Thursday, May 21, 2009

21 May 09 – Day 5 (Taipei)

Got up around 7am, ate breakfast and off to the Main Station to buy train ticket to Ruifang. Paid NT$52 for the 8.25am train to Ruifang and then crossed the road to take bus to Gold Ecological Park. There was a promotion going on where one would be granted free entrance upon producing any receipt dated between March and June. Walked to go up to the temple but we gave up half way but we saw the Teapot Mountain. Went to the Museum and again there were many tourists and they swamped to the 220kg gold bar and SWT kena pushed again. After the museum, I wanted to try the Benshan 5th tunnel and also the Gold Panning Experience but SWT didn’t want to coz she didn’t want to get push by the tourists again. As it was already 12+pm, we took the bus to Jiufen. It started raining but fortunately it stopped when we reached Jiufen.

Entrance to Gold Ecological Park

Old track in Gold Ecological Park

View of Teapot Mountain

The 220kg Gold Bar

Alighted and saw Lee Yi 饼家 so we went to place our orders with them and requested to collect at the Main Station branch the next day. They told us it was better this way coz the Main Station branch’s stock came from them and if we get from the Main Station branch, we might run into “out-of-stock” problem. Walked the Old Street, ate yam ball with dou hua in ginger soup, the three balls (fish, fuzhou, squid), grilled unagi and ink squid sausage. Lots of interesting things to see and buy but couldn't buy due to luggage space constrain.

Lee Yi Bing Dian

Jiufen Old Street

Yam, Tapioca & Pumpkin Balls

Fish, Squid & Meat Balls

View from top of Jiufen Old Street

Sausage Stall in Jiufen Old Street

Left for Keelung around 4+pm via bus. The bus driver forgot to inform us when we reached獅子橋 so we alighted at the last stop and walked back. Rested at a café to eat a Black Forest Cake and drank Ice Kiwi Green Tea before making our way to Miao Kow NM. There were lots of food to eat but SWT stomach was ultra small and hence we didn’t get to eat a lot. Bought 三姐妹水煎包 for myself though and ate 天妇罗 before taking the 7.20pm Tze Chang train from Keelung to Taipei. Reached the station at 8pm, took MRT to Ximen Station and walked back to the hotel.

My Black Forest Cake

SWT's Fruit Cake

Our Kiwi & Apple Drinks

Tempura in Miaokow NM which was actually fried fish paste

Shui Jian Bao from Miaokow NM

Thoughts: The Gold Ecological Museum is a nice place to visit and I would want to go back to try Benshan 5th tunnel and the Gold Panning Experience. There are also actually other interesting spots in there to explore so I would want to do that too. Jiufen is actually a street with lots of alleys. Many shops selling food and stuff. A few selling clogs and I mean nice looking, light clogs but in my humble opinion, I didn’t find them practical to wear. Many shops selling tealeaves, nuts, preserved small fishes, prawns, bags, etc, etc. Whether I would want to go back again, I can't say for sure right now. As for Keelung, I didn’t find it interesting or maybe I didn’t explore it properly. Miao Kow NM sells mainly food, lots of stalls selling thick soup with ingredients such as bean sprout, squid, etc. Personally I won't go back to that NM again.

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