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Day 1

Spore Terminal 3 -> Taoyuan Airport -> Taichung (Tomato Rooms B&B) -> Feng Jia Night Market

The pamphlets we collected during pre-trip preparation.

After months of preparation by collecting Taiwan tourism pamplets to aid our planning and visiting the Taiwan tourism board in Singapore we have finally reached the day in which we embarked on our 10D9N Free & Easy Tour to Taiwan.

My family trip to Taiwan include Taichung, Sun Moon Lake, Cing Jing Farmstay, Hualien (Taroko Gorge), Kaohsiung and lastly Taipei!

Our SQ flight was at 8.35 am.

we were all geared up to embrace the excitement awaiting us for the subsequent 10 days!

Boarding Pass

Our brunch on board the flight was a sumptuous spread. The four of us ordered 3 Oriental and 1 Western delight.

Western Delight

Oriental Delight

After around 4.5 hours of air travel, we finally reached Taoyuan international Airport at 1.10pm. It was 25 degree celsius, colder than Singapore. There was a long queue at the immigration counter however custom clearance was fast. Baggage clearance is only for those that have goods to to declare. Hence its actually not required to fill up the white form given out by the air stewardess. Our first stop was at the first main counter after the custom clearance - Tourist Service Centre, where we obtained our youth travel card. There's a need to fill up a short form and show your passport for identification purposes.
Taiwan Tourist Service Centre @ Taoyuan International airport
Youth Travel Card (Front and Back)

The youth Travel card is for tourists aged 30 and below. With the card, it opens up to a wide range of privileges and discounts may it be accommodation/shopping/admission tickets. My sister and I got half price for our green green grassland admission@ Cing jing!

Two left turns about the Tourist Service centre brought us to the telecom centre where we bought Sim card for phone usage in Taiwan. There are 4 telecoms competing there but we queued for Chung Hwa telecom(the furthest left) as its kinda equivalent to Singtel. Its the largest and famous telecom in Taiwan, hence a better coverage. Chung hwa telecom provides extra NT50 value. In another words, its 3G sim card cost NT300, but you get NT350 value! It provides international dialing too! However every passport and ic is only entitled to 1 3G sim Card.

We walked back to the main arrival hall and turned right to buy 2.30pm tickets for ubus to Taichung.

There are various bus companies selling their coach tickets to various destinations in Taiwan. Hence buying a coach ticket is definitely more economical than hailing a cab at the airport. There's no public transport there, or rather nothing convenient for boarding other than coach services.

U-Bus ticket Stub
Perhaps we were lucky, as there's still vacancy though we bought only 10 minutes before the stipulated bus timing.

U-bus pick-up point (Right outside the door)


The whole journey took approx 1hr 45 mins. The bus was punctual and we departed 5 mins after 2.30pm after all passengers went onboard. The coach was quite comfy and there's tv entertainment! It travelled by expressway and we alighted at the first stop after expressway - 朝马站. There was one taxi driver at the station jio-ing business, and hence we on board his cab to our accomodation at Taichung - Tomato Rooms. The taxi driver, 马先生 was quite friendly and he drove us within 10 minutes to the road name that we told him. We paid him around NT115.

However one cons about Tomato Room is that its quite difficult to find the exact location of the service apartment.The administration office and the staying place is of different alley. Once you see Subway restaurant, turn left and walk straight till you reach 顺天Blog (Yes, Blog not block). That's the accommodation place, but you have to cross the road to settle all administrative procedures first. The administration office doesn't has its name written on but it has a tomato logo!

顺天Blog is a residential building and beside it house the Feng Chia University Hostel. Hence its inevitable to see younsters hanging out around the area + Feng jia night market.

The whole place is highly secured with security guard at the main building at all times and internal security whereby you need to tap your access card to gain entry into the inner building and lift. Tomato room seems smaller than expected from photos, but after staying at 5 different hotel/minsu during our trip in Taiwan, we concluded that this is still the biggest room. However, we spotted two cockroaches during our stay there. (opps!)

We stayed at 2A02

Door and rotatable TV(Sleeping area behind the TV wall)

sofa set

Bed and TV

2 Double Beds (extremely big)

Shower room (segregated by a transparent sliding door from main toilet)

Toilet (nice shampoo and bathing foam provided as well as basic utilities)

Sink and kettle area

My family is very satisfied with the accomodation especially when it is a very economical choice at NT2080 for 4 person/night and breakfast voucher provided.

Updated as of 25/08/2012:

For our non-Chinese friends, Tomato Rooms hostel will be closed with effect from end of October as of Taiwan's government order. Under the law of Taiwan, homestay resorts are not allowed to be operated wthin residential buildings. Hence they will cease operations temporarily until they find a suitable location. In the meanwhile, if you are interested in Tomato Rooms Hostel, do like their Facebook page for more updates.

After settling our baggage, we kicked off our first night at Taiwan with a visit to their popular night market - Feng Jia Night Market which is just 5 minutes stroll from our accomodation.
We passed by Feng Chia university hostel.

Feng Chia University Hostel
Along the street to Feng Jia night Market

Not very advisable to visit night market at 6 pm, as theres a lot of motorcycle on the road believed to be the peak period when working adults knock off at the time. The need to avoid the vehicles while walking along the road with the crowd makes it very difficult especially for newcomers to the city (tourists).

Feng Jia Night Market!

We ate at a mixed vege store that seems to be quite well liked by the locals. They served a big portion of 3 vege + Chicken cutlet. There's free flow of soup and sour plum drink but the soup wasn't to our liking. The main meal was however very very delicious. For NT 65/person, its certainly very worth the value!

The mixed vege store @ Feng jia night market

Street at Feng Jia night market

The famous 大肠包小肠. There's seem to be never a time when theres no queue!

Due to time limit, we couldnt afford to spend time queuing but we satisfied our craving for the glutinous rice wrap + sausage local delight at Taipei.

Feng Chia university Campus

We passed by the main Feng chia University on our way back to our accommodation and saw students walking out of the campus despite night time.

During our stay at Tomato Room, we saw on news about a magnitue 8.9 earthquake happening in Indonesia. Even people in Singapore can feel the tremble. May the people there recover from the natural disaster fast.


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