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7D6N of Fun in Taipei!

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Day 1

Depart: Wed, 31 Mar, 09:50
Arrive: Wed, 31 Mar, 14:50 (we arrived at 14:10, earlier than expected)

Kuala Lumpur LCCT - Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport - Apply youth travel card 青年旅遊卡 - Free Go bus to Neijiang hotel 內江商旅 - Tea @ Ay-Chung misua - Drinks @ Presotea 鮮茶道 - Tea @ Taoyuan St. beef noodles - walk ard XimenDing 西門町 - MRT to Longshan temple 龍山寺 - walk back to Ximending - shop ard XimenDing - MRT to Shilin night mkt 士林夜市 - MRT back to hotel, rest

Taipei 14
Ximending - a popular shopping and fashion district in Taipei. This is where all the young people hang-out and shop. I will still choose to stay here if I ever go back to Taipei as it's really convenient with lots of shops and things to eat.

Taipei 2
Kenting ice tea 墾丁冰茶 @ Presotea 鮮茶道, near Ay-Chung misua. Fruit tea with slight hint of coconut with jelly. Nice and refreshing.

Taipei 3 longshan temple
Longshan temple 龍山寺 - A very popular tourist spot. The temple is really huge and grand.

Notes:
  • Apply for youth travel card (青年旅遊卡) @ the tourism passenger service center in the airport which gives your discounts at selected restaurants and tourist sites.
  • Apply for EasyCard (悠遊卡) @ MRT stations or 7/11 store - a stored-valued smart card used to integrate fare collection for various transports by one card. NT$500, which includes $400 stored-value and $100 refundable deposit. Think: Oyster Card but for a cheaper and cleaner Tube.
  • There are many buses from the airport to the city centre (about 1 hr journey) and other parts of Taiwan. We took Free Go (飞狗) bus as it stops right outside our hotel. NT$140 one way, 260 return. We only bought one way as we wanted to take the cab for our return trip as we had lots more baggage then.
Taipei 1
  • For cab services, you can call +886935-247-935 (Mr. Chan Jun Ting 陈俊廷), he charges NT$888 one way (airport-taipei city centre).
  • Neijiang hotel 內江商旅 - minutes from Ximen MRT station. Just off the main street so very convenient with lots of shops and restaurants nearby and most importantly quiet (I'm a very light sleeper) and clean. NT$1580 (Fri, Sat and public hols) NT$1380 (other days) per standard double room, including breakfast (a sandwich and a pack of juice sent up to your room every morning). Picture of room here (yea, it does look like this). The only downside, you have to call them to make reservations and they only speak Mandarin +886(0)2-2381-2147、2381-2148 台北市萬華區西寧南路112號 No. 112 Xining South Rd.

Taipei 12
Hotel breakfast - pork floss, egg, ham and creamy dressing sandwich with a box of juice. Although it's the same every morning, we still look forward to it as it's really delicious.

Day 2

9 AM Bus 260 to Yangmingshan National Park - Minibus 108 to Zhu Zi Hu 竹子湖 - walk to calla lily fields - Snack @ random mantou store - Minibus 108 to Hsiao You Keng 小油坑 - minibus 108 to Leng Shui Keng 冷水坑 - Minibus 108 to YMS terminal - 1 PM bus 230 downhill to Xinbeitou MRT - Lunch @ 24hour small eatery 北投24小吃店 - Desserts @ Meet Fresh Sweets Shop 鮮芋仙 - Spa at Shan-Yue hot spring Hotel 山樂溫泉 - Tea @ hotel - 5 p.m. MRT to Danshui 淡水 - 5:30 PM Ferry to Fisherman’s Wharf & Lover’s Bridge (渔人码头&情人桥)- 6.45 PM Ferry back to Danshui - Dinner @ Danshui Old St. - Dinner @ Tu Hsiao Yueh, Minquan West Rd - Shop @ Ximending - Hotel, rest

Taipei 4
Calla lily fields.

Taipei 5
Hsiao You Keng 小油坑 (left) - a volcanic hotspot. You can see yellow sulphur crystals, and sulphur fumes emiting from the rocks. Beautiful but smelly; Leng Shui Keng milk pond 冷水坑牛奶湖 (right) - hot spring named from the unusual yellow and while sulphur that colours its water.

Taipei 7
Special “Hot Spring MRT” at Xinbeitou station. They have huge TVs showing introduction of Beitou.

Xinbeitou train

Taipei 6
Spa at Shan-Yue hot spring Hotel 山樂溫泉 - NT$980 for a double room with private hot spring tub for 2 hrs and tea afterwards.

Taipei 8
Danshui Fisherman’s Wharf/ Lover's bridge 淡水漁人碼頭情人橋 - people normally go for the sunset but the weather was too gloomy to see anything.

Notes:
  • Take bus 260 from a bus stop outside Ximen MRT, exit 3 to the bus terminal at YMS (abt 45 mins).
  • Explore YMS via Minibus 108 (a YMS inner bus route) - can use Easycard. Or you can buy a day travel card for NT$600.
  • Can take bus 230 at YMS terminal to Beitou MRT, about 30 mins journey. Bus stop is outside 7/11 store.
  • Other things to do in Beitou: Beitou Geothermal Park (Hell Valley) the source of sulfur water(磺水头) or ghost lake(鬼湖); Beitou Library Eco-Building; Beitou Hot Spring Museum (北投溫泉博物館) . Devil Hot Spring (地熱谷溫泉). We were too lazy after walking around YMS, so we just went for a 2-hr spa at a hot spring hotel.
Day 3

9 AM Breakfast @ Fu Hang Dou Jiang (traditional Taiwanese breakfast) - Taipei Storyland 台灣故事館, main station - Walk to Zheng's pork trotter rice - Walk to Ximending - MRT,bus to National Palace Museum - bus back to MRT station - MRT to Houshanpi - Dinner @ Hu Xu Zhang (pork rice 鲁肉饭) - Shop @ Wufenpu - MRT to Ximen - Supper @ Mala hot pot - Hotel, rest

Taipei  storyland
Taipei Storyland 台灣故事館 - retro-style street scene museum. It's suppose to represent an imaginary neighborhood located in what is now Taipei’s Zhongzheng District (中正區). They have streets and small alleys of little shops like old-fashioned convenience store, pharmacy, cinema, cafe... We had fun, definitely worth a visit!

Opening hrs: 9 AM to 8:30 PM hrs daily. Last admittance: 2000 hrs.
50, ZhongXiao W.Rd, Sec. 1.
Operating Hours: 1030am to 11pm daily
Getting Here:
Take exit 6/8 from Taipei Main Station and walk to the B2 level of K-Mall (next to ShinKong Tower)
Admission Ticket: NT 280 with NT 150 cash voucher
Nearest mrt: Taipei main

Taipei 10
National Palace Museumn 國立故宮博物院 - to see museum’s most treasured objects - Jadeite Cabbage & Meat Shaped Jasper. Well worth a visit just for these 2 items.

Operating Hours: 9 AM to 5 PM daily (ticket: NT 160, youth travel discount: NT80)
Take the Red Line to the Shilin Station. At Exit 1, take bus R30 (Red 30) to the National Palace Museum.
Nearest MRT:Shilin Station

Wufenpu
Map of Wufenpu. Taken from Taipei Tourist Map, version Dec. 2007.

Wufenpu 五分埔 is Taipei's biggest wholesale clothing market. It is fashion paradise - they follow the latest fashion trends and prices are cheap (you really have to bargain). The girls went crazy and spent more than 3 hrs there. Forced to leave by the grumpy boys, if not will be there the whole night. Open 7 days a week, most shops open around noon and close after mid-night. Sunday until 9 PM. Avoid going there on a Monday as reserved for wholesalers and the service might not be as good as usual.

Day 4

8:30 AM to Yeliu (Queen's head) - Tried betel nut 槟榔 - Jiufen 九份 - Jinguashi Gold Ecological Park 金瓜石 - Golden Waterfalls 黃金瀑布 - Yin Yang Hai 陰陽海 (Bay of two colors) - Nanya Rock Formation 南雅奇石 - Keelung 基隆 - Lee Hu Pastry Shop 李鵠餅店 - Tea @ Din Tai Fung - Snack @ Raohe pepper bun - Dinner @ Kao Chi - Shop @ Ximending - Hotel, rest

Taipei 11

Notes:
  • We hired a private cab/ guide for a day trip in Taipei County area. If you are interested, here's the driver's contact:
  • +886921-915-586 Meeky Yang (杨振银); Email: meeky589@yahoo.com.tw; Rate: NT$3000 (12 hours)
  • The cab is quite spacious and clean. Meeky is very punctual and friendly, he speaks mainly Mandarin and very little English. He's a very good guide IMO - very chatty, he'd tell you lots of stories along the way. Due to the horrible weather, we went back to Taipei city earlier and he continued to chauffeur us around and dropped us back at the hotel after dinner.
Day 5

Red House Theater 紅樓劇場 - Breakfast @ Ya Rou Bian (goose & noodles) - Walk ard Ximending - Lunch @ Shui Long Wang - MRT, bus to Wulai - Check-in Full Moon Spa Hotel 明月溫泉 - Wulai Old St. - Log cart to waterfall - Log cart back - Snack @ Wulai Old St. - Rest in hotel - Dinner @ Taiya Po Po - Snack @ Wulai Old St. - Hotel, rest

Taipei 13
Red House Theater 紅樓劇場, Ximending

Taipei 15
Wulai

Taipei 18

How to get to Wulai:
  • Take MRT to Xindian station 新店 (green line terminal stop), take bus 1601 (just behind the tourist information center at Xindian station) to Wulai terminal stop (about NT$40, 45 mins).
Day 6

Breakfast @ hotel - Walk ard Wulai - Bus, MRT back to Neijiang hotel - Lunch @ Hope noodle - Taipei Arena 台北小巨蛋 - Dessert @ Hello Kitty Sweets Cafe - Taipei 101 - Tea @ Taipei 101 food court - Coffee @ Mr. J II - Eslite Book Store 誠品書店 (Xin Yi Store) - Dinner @ Shida night mkt - Supper @ Ah Chai - Hotel, rest

Taipei 16
Taipei Arena 台北小巨蛋

Taipei 17
Taipei 101

Notes:
  • It was a public holiday (tomb sweeping day) so a lot of little traditional eateries were closed.
  • We were all too tired and lazy and so we traveled around by cab instead of the MRT. Traveling by cab was actually quite cheap: NT$70 from Hope noodle shop to Taipei arena; NT$115 from arena to Hello Kitty Sweets; NT$105 from Hello Kitty Sweets to Taipei 101; so with a party of four we spent about NT$20 per trip on average which is about the same price per person as taking the MRT but much more convenient.
Day 7

Brunch @ Ji Ma Chen Oyster Noodle King - Brunch @ Ay-Chung Misua - Shop @ Ximending - Cab to Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport

IMG_4159
Ay-Chung Misua round 2!!! A MUST-TRY!

Depart: Wed, 6 Apr, 15:40
Arrive: Wed, 6 Apr, 20:50

Useful links:

Other Taipei related posts:

Map of the places we visited or at least intended to visit. Tourist attractions in blue, food in red (all were in my to-eat list, but we didn't manage to hit all).


View Taipei 2010 in a larger map

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