This is a belated post of our Taiwan honeymoon in December 2012 and the sharing is very much delayed due to several reasons.
The trip was generally covered mainly with a Nikon FM2 SLR and a Nikon D7000 DSLR for foodie shots. She carried the awesomely light and good Fuji X100. Having said that, my FM2 had a shutter malfunction, which caused the shutter to open halfway for 95% of the shots.
It was a painful experience to come back from such a wonderful holiday to experience such a loss in memories. Luckily, we still have other forms of memories (We kept it in our hearts. Awwwww!)
Anyway, I had to make do with the loss and stop emo-ing about it. I made it into a Photobook. XD
I am not a designer and I do know that I stuff too much images in some pages but I didn’t have too much of a choice cause I have so much to show you people! I have also decided not to show you what I have written on the space in each page as it is a little too personal =D
To summarize the 9-day trip, we basically did the following:
1) Visited Hua Lien on day 1 (as we are going CingJing the next day)
2) CingJing for the next 3 days (To see snow at HeHuanShan!)
3) Taipei for the last 5 days (Eat, shop and walk!)
I boarded the 1am flight while doused with medication (feeling feverish). The next thing when I woke up, we were already in mid air.
Reached taoyuan airport at about 0510am! Managed to get our luggage and caught the 0620am kuochang bus to arrive at Taipei main station at 720am!
And yay! I love the Mcd breakfast milk tea!
Reached Hualien at 1120am! Met up with mr Wu! We went to qingshui cliff (hanged around for half hour) where we also got to see the old road before the mountain tunnels were built.
Moved on to Taroko at 12.26pm. Along the way, we went by Shakadang trail of Taroko as well Yanzi kou for all the faces in the stones (Indiana, Gorilla etc). Picturesque!
1.30pm, we headed to the lunch place at Lu Shui cafe! Curry rice and red wine beef rice!
After lunch, we started Lui Shui Wan (trail) and I gave her some pointers on composing images.
Went to ZhiQiang night market to have dinner from 630-730pm.
Loved the Guan Cai Ban (Coffin Bread) and the Guan Dong Zu (like Yong Tau Fu) soup was good too!
After that we proceeded to our hotel (King13 B&B) to put our stuff before heading out to the golden triangle area for shopping. She got a pinky plush toy and I got my pink blazer at a Victory apparel shop. 8D
Mr Zheng from Taroko tribe (Ms Gu’s hubby) treated us to freshly made Muah Chee while on the way up the mountain. Awesome goodness while the long winding way up the mountain!
1015am, We are about 1,000m from sea level now and my legs are getting wobbly.
Before even reaching 2nd peak, the temperature have reached 13 degrees already! The 3rd peak will be at 2150m high! Took a pix with mr Zheng before reaching there! 9 degrees now!
Reach Bi Lu Shen Mu (Bliv divine tree) at about 1100am. We had hot black tea with peach honey at a hut and bought many packets of dried crispy mushrooms (I bought 12 packets of mushrooms so you can imagine how good it tasted!) we took pictures of the beautiful tree before deciding to drive towards hehuanshan! (more than 1000 years, it will be called shenmu)
Reached hehuanshan at about 1230! 3 degrees now!!! I got out of the car to get some shots further up the mountain. Freezing!!! It is now 2 degrees!!!
It reached the coldest at 1 degrees when we reached He Huan Shan’s Wu Ling peak (7th peak)! Still no snow even though there was a little drizzle.
Going downwards along Nan Tou Xian towards Cing Jing.
We met a couple (Yenchu & Mabel) over lunch around 1.30pm, who so happen to be led by Mr Zheng’s son. They are from Singapore too and so I offered to get a picture for them!
We checked into our hotel at Top Cloud villa at about 0200pm. View wasn’t fantastic due to all the clouds covering everything in sight so I am not that impressed. We spent some time dozing in our accommodation before proceeding out to have dinner and do some shopping at about 0500pm.
It turned dark pretty soon (luckily we had a 100 lumens torch with us!). We reached our dinner place, Carton King Cafe and we really enjoyed the dinner there! It was sumptuous (her lamb chop and my milk based steamboat was yummy!). We did some tidbits shopping in the supermart before finding our way back to our hotel around 8pm in the dark.
Woke up at 5 to wait for some nice scenery from our apartment. However, there was still no sunrise or good skies. The entire scene was covered in clouds but I continued to take some shots. You can tell it is lousy as I did not show it here. hehehe…
We proceeded to breakfast (very simple food here) and Mr Zheng came to fetch us at 0830am to the Cing Cing Cao Yuan aka the sheep farm. Entire place was scattered with sheeps so we got some shots of them before taking our leisure stroll towards the visitors centre. At 1130am, we took an early lunch at Patite cafe. It tasted alright and was reasonably priced so I think it’s just to fill the stomach. Lol.
We reached back our hotel at about 0100pm and we lazed our day while looking forward to the He Huan Shan Sunrise tour at 0430am tomorrow! However, it was cancelled due to snowing so we changed it to half day tour!
Throughout the night, we seemed to have tummy pains and we suspect it was due to the 10 dollars (very expensive!) pear that we bought in Cing Jing.
0845am, we gathered to go He Huan Shan in hope for snow! Upon reaching there, we saw some snow on Wu Ling peak! The sides of the mountain not facing the sun still had some snow while the sun-facing side have started to melt.
My first experience with snow? It was very slippery! We truly enjoyed it and deemed it our good fortune to be able to see snow! This 700twd per pax is definitely worth the buck!
We left the peak at 11.15am to Cing Jing for lunch. We reached about 1140am and went to Carton King for lunch again!
Met a taxi driver who drove us around for the day (3500 ntd, which is a little pricey but still bearable).First stop was to Yeh Liu to see the Queen’s Head.
We spent 2 hours plus in Jiu Fen before proceeding to Shih Fen for impressive waterfall and to let off the heavenly sky lantern
Saw double rainbow! And flipped a coin into the Goddess of Mercy pool for Love (I said “Ai Qing Shun Shun Li Li” and it went straight in!)
On the way to let off Tian Deng at 0320pm! Yay! After making our Tian Deng, we shopped (nothing much though) around Shih Fen for a while before making our way back to Taipei at 4.10pm. Long day but totally worth it!
We went out for dinner at 0600pm and ended up at Coke Forest cafe in Xi Men Ding for a Chicago Cheese Burger. We packed some street food back to the hotel afterwards. All is good but I really have to say its hard to find tasty Yan Su deep fried chicken in Xi Men Ding. The best I had was still at Hua Lien!
End of the world didn’t come. It’s 0600am and I am here typing this. Duh…
We went to the infamous Ding Tai Feng at 0900am and also queued at Grand Place to try the waffle (overhyped. Just because it was opened by the Korean star’s brother. Not a big deal to me though…).
I typed all these along the journey and it got a little busy towards the end (especially when you constantly have to eat) so you will realise it gets shorter and shorter.
The 9-day trip went by real fast and few months later while typing this (like now), I still miss Taiwan! The people, the food, the weather etc.
I will be back! =D