Sunday, June 16, 2013

It's Time for Taiwan! Days 7-8

Day 7: Cingjing - Jiufen

Morning of day 7. We wokeup early for breakfast and waited for our bus to go down the mountain at 9+. It was really foggy then. And unlucky us, it started to rain as we were waiting for the bus. And the route down was foggy and rainy. Damn LL was so worried there would be landslides due to the earthquake days before. hhaaha but nth happened!

We reached the Taizhong Station ahead of time, so we changed the high speed rail timing and had to topup to the usual price. There was an early bird discount when I bought it online. But time was of essence so we forgoed the discount lor...

Back to the familiar Taipei station, we we bought this salmon sushi cos it was so cheap! Quite fresh too. Its less than SGD 6 for 8 pieces!

Some 葱油饼 and bubble tea as we ran out of money and walked some distance away to the Citibank to withdraw money. The rate was actually better than us exchanging the money here in sg.

Ok anw after that, we bought train tickets to go to Ruifang, and then to Jiufen. 

I already knew what I wanted to eat when I reached there. The fishballs: 

Peanut with icecream (which was totally awesome): 

Grilled mushrooms:

And this time, we tried tea appreciation as the Jiufen Teahouse!

Cant really rmb the price, but it was around SGD 20 for each person, for the type of tea leaves we chose.
It could be more ex depending on what else you choose.
So the person taught us to 泡茶

The cup was uniquely designed by the teahouse owner: 

The big bowl is for throwing away unwanted tea leaves or any other trash.

Well I almost forgot the steps. But here is what I rmb.
First put some amount of tea leaves into the bigger white cup, and pour in the hot water.

Let it brew for goodness-I-forgot-how-long

Then pour the tea out into this white cup without any lids 

And then you can pour the tea into your tiny tea cups. 

And after that, the tea leaves can be reused, and brewed, and reused, up to 7 times I think. Each soaking session longer and longer by I-forgot-how-many seconds.

On a side note, don't I look very Japanese tourist in my day 7 OOTD? hehe

After the tea session, we just have to take this little clay thing to the counter for payment. 

After that, I went in search of the famous Ah Gan taro balls. U need to go up a flight of stairs to see it. Ask the ppl around if cant find. I don't think nobody there doesn't know where it is. 

We got the hot one, cos in those colder weather, I just don't feel like eating a cold dessert.

It was sooooo good. Awesomely good. The texture was just perfect, and you could really taste the natural taste of the ingredient as u bite into them. But too bad I couldn't buy it back into SG cos they don't have any vacuum packed product or whatsoever. The guy said the only thing I can do is to freeze it then bring it back. But of cos its impossible so I guess I have to go back next time to have it!

Picturesque view of this place. So postcard-worthy rite?

Just like to walk around this Jiufen Old Street

Only pity was that it was raining the whole day. 

After that, we cabbed back to the train station and went to Shida University Night Market. 

Its the first time I am going there. And I must say. Really nth much.

Had beef noodles but it ain't very awesome.

Had this waffle like thingy which was ok.. 

After that we went back to Taipei Station and walked around the underground mall hoping that I would be able to buy some last min stuffs. But only found some. Walked for damn long and legs were damn tired.

But that concludes day 7.

Day 8: Taipei - SG

Nothing much today. We woke up quite late. Shopped around the malls and went to this place for brunch.

Luved my egg benedict. It was around SGD 13. Great price as compared to those in SG.

Some last min shopping, and we took the bus back to airport for our flight back to SG.

And thats all! Another satisfied TW trip!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

It's Time for Taiwan! Day 6

One of the my fav places in TW on day 6!
Day 6: Hehuanshan, Cingjing Farm

Our driver waited for us outside at 4.30am. And started driving up the mountain to Hehuanshan to watch sunrise today. And he specifically showed us this 7-11, saying that this is the highest 7-11 in Taiwan! hahaha not sure how true cos I went to google and couldnt find a definite answer on whether its Cingjing or the one on Alishan. Anyone can gimme the ans?

Ok then we drove off further up and reached the highest point of Hehuanshan! 3275m above ground! It was so foggy that this was the best picture I could take of the area!
But anw the sunrise can't be seen nicely from this point so we had to drive further down from that point to other areas that can view the sunrise nicely.

Another photo point. Just to show u the date, time, altitude, and temperature. I was glad I wore pretty thick clothes, but it ain't even enough to survive 3-7 degree celcius for the whole 2h on top of the mountain.

We passed by some interesting roads which was impossible to take photos of. Like a road which stands between 2 huge rocks. The driver said that after the ppl blew up the rocks to make the roads easy to pass through, the wind there became forever strong (cos no more rocks to block the wind). He opened the car windows and my goodness, the wind was blowing at don't know how many km/h. It was really so strong, I can imagine how cold it will be if a human stepped out ahaha.

And I forgot to take photos while going up, but it was the first time I couldn't see the road up such a high mountain. Cos everything was covered in fog. The view in front of us was just white, like srsly completely white, except for little road markers by the side. Lucky our driver is experienced, if not rookie drivers, for eg me, will just fall off the mountain and die cos can't judge where is where. ahahaha.

Ok after more driving, we reached that viewing spot. The white thing u see in the middle is the sea of clouds!

Cant imagine just how high I went. And lucky we don't have any gaoshanzheng. If not we would puke and goodness knows what else. Driver says we have to thank our parents for that hahaha, cos if u have that condition, bobian u won't be able to go high up the mountains.

Unfortunately, the fog was too serious that morning, and we couldn't see a proper sunrise. 

Nvm tho, it was a great experience alr. But by this time we were dying to get back into the car, cos the temperature is about 3-5 degree celcius. 

LL was dying alr cos he din wear a thick jacket. My hands were on the verge of turning purple alr with no proper gloves or whatsoever.

And I didn't know that Hehuanshan is actually a part of the Taroko gorge. Going further down the road, we would actually reach Hualien!  

 Its really a pity it was sooo foggy. This is how foggy the area was. If it wasnt, then we would probably see what is on the board.

Can u imagine if u fall off the fence on the other side? Will actually die, but cos the fog is too thick, we can't see how scary it really is. hahaha. pity..

Driver was like saying, since we cant see much scenery, he shall take us to see this snow machine for clearing snow. Its sooo huge! And he brought us to this hotel so high up in the mountains for some phototaking

 The temperature at this hotel is 3.8 degree celcius at the moment we were taking. SOOO COLD.

Bought some snacks and this ginseng fruit from a stall up in the mountains. I didn't really like the taste of this fruit tho...

We were back at our minsu for breakfast and took a nap after that. Cos on the way down I actually felt nauseous. Must be the high altitude plus the cold weather plus an empty stomach plus the winding car. haha.

Took some med and went to bed until like lunchtime. We went to 陶易烧 for some hotpot!

After that, we rushed to take the bus up to the Green green grasslands to watch the Sheep show at 2.30pm. Literally rushed. Cos the buses were all full from ppl trying to reach by that time too. And not to forget we had to get the tix and walk in. So rmb to give yourself ample time!

Before the sheep show started, the area was used for horse riding. Its NT 150 for 2 persons per ride.

Ok and the sheep show starts! The weather was quite hot by this time cos the sun was SHINING SO BRIGHTLY!

The shepherd on the horse.

And the highlight of the show:

"Stripping" the sheep of his clothes!

The show lasted ard half hour I think. And after that we went for the horse ride. Very short time only, like 30s?

But our ride was teeny bit longer cos halfway our handsome horse stopped. And I saw ppl whipping out their cameras and started taking photos of us. Ok not us but the horse. Turns out he pooped. And the crew was really efficient in clearing their poop as this was what I saw the moment we got down and rushed to the scene of action. Huge poops over there.

We bought some sheep ice cream. LL didn't like the taste of it. But as usual, I luved it.

We continued to walk towards the Qingjing farm for the horse show, and while passing by, bought this 大肠包小肠 which was really normal only...

The horse show started at 3.45pm. So it is just alright for u to walk over from the sheep show to this place.

The horse circus team came from Russia.

And then the stunts began. Hard to take photos cos the action was too fast.

By the way, less than 1 month after coming back to SG, I found that one of the crew members, this guy below, died. He was stabbed to death by the crew leader.

Bought some sweet potato for NT 50 and started feeding all the horses. First time feeding horses! Their saliva was... disgusting..

And yep this guy below is the leader of the crew... I wonder what happened to him eh.

But anw, after the show, we walked around the farm and took pictures of the surroundings and the herds of sheep.

I fed sheep before in Korea so I skipped the feeding part this time. But its always nice to see sheeps cos they are just soooooooooooooo cute.

So after that we started walking down the mountain and towards our minsu.

These are some of the places we passed by.

About half hour walk. We needed to go down this walking path with alot of steps. Lucky the weather was cold enough. haha.

And then we went to the Little Swiss Garden

There was a water show at certain half hour timings. Not impressive at all...

The garden itself, is soo boring. Not impressive. But I decided to make the most out of it by snapping as much photos as I can.

Also, through this trip to the garden, I realized ducks actually stand on 1 leg! Was staring at these ducks for the longest time cos I wanted to know what happened to the other leg, and finally I saw that the other leg went down when the duck wanted to walk away! hehehe.

After that, we went to the Carton King shop to look at some of the carton thingys they sell.

And then we walked around the area in search of dinner.

And decided to dabao Mos Burger back to our minsu. Found a flavour which cant be found in SG, and its quite nice!

And thats all for a busy day 6. Days 7-8 up next!