Thursday, October 25, 2007

An Insight to Hot Springs

Since I am a novice to soaks in hot springs, I decided to do a little research on the topic. Yeah, you may find this to be a mite obsessive but it's basically for my own interest since I did do a fair bit of soaking. Found this useful book entitled "极美。美食 美丽台湾进行式 6 :温泉汤" on recommended hot springs in Taiwan.

Here are some of the things I have learnt:

  • The Proper Methods of Soaking in Hot Springs
  • Safety Related Issues of Hot Springs
  • Types of Hot Springs and their purported properties
  •  What are the things you should look out for/ask in a Hot Springs Facility
  • A list of Hot Springs that caught my interest

The Proper Methods of Soaking in Hot Springs

Preparation work:

Use hotsprings water or warm to drench/shower your body. For people with heart conditions, they should start soaking from the areas further away from their heart: the fingertips, toes and slowly let the heat buildup from these areas. There must be ample time to shower to avoid overstimulation on your heart.. During Showering to maintain pool cleanliness, you must carefully wash your lower body and folds. Remove all traces of makeup. After washing your face, wash your shoulders. When entering the pool, start from the region that is coolest in temperature, one foot entering the water slowly.  When entering the pool, don't bend your body or enter in a crouching position as this will cause stress on your blood vessels and reduce the health effects of soaking in hotsprings. To maintain personal hygiene and avoid picking up a nasty disease from the hotsprings, after a soak, bath thouroughly. People with fungal infections should not soak overly long so as not to bring up a rash of infections later on after a soak and always take note of the signals from your body, if there is any signs of discomfort.


Safety Related Issues of Hot Springs

Q: Who are not suited to soak in hot springs? A:Soaking in hotsprings for extended periods of time, being of higher than body temperature, will cause blood vessels to expand. It is not suitable for people with heart diseases: clogged arteries, high blood pressure as well as people with injuries near the skin surface, diabetes, maligant tumours, acute arthritis. People with skin diseases and eye infections should also avoid these places to prevent spreading of the disease to other users. Q: What are the situations unfavourable to soaking? A: There is a wrong perception out there that soaking in hot springs will help to relieve stress and tiredness when in actual fact, a tired body isn't favourable for soaking. Other situations when you should avoid hot springs includes: not soaking 1 hour before food and 2 hours after food, drinking alcohol, medications, surgery,menstration,overtaxed brain,lack of sleep and insomnia as well as sexual congress and recovery after a recent illness. Q: Can pregnant women soak in hot springs? A:Except for the early stages and late stages of pregnancies, hot springs can help reduce the pressures of carrying an increased body weight and relax the body and mind for the women, aid blood circulation and pains. However they should be acccompanied by other people and should not soak for more than 10 minutes each time before leaving the pool.  They should be well hydrated and maintain the electrolytic balance in their body. At the same time they should watch out for any signs of discomfort. Q: What is a healthy temperature for hot springs? A: Recommended 40-42 deg. celcius. Due to varying body conditions, it is best to slowly soak your body starting from the toes then the legs to allow time for your body to acclimate to the temperature changes before immersing yourself in the hot springs. Q: What should elderlies and children watch out for? A: Children above 3 years and elderlies above 60 years can soak but they should be careful as young children have underdeveloped nerve endings and the elders have deteriorated nerve sensation. They are not that alert to heat changes and might scald themselves unknowingly. They should be accompanied at all times and best to fins a location that is well ventilated and safe environ where they will not slip and fall whether due to weakness in body or by accident. Q: Is water theraphy safe? A: You might see different facilities consisting of jets of water with various pressures in water theraphy. However, if usage of water pressure is wrong or the place used on is wrong, you might inadvertlt cause yourself injury. Ladies should not direct the jets at their abdomen and lower body parts especially during menses. The water pressure of the jets might cause injury to your fallopian tubes. Q: How to avoid hotspring transmitted diseases? A: All natural springwaters have the presence of microorganisms and bacteria. Especially at 40 deg celcius which is the optimum temperature of growth for many organisms. If your body is stressed, ill, or weak, it is best to avoid the hot springs. Also, you should not soak your face or let water get into your mouth or nose especially during peak periods where there are many people using the pool.


Types of Hot Springs and their purported properties


There are 6 common types of Hot Springs and a few minor types in Taiwan, namely the:

  1. Sodium Carbonate Springs 碳酸泉

    Appearance: Water is clear, odourless and colourless. Properties: Whitening/Beutification of skin,alleviate rheumatism, skin conditions, women's sickness,ulcers?,overproduction of stomach acid and foot odour, banish tiredness and aid digestion and the digestive tract. Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings: Yilan SuAo, MiaoliTai-An, Wulai, Nantou Lvshan, Kaoshiong Bulao, Tai-dong Zhiben anf Taidong HongYe.

  2. Sodium Hydrogencarbonate Springs 碳酸氢钠泉

    Appearance:Clear and odourless: no pungent smell Properties: Cleanse the skin and prevent signs of aging. Aid metabolism of skin tissues, lower blood sugar. The steam from these springs is relaxing to those with Bronchitis and asthsma, oversentisized nose and respiratory system. Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings: Wulai, Beitou DongPu, Yilan JiaoXi, Tai-dong Zhiben.

  3. Salt Springs 盐泉

    Appearance: Contains salts so water is slightly salty and has excellent capacity in retaining heat. Properties: Strengthen bones and flesh. Increases metabolism, reduces blood sugar. Good for rhematism and chilibans, women's sickness, anemia, diabetes and hips pain?? zhou4gu3shen2jing1tong4. Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings: Tainan GuanZiLing

  4. Sulphur Springs 硫磺泉

    Appearance: Water is milk white, rotten eggs smell. not suitable for deep inhalation. Properties: Improves blood circualtion,chronic rhematism/ arthristis, anemia, chronic heartbloodvessel disease?! and hips pain?? zhou4gu3shen2jing1tong4 Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings: Yangmingshan, Beitou, KaoShiung Baolai, Hualien An-tong.

  5. Ferrous Springs 鐵泉,

    Appearance: Properties: Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings

  6. Simple Springs?? 单纯泉,

    Appearance: Odourless, colourless water, contains minute traces of minerals present in hotsprings. Mild and therefore suitable for elders and yound children Properties: aid blood circulation, suppress infections, speed up skin surface cell repair and pain relief. Relaxing for people that had stroke, nerve pain, brain aneurysm. Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings: Taipei Jinshan

  7. Cold Sodium Carbonate Springs 低温碳酸泉/,

    Appearance: Odourless, Colourless and clear water. Can be drunk or bathed in. Contains natural gas bubbles. Properties: Alleviates over production of stomach acid, lower abdomen fill bloated with blood, chronic bronchitis, gallstones, kidney stones, diabetes, painwind? insect bites Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings

  8. Deep Sea Mineral Salt Springs 海底温泉,

    Appearance: Heated seawater released from the grounds under deep sealevel. Contains strong salt content. Only 3 places around the world has this type of hot springs: Italy, Japan and Taiwan's Lvdao which is a sulphur spring too. Properties: treats Rheumatism Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings: Lvdao

  9. Mud Springs (Spring water contains alkaine and iodine, is salty and has a light sulfuric smell) 泥巴濁泉(鹼性含碘及溴弱食鹽水)

    Appearance: Properties: Representative Areas for this type of hotsprings

Honestly, I think items 3 and 6 are rather vague. But what the heck, it is listed on the book so here is it! Item 9 was collated from online sources since it sounds plausible and the book did introduce some spas that have it although I haven't the faintest idea where they are grouped in...

D) What are the things you should look out for/ask in a Hot Springs Facility


A list of Hot Springs Resorts/Hotels that caught my interest

  1. sulphur salt springs, taipei jinshan area 台北縣萬里鄉加投18-4號 平日全票 原價:399元 現正特價:250元 憑溫泉優惠券:150元 假日全票 原價:399元 現正特價:350元 憑溫泉優惠券:250元 Lodgings  菁英 平日 2240 假日 2800 領袖 平日 2880 假日 3600
  2. sodium hydrogen carbonate salt springs, taipei wulai area 237台北縣三峽鎮插角里80號 露天溫泉 平日 NT$350元 假日 NT$450元 平日10:00-24:00 假日08:00-24:00
  3. carbonate springs taipei wulai area 露天溫泉 平日 NT$390元 unlimited time 8am-1pm
  4. sodium hydrogen carbonate springs, 營業時間AM09:00--PM11:00﹞ 全票 NT$300元 半票 NT$200元 家庭房/4人 NT$6600元

Jhiaohsi Area Hotsprings

  1. 礁溪‧中冠礁溪大飯店  地址:宜蘭縣礁溪鄉德陽路6號  電話:(03)9882011 傳真:(03)9873552 family Room for 4: Usual 8000?5200-4000NT Very Excellent Facilities
  2. 和風溫泉會館‧礁溪店 電話:(03)988-1133 傳真:(03)988-0001  地址:宜蘭縣礁溪路五段97號 Triple Room Rack Rate NT $4500 weekday:3800,sat:5200 需加收早餐150元/人 the SPA facilities is excellent but it is not w/in the premises, Share w HefongJaeeHotel
  3. 礁溪‧和風嘉一飯店  地址:宜蘭縣礁溪鄉德陽路16號  電話:(03)9881212 傳真:(03)9883567 family Room for 4: Usual 2600NT Fri:3000 Sat:3800 Excellent Facilities
  4. 礁溪‧友誠溫泉飯店  地址:宜蘭縣礁溪鄉德陽路35號  電話:(03)9882522 傳真:(03)9887430 family Room for 4: Usual 2750NT Good Facilities
  5. 礁溪‧元隆溫泉飯店  地址:宜蘭縣礁溪鄉礁溪路五段112號  電話:(03)9888619 傳真:(03)9887606 Family Rm for 4:usual2380 Sat:3400
  6. 礁溪‧不二泉溫泉旅店  地址:宜蘭縣礁溪鄉德陽路26號  電話:(03)9889468 傳真:(03)9889245 family Room for 4: Fri,Sat: 3360NT, Usual:2400NT
  7. 礁溪‧山泉大飯店  地址:宜蘭縣礁溪鄉礁溪路六段36號(礁溪火車站附近)  電話:(03)9887979 傳真:(03)9880066 Family Room for 4: Saturday 6000NT, Usual:3800NT

Beitou Area Hotsprings

  1. Spring Resort Hotel 春天酒店 地址:112台北市北投區幽雅路18號 聯絡信箱 訂房中心:(02)2897-2345 服務專線:(02)2897-5555  傳真:(02)2897-7245
  2. Spa Spring Resort 水都北投溫泉會館 地址:台北市北投區光明路 283號 電話: (02)2897-9060 傳真: (02)2897-9065 Public Pools: 399/499[norm/peak]
  3. Yangmingshan Hotsprings 陽明山溫泉-前山溫泉
    地址:台北市北投區光明路224號 near datong street intersection @NBT station
    電話:(02)28983838 傳真:(02)28984505
    Have public bath facilities. Strictly hotsprings no fangledangle. Operates betw: 7.30am to 2am next day
The motherlode: - Hotsprings Network of Taiwan website 


Monday, May 28, 2007

Oooh Top Secret!

Recommendation for next trip: Along 南部横贯公路 are some beautiful Hot Springs that we can go to: 利稻温泉 宝来温泉 梅山山庄 one of the cheaper lodgings ~ S$150 Apparently you can meet really native aborigines while you are bathing there. Really beautiful scenery though getting there might pose a problem. No changing rooms so you may need to wear your swim suits under your clothes.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

A list of Taiwan Hotels I've stayed at on this trip

Day Hotel Name
12th-13th May


Taoyuan Golf & Country Club - Yaward Hotel 

No.39, 23-Lin, Chiu-Long Village,
LongTan Hsiang 03- 480 3388

Telephone + 886 3 480 3388
Sales Office + 886 3 470 1616

13th-14th May


Astar Hotel Hualien
花蓮 - 亞士都飯店





14th-15th May


TZYY Shi Garden Lodge

台东县 鹿野乡 龙田村南二路608号

reservations number: 089-550617
fax number:089-550621

15th-16th May


Howard Beach Resort Kenting

2, Kenting Road, Hengchun Town,
Pingtung Hsien,Taiwan 946, R.O.C.

TEL:+886-(8)886-2323 Fax:(08)886-2359


16th-17th May


Dakeng Recreational Farm 大坑休閒農場
Tel: 06-5941555  Fax:06-5940266
17th-18th May


DEBAO business HOTEL 帝宝大饭店
No. 22, Sec. 3, Liou-chuan West. Rd., Taichung, Taiwan
TEL: 04-22273456  FAX: 04-22270011

18th-19th May


Four Points by Sheraton 福朋喜來登飯店
Chung Ho, Taipei. 631 Chung Cheng Road, Chung Ho City · Taipei 235 · 地址:台北縣中和市中正路 631 號

電話: (886)(2) 2222 9999
傳真: (886)(2) 2222 5299

19th, 21th May
Saturday Sunday


Futurestar Hotel 明日大饭店
地址:臺北市成都路23號7樓 near Ximen MRT
電話:(02)2375-5500, (02)2375-52299

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

21st May 2007 Day Ten: CKS memorial> Presidential Building > Walkabout Ximen > Return Singapore

CKS memorial Took the metro green line from Ximen to CKS (NT$20)to try our luck to see if it is open. Good sunny day. Too bad we didn't plan our YMS trip for today. Lovely pictures taken. Next stop: CKS station to NTU hospital station (the Presidential Building) Walkabout from Presidential Building back to Ximen Using the Shin guang San Yue as a landmark to orientate ourselves, we decided to travel in that direction in search of interesting food. Discovered a marketplace with interesting variety of foods for breakfast during our walkabout. Too bad we only found it on the last day. Return Singapore Trip home was smoother compared to the trip here though we can't see anything outside our window coz it was dark. Strangely, the seats were dirty as if the cleaning crew were skiving. Found bread crumbs scattered on the seats and the disposable headrest was smudged with something tar-like.

20th May 2007 Day Nine: Yangmingshan > Shilin > Taipei Underground Mall > Raohe > Wu fen pu

Que Terriblis! It was rainy and foggy the entire day. Miserable Wet day.

19th May 2007 Day Eight: Longshan Temple > CKS memorial > Shida > Tamshui

No one don't knows where to go to eat on Sunday as the places suggested by the receptionist was closed. Bought a cup of Soy milk from a street hawker near our hotel which I guess was boiled using charcoal as it has a slight sooty taste.

Had a good breakfast in Four Points @ Sheraton before travelling by the cab booked by Hotel the night before for 8am costing NT$190 (independent taxi driver)and $180 (rented taxicar driver)respectively. I don't know if independents were supposed to be more expensive or was it because of the small reverse move the driver did as he overshot FS hotel but from what I gleaned from the conversation with him, there are very few independent cab owners in Taipei and in order to qualify for an independent license, you need at least 6 years experience in driving a cab and a spotless driving record with not traffic offences. I dunno it is means that the independents are a quality assurance or it can simply mean that the traffic police is very slack in catching traffic offenders. Taipei cabs are metered so not to worry about being cheated.

After dropping our luggage at FS hotel and paying for the hotel rooms, we headed to the Ximen Station which is practically right at the doorstep of our hotel. Less than 3 minutes walk to the nearest entrance 6.

Bought a Taipei 2 day pass which allows unlimited use of the metro and public bus services for NT$310. If your travels cost more than NT$155/day, it original price NT$450 . 1 day pass NT$250 slashed to NT$210. 3 day pass NT$440 up NT$650

Longshan Temple, Taipei 龙山寺

Longshan Temple (LST)was OK

Alighted there and immediately felt that the air there was much fresher and cleaner than both Ximen and Singapore. Not that the air in Ximen is polluted but you feel more refreshed when you emerge from the Longshan Metro Station. Even outside the confines of the temple, you could not detect the smell of joss stick unlike the heavy scent of sandalwood that hits you a distance before you even reach Guanyin Temple at Sima Road, singapore. In fact, the Temple is much bigger and more crowded on the day we visited.

On our visit, I noticed that the bulk of the visitors were students accompanied by friends, parents and relatives were there to pray for good results for their exams and in their offerings of food, you could see photostated copies of their exam schedule slips.

I deemed that it is almost time for their exams for the school hols starts. Typical offerings in their plates include lots and lots of raw vegetables like white daikon, chinese celery and sprigs of green onion, sugarcane or bottled sugarcane juice. I really wonder at the symbolic meaning of the vegetables. I'm guessing that the chinese celery 芹菜 tsin-chai represents 勤劳 hardworking, 青葱 cong represents 聪明intelligence, 甘蔗 kyu jin can lai meaning 苦尽甘来 that your hard work will pay off in the end. But I fail to understand what has Daikon 白萝卜 got to do with the qualities a student ought to possess during their exams. Perhaps there is some other name the Taiwanese have for the veggie...

On a funny note: some students even offered potato chips and other kinds of junk foods. I wonder if the gods will find favour with them because of these new strange foods they haven't tried before !?!

Aside: No particular feelings about LST and unlike the others we didn't pray. Just paid our respects to the 7 gods/deities housed in the temple. Grandma warned us beforehand that any wishes/promises made to the deities? gods? have to be 'repaid' so if you might not have the opportunity to go back to give thanks if your wish comes true, please don't do it.

Chiang Kai Shiek Memorial

CKS memorial was closed!!! Earlier on the news, we heard that the plaque of the memorial was secretly taken down during the night and replaced with another name due to political reasons.

Longquan Market 龙泉市场 and Shida Night Market 师大夜市

Good and interesting. Longquan market is abit like the wet markets in Singapore, except what they sell are quite different from us. Their ready to eat foods aka hawker fare is certainly interesting!

Technically speaking, we didn't visit the Shida Night Market (its afternoon not night you geddit?) but the area was open and there were lots and lots kinds of food to eat. I ate goose meat noodles and Mei, their Zhajiang Mian. Shared a bowl of their wonton soup. Not as nice as singapore's but very still good and piping hot! The store was doing a brisk business of takeaways. Alots of students from Shida decended on that place during lunch. I dunno its because there isn't any food to be had in their Campus or the canteen food was really bad but I think those hawker centres near our uni didn't manage to get that much custom from uni strudents. The price perhaps...

Tamshui 淡水- Valentine's Bridge 情人桥 & Old Street 淡水老街

See Lover's Bridge At Tamshui Metro Station, Exit and turn right to bus interchange. Took Bus 26

18th May 2007 Day Seven: Miaoli Fruit Picking > 101 Building > National Palace Museum > Martyr's Shrine > PiSiou > Shihlin > Wu Fen Pu

The news last evening and this morning kept reminding us of the approaching typhoon called 玉兔台风 or Jade Rabbit that is expected to pass by Taiwan from Guandao. Therefore some rain and storms are expected. It suddenly connected to me when I wrote this piece of news on my notebook that I had eaten a rabbit bun for breakfast at Debao Hotel and was gushing about how cute the white and pink bunny was. How symbolic was that? This white fury of a bunny isn't atal cute...

Miaoli Fruit Picking$ 苗栗果园

101 and the national palace was great.

101 Building 101大楼

Not everyone went up to 101. In the end only 7 out of 28 people in our tour group went up. Took the elevator to the 5th Floor to purchase tickets to the 89th floor. Used the student pass we applied on day 1 to get NT$50 off admission fees. They are bundled with discount coupons for souvenir photos on the 89th floor and $15 off ice-cream at the Sky Cafe but we didn't make use of them due to the lack of time. The open air observatory on the 90th floor was initially closed due to bad weather but later on it opened to allow visitors onto the platform. As we had spent most part of the half hour oohaahing over the scenery, the additional NT$100 for 5 mins on top wasn't that worth it so it had to be shelved.*pouts*

Four Points by Sheraton 福朋喜來登飯店 Very lovely hotel with a business center and a fleet of well trained staff; although I did think the PCs there were a mite slow when we transferred 10gigs worth of photos to storage. The staff were conscious of our safety and recorded down the particulars of the cabbies that they booked for us. Excellent buffet breakfast in the Red restaurant. I think it has a theme of some sort going but I can't recall now. It is perfect for people staying in for a late breakfast or a lazy morning after a late night, which unfortunately isn't the case for us :< The only peeve I have of the hotel? I would say none but while we were on the cab, the cabby asked: "为什么你们会住在这鸟不生蛋的地方?(Why did we stay in such an offbeaten place?)" so I guess its location away from the city center might put people off.

The tickets come in 2 designs with the Daytime and Night time view of Taipei 101.

After purchasing the tickets, we queued up in front of a barrier before a special elevator which will take you up to the 89th floor with a travel speed which is supposed to reach up to a max speed of 1010m/min. We didn't notice how fast the lift was but from the pamplet it takes 37s for the elevator to reach the 89th floor and for a fact that the elevator took about 45s to travel down from the 89th floor to the 5th floor. For different people have varying sensations during the ride so it is hard for me to say what is the exact feeling but I only feel a minor compressed feeling when i rode up and a kind of 'my stomach in my lungs' freefall feeling when coming down. Perhaps the dimming of all lights in the elevator helped alleviate the sensations.

To talk about the obvious, look at the exterior. The design concept of that place was the sections of bamboo to mean bu bu gao shen meaning to rise at every step you take. Every 8 level is one section of the bamboo(eight represents fa cai prosperity), there is one Ruyi (jade emblem) and the sign of the the ancient coins with a square hole in the middle.

There was some fog but we could still see into the distance. Noticed the route that we travelled from the tunnels on the right then we tried tracing the roads that we travelled by looking out for landmarks. We could see the muzha incinerator plant and the big and small bridges that we passed as well as the deserted miramar park with the ferris wheel. In the distance were the faint blue roofs of the National palace Museum at the end of a long straight road that we will be going to later.

National Palace Museum 故宫博物馆

It happened to be the open house day where admission is free. It was great.

Pi Siou Arts Centre 汉玉辟邪馆

Martyr's Shrine 忠烈祠

Wu Fen Pu Wholesale 五分埔时尚特区

Shihlin Night Market 仕林夜市

17th May 2007 Day Six: Alishan Forest Recreational Area> Sun Moon Lake, Wen Wu Temple > FengJia Night Market

Alishan Forest Recreational Area 阿里山风景区

Too bad no sunrise at 3am

Nantou Sun Moon Lake 南投日夜谭

Wen Wu Temple 文武庙

Taizhong 台中 & FengJia Night Market 逢甲夜市

WeeWoo Switched to Taizhong's Five Cent Driftwood House instead of Taipei coz it is nicer and in Taipei there are lots of night market we can visit and try out new foods but the con is no time to walk Fengjia Night Market :( DEBAO business HOTEL 帝宝大饭店 Hotel room was spanking new and clean when I stayed there in 2007. I have no complains on the room and the room provisions whatsoever. The only complain I have is the too thin and too short room door that allows sound through. The soundproofing of the room is fairly good but as the clearance of the door from above the carpeting is high, it allows sound and light in from the corridor which is reflected on the ceiling which makes not for a good sleep; you could hear people walking and opening doors. After hunting down the problem, we decided to stuff the hotel towels tight under the door and went back to sleep. Breakfast was a bustling and interesting experience. The food served. We had no seats when we got down for our meals and we had to hang around the tables and wait for others to finish and the serving staff to clear the tables. I'm not sure if Debao was experiencing full occupancy that day (which explains the masses of people jostling for tables and food) but the scene amusingly reminds me of foodcourts and the good ole tuckshops.

16th May 2007 - Day Five: Fo Guang Shan Monastry > Yen Ping Chun Wang Temple > Anping Fort > Dakeng Recreational Farm

Kaohsiung 高雄

The Industrial city of Pollution. Allan spat it out like it was a BAD word.

Fo Guang Shan Monastry 佛光山

Boring, culture boring The highlight of the trip is to watch Mei saunter in her flip-flops despite the cautionary sign. Very bad karma. They will get you for this!

Yen Ping Chun Wang Temple

Boring, culture boring

Anping Fort 安平老街

Old street in no longer present except for the cobbled streetstones.Dutch Influenced Fort later taken over by Zheng Chenggong Dakeng Recreational Farm 大坑休闲农场 You can see fireflies if you look real hard. especially at the cafe.

15th May 2007 - Day Four: Kenting > Howard Beach Resort

Kenting 垦丁

Howard Beach Resort Kenting 墾丁.福華渡假飯店

Boring. will never visit the hotel again. The indoor waterpark was a joke. Go to the beach, anything but the park.

14th May 2007 - Day Three: Taroko Gorge > Qi Xing Tan > Lingzhi Centre > Bashen Caves > Shanxiantai > Taidong

Wow wee! We are off with a good start; the morning is sunny!!!

Taroko Gorge 太鲁阁国家公园

Starting off from Astar hotel, we rumbled off to Taroko Gorge (actually I thought we intended to go Tianxiang). Along the way, Allan expounded on the purported medicinal properties of the Lingzhi drink in his thermos to all the aunties and uncles while I privately thought he was just trying to prep us tourists to purchase it from the Lingzhi Centre later in the day.

At the main entrance, we stopped to take some pictures before boarding the bus again to travel past a tunnel. Stopped again at the parking lot near the Sakadang Tunnel which has a red-truss bridge leading to it. The weather was sparkling hot that I could feel my hair frying in the sun.

Later at the Eternal Springs Bridge 长春桥 (the original aka OLD one not the new one), all of us alighted at the gates to travel by foot inwards. We heard from Allan that Tianxiang was closed due to falling rocks and that Taiwan Govt is considering closing up the inner parts of Taroko to minimise human disruption of the Nature Reserve which is gradually eroding. In areas, parts od the Mtn is becoming less stable. Not sure if he was joshing us at that time but we heard later from other F&Es that it was accessible!! Perhaps, there is really falling rocks and he felt that as there are too many oldies around, we shouldn't attempt the more dangerous parts of it. The greyish blue waters seemed shallow looking down from the railings. In a distance away is a tiny templelike architecture nestled among the greenery with water gushing out from its mouth. Its eye-catching red walls brings the visitor's attention to it seems to shimmer in the bright sun.

Qi Xing Tan (7 Star Lake) 七星潭

On the bus, we first see the oddly barb-wired fence of a military facility before we even know this is Qixingtan. Turns out this is an airforce facility. The way our guide put it: if we are china chinese, we won't be allowed to see it due to internal security reasons. When the qn was put in another way: what if one of us in the tour group was a china chinese and now a PR what would you all do? That's why china tourists can come to Taiwan in a restricted quantity and under supervision of licenced Taiwan tourguides...not allowed to photograph the facility. Oh should we be so honoured that we are singapore chinese? *rolls eyes*

There are biking trails, footpaths, palm trees, the very necessary restrooms and the obligatory 'works of art' - stone sculptures. My first impression of the lake is: oh, this looks like a new park in East Coast!

One would think that this is a sandy beach not a lake! Strangely, this lake is

Bashen Caves (8 Immortals caves) 八仙洞

Not my kind of place. It reminds me much of Batu caves (minus the bats but add in the flying swallows or birds)

Shanxiantai (The Three Fairies Islet) 三仙台

Strangely, this is one of my favourites. I don't think the others were that enthusiastic about it but I love the rocks and the way the water crashes around it.

Shi Garden Lodge 紫熹樓花园山庄

Purple Lodge is really on top of the mountain! The attendant whom I think is a native seem rather cold at first but slowly warmed to us. Think to a certain extent she is rather amused by the reactions/antics of urbaners. Lots of mosquitoes though. Was initially excited to have upgraded from a 2 person room to a 6 person lodge where everyone of our group can stay together but even with two bathrooms, it was frighfully slow for every decision/move that we made.

Tried our hands at letting off a Kong Lantern where everyone wrote their wishes on and the lady attendent set off two boxes of fire-crackers. Never had that experience in Singapore. Unfortunately, the Lantern didn't manage to rise over a few inches above ground despite the aid given by the tour guide and the lady. I don't know if it can be attributed to the size of the fire lit, the weather (pressure, wind etc) or an ominous sign that the wishes can't be granted or that the wishes are too weighty and numerous to be fulfilled.

Went to the first hot springs spa in the trip in a really off beaten track but luckily the pool was open. after showering, we put on our caps and happily splashed into the hot pool which surprisingly wasn't that hot when i took a peek at their boiler, it indicated 39.6 which is close to our body temperature. I guess the guide must be real careful as there are many inexperienced and elderly users in our group.

After the spa, we tried our hand at making Muah Chee. It is simple really. First you need to cook some glutinous rice in your rice cooker like you cook your normal rice. When it is done and still very very hot, you dump the rice into the huge wooden mortar, take up the uber long pestle that looked like a mutant boat paddle and start pounding!

After sometime, the whole mess start to become mushy then gooey and the pounding becomes very much difficult. Later on in Dakeng farm, the boss gave us a very useful tip: to make chewy Muah Chee, you need to lift up the pounder real high with the gooey substance still clinging on the paddle and to the rest of the goo in the mortar and pound the Muah chee, preferrably hitting the mortar when you land, not on the goo as this will help to grind out the rough bits of the mashed rice and introduce elasticity to the substance when you pull the taffylike goo and pound.

Pound and pound and pound like mad women till your arms ache, check the Muah Chee and flip it a bit and repeat this process till the mix is totally smooth. Then coat your hands or disposable gloved hand with some cooking oil and grab a fistful (not handful) of the Muah Chee and squirt a small round out of the hole at the top of your fisted palms into the plate of mixed ground peanuts, sesame and icing sugar. Drop that lump and squeeze your fists again. Then all the Muah Chee have been squirted into small rounds, not too big or the taste would be good, and you start to roll the small bits of Muah Chee till they are coated with the ground nut mix. Nice! Now you can start munching!

After a full day's activities, I'm ready for a rest....zzzzz

In the area

13th May 2007 - Day Two: Yeliu > Chiufen > Hualien

The actual tour starts


Along the northeast coast are rocky coastal lines with foamy cerulean blue waters. Along these roads and in parts of Hualien and Kenting, you will get to see many types of rubble mound (R-M) structures used in coastal line protection against erosion.

One of the most noticeable part of a R-M structure is call riprap. Riprap is a mixed assemblage of rubble, either dumped indiscriminately or deposited on the surface of a mound to protect the mound against erosion by waves and scouring by tidal action and underwater currents.

You would mostly see large cubical or rectilinear blocks of quarried stone of the prevalent types: tetrapods, tribars, and dolosse. No reinforcing steel or steel lifting eyes are used in dolosse and tetrapods; consequently, corrosion is not a problem, and unit cost is minimized. Dolos and tetrapod units are less vulnerable to damage during placement and storms than the various other types of concrete armor units.

From the tremendous amounts of R-M structures seen along the coast, I deem that Taiwan's coast is extremely vulnerable to erosion by strong wave action. On an interesting note I also noticed these concrete armours being placed along rivers even in Taroko Gorge.

At certain parts of the coast approaching Yeliu, you could see large rocks sticking out of the sea; these rocks continue along the sea underwater and you could see water being blown up from the sea as the waves crashes around the rocks.

According to our guide, the waters around Taiwan's coast can reach a depth of 4000m just a short distance from the shore. So, if you are not a strong swimmer, you are not advised to swim in these turbulent waters especially those in the Northeast Coast where the currents can travel at tremendous speeds under the deep waters and gush up and outwards when it hits the rocks creating a vacuum-like vortex called the “疯狗浪”



The story of why Chiufen is called Chiufen or translated in English means: Nine portions.

In the past, that area was sparsely populated by farms. So sparse that there were only nine families living on the mountain. As transportation and road infrastructure were undeveloped at that time, it was terribly inconvenient for the families to get their supplies from the foot of the mountain.

Being a closely knit community, whenever someone went down, they would in goodheartedness order nine portions of everything he/she need for the rest of the families and neighbours living up there. After sometime, the merchants became familiar with them and their odd request for nine portions of everything that they will automatically call out "Chiu-fen" when the person placed his/her orders and the name stuck.

One day one of the 'chiufen' was walking along the river where he found gold. when this piece of news spread, people from everywhere moved to Chiufen to join in the gold rush fever and the population burgeoned to over 4000 people. Even today, after the Japs took off with most of the gold mined in chiufen, the experts invited by the government to survey Chiufen which is located on a volcanic region, are still finding untapped gold resources that was previously technologically unattainable.

During cattail season, the whole mountain is covered with the white down of cattails.

Taiwan is truly blessed for possessing such an abundant supply of resources. According to our guide, Taiwan's climate can be divided into 3 temperate zones with a huge variance. Along the way, he also pointed out to us the 'Pixiu's standing guard at numerous entrances of the tunnels. Pixiu 貔貅 is male and is typically a luckbringer, a fortune bringer and a ward against all things bad for the living. Pixie 辟邪, is female and is typically seen carrying a young. The female animal is used for the dead and is buried together with the bodies. They can be found in ancestral graves. May's Seasonal Flower: 五月雪- 油桐花 Tung Blossom / Paulownia Flower / Princess Tree Blossom

This is a closeup. It is said that in Miaoli, whole mountains will be covered in a sheet of white when the flower is in bloom. When the wind blows through the mountain range, the petals of the Princess tree will be borne aloft from 'snowladen' trees into the air like twirling snowflakes in the cover of white, hence the name 五月雪 or May's Snowfall. Too bad I only got a glimpse of a lone Paulownia Tree while onboard the tourbus :(

Another area where you can find the blossom :

Astar Hotel

Very bad. I don't know if I'm influenced by my room lockout. I was intending to go out to get some water from the heated water cooler along the corridor coz I didn't dare to make use of the heavily scaled airpot and my friend got the same idea to do so but the door slammed on her before she had the opportunity to grab the keys by the door which we stick into the power switch in order to turn it on. Thats a very sticky door!

Worst of all the bus driver & the tour guide were settling up the bills at the reception when I went down to ask for help. The concierge used the master key to open the door for us. One Lesson Learnt: Always separate the hotel room key from the power switch on the keychain when possible and keep it on you at all times!! Room Number:5flr lastnumberA?

Toilet: found a hair inside the sealed comb package before I actually opened it for use. Didn't dare to use any of the complimentaries there. Only good thing was the hairdryer which was better than Yaward's which worked in one minute intervals then short circuited after a few blasts at our wet clothes.. Room

Can see the running track straight on and the Breakfast Room is on 2nd Floor, Right. can see ppl eating while I was brushing teeth.

At Yaward Directly opposite Breakfast Room Just walk straight down the corridor 203.

There is minor earthquake on 13th May 2007. Ade and Lp's sensations were true. The following is copied from Central Weather Bureau "5月13日01時50分 4.9 宜蘭牛鬥地震站東偏南方 13.3 公里"

Kenting 457, Debao , FourPoints 711, Futurestar 713

12th May 2007 - Day One: Singapore > Taipei Ximenting

Set off at 9.30am to the airport. Shared a cab with J. Every other persons were late. First time tried the auto gates where you insert the passport with the page turned to the one with your dets. gate opens, place thumb on screen for scanning and the second gate opens.

SQ876 took off after queuing for quite sometime under the good sun. I had a feeling that the climate control system was non-existent. We were squeezed so close behind a Tiger Airways plane and in front of an SQ plane like people jostling for positions. I don't know if 12.40 noontime was peak hour @ runway but isn't Changi Airport supposed to be efficient? Not allowed to carry water, no drinks before takeoff, I was parched!

Having learnt my earpopping lesson on MA, I took along some chewy bonbons to masticate during the takeoff.

Lunch on board was chicken w broccoli, salad and broiled prawns with chilled chinese noodles, a bread roll, wrapped up lunch with a magnum ice-cream cone.

2 days earlier we did online check-in to change our seats from the back to the middle section of the plane. It was a hassle and we ran into some problems we still had to queue the same amount of time for our boarding pass at the check in counter that I wondered what is the point of online check in. However, it was a good thing we did secure mid-section seats becos the plane did run into quite a bit of turbulence halfway through even though the pilots did their best to get around the turbulence.

Although there was turbulence, there weren't alot of clouds blocking our view of Taiwan.

[insert picture here][insert picture here]

In the light of sunset, the endless mountains, long grey stretches of roads snaking though the land, small dense huddle of building in cities versus the light sprinkling of houses smaller than a grain of rice amidst the neatly planted rows of crops, running rivers versus heavily sedimented and dried out rivers provided an unforgettable view of Taiwan as the shadow of our plane glided past green and gold fields on the slanted beams of the setting sun.

Had a feeling that we reach there after 5.20pm.

On the way to baggage claim was a quarantine post. Hl was stopped by an official as the thermal sensor indicated that her entire forehead was red. The rest of us decided to go to the loo while she filled out forms. While waiting for my turn, I was secretly tickled that they actually thought to change the name of the airport from CKS Airport to Taoyuan Airport even on a small thing such as the toilet air freshener. If it was up to me, I'd wait for the sprayer to be spoilt before I'd decide to change it, from a pragmatic economical viewpoint.

In the cubicle wall behind the loo was a sign telling users to please throw their used toilet paper in dustbin and not bowl and provided an inkling of the sanitary system of Taiwan for days to come. It was the first time I did not throw it straight into the bowl as it would strain the sewage system.

After Hl filled out her contact details, we left for get our baggage. As we still had much time on our hands before travelling to Terminal 1 to meet our landtour group at 7+pm, we decided to raid the tourist information counter for pamplets, maps and brochures. Signed up for the free international student pass that allows us to have student discounts in certain places.

The pass is a rubbery bookmark-like keychain that can be hanged on bags and it is accompanied by a cute pin with a note that enlighened me on the Naruwan Taiwan logo.

Written on the note: "T" represents the sheltering eaves of Taiwan in a symbol of the island as a warm home. The "a" represents the host of this home, ardently welcoming travelors to Taiwan. "i" is the traveller who has come to visit and is being received by the host and "w" is the host and visitor shaking hands and greeting each other happily. "an" represents the two sitting together drinking tea and chatting casually. On the upper right corner of the logo is an image of the island that expresses Taiwan's earnest and sincere desire to "Touch your Heart".

Took the shuttle bus to Terminal 1 and stopped at a little cafe near the bus ticketing counters for a rest while we check out the buses available and if necessary make transport arrangements to take us back to the Airport on the last day. Decided on Free Go cos unlike other buses it stops directly infront of FS hotel that we are staying on the last day. Bus fare: NT$135.

During the rest time, we tried out our phones and discovered that those using prepaid cards could receive calls from subscription plan mobiles but could not call out to other s'pore mobiles and each sms cost S$1 to $2+ for S'pore mobiles to S'pore phones *gasps*.

[insert picture here]

In case we need to contact hotels or each other during the free and easy part of our stay and we need to call back to singapore to our families, we signed up for 2 sets of the cheapest local prepaid IF for NT$300 with NT$400 talktime at the Far East Tone telecom counter situated at the right of the arrival gate which is so much cheaper. Calling to Singapore costs NT$0.075/min on weekends and NT$0.085 on weekdays. To call, simply dial +65 followed by the singapore telephone number will do. To call a taiwan landline, you will need to add area code e.g 02 for Taipei in front of the telephone number. To call a taiwan mobile number, dial 09 blahblahblah whichever number it is will do. The telcom have service licenses for GSM1800 (islandwide) and GSM900 (northern region) . To check value of card, dial "777" They will need to photostat your passport in order to sign you up. You can visit for more details.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Rules, Weather and what to bring?


Today the new Changi Airport Rule is formally in place. Carry-ons should not contain liquids, aerosols & gels in containers more than 100ml and the total of such content shouldn't exceed 1 Litre.


Looking good. 90% of the areas are sunny and in the region of 22-32deg oC. But still must bring Torch and raincoat/brolly if wish to visit caves.

When To Go to Taiwan?

Spring can be clear and dry, or wet and grey, or even blighted by a sandstorm from China. Sometimes you get all three conditions in one day.
Summer (June to August) is a great time to visit the east coast, especially for outdoor activities, but be aware of typhoons, which can hit the island from June to October. Summer is not a good time for travel to the outer islands as they are crowded with tourists, and flights and hotels are difficult to secure. Try October to November when rates have dropped but the weather is still great. The cities are always hot and sticky in summer.
Autumn (September to November) is best, as conditions tend to be warm and dry, air pollution is at a minimum, and prices lower.
Avoid travelling during the Chinese New Year holiday as the entire country pretty much shuts down. Some good holidays not to avoid, however, include Lantern Festival, Dragon Boat Festival, and the Matsu Pilgrimage.
In general, July and August, Chinese New Year, and Saturday nights are considered high season and accommodation prices are often double the off-season rates. Outside touristy areas, however, there is little change in price from month to month (only perhaps weekday and weekend).


Taiwan is sub-tropical:
> the mountains can be chilly in summer (June to August)
> snowy in winter (December to February)

The dry season lasts from November to January in the north but extends to April in the south.
Summer is hot and sticky all over the low parts of the island, with drenching rains in the mountains.
Daytime temperatures in Taipei are around 33°C in summer and 19°C in winter, while the southern regions experience warmer winters with daytime highs of around 24°C (75°F).
In winter monsoon winds can sweep across the island from Central Asia and cool the air by 10°C or more in a few hours.

the above section is extracted from:

Currency Rates

Tried posting this yesterday but there were some probs with google and blogger. Rate: SingDollar $1 to New Taiwan Dollar $21.70 Where: Crante Money Changer 1 Park Rd #01-28 Singapore 059108 Tel : 6532-5929

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Electricity & Voltage in Taiwan

Singapore voltage: 240 V / 50 Hz Taiwan's electric current is 110 V, 60 Hz which is the same as the U.S. and thus the wall sockets are made for standard American 2 pin flat plugs.


If your appliance indicate 110v-240v 50~60Hz it should be able to be used in Taiwan but you might need one of those multi-adapter plugs.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Reported our bookings to group and told them that if they don't like having to change rooms, we still have time to book another hotel but nobody bothered to speak up. Am secretly wishing they would & we can try other hotels...hehe...or even worse, book another better hotel then sabotage the FS booking by telling them the personnel called to update us that it is full...:K

Futurestar called to say that they made a booboo on the hotel rooms. Apparently the 4 person room was occupied on 19th so they have to move the 4 to two double rooms and return them to the 4 pax rm on the next day. Arr...quite confusing but thats not my problem since I'm staying put in the 2 person room.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

捷运 stands for metro EasyPass Taipeipass

Coincidentally the TV was showing a taiwan program. I'll remember this term so I can use it in taiwan. Easypass

  • has 20% discount on Taipei Metro, other transport system: No.
  • can be used on all Danshui Ferries
  • can be used in Keelung Keyun (Bus)?uncertain?
  • can be used in Yilan?uncertain?
Taipeipass Price adjusted to:
  • 1day - $180
  • ($250 1day pass for 3 Maokong Gondola Rides Option - only worthit if 3stops roundtrip)
  • 2day - $310
  • 3day - $440
  • 5day - $700

Q: Can Taipeipass be used in Keelung and Danshui Ferry?

Courage, Onward Twit!

TS was full! On 19th May. With only one double room TS3 left. More than one month (42 days to be exact) beforehand. How pathetic! :(

It must be really good to be that popular or the 50% promo is the real deal! If you are intending to go there book earlier!

That got me worried that the situation might be the same in other hotels especially since the ones we are recce-ing are the el cheapo kind with minimal facilities since we need only a clean and safe place to sleep and bathe.

Note: At this point when we checked, Rainbow is already filled, Kilin and Ferrary were not even considered as they are fully booked. Even Chengdu (royal castle) which wasn't even considered was currently left with 2-3 rooms for that date. I wonder what is the occasion over there in Taipei? Besides being weekends? Or is it because these are the better hotels?

Decided to place a call to Futurestar. The personnel, Ms Li must be quite amused with my kiasu-ness (or craziness I dunno) coz there were many rooms available except for the NT$1480 combi one ( 精緻和式套房) . Placed a booking for a 豪華四人套房 for 4+ 溫馨套房 for 2 to suit the needs of other grp members.

Sucess! A stone has been laid down in my heart 放下了一百个心

Call, Email, Fax or Book Online

Boy am I good at procrastinating too!

- Booking online through some online sites seem dangeruse when the T&C is read

- I no longer trust my fockedup unreliable tour agent to book a hotel for us (without trying to rob us at the same time)

- Fax seems to be cheaper but I want the booking to be over and done with b4 the new week starts as the hotels seem to filling up quick.

- Tried emailing TS but after one day still there was no reply. Being anxious, I decided not to wait but just call them up using my trusty chinese :P

Yup, but for those who are not urgent you can use singtel fax which is cheaper and a paper confirmation is nice in a psychological sense that everyone in your big grp get to keep a tangible copy.

Simply enter 012 for the fax connection followed by the country code which in this case is: 886 then the area code for taipei: 2 (you do not need to put 02) lastly. the telephone number of the hotel: XXX XXXX (whichever number of digits required)

Summary: 012 886 2 XXXXXXX

IDD calls

Initially I considered using Singtel - v019 seems to be the cheapest on paper 16cts/min weekdays & 10cts/min weekends Free registration & subscription (I don't know if there'd be charge for cancellation?) BUT might need to apply 5 days b4 you dial O.o;

Summary: 019 886 2 XXXXXXX

But I ended up using M1 simply because of my mobile plan 021 4.5cts/min flat rate Summary: 021 886 2 XXXXXXX

You basically get more out of using landline instead of a mobile but mobile phone seem to be IDD automatically available unless requested otherwise by the user so you can dial immediately.

For Overseas calls to Taiwan, you do not need to put a '0' in front of the Taipei Area Code but for calls made within Taiwan, you need to to add a zero. Press '02' instead of '2'. How's that for confusion?

From the above stated, I do seem rather excessive...

Will there be hotel rooms left at this rate?

Forgive me for being kiasu. Finally we prodded the people into some action after compiling the results! You notice the emphasis on some?

The results of yesterday's night discussion:
1. TS Hotel
2. Future Star Hotel
3. Neijiang Hotel
4. Wonstar
5. Keyman's (my idea just in case)

It was painful watching them drag the cat around that I decided to start the ball rolling by volunteering to call TS first today and making them participate by take one hotel each to call if the first choice is filled. Angel will take Wonstar while JP take Futurestar (since she seems rather enthu abt it) and Ade will handle Neijiang

I was really banging on TS, Wonstar Chongqing and Keyman's (I sorta like the latter 2 as they are nearer taipei mainstation & Shihlin!!) but the majority seem to like Ximen Station better. I sense there are some unspoken budget concerns even though that's just a difference of 10-20 bucks. Hmm...

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Hotels Hotels Hotels; Some Cheap Hotels in Taipei 台北

I really hope I won't end up in a fleapit motel :( If the indecisivness continues, I think I might be able to get everyone to upgrade to a higher end hotel! ^_^; To quote a taiwanese friend:

Try to book earlier to avoid disappointment. Few times, we cannot get our first choice via asiarooms even we try to book one month ahead... Red light districts to avoid :万华, 圆环.

Cheap and Clean hotels in Taipei We have 6 people so we have to book earlier to make sure we have rooms.. Note: List not sorted according to price or preference

Ximending Station Area

  • Royal Castle hotel Taipei 成都大饭店 No.115, Cheng Du Rd. Taipei Taiwan One Double Bed NT$ 1,780>~89SGD pax Two Single Beds NT$ 1,880>~94SGD pax Two Double Bed = NT$ 2,650 >~67SGD pax (for 4 person) Comments: Looks great but not keen on this cos it is near STD control center on the map. Run by same company as Rainbow Hotel

  • Won star / one star 万事达旅店 Branch 1: No. 82 Zhonghua Rd. Sec. 1, Ximending 台北市萬華區中華路一段82號 電話:886-2-2382-0889 傳真:886-2-2382-0719 雅致雙人房 一大床 2080+1880 元起~99SGD pax 標準雙人房 一大床 2280+2080 元起~109SGD pax Onestar (Taipei) Branch 3: No. 219 ChangAn E. Rd. Sec. 2, 12Fl., across town, in east Taipei Onestar (Seaview) Branch 4: No. 250-6 Beining Rd., Keelung City, at Bisha Port Comments: Branch 3 & 4 are irrelevant in our context

  • East Dragon hotel Taipei 东龙大饭店 地址︰ 漢口街二段23號 23,SEC 2,HANKOU ST.TAIPEI 電話︰ (886) (02)2311-6969 Deluxe Double Room NT2400-120SGD pax Deluxe twin Room NT2600~NT2800~140SGD pax Deluxe Triple NT3200~NT3400~113GD pax Quad suite NT4000~100SGD pax

  • Rainbow hotel Taipei 长虹饭店 no.36, Han Chung St., Taipei Taiwan 飯店電話:02-2311-9193 fax: 886-2-2388-5011 fax: 886-02-2388-5011 標準雙人房 bd bed 一大床 2150 元 1680 元起 online price~ 84 SGD 精緻雙人房 bd bed 一大床 2400 元 1880 元起~ 94SGD pax 豪華雙人房 bd bed 一大床 2680 元 2080 元起~ 104SGD pax 商務金香雙人房 twin bed 二小床 3400 元 2080 元起~ 104SGD pax 豪華三人房 1db bed 1 single 一大床一小床 3550 元 2280 元起~ 76SGD pax 家庭溫馨套房 2 db bed 二大床 3680 元 2780 元起 ~69.5SGD pax for 4~ 92.7SGD for 3 彩虹玫瑰套房 2 db bed 一房一廳 4260 元 2580 元起 ~64.5SGD pax~ 86SGD for 3 Comments: If the above link can't be accessed try this to reach their booking network. This Hotel is popular with budget travellers but a bit noisy due to location i think

  • King Shi Hotel 金帥商旅 地址:台北市昆明街142號7樓(近西門町)  TEL:(02)2381-8131 FAX:(02)2383-2729 標準商務套房 1DB Bed 2800 1680 1960 [rack/norm/wkend] 精緻商務套房 1DB Bed 3000 1800 2100 豪華商務套房 1DB Bed 3300 1980 2310 標準四人套房 2DB 4800 2880 3360 豪華四人套房 2DB 5400 3240 3780 Breakfast included. all rooms add bed +NT500

  • TS Hotel (DaShun) 大顺 No. 170-172, HanZhong St., Taipei, Taiwan (near ChangSha St.) Tel:886-2-2381-8710 Reservation:886-2-2388-1315 Fax:886-2-2381-8713 One Double Bed NT$ 1,680>~84SGD pax Two Single Beds NT$ 2,280>~114SGD pax One Double Bed + Extra Bed NT$300/person = NT$ 2,480 >~83SGD pax *the above listed are promo prices

  • Future Star Hotel 明日大饭店 地址:臺北市成都路23號7樓 near Ximen MRT 電話:(02)2375-5500‧(02)2375-52299 傳真:(02)2331-2243 雙人套房 bd bed 定價 : $ 1,180 ~59SGD 溫馨套房 bd bed 定價 : $ 1,280 ~ 64SGD 精緻和式套房 定價 : $ 1,480 ~ 74SGD 豪華四人套房 定價 : $ 2,080 ~52SGD pax, 70SGD pax if cost split btw 3 person Comments: This Hotel is el cheapo therefore el popular with budget travellers but a bit noisy due to location i think

  • Neijiang Hotel 内江 108 台北市萬華區西寧南路112號 112 Xining S. Rd. Tel:02-2381-2147、2381-2148 Fax:02-2331-6340 Twin Weekdays: $1280 +Sunday: $1480 ~69 SGD pax Possible bed config: 4+2, 2+2+2, 3+3

  • King National Hotel 金國際 SPA旅館 108 台北市萬華區西寧南路159號 2nd floor Tel: 02-2331-3131~5 Fax: 02-2311-1253 Twin rooms only. starting from NT1600.

  • Handsome Hotel 函舍商務旅店 台北市成都路68號4樓(國賓戲院斜對面) 4F. , No. 68, Cheng Tu Rd., Taipei, Taiwan, R.O.C. TEL:(02)2371-8812‧FAX:2389-5151 精緻商務套房 NT3760/ 1880/ 2180 (rack/usual/hols) 函舍商務套房 NT3960/ 1980/ 2280 (rack/usual/hols) 豪華家庭四人房 NT5360/ 2680/ 2980 (rack/usual/hols) 商務四人房 NT5960/ 2980/ 3280 (rack/usual/hols) includes breakfast

  • Burgary Hotel 寶格利時尚旅館 地址:臺北市中華路一段168號 專線:02-2382-1314 傳真:02-2382-1344

  • Pai Yueh Hotel 百悦商务旅馆 台北市開封街二段42巷2號   電話 02-23881792  傳真 02-23891029 Comments: Ran by Hong Kong Company I think...A bloody hard website to access due to the buggy flash content.

  • Paradise Hotel 一乐园饭店 台北-西門町區 西寧南路24號 24,HIS NING SOUTH ROAD,TAIPEI 電話︰ (886) 02 2314-1181 網址︰ try looking: Comments: website doesn't work. have old & new wing

Taipei Main Station Area

  • 台北‧城美大飯店 地址:台北市漢口街一段88號  電話:(02)23147305 傳真:(02)23146328 雙人房 (一大床) 2600 / 1560 [rack/norm&wkend] 雙人房 (二小床) 2800 / 1680 三人房 3100 / 1860 incl breakfast, no adding bed.

  • Keyman's Hotel 台北懷寧飯店 地址:台北市中正區懷寧街1號  電話:(02)23114811 傳真:(02)23115212 db bed 1760+1560NT=3320>1660pax~83SGD triple (db+single) 2200+1950NT=4150>1383.3pax~70SGD Comments: Comparable to One Star Chongqing. Straddles betw Taipei Main Station and Ximen. Direct booking from hotel network so you can see the no. of rooms currently available & room types at the different dates & get immediate confirmation.

  • City Inn 新驛旅店 100台北市中正區懷寧街7號 No.7, Huaining St., Jhongjheng District, Taipei 100, Taiwan (R.O.C.) near Taipei Main Tel: +886 (2) 2314-8008 Fax: +886 (2) 2331-3311 E-Mail: Single Room $2000 ~ 100SGD CityInn Suite $2600 ~ 65SGD pax Twin Room $3200 - 80SGD pax additional guest charge $380 ~ 19SGD *prices shown are before promo Comments: a NEWly opened modernist concept hotel promo till 31 Dec 2007: 40-50% off room rates. Alots of things to eat. One of the hotels with gd english speakers.

  • Hotel Flowers Taipei 華華大飯店 No.19&36,Han-Kow St,1, TAIPEI,TAIWAN, R.O.C. TEL : 2312-3811 (20 LINES) FAX : 2312-3800 Room reservation special line TEL : 2331-7392 Standard Twin $2,400.00 ~60SGD pax Family Twin $2,500.00 ~63SGD pax Deluxe Twin $3,000.00 ~75SGD pax Extra Bed $300.00 ~15SGD Comments: Not uber cheap but near Taipei Main Station & B/fast included

  • Hope Hotel 全家歡旅店 電 話:02-23814755 傳  真: 02-23897984 地  址: 台北市中正區忠孝西路一段 72 號4樓 email: 獨享單人房 NT2200 元 1100/1320 雅緻雙人房 NT.3000 元 1500/1800 双床家庭房 NT.4200 元 2100/2520
  • Miyi Hotel 名邑旅店 電話 02-23713151 傳真 02-23756199 地址 中正區漢口街1段4,6號2-4樓

  • (Taipei) Onestar Branch 2: 地址:台北市中正區重慶南路一段18號 No. 18 Chongqing S. Rd. Sec. 1, near Taipei Station TEL:(02)2388-7269 FAX:(02)2388-2983 雅緻套房 NT680/ 1980/ 2280/ 2900 (rest/usual/hols/rack) 名仕套房 NT780/ 2380/ 2680/ 3400 尊爵套房(Twin Bed) NT880/ 2680/ 2980/ 3800 尊爵套房 NT880/ 2680/ 2980/ 3800 All for 2 ppl only

  • Forte Orange Business Hotel 台北‧福泰桔子商務旅館  地址:台北市中正區開封街一段41號2樓 near wonstar chongqing Taipei Main Front station exit 1 電話:(02)23881523 傳真:(02)23881526 豪華客房Single Bed Rm 2800 1800 [rack/flat] 豪華雙床房 Twin Bed Rm 3200 2200 No breakfast Included. 現場加收費用:NT200 / 人

  • 璽愛旅店飯店旅館 aka 喜愛飯店旅店旅館 slovehotel

    台北市中正區忠孝西路一段72號3F(台北車站50公尺) TEL: 886-2-2388-0808 FAX: 886-2-2311-4112

Other Areas

  • Shandao Station

    Good Life Hotel 群来商旅 電話:886-2-23217061 地址:台北市紹興北街31巷26號 DB NT1680 3p NT2280 extend 1h NT160

  • Minquan West Station

    Friends (Yo Chun)Hotel No. 55, Min Quan W. Rd. , Taipei, Taiwan , R.O.C TEL:02- 2597-2588 FAX:02-2598-6664 地址:台北市民權西路55號 溫馨和風房 ( 雙人床 ) $2500/ 1800 [rack/disc/-] 精品商務房 ( 雙人床 ) 含 $2700/ 1950 豪華商務房 ( 雙人床 ) 含 $2900/ 2100 貴賓廳房 ( 雙人床 ) 含 $3100/ 2250 Comments: W breakfast, Can only book 3 days in adv, Have airport car to bring us there $NT1100.

  • 東吳大飯店Dong Wu Hotel 地址:台北市延平北路二段258號 電話:02-25571260~9 傳真:02-25537614 經濟單人房(兩人用)  NTD 2,800 標準單人房(兩人用)  NTD 3,000 商務單人房(兩人用)  NTD 3,200 豪華單人房(兩人用)  NTD 3,400 豪華雙人房(兩人用)  NTD 3,800 豪華三人房(三人用)  NTD 4,200 加床五人房(五人用)  NTD 4,800 Incl B/F

  • Equally far from Minquan/Shuanglian/Zhongshan Station

    Silken Hotel (新凯商务旅店) 地址:台北市中山區新生北路3段76-1號  電話:(02)25855000 傳真:(02)25957722 Toll Free number 免付費電話:0800-500488 near Taipei fine arts museum

  • Near Shuanglian Station/Zhongshan Station

    Taipei Wish Hotel 微風商旅 台北市中山北路二段77巷17-3號 TEL: 02-25633369 FAX: 02-25677898 Email: 雅緻客房 3000 1950 豪華套房 3500 2275 貴賓房   4000 2600

  • Shin shih hotel 新仕商务旅馆 No.8 , Min Sheng W. Road. , Taipei ,Taiwan TEL:(02)2562-7466 FAX:886-2-25421477 精致房 $2560 $1780 ~89SGD/pax 豪华商务房 $2790 $2080 大和室房 $2970 $2180 尊爵房 $2970 $2180 豪华三人房(一大一小床) $3550 $2480=1653.4~83SGD/pax The calculated SGD is for online reservation $incl breakfast

Near Zhongshan Station

  • Friends(YoYo) Hotel Taipei 台北‧友友大飯店 Taipei Zhongshan Area Changchun Rd No.24 地址:台北市中山區長春路24號  電話:(02)25316767 傳真:(02)25119637 豪華套房 NT2570/1900 (rack/usual/-) 標準套房 NT2450/1800 商務套房 NT3150/2300 Comments: All 2 ppl rms. Checkin&Checkout at 12 noon

  • Leofoo Hotel 六福客棧 台北市長春路168號 168 Chang Chun Road, Taipei TEL: +886-2-2507-3211 FAX: +886-2-2508-2070 豪華套房 NT$ 5,280 [rack] 一般單人房 1,900 豪華單人房 2,100 一般雙人房 2,100 豪華雙人房 2,300 三人房 2,600 日式廂房(兩位) 2,100 comments: Incl Buffet Breakfast Prices Indicated not for * 97 年 3 月 13 日 - 3 月 16 日 * 97 年 6 月 3 日 - 6 月 7 日

  • V Near Station

    Royal Inn Taipei 老爺商務會館 台北市南京西路1號8~11樓 8~11F, 1 Nan King W. Rd., Taipei TEL: +886-2-2531-6171 FAX: +886-2-2531-6179 Single 單人房 Standard 標準型 17 NT$3,400 Business 商務型 20 NT$3,800 Deluxe 豪華型 20 NT$4,200 Twin 雙人房 Business 商務型 6 NT$4,000 Deluxe 豪華型 11 NT$4,400 Suite 套房 2 NT$6,600 Comments: A bit expensive but KIV

Near Zhongxiao Xinsheng Station

  • Betw JianGuo N. & Xinsheng Rd

    KDM Hotel 凱統大飯店 Zhongxiao East Rd Sec 3 No.8 台北市忠孝東路三段8號 電話: (02)27211162 傳真: (02)27119096 Economy Db NT$2,250/ $1,780 [rack/online$](1 ppl only)+200 for 2nd Biz DB NT$2,500/ $1,980 (1 ppl only)+200 for 2nd Superior Db NT$2,850/ $2,280 Deluxe Suite NT$3,350/ $2,680 Triple Rm NT$3,500/ $2,800

Near Nanjing East Rd Station

  • Hondo Hotel 皇都飯店 台北市南京東路四段55號之1 No.55-1, Nan-King E. Rd., Sec 4, Taipei TEL: 886(02)8712-1988 FAX: 886(02)8712-1999 Room Type [rack/disc] Japanese Style Room 2,980 2,380 Chinese Style Room 3,100 2,480 Delux Room 3,350 2,680 VIP Room 3,480 2,780 Business Room 3,480 2,780 Twin A 3,850 3,080 Twin B 3,850 3,080 Comments: Check in after 12 AM, and check out before 12 AM. We will charge 400 NT per extra person

  • Hsuan Mei Hotel 宣美商務飯店 台北市中山區建國北路一段52號 No.52, Sec. 1, Jianguo N. Rd., Taipei City 104, Taiwan TEL: +886-2-8771-3066 FAX: +886-2-8771-0851 Economic Double Room NT$3700/ 2400 [rack/discounted/-] Standard Double Room NT$4,000/ 2560 Superior Double Room NT$4,200/ 2880 Deluxe Double Room NT$4700/ 3000 Executive Double Room NT$5,300/ 3200

Near Core Pacific City Living Mall & puppet center nearest not so near Station: Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall

  • Golden Garden Hotel 台北市 蒲園飯店  Ba de Rd Sec 4 No.176 台北市八德路4段176號  TEL:(02)27530772 FAX:(02)27644441 雅品套房 房價 NT$2280 優惠價 NT$1780 雅緻套房 房價 NT$2480 優惠價 NT$1980 和風套房 房價 NT$2750 優惠價 NT$2180 商務套房 房價 NT$2750 優惠價 NT$2180 溫馨三人套房 房價 NT$2850 優惠價 NT$2280 貴賓套房 房價 NT$3000 優惠價 NT$2380 雅典套房 房價 NT$3250 優惠價 NT$2580 蒲園尊爵套房 房價 NT$3500 優惠價 NT$2780 優惠方案:1、住宿不分平、假日八折,附贈中西式早餐 2、休息三小時一律 NT$680 元

  • Charming Hotel 台北‧喬美旅店 地址:10563 台北市松山區八德路四段16號  電話:(02)27630555 傳真:(02)27657092 精緻客房 NT2500/ 1980 (rack/usual/-) 商務客房 NT2900/ 2260 貴賓客房 NT3100/ 2480 商務雙人房 NT3300/ 2480?! 喬美三人房 NT3400/ 2720

Strangely many budget hotel websites have flash content. Not that I don't like the nice pictures but the lag gets irritating after sometime. They should either provide have an OUT button where we can skip the snazzy slideshows/photos and get down to the important or have the critical info/links be in html so when the flash fails, we traveller can still read about the rooms, rates, location blah blah blah & have an ease compiling down our info.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Zut Alors! We are off to a bad start...

The short of the LONG story the day we went to book for the trip:

Lesson Learnt

Have more than one person present Write down what was said Talk to an experienced staff and repeat this step with another staff Never discuss your argument in front of the arguant(?) before arguing.

Conclusion HC is only fit to give out flyers.


The LONG story...


Part 1: Why did you people torture me with your dithering?

If a decision has been reached why not speak up & let's not waste each others time Rather than let me go ask so many questions in the other agency and then the next. Worst of all, we asked 3 different staff starting from the best and ended up with the worst. Sigh!

If only the Blur King was allowed to totally blotch the whole thing up by booking us on ChinaAir when there isn't any vacancies left. Would we be able to getaway from assuming responsibility for the price change or will we have ended up with no trip at all??

Part 2: Why did GTPW intervene?

Ergo the same answer: will we have ended up with no trip at all?? The Blur King must be utterly embarrassed by an indepth display of his ineptitude for reading a chart. Fancy charging us and additional $230 pax for and upgrade? I believe if we folded and gave in, the mistake slide and let us end up with an exorbitant air tix. Good thing we recorded down that little nugget of info. Hard to beat with five person backing up the claim. GJ girls! Always DOUBLE CHECK!

Part 3: Why do we torture ourselves this way?

By arguing for a free upgrade when it is obvious from the supervisor's facial expression of 'Jolly well isn't and FAT HOPE'. I have an urge to do violence.

Part 4: I really hope it is worth it.

After 3 hours of wrangling, wringing (of hands) and waiting when we finally lighted on the solution. No thanks to HC, it was even cheaper than the original deal(OD). We got the landtour(LT) which includes hotels and transport + book separate air tix instead of the OD. We will meet up with the 7 mystery persons on the OD who will take ChinaAir.


Thank GTPW for helpfully clearing up the mucketymuck. I hope HC treats you to a better dinner.

OD(8D ChinaAir) 2D ext
+ 114 (airport tax)
+ 125
OD(8D SiA) 2D ext
+ 150 (addon for SiA)
+ 114 (airport tax)
+ 125
LT(8D) SiA Tix 2D ext
+ 408(air tix)
+ 113 (airport tax)
* if we book online direct from SIA, we can save another $10/pax


In fact, if we plan to stay more than 2 days, this arrangement we ended up with is even more economical as we do not need to topup $125 processing fees to inform the airlines to make allowance for our change in plans. My assumption is tt group tour air tickets have low priority and open up late; you arrive & leave in a pack. Stragglers like us get the short end of the stick.

Part 5 (Yes, its the finale)

A_ informed that HC had to cheek to be so nice to remind her to book the hotel rooms for our extension. Pah! feels more like divesting all responsiblities. Don't worry, we learnt our lesson and prolly won't want him to book the hotel for us. We might even endup in a motel due to his oversight. I promise to be the best skeptical critic during briefing. Now, if there is some discrimination by the Company due to the 'troubles we caused for all the mistakes they have made'... I will make life difficult for them *shakes fists*

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Our Selected Itinerary - 8D Taiwan Natural Splendor

Day Itinerary B L D Hotel
1 Sat Singapore > Taipei 台北 (Flight)
Ximenting 西门町
2 Sun Chiufen 九份
Yingyang Sea 阴阳海
Northeast Coast National Scenic Area 东北岸国家风景区
Yeliu 野柳风景区 > Hualien 花莲 (by train)
Ami Aboriginal Cultural Show 阿美族传统文化表演
y   y
Herbal Cuisine
3 Taroko Gorge 太鲁阁峡谷
Qi Xing Tan (7 Star Lake) 七星潭
Lingzhi Centre 灵芝中心
Bashen Caves (8 Immortals caves) 八仙洞
Shanxiantai 三仙台
Taidong 台东
y y y  
4 Kenting 垦丁
Kenting National Park
> Howard Beach Resort
> Water Space
y y Tainan Local cuisine
5 Kenting 垦丁
Kaohsiung 高雄
Fo Guang Shan Monastry 佛光山
Yen Ping Chun Wang
Temple Anping Fort 安平老街
Tainan Sinhua Township:
Dakeng Recreational Farm 大坑休闲农场
y y
Tainan Local cuisine
Dakeng Specialty Dinner $
6 初一 Alishan Forest Recreational Area 阿里山风景区
Nantou Sun Moon Lake 南投日夜谭
Wen Wu Temple 文武庙
Taizhong 台中
FengJia Night Market 逢甲夜市
y y    
7 Miaoli Fruit Picking$ 苗栗果园
National Palace Museum 故宫博物馆
Pi Siou Arts Centre 汉玉辟邪馆
Martyr's Shrine 忠烈祠
101 Building 101大楼
Wu Fen Pu Wholesale 五分埔时尚特区
Shihlin Night Market 仕林夜市
y y
Taiwanese Cuisine 5ct Driftwood House
8 Sat ?Da Shee Oasis$ 大溪花海农场 y      
9 Sun        
10 Taipei > Singapore (Flight)        

$ : May need to pay additional fees
All unstated travels are by coach

Monday, March 19, 2007

Itinerary Planning - I must eat at least 1 mochi

Free and Easy Plans if extension

Places of interest near Taipei

  1. 野柳 Yeliu Address: 167-1 Gangdong Road, Yeliou Village, Wanli Township, Taipei County 台北縣萬里鄉野柳村167-1號 Tel:(02)2492-6516 Opening Hours: 08:00~17:00 Fee$: Adults NT$50 How to get there: From Keelung take the North Coast Bus to Yeliou stop. 自基隆搭乘北海岸的客運,於「野柳站」下。

  3. 朱銘美術館 Juming Museum Address: 2 Sishihhu Rd., Jinshan Township, Taipei County Tel: (02)2498-9940 Opening Hours: 10:00~17:00 Closed on Monday? Fee$: Adults NT$250 How to get there: From Keelung take the Jinshan- or Danshuei-bound Keelung Bus to Jinshan and then take a taxi or the museum shuttle. 自基隆搭乘往金山、淡水的基隆客運,於「金山站」下,再轉搭計程車。

  5. 碧砂漁港 Bisha Fishing Harbor Address: 211, Beining Rd., Jhongjheng District, Keelung City Tel: (02)2469-3606 Opening Hours: Fish market 08:00~20:00 Restaurants 12:00~23:00 Fee$: 0 <-- (^_^) How to get there: From Keelung Train Station take the Heping Island-bound Keelung Bus to the harbor. 在基隆火車站搭乘往和平島方向的基隆市公車,於「碧砂港站」下車

  7. Address: Tel: Opening Hours: Fee$: How to get there:

  9. Address: Tel: Opening Hours: Fee$: How to get there:

  11. 漁人碼頭 Fisherman's Wharf Address:Inside the second fishing port, Shalun village, Danshui township, Taipei County How to get there: Take MRT Danshui Line, get off at the Danshui Station, and take a "Red 26" bus.

  13. 袖珍博物館 Miniatures Museum of Taiwan Address: 60 Fulin Rd., Shilin (Shihlin) Dist., Taipei Tel: (02)2881-2512 Opening Hours: Jul.~ Sept.: 08:00~19:00; Oct.~Jun.: 08:00~17:00, Holidays: 08:00~19:00 Fee$: Adult NT$ 180,Concessions NT$ 150,Children NT$ 100 How to get there: Take the MRT Danshui(Red) Line to Shilin Station and walk about 5 mins. Or from Taipei Main Station take the 310,260 or 220 bus to the Shilin (Shihlin) Official Residence stop. 於台北車站搭202至「長安東路二段」,或搭652、605、307至「南京國路口」下車。

  15. 公館 Gongguan Address: Roosevelt Rd., Xinsheng (Sinsheng) S. Rd. and Dingzhou (Dingjhou) Rd. How to get there: Take the MRT Xindian Line to the Gongguan Station. 搭乘捷運新店線至「公館站」

  17. 富田花園農場 Tomita Farm Address: 20-1, Piwei, Dasi Township, Taoyuan County Tel: (03)387-2540 10:00~18:00 Admission NT$50 (good for discount on purchases; min. NT$100 purchase per person) How to get there: From Taipei Main Station take the train to Jhongli. Then take the Taoyuan Bus to Dasi Train Station and transfer to the Cihhu-bound bus and get off in Dasi. 從台北火車站搭火車前往中壢火車站,轉搭桃園客運前往大溪車站,再轉乘往慈湖方向客運於大溪站下車。

  19. 大溪「花海農場」Ta Shee Blooming Oasis Address: 27, Alley 1093, Fusing Road, Dasi Township, Taoyuan County Tel: (03)388- 0801 Opening Hours: Weekends. 08:30~20:00 Lunar New Year's Eve Fee$: Adults NT$100, Concession NT$60 How to get there: At Gueiyang St. in Taipei City take the Dasi-bound Taipei Bus to Dasi. 從台北市貴陽街搭台北客運往大溪班車,於大溪站下車。

*Note: Evenings are reserved for nightmarket & shopping.

Taipei Nightmarkets / Shopping area

  1. 淡水老街 Danshui Old Street Address: Danshui Township, Taipei County How to get there: Take MRT Xindian-Danshui Line and get off at Danshui Station.

  3. 華西街 Huaxi Street Address: 1 Huaxi (Huasi) St., Taipei How to get there: Take the MRT Bannan (Blue) Line to the Longshan Temple Station. 搭乘捷運板南線至「龍山寺站」。

  5. 後火車站、華陰街商圈 Huayin St. Shopping Area Address: Huayin St. and Chongqing (Chongcing) N. Rd. How to get there: Take the MRT Bannan (Blue) Line or Danshui (Red) Line to Taipei Main Station and walk about 10~15 mins. 搭乘捷運板南線、淡水線至「台北火車站」,步行約10~15分鐘。

  7. 南雅夜市 Nanya Night Market - For every self-respecting gourmand Address: Intersection of Nanya S. Rd. and Nanya E. Rd in Banciao City, Taipei County How to get there: From the south exit of Taipei Main Station take the Banciaobound 265 bus to Nanya Station. 在台北火車站南邊出口搭265公車,往板橋方向至「南雅站」下車。

  9. 士林夜市 Shilin Night Market How to get there: Take the MRT Danshui (Red) Line to the Jiantan Station (Exit2). Or from Taipei Main Station take the 310, 218, orChongqing (Chongcing) Line bus to the MRT Jiantan Station. 搭捷運淡水線在「劍潭站」下車,自2號出口出站,馬上到;或於台北車站搭310、218、重慶幹線至「捷運劍潭站」下車即抵。

  11. 天母西路、天母北路週邊 Tianmu W. Rd. & Tianmu N. Rd. Address: Tianmu W. Rd. and Tianmu N. Rd. From Zhongshan (Jhongshan) N. Rd. How to get there: Take the Tianmu-bound 220 or 224 bus and get off at the Tianmu Plaza stop. 可在中山北路上搭220、224等公車,至「天母廣場」下車。

  13. 西門町 Ximending Address: Chengdu Rd. How to get there: Taipei Take the MRT Bannan Line to Ximen Station. 搭乘捷運板南線至「西門站」
    Tourist Night Markets
  1. Keelung Temple Night Market Location: Between Jen 3rd. Rd. and Ai 4th Rd.

  3. Taipei City Shihlin Night Market Location:Between Wenlin Rd. , Tatung Rd. , and Anping Rd.

  5. Taipei City Jaoho Night Market Location: Intersection of Pateh Rd. , Sec. 4 and Fuyuan St. (up to Tziyou Temple on Pateh Rd. )

  7. Taipei City Huashi Street (Snake Alley) Tourist Night Market Location: Between Hsiyuan Rd. and Huanho South Rd.

  9. Taipei City Linjiang Night Market Location: Linjiang St. and Tunghua St. between Hsinyi Rd. , Sec. 4 and Keelung Rd. , Sec. 2

  11. Taipei City Liaoning Night Market Location: Between Changan East Rd. and Chunghsing Senior High School

  13. Taipei City Chingmei Night Market Location: In the vicinity of Chingmei St.

  15. Panchiao Nanya Night Market Location: Within Nanya East Rd.

  17. Chungho Hsingnan Night Market Location: Between Hsinyi St. and Lane 410 of Chinghsin St.

  19. Hsinchuang Night Market Location: Hsinchuan Rd. , behind Hsinchuang Junior High School

  21. Hsinchu City City God Temple Night Market Location: Area surrounding City God Temple as well as Chungshan Rd. and Hsian St.

  23. Taichung City Chunghua Night Market Location: Chunghua Rd. between Kungyuan Rd. and Minchuan Rd.

  25. Taichung City Fengchia Night Market Location: Fushing Rd. between Hsitun Rd. , Sec. 2 and Hsian St

  27. Taichung City Tunghai Villas Night Market Location: Intersection of Tungyuan Lane and Hsinshing Rd.

  29. Changhua Lukang Night Market Location: Between Lukang's Tienho Temple and Mintsu Rd.

  31. Chiayi Wenhua Night Market Location: From the fountain circle on Chungshan Rd. up to Tsuiyang Rd.

  33. Tainan City Hsiaopei Night Market Location: Hsimen Rd. up to the Linan Rd. intersection

  35. Kaohsiung City Lioho Night Market Location: Part Lioho 2nd Rd. between Chungshan 1st Rd. and Tzuli 2nd Rd.

  37. Kaoshiung Hsinshing Night Market Location: In the vicinity of Nanhua Rd.

  39. Pingtung City Mintsu Night Market Location: On Mintsu Rd. and in the area of Fushing Rd. under the bridge

  41. Yilan County Lotung Night Market Location: Center of Lotung Town , around Chungshan Park

  43. Hualien City Nanpin Night Market Location: Entrance to Nanpin Park

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Getting started


  1. Airport Tax
  2. Arrival Freebies: Remember to get a free sim card (balance of NT$99) to use in Taiwan from one of the handphone rental counters near the Tourist Service Counter. One passport for one card. One SMS is NT$1. The counter is on the right once you exit from the custom gate; bus counters are on your left.
  3. Baggage
    • Luggage not more than 20kg.
    • 1 pc Handcarry not more than 7kg.
    • Sharp objects must be checked in; No handcarry.
    • No liquids/semi-liquids/creams & lotion BUT can bring empty water bottle.
    • Liquids, gels and aerosols will be allowed in cabin baggage if they are kept in containers not exceeding 100 ml each. *does that mean we can put them in our check in luggage rather than handcarry?
    • These containers must be carried in a clear, re-sealable plastic bag. The total volume of the bag must not exceed 1 litre.
    • Medication must be removed from cabin baggage and declared to security personnel at the checkpoint. These items may be subject to security checks.
  4. Check in at least 2h before - can check in 24 hrs to 3 hrs before flight departure time. China Airlines Website :<>folder_id=2534374302023834&ASSORTMENT<>ast_id=1408474395181061&bmUID=1109748552279 Singapore Airlines:
  5. Clothes - Plan for climate
  6. Departure - No. 9, Hangjan S. Rd., Dayuan Shiang, Taoyuan, Taiwan 33758, R.O.C.
    • T1 Departure Service Counter: 03-3982143 / 03-3982144
    • T2 Departure Service Counter: 03-3983274 / 03-3983294
  7. Hotel Tax
  8. Medical
  9. Fees
    • Tipping Fees
    • Accomodation Fees
  10. Travel Documents
    • Passport with min. 6mths validity
    • Photostat copies of passport, ic and other relevant info in event of loss.
    • Notify Singapore embassy in Taiwan in case of unforeseen circumstances
  11. Travel Insurance - individual
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