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Mirador Hotel -> 佛陀纪念馆 -> 佛光山 -> Rainbow Bazaar -> 六合夜市

We woke up at 6+am to find it drizzling at Kaohsiung which is quite unbelievable since friends/rumour has been telling us that Kaohsiung is the hottest place in Taiwan and it seldom rains. The drizzle evolves into a downpour when we reach our destination and it persist for the whole day interchanging rain and windy weather.

Our first breakfast at Kaohsiung - Mirador Hotel is vegetarian set meal. Breakfast is served at level 5, rooftop garden of hotel.

rooftop garden at Mirador Hotel
Though the garden isnt very big, big enough for you to roam about, but it's definitely decorated very exquisitely. It's beautiful to butterflies and birds too as we saw a few fluttering around the plants there!

Dining area. (TV area hidden from view)
Vegetarian Set Meal
There's free flow of warm porridge for consecutive helpings. It's a satisfying breakfast to start our day with! All ingredients were up to our satisfaction! Especially its effort in preparing the dishes!

We left Mirador Hotel at 8am and took the MRT at Central Park Station which is just within 5/10 mins walking distance. There's an E-da bus at 9.15 am at Kaohsiung HSR station's bus stop to drive us to Buddha's Memorial Centre.

MRT token for single trip

sight at 8+am on a weekday's MRT @ Kaohsiung
There's pretty little people onboard the train on a weekday morning. This is for stark difference to Singapore's MRT where you dont get to see this type of situations on a peak morning period. We speculate that its because of a slightly more expensive MRT fare at Kaohsiung. Hence we see more people owning motorbikes at Kaohsiung and also more people boarding the public bus. It's quite common to see Kaohsiung people wearing face mask due to the high pollution from exhaust pipes of motorbikes.

one stop away from our nearest MRT (Central Park)

Central Park Station MRT
Honestly we feel their infrastructures seem average as compared to other different industries' infrastructures. But its certainly different and more 'artistic' as compared to a normal MRT train station you see in Singapore.

Formosa Boulevard Station : 2nd for World's most beautiful train station
E-Da bus tickets are to be bought on the spot when the bus arrives. It is on a first come first serve basis. There are two different types of buses: one goes straight to E-da, while the other stops at E-da but final destination is the Buddha's Memorial Centre.

E-da bus to Buddha memorial Centre
The bus that travels directly to E-da is bigger, like a chartered 30 seater bus.

Bus frequency

We reached the Buddha memorial centre in about 40 mins time. It's already packed with tourists when we reached since Fo Guang Shan Monastery is a tourist attraction.

front entrance

front entrance

the green patch at the front entrance

visitor  centre
At the second floor of the visitor centre is a common dining area whereby they will serve vegetarian lunch at specific timing.

dining area

glass wall around the memorial centre
The small writings on the glass wall around the memorial centre are the names of the donors in appreciation for their monetary contribution.

Fo Guang Shan Buddha memorial Centre is designed in such a way to illustrate the journey whereby buddhism is being passed down from India to China(Taiwan).

illustration of whole Buddha memorial Centre
At the very end where the great buddha statue is, has buildings designed following India's culture. Then there's a large open area depicting a neutral ground. Lastly just before the entrance are the 8 pagodas, 4 on each side depicting china, since pagoda originates from China history.

8 pagodas, with 4 each on the side.
The great buddha statue
Soon after touring the 4 pagodas aligned at the right side from the entrance, we headed to 滴水方for our lunch. It's a standalone restaurant, not the one at the visitor centre opposite starbucks though. There seems to have a few restaurants called 滴水方.

It's a vegetarian restaurant that sells only two types of dishes.


We headed to this place in the hope of trying Venerable Hsing Yun's creation - 佛光面.It's actually noodles in soya bean drink. Sounds new?


It's appearance is as good as its taste. Very different from the normal noodles we had. It's a worth trying dish!
We tried its other dish - 吉祥饭, but its just curry rice. It tasted equally nice too, but the noodles is a little more special. This unique creation cannot be find elsewhere other than 滴水方@佛光山.

The restaurant do not collect any payment for the food, instead you pay by donating any amount into the donation box in which  you deem fit. Though you do not 'pay' for the food, their service there is very good! The helpers are very friendly!

If you do drop by Fo Guang Shan memorial centre, do come in for a light lunch before continuing your journey!

Oh! one of the key highlights of the Fo Guang Shan Buddha Memorial Centre would be its 4D 'cinema'. Screening of the short video clip about the great buddha's life (approx 15-20mins) is of 30 mins interval. The effects used in displaying the movie is awesome. Since its a 4D movie, 3D glasses are definitely mandatory and will be given to you while you enter the room. We went at 11am to obtain our tickets but the next session was already given out, hence we took 12.30pm tickets instead. (Yes, it's free and a recommended must-watch ). Be sure to be there 10 minutes earlier to obtain a good seat as its free seating.

After that, we continued our journey to the 'India' part of the memorial centre to pay our respects to the buddha statues.

More of the memorial Centre
We then rushed off to the main 佛光山temple. Its quite a distance but dont worry there's tram (接驳车)to and fro, but make sure you catch the timing. Do check with the people working there!
We reached the main 佛光山temple at around 3.30pm.


inner view of the temple 
There's this part of the temple where you will undergo a journey as if you are living in the realm as described in the Buddhism scriptures. It's quite surreal and the journey will last you around 15 minutes considering a constant fair pace.

Main Hall (大雄宝殿)
the hallways along the two sides leading to the main hall of the temple
Doesn't this looks like the hallway in the ancient chinese palace?

There's quite a flight of steps leading to the main Hall. So be prepared to climb the steep stairs!

We went to tour around and waited for the tram again at around 4 pm to return to the memorial centre for the E-da bus.

We were quite lucky, as the E-da bus was there when we reach the memorial centre. It departed at 4.30pm sharp. Fo Guang Shan is quite a pretty place in terms of its infrastructure and even its natural scenery. It has scenic backdrop like mountains! Worth giving a try here, and especially for buddhist devotees, a minimum of one day is needed to be devoted to this place as its very big. For us, though we stayed for nearly a day, there's still a lot of the places we havent tour yet.

At the fo guang Shan memorial hall (India Part), there's a 4D cinema that shows the story of buddha (cartoon) for 15 minutes, in approx half hour interval. Due to the strong demand for this, there's a need to take tickets(queue number). We went to take the tickets at 11+am, and only the 12.30 slot was available at that time. Advisable to get your tickets about an hour beforehand. There's no seats allocated. The movie is a must-watch! The amalgamation of high end technology into the film makes the whole story more vivid.

Along the way back, there was a vehicle accident, and our journey got delayed. It took an hour or so to return back to the bus stop @ Kaohsiung HSR.
the bus stop at HSR station where one can board the E-da bus
There's this mall (Rainbow Bazaar by Shin Kong Mitsukoshi) beside the HSR station. It's of similar type to dream mall/ Miranmar Entertainment Centre.

Rainbow Bazaar mall beside Kaohsiung HSR station
We went to have our dinner at a vegetarian restaurant called Anita Vegetarian restaurant. It located at the same floor as Bee Cheng Hiang. Yes, there's Bee Cheng Hiang at Taiwan. The price is similar to Singapore's if not a little more pricey, but Singapore's authentic bak kwa appears to be more appetising!

Anyway back to Anita Restaurant, they served generous servings (variety) and at affordable price! They had 10% discount when we had our dinner there as they were celebrating their Xth anniversary.

Stewed pumpkin set
black pepper chicken(vegetarian) set
vegetarian baked rice
We couldnt remember the exact price of each set but each doesnt cost more than $10, about $8 each. In addition, we were served chinese tea each. It was quite empty despite being 6+pm.

We went shopping around the mall with our full stomach and along the way we bought 姜母茶for souvenir. According to the store owner, it has good benefits especially for ladies. Each packet cost NT150. When we tested the sample drink there, the ginger smell seem quite concentrated. Oh, and its 100% natural!

We bought 董师傅 MuaChee too for consumption during our train ride to Taipei the next morning. 

On our last night here, we headed to the popular Liouhe Night Market. 

the crowded streets of Liouhe Night Market
It's flooded with tourists especially from Mainland China. We feel that the things sold at this Kaohsiung Night market is quite expensive. So far its the most pricey of all night markets in Taiwan that we visited during this trip.

A drink store endorsed by President Ma of Taiwan

We took about a half hr walk back Mirador Hotel. It's approximately the distance between two train stations. Though long, but had we not take the route, we would not be able to meet this street vendor selling roasted sweet potato. It emphasize on the 古早味 of the sweet potato. The sweet potato was really very fragrant, but we only bought one. Sometimes, it seem like street vendors that mainly cater to locals, tend to sell better food than those shops that sell to tourists. 


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