Ate booked a driver for a day tour further around Taiwan. She was able to get 4k ntd (approximately 6k php) for a small car that fits 5 peeps & whole day sightseeing spanning 8 hours. Hindi na namin pinaalam kay Kap, wala na naman syang magagawa pag bayad na hehe.
We were supposed to do this yesterday but weather forecast said yesterday was going to be rainy & today not a single drop. Aba, eh pareho lang pala sila ngPAGASA, palpak. :P
We started our day with instant noodles. No time for long queues, besides, it was drizzling non-stop. And today is probably the coldest day at 15 degrees since we set foot in the country.
Good thing Kap had the foresight of buying cup noodles on our way back last night para ready na daw for an early morning exit the next day. Our pick up time was at 9 am & it takes us 2 hours to get ready with just 1 bathroom. @_@
When we were packing back in Manila, I nagged Kap & the kids non-stop to bring the thermal undies I bought from Uniqlo, plus an extra jacket. Kap said maarte daw ako. Asia lang ang Taiwan, hindi daw ganon kalamig. I snuck the thermals in their luggages after they finished packing anyway. O ngayon, tahimik sila. Thank you mommy ang drama. Hay, when will they ever learn that momma knows best? ;) Mga kontrabida sa buhay!
Epitome of NANIGAS SA GINAW! ;))
Instant noodles for breakfast, early head start. (Rented van, 8 hours)
Ye Jiu Geopark
Lunch at Jiufen old street (Ruifang)
Shifen old street for lantern flying
Buy Pineapple Cake pasalubong from Chia Te
Raohe night market (near bridge), try black pepper pork buns
First on our agenda, a 40-minute drive to Yehliu Geopark. It’s near the water.. HOOONG LOMIG, brrrr! Good thing I was able to buy a cap at the night market last night. Nipis pa naman ng buhok ko!
Yehliu is a cape in Wanli District, New Taipei, Taiwan, which stretches approximately 1,700 metres into the ocean and was formed as geological forces pushed the Datun Mountains out of the sea.
A distinctive feature of the cape is the hoodoo stones that dot its surface. A number of rock formations have been given imaginative names based on their shapes.
The best known is the “Queen’s Head” (女王頭) or “Cute Princess”, an iconic image in Taiwan and an unofficial emblem for the town of Wanly. That’s a scale of “Cute Princess” rock formation behind us. I went around & around, I kenat distinguish the face. Frustrated, I ask KK (Kalokohang Kap) – a big mistake, I know! :| Me: Honey paano naging mukha yan? Asan ang mukha? Kap:Ayan o hindi mo ba makita? Yung tumbok sa likod (hair bun) buhok nya. Tapos yung butas-butas ang harap mukha naman nya. Kasi binulutong nung bata. Me:Paano naging mukha yan? Nasaan ang ilong? Kap: Sweetheart naman. Asian yan. Maliit ang ilong. Hindi mo talaga makikita. What do you expect? Oo nga naman. What did I expect asking Kalokohang Kap (also known as Kapitan Kunat). I did ask for it. @_@
Other formations include the “Fairy Shoe”, the “Beehive”, the “Ginger Rocks”, and the “Sea Candles”. Am I so unimaginative talaga that I kenat distinguish which is which?? Basta’t sinabing peechur taking, smile nalang ako. ;))
Further along, outside the Geopark, is a market section where you can buy various food & pasalubong.
We refrained from buying anything from here though, except for this cute Panda ice cream, which tbh, wasn’t much for taste, lels. We were going to Jiufen next & didn’t want to spoil our appetites. ;)
Oh Pandie, my child! Terno pa kami ng kulay, at parehong namimilog!:P
By noon, we were off to Jiufen Old Street. Best to describe it is Taiwan’s version of our Mines View Park in Baguio. :) Plenty of interesting & unique food stalls & other wares lined up along a narrow alley.
Jiufen is a renowned tourist attraction representative of Taiwan. It draws many tourists from Taipei during the whole week through, but more so during weekends. We went on a weekday & it was already filled, what more on a weekend kaya? Yikes!
Jiufen, which means “nine portions”, is a mountain area in the Ruifang District of New Taipei City near Keelung, Taiwan. During the first years of the Qing Dynasty, the isolated village housed nine families, thus the village would request “nine portions” every time shipments arrived from town. Later Kau-hun (meaning “nine portions” in Hokkien) would become the name of the village.
We were famished by the time we reached Jiufen. Good thing we held on from eating anything from the Geopark as the Old Street was riddled with FOOD, FOOD, and more FOOD! Those are prawn balls & stuffed tofu. Sarap!
Every inch was crawling with locals & tourists alike. The first available table we spotted, we jumped in right away so we could get on the business of lunch. Gotta try: The bola-bola soup & sweet Taiwanese sausages! \m/
It’s a good thing that Kap already introduced the kids to Binondo eating so they were already a PRO by the time we got to Taiwan, teehee. Such cowboys, my GOppets. <3
Even though you are stuffed beyond belief trying to sample as much as you can, there will always be something else that catches your fancy! Here is the empacho queen, ice cream pa more.
If there is absolutely one last thing you gotta eat while on a food trip at Jiufen, it’s this peanut ice cream roll. Sooooobrang sarap huhu. We only bought 1 and had a bite each coz our tummies were already stretched to the max. Sasabog na! At least next time we visit we already know which ones to save our tummy space for. ;) Isa na ito.
Ate went gaga buying surgical/face masks as pasalubong for her med student friends. They use this when slicing cadavers so the wacky designs will surely be a hoot! ;)
My adorb pets <3 <3 <3 Meds with humor are the best kind. ;)
Taiwan’s gold districts developed in 1890 when workmen discovered flakes of gold while constructing the new Taipeh-Kelung railway, and in 1893 a rich placer district was discovered in the hills of Kau-hun that produced several kilograms of gold a day. In the next year, the promise became greater than ever after a Chinese expert with experience gained in California found gold-bearing quartz in the said hills. The resulting gold rush hastened the village’s development into a town, and reached its peak during the Japanese era. I was wondering why this coal chocolate store was getting a lot of mileage kahit hindi naman kasarapan yung tsokolate. Eh kaya naman pala, may istorya!
I have a pen!$, I have pineapple. I have pineapple pen!$. :P Was looking for this Ice Cream store in Shilin Market but the natives said it closed shop na. How fortunate that while snooping around Jiufen, we walked right into the store! Too bad they only sell the pen!$ popsicle/ice cream during summers. Oh well, I’ll have to make do with these pineapple & sesame cakes! Ate, scalpel please. #ouch A box costs 280 ntd only, what a great novelty gift for kewl peeps who don’t get haughtily offended by such things. ;)
After a leisurely lunch & some shopping for pasalubong (took the opportunity since we had a car), our driver took us to our last destination: Shifen Old Streetnaman for lantern flying.
Shifen Old Street is a bustling hub for those eager to get a glimpse of an old railroad town which still retains the charm of yesteryear. Originally built to transport coal, the Shifen Old Street stop has now become one of the most popular on the Pingxi rail-line. And yes, it still works!
It is easy to see why so many are drawn here – local food, souvenir shops and puffing trains add to the charm of this little gem, as well as make it a fantastic place for peechur-peechur. ;P
With lots of love from Taiwan from Team GOppets! :-*
The sky lanterns at Shifen Old Street are the main attraction. Once used as a signaling system for those living and working in the railroad industry, visitors today paint their wishes with calligraphy before releasing the lanterns into the sky.
The kids chose the 4 colors which they felt best suited our needs. Each lantern costs 200 ntd -save for the more elaborate ones like the spinning (500 ntd), and heart-shaped (600 ntd).
Pink stands for happiness. Yellow for money/prosperity. Blue for work/business. And Red for health. <3 I wanted Orange for love sana but the kids said umaapaw na kami sa pagmamahalan, kaya fast-track nalang daw sa blue & yellow, lolz. Mga mukhang pera!!! $$$
Up, up & away, storm the heavens above for us please. :)
All I really ask for this 2017 is safety & the pinkest of health for me & those I love, especially Kap & the 3 kids. I really can’t even ask for more, nakakahiya na kay Lord. <3
We thought we’d get back super late but there isn’t much to do at Shifen except for the lantern activity. So we made it back with plenty of time for even more pasalubong shopping at ChiaTe Bakery, said to have the best pineapple cake in the whole of Taiwan. The line outside proves it too!
It’s pasalubong time! Pineapple cake from ChiaTe, said to be the best in da west! Taste test. Which one is the better pineapple cake? Left: flaky crust, chewier pineapple from Vigor Kobo (180 ntd for 5 pcs), or Right: the more compact, sweeter ChiaTe (180 ntd for 6 pcs) na pinipilahan? Drumroll please.. I like both, but ChiaTe is the winner for me. Taiwanese peeps, agree? Ate, however, seems to like Vigor Kobo more, maybe coz it’s not too sweet.
Omg please mga kababayan ko. If any of you will be coming home, please please please bring home a box or 2 naman of egg tarts from Chia Te for me??? Kung alam ko lang ganito kasarap ito I would have bought 10 boxes to bring home huhuhu.
With pasalubong all accounted for, we again “exploited” our car situation & dropped off all our packages at the apartment, paid our driver, then hurried off to Raohe Night Market for dinner. Yup, all the eating in between meals and STILL we’re off to dinner for more food, lol. What pigs & bottomless pits we are, taking advantage of the city where food takes center stage.
The Raohe Street Night Market, about 600 meters long, is one of the oldest night markets in Songshan District, Taipei, Taiwan. My fave from all 3 we visited, packed with fun and interesting night foods and snacks, quaint shops and stalls, and carnival games with prizes.
To get to Raohe Night Market, take the Green Line 3 to the terminal station Songshan (松山), exit 5. The night market entrance is just to the right across the street next to the temple. By Train From Taipei Main Station, take any local train northbound (區間車) to Songshan Station (松山), then locate MRT exit 5. Boy am I am glad the kids are walking waze & encyclopedias -great guides. Kap & I would have been totally lost without them!
Not to be missed: Pepper Pork Buns. The line is lonoooog & winding pero tyagain nyo lang. You won’t regret it, super yummy! <3
Didn’t buy for take home coz pork buns are best eaten when freshly baked & hot. How I envy the Taiwanese locals for having access to this every single day waaaah!
Kap fell in love with the stinky tofu although can I just say? Nakakasuka talaga ang amoy ha! You can really smell it a mile away, ANG BAHO!
For me, Shilin is still the most complete night market & definitely has the most food & non-food items, although Raohe is more organized coz it’s just 1 straight line with stalls back-to-back. Shilin is more chaotic and all over the place. :) Yung Shida, don’t even consider anymore unless like us, you’re already in the area.
Pagoda cold wave lotion. Ate until we’d burst, shopped until we were left penniless, and walked until we could walk no more.
To get a complete guide to Taiwan’s night markets, CLICK HERE. You’re most welcome. :)
Last day tomorrow, gosh the last 3 days just zipped by. Goodnight citizens. :-*