I booked the flight by Scoot, a budget airline under the Singapore Airlines company to Taiwan Taoyuan Airport. Departing from Taoyuan Terminal 1, I took the 國光客運 Kuo-Kuang Bus no.1819 that heads to Taipei Main Station. Ticket cost 125/passenger. The bus alighted at a bus stop near the Taipei Railway Station and travellers will need to lug your luggage around with a short walk of 3 minutes to reach the station. Important information is the Taipei Railway Station, Taipei Metro Station & Taipei High Speed Station are all linked underground. So don’t get confused if you only see the Railway Station entrance, go ahead in to search for your way into the Taipei MRT lines. On the way, I was delighted to see a model of their Railway Train in the open area. There seem to be artistic monuments every here and there in Taipei that I noticed. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to take a picture with the others as there were seriously too many mainlanders crowding at the seats in front of these beautiful art works.
It wasn’t my first encounter with this but I was surprised my travel companion and even other tourists seemingly loss on what to do with this token a.k.a coin (shown below) from the Single Journey Machine. They were expecting the use of a card size ticket instead. If you are not sure how to use the one-way token from the single-journey machine, this is what you do.
My 1st hotel -家美飯店 Welcome Hotel, is situated at Beiping North Road so I had to transfer to Shandao Temple Station which is 1 stop away from Taipei Main Station on the blue line to get there. I booked the hotel over on Booking.com, you can see my review for more pictures! I highly recommend them as the room rates are reasonable, location is not far from the subway – a 6 minute walk to hotel but most of all, the room is very clean with all neccessaties available and the hotel feels safe and friendly. They have a complimentary breakfast buffet every morning. Finding the hotel at first was not easy, take a look at my review for Welcome Hotel for ease of searching. Its actually in a pretty convenient but quiet location smacked right in between of two exits from Shandao Temple Station. We were very early when we reached and the hotel could not check us in at that time. We left our luggages with their free luggage storage service provided and head out for a quick breakfast at the nearby starbucks.
Our 1st stop was 国父纪念馆. This place is very easily assessible. Take the mrt on blue line and alight at its own station Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall Station 国父纪念馆 and follow directions to exit. You can see a commemoration statue of Sun Yat Sen, the changing of guards and also a beautiful garden with 3 fabulous fountains with water show at specific times. There’s also exhibitions opened to public for free and they change periodically. Check out their official website for the current exhibits.
After watching the guard changing ceremony and loitering around the building, we set off to our next destination – Uni Hankyu. A japanese brand departmental store that have established a few of their branches in Taiwan.
I found one of my favourite japanese Zakka brand – Afternoon Tea. I wanted to visit another branch that solely sells their products but this branch at offers a cafe as well so I settled here for lunch altogether.
They never let me down. The items were expensive(but I managed to get myself a discount, I will show you how in my separate review for this) however are of really great quality. The food is alike regular cafe pricing in Singapore and tastes very good. Ingredients were fresh and I savoured a satisfying lunch here.
Our footsteps for today aims to be on the lighter side so we headed slightly off central shopping area to Jiannan Rd. station where it homes the 美麗華百樂園 Miramar Entertainment Park. Its not so congested shopping here compared to taipei station as there’s less crowd and you can enjoy a movie at the top level’s cineplex or take a ferris wheel to see the scenery of the area.
Not far from Miramar, you can find this unique building after a short 5-10 minutes walk.
This is a very special architecture built from scratch by the owner and here you can enjoy chinese cuisine. I was supposed to have dinner here according to plan but I felt a little tired probably from the midnight flight and headed back to hotel for rest instead.
That laze made me slacken on the comfy bed till I was so hungry and finally got on my feet to head out for search of dinner at about 8.30pm. I found this no frills casual dining japanese cuisine restaurant – 百八魚场 nearby the Shandao Temple MRT. Despite the late timing, the restaurant was more than 80% filled and customers are still coming in. I give thumb up to this place with its value for money quality and quantity. See here for my review.
Ending the day off, I am anticipating my 2nd day to be another foodful and an exciting travel too.