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DAY 10

long shan Temple 龙山寺-> chiang kai shek memorial hall 中正纪念堂-> Taipei 101 -> 忠烈祠 -> Yangmingshan 阳明山-> Dan Shui old street 淡水老街 -> Danshui's Fisherman wharf 渔人码头-> Taoyuan international airport -> Singapore Terminal 3

For our last breakfast at Neijiang Hotel and also at Taiwan, we chose its vegetarian sandwich since we tried its standard sandwich. It was equally yummy too!

Today, we will be catching hold of some important attractions in Taipei which we didn't have a chance to visit. As we will be leaving Taipei for Singapore at 5.45pm, we booked our day trip with 董先生 starting from 8am. This was not in our planned travel itinerary, but as he proposed about bringing us to the other worth-visiting attractions in Taipei, and the price is reasonable, we agreed.

We checked out at 7.45 am that morning, and proceeded to load our luggages at 董先生's car's boot. Throughout  the journey our luggages will be on his car, and after the day tour he will send us to Taoyuan International Airport straight. It's definitely convenient, but do find a trustworthy driver, one that has some certain popularity!

Check out @ Neijiang Reception Area
Oh, and there's lift at Neijiang, dont worry about carrying your luggages. There's only about 7 storeys in total. It's a standalone building.

Generally, considering its price, Neijiang is worth the price and the plus point about the hotel is it's location. It's convenient to all parts of Ximending. But it can be a little noisy at night. Beware of mosquitoes lurking around the room too!

Neijiang Hotel Namecard
Our first stop is at Long Shan Temple which is 5-10mins car ride from our hotel. At night, the market near Long Shan Temple is famous for its snake delicacies. 

man-made fountain in Long Shan Temple
prayers session ongoing everyday

building infrastructure of Long Shan Temple
We left at 9pm, and we started seeing Japanese tour groups streaming in Long Shan Temple.

Our next stop is chiang kai shek memorial hall.  It was erected in memory of Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, former President of the Republic of China. Along the way we saw Taiwan's 'Istana' where President Ma resides. It's a long stretch of walk to the main building and honestly the history of the museum doesn't arouse our interest.

Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall (中正纪念堂)
Off we went to Taipei 101 for phototaking after a short stay at the memorial hall.

eslite bookstore just opposite of Taipei 101
The shops at Taipei 101 weren't open yet in the early morning, hence we took some photos and headed for our next destination, 忠烈伺 (martyr shrine taipei) 。

It's dedicated to the war dead of the Republic of China during National Revolutionary. It's popular with tourists for its guards changing ceremony that happens every hour. 

Guard at the entrance (one at the right, the other left)

Taiwan's flag

watching the change of guards ceremony
Taiwan's way of marching is slightly different from Singapore's. There's short pauses in between their long march and there's a little different in procedure before standing in attention.
The whole ceremony lasted approximately 20minutes. Worth watching if you have the chance. There's the ceremony every hour.

We then went on to Yang Ming Shan National Park. It takes about 30minutes since its uphill.

Flower clock @ Yangmingshan
FYI, the flower clock is functioning!
Before we entered Yangmingshan visitors area, there's quite a few street vendors selling Roasted Sweet Potatoes. We bought 2 long and big purple sweet potatoes and a few normal sweet potatoes for NT200. 董先生treated us to the sweet potatoes. Initially we wanted only the 2 long big purple sweet potatoes, but as 董先生know the store owner + 董先生 is hospitable, we got a lot more additional sweet potatoes.

the store which we bought our roasted sweet potatoes
the roasted sweet potatoes
The Roasted sweet potatoes are quite sweet and fragrant, but purple potatoes are a little less sweet than  the yellow standard potatoes. But as compared to the street vendor which we bought a sweet potato from at Kaohsiung, the one at Kaohsiung is nicer as it has a slightly stronger '古早味'.

ducklings at a pond
Yang Ming Shan's 竹子湖 is worth going. It's quite chilling there, suitable for 海芋to grow.

You can pluck any stalk of the flowers and pay NT10/stalk at the counter before exiting. Good experience and the flowers are real pretty! But a pity we dont stay in Taipei, if not it will do a good decoration at home.
Otherwise, entry into the 'garden' is FOC.
Do note that there's a distance from Yangmingshan main entrance and 竹子湖.Walking can take about an hr or so.

different colours of 海芋
There's a lot of floral shops along the way outside of 山中园(海芋).

we passed by this roasted sweet potato store along our way, in which we saw the process in making the potatoes. There's a lady scrubbing the sweet potato, while beside her, there's a big pressure cooker.

roasting of sweet potatoes

little garden

We bought cherry tomatoes mixed with : [shredded Galangal (南姜) + salt + licorice (甘草)powder ] and three pink guavas. The cherry tomatoes are much nicer with the yellow powder. They are no longer sour. There's a lot of seeds in the pink guava and according to the locals there, they consume the seeds together with the guava flesh.

Our second last stop is at Danshui. Taiwan's 铁蛋 is a must eat at Danshui. We bought a pack from the popular 阿婆铁蛋. They have two different types: Chicken and quail eggs.

Basically 铁蛋 is egg being stewed over and over again for a long period of time to make it very seasoned with the use of spices. It's very chewy, the outer egg white can be quite 'tough' but the inner egg yolk is still the same. Other stores at Danshui sell fresh 铁蛋, whereby you don't need to purchase a big pack. I would recommend you to try out the fresh ones though a little costly, then if you enjoyed the taste, buy the packet 铁蛋 to savour it back at home.

primary school(国小)students
We also bought a piece of agar agar from a street vendor along Dan Shui Old street for approx NT35.
董先生recommended us to try 阿给's fishball soup. We ordered its fried bee hoon and fish ball soup,. Love its bee hoon the most.Worth trying this store but there seems to be a lot of 阿给老店in Danshui, until we dont know which is the genuine store.

董先生 bought 喜饼for us to bring back Singapore, as he said this store: 双元成饼店's西饼is freshly baked and is very traditional. It's one of the popular stores there in Danshui according to him. It's appearance is indeed very traditional. Worth giving it a try!


We also bought 大肠包小肠 again. But this time, it's not as tasty as the one bought at 黄金瀑布, though cheaper at NT50. The glutinous rice is not as fragrant and the sausage doesnt seem to have a nice flavour. It contains of coleslaw wrapped within the glutinous rice, which tasted a bit sour and kind of spoiled the taste of what 大肠包小肠 is supposed to be. The one that we ate at 黄金瀑布 has ingredient of 菜脯(chai poh) which was nicer!
We then head off to our last destination - Danshui's Fisherman's wharf (渔人码头). 
Danshui's Fisherman's wharf (渔人码头)

However, comparing the scenery that we see and the pictures taken at night, the night scene seems much prettier though. There bridge will light up at night.Nevertheless, the scenary there is still quite picturesque. The view of the famous bridge differs at various angles.


情人塔 is actually a rotation restaurant near Fisherman's wharf and Fullon's Hotel. The rotation restaurant gives you a bird eye view of the 渔人码头.

Marina Bay Plaza @ Fullon Hotel
Yes, it's Marina Bay Plaza @ Taipei not Singapore. It sells mainly exquisite souvenirs there - at the hotel lobby of Fullon Hotel.

We are off to Taoyuan Airport at 3pm, reaching the airport Terminal 2 in about an hour's time. We are thankful to 董先生 for bringing us around Taipei for the two days and creating lasting beautiful memories of the various attractions in Taipei, in our memory. As mentioned earlier, he provides great hospitality and is very friendly as a guide. For a few years, he used to mainly bring customers all around Taiwan for bridal photoshoots. Hence he can be deem as quite knowledgeable in areas that gives you breathtaking nature experience/scenary. His customers mainly come from word of mouth or from recommendation by his boss, 姜先生。

董先生 and his cab

Taoyuan International Airport
Eva Air self-check-in booth (Hello Kitty Theme)
boarding ticket
Our flight was supposedly schdueled to depart at 5.45pm, but it was delayed due to air traffic congestion. There was busy traffic (taking off/landing) at the airport, we were the fifth in queue to use the runway for departure.

Airplane cabin

Spread and soar its wings, off we go and this comes a closure to our 10D 'roundabout' Taiwan Trip

Oriental Dinner (卤肉饭+ bread + cold braised noodles and shrimps+ chinese tea)

dessert of Häagen-Dazs® Cookies and cream ice cream!
The ice cream was the best! If its not for shivering while savouring the ice cream, we would have asked for more(typical Singaporean)!

Due to the earlier delay and also delay due to congestion of air traffic at Singapore's Changi International Airport, we touched down at 10.40+pm. Collection of Luggage was slow and we managed to take a cab ride home, at 11.30pm, but reaching past midnight. We couldn't really get used to Singapore's cab since we had all accustomed to Taiwan's yellow cab.


Garbage Collection Vehicle @ Jiu Fen
Unlike Singapore, Taiwanese generally have to throw out their garbage when the collector vehicle pass by. They are usually alerted by the music played by the vehicle.Store owners/houses who forgot/delayed in bringing out their garbage, would have to wait for the next day or practically chase after the vehicle.This culture is very different from Singapore,but it's quite evident in Taiwan TV dramas.


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