Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Taiwan Day 3: Jiufen, Shifen, Taipei 101, Modern Toilet, Ximending Night Market

This is day 3 of our Taiwan adventure.  We travelled to Ruifang Station to visit two old streets.

Jiufen Old Street

It’s known to be Hayao Miyazaki's inspiration for the Academy Award winner Spirited Away. I remember the street lined with red lanterns where Chihiro's parents sat down and ate until they became pigs. Jiufen Street, reminiscent of the movie, is lined with red lanterns and everywhere I look, there were food stalls left and right. We also came into a street with different masks which also reminded me of the animated film's artistic design. It was surreal. 

Of course, we ate and ate. Good thing we didn't turn into pigs. Or maybe we did.

Golden Waterfalls

We proceeded to the Golden Waterfalls. It looked like there's gold flowing through the water. But the rich color was really brought about by the abundance of metal elements in the riverbed that are awashed by the rain. It looks so exotic but be warned. They say that the water's toxicity is high that it's not safe to even touch it.

Shifen Waterfalls

This was like a small Niagara Falls. It was so powerful yet so beautiful. I can stay here for hours. But we have some lanterns to fly.

Shifen Old Street
This was the reason why we went here. The lantern sellers lined the side streets. It was a sight to behold. There were tourists like us who were writing on their lanterns with ink and brushes. There were some already on the train tracks ready to have their photos taken as they release their lanterns. We did the touristy thing. We chose our paper lantern, wrote on it then flew it. 

After that, we took some noodle dish. It was drizzling almost all afternoon. And something hot was a good exclamation to our day out on this old street.

Taipei 101 – 91st floor

Since we rented the cab that we hailed in Jiufen, we told him to bring us to Taipei 101 for our final stop. We went to the topmost floor to see the Taipei Skyline at night. It was beautiful. 

And there wasn't much visitor that day. We were able to go up without much ado. We spent some quiet time here. I just feel that the entrance fee was quite expensive.

Taipei Love
This looks like the LOVE installation in New York. We just took a commemorative photo since it was just outside Taipei 101.

Modern Toilet
Another Taipei novelty... a restaurant to gross you out. The food was ok, nothing really special. But having gone through the experience, especially with kids, was nice.

Ximending Night Market
This was our night market fix before we ended the day. 

Jiufen Street
How to get there: From Taipei Main Station (台北車站), take the train north to Ruifang Station. After exiting the station and facing the Wellcome supermarket, take a left and walk 200 metres down Mingdeng Road. We rode a taxi going to Jiufen Old Street.

Golden Waterfalls, Shifen Waterfalls and Taipei 101
How to get there: We went into a taxi stand and inquire if we can just rent a taxi cab for the rest of the day.  I think we paid 2,800 (converted to Philippine pesos) from this point until about 6pm with Taipei 101 as our final stop

Taipei 101
Tickets: NT$600 (adults), NT$540 (child)

Modern Toilet
2F, No 7, Ln 50, Xining S. Rd., Taipei City

Ximending Night Market
Walking distance from Modern Toilet

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