting the shops and traditional Taiwanese stalls, I made my way over to the Danshui River to find a good location to shoot. Here you can see the the great views and catch the ferry boat to the Fisherman’s Wharf or Bali Village, famous locations when you visit Danshui.
And did I mention famous for photographing sunsets? Photographers everywhere. Standing room only – well that was until the rain started to fall again, this downpour only lasted 20 minutes and was nowhere near as heavy as the rain that had fallen earlier in the day.
Once the rain had passed, I was the only photographer to be seen. The clouds were providing some great mood and the light was ambient and deep blue, illuminating the scene before me.
I fired off a few 30-second exposures that captured the movement of the clouds and the ambient light filtering through, lucky enough to have the ferry boat cruise through at that moment to create movement and blur in the foreground.
I kept photographing the scene for another 30 minutes before heading over to shoot the Red Castle, which is over near Danshui Old Street, with its beautiful architecture and background of famous landmarks which include the Guan-yin Mountain and Danshui River.