Taiwan Chronicles

Hello friends. I hope each one had a lovely weekend. After a relaxed weekend, its back to the grind of daily routine called "Work". There is one reason I looked forward to this Monday though..... you guessed it right.... the pleasure of getting to read some great blogs!!! 

My topic for T is a short post about my trip to the wonderful country TAIWAN. Taiwan is a small, beautiful island to the east of the Chinese Mainland. Although it is not a very big country as far as total area goes (35,883 km2 or 13,855 sq mi), the natural beauty of this country really left us awestruck. We chose to take a 5-day guided tour of the island as we found it convenient, but one can choose to tour on their own too as the transport facilities are pretty good. The best time to visit Taiwan is between February to April, which is spring season there. Although Taiwan has much more to offer than what i can cover here, I will give just a few glimpses of this mesmerizing country.

DAY 1 : TAIPEI 

Taipei
We landed at the Taoyuan International airport and checked into our hotel in Taipei, the capital city. After that, we were taken on a city tour which included the National Palace Museum, Taipei 101(tallest building in Taiwan) and Chiang Kai-shek Memorial hall. Taipei is a bustling metropolis and also has a lot of places to offer for shopping. it has one of the largest night markets in Taiwan, the Shilin Night Market. One can also try the street food here, the variety is mind blowing!!

DAY 2 : SUN MOON LAKE

Sun moon lake & Wen Wu temple


It is the largest lake in Taiwan. The east part looks like the sun while the western part resembles the moon. Hence the name. It is surrounded by hills which have plenty trails you can explore. Other places of interest are the Wen Wu temple And Ci En Pagoda. The Wen Wu temple is dedicated to Confucius, the Chinese philosopher, teacher who is respected as the God of knowledge.




DAY 3 : KAOHSIUNG
Love river promenade

Kaohsiung is another big city in Taiwan. It lies on the southern side of the country. The main attraction here is the Love River with its scenic promenade. One can spend a lovely evening here sipping coffee and just watching the river flow with all its serenity. The other attractions here are the Lotus Pond and two pagodas that stand tall on it. The unique feature about these were the entrance and exit. The entrance was through the mouth of a Dragon and exit through a Tiger. It signifies entering good(dragon) and defeating the Evil(Tiger). 
Lotus pond, Fo Guang Shan, Temple



We also got to visit the Fo Guang Shan buddhist monastery which is the headquarters of the Chinese Buddhist Religious Society. It is extremely vast and peaceful. The main attractions here are the huge statue of Buddha at the centre of the monastery and the Vegetarian Buffet Lunch at the restaurant, which is prepared by the monks. We also visited a temple which was devastated during the 1999 earthquake.



DAY 4 : KENTING NATIONAL PARK

Cat Rock, Nixon Rock & Aboriginal show
This national park is situated at the southern tip of Taiwan. It boasts of unparallel natural beauty. We had a great time seeing the various rock formations, coral reefs and other wonders created by natural wear and tear by the ocean and winds. We also visited the Eluanbi Lighthouse, which was constructed to guide ships which would previously often collide with the rocky shore. Overnight, we got a taste of the aboriginal culture of the region through a vibrant display by some very talented kids at our hotel!!


DAY 5 : HUALIEN and TAROKO GORGE


Rock Formations
The Hualien shore also boasts of breathtaking views of rock formations made by constant currents from the ocean. From there we proceeded to Taroko Gorge which situated on the Eastern side of Taiwan. This region frequently bears the brunt of natural calamities like earthquakes and typhoons and therefore is sparsely populated. But the beauty of the Taroko gorge and its natural Trails make the stay here worthwhile.
Trails in Taroko Gorge
Finally, after 5 days of all this excitement, we returned to Taipei at the conclusion of this tour. As my husband was staying in Taiwan for a fellowship, we decided to stay back for a few days in Taichung. There we visited a few places of interest around Taichung. The place which touched me the most was The Earthquake Museum. This was a school which was totally destroyed in the 1999 ChiChi earthquake. It has been preserved as a reminder of the horrifying night which took Taiwan by shock in the middle of that ill-fated night of 21/9/1999. Just watching the remains sent chills down my spine. 

Earthquake museum
Mango desert & Icecream!!!

Other than that, we visited the Museum of Natural History and Night markets to taste the Taiwanese fare. We specially loved the Mango desert made from fresh mangoes.

Natural history museum, Taichung
All I came back with was some happy and loving memories!!! Do visit this country if you can. I will surely do so again sometime, as there is so much more to discover!!! 

--------------By MocktailMommy Prasanna

Comments

  1. Taiwan seeps to be a great place to visit. I am not sure if its in my to visit list, though.
    Tina
    Twinkling Tina Cooks

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    Replies
    1. You must try to visit it Tina. It is beautiful and the people are very friendly. Thanks for visiting our blog!!

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  2. Sounds like a wonderful trip! I haven't been overseas in years, alas.

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    1. Then maybe it's time you planned a trip now. Thanks for visiting us, Sue!!!

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  3. Lovely peek into Taiwan - never relaly thought about this country from a travel wonder perspective but your post has changed that.

    ​Taaza Thindi in Bangalore

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    1. You should visit it once...also did I mention that Taiwan is famous for its shoes?? One can go crazy shopping for shoes there!!! Thanks for visiting us...

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  4. Great round up of Taiwan...and a great choice for T too! Both Taiwan and Travel...

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    1. Thanks Nilanjana!! Just got lucky there!!! Thanks for visiting us.

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  5. I loved the way you weaved this memoir and Taiwan looks really worth visiting. Will try to persuade hubby to tuck us along on his next visit. Much Love, Truly Yours Roma

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    1. I m so touched by your kind words. Taiwan is indeed worth visiting. The people are friendly and kind too. Happy travels to you!!! Thank you so much for all your love!!

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  6. I would love to visit Taiwan, after reading your post, Prasanna. Such a detailed and helpful travelogue. That mango dessert and ice cream look delicious!

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    1. It was the first time I ever had frozen mango snow. It was just too good!!! Thank you for visiting us.

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  7. I would love to visit taiwan someday.
    How did you manage food?..Lovely pictures
    Thanks for sharing

    A Peice Of My Life

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    1. Food was a little problematic, especially us being vegetarian. But my husband had learnt some Chinese and we managed to communicate with the locals who went out of their way to help us!! Thanks for visiting us!!

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  8. Sounds like you had a wonderful adventure. Thanks for sharing :-) Happy A-to-Z-ing.

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    1. We sure did!! Thank you for visiting us. Happy A-Z-ing to you too Ronel!!!

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  9. Taiwan looks terrific. Nice pics.
    The Earthquake Museum serves as a grim reminder.
    Have a great week!
    Anita, The Explorer of Miracles

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    1. Yes Anita, the earthquake museum was the most painful part of the entire trip. I literally had tears in my eyes, seeing the hardships that people faced and yet fought to regain normalcy... thank you for visiting us!!

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  10. Taiwan is on my 'must visit' list, and you've just reminded me why!Thank you.

    Another day in Amble Bay!

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    1. Enjoy your travels to Taiwan , Keith. I assure you that you will not regret it. Thank you for visiting us.

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  11. That's an interesting and informative travelogue on Taiwan. Earthquake museum sounds intriguing.

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