Taiwan and Vietnam


Day 3

Got to Taipei station and waiting to start our day tour to Yehliu Geopark, Jiufen and Shifen

The rock formations of Yehliu Geopark

The first stop on the tour was Yehliu Geopark, a UNESCO World heritage site full of interesting rock formations. It’s kind of like finding shapes in clouds, you have to use your imagination a bit to understand how they got some of their names but they were pretty interesting none the less. There was even a fossil among the list of rocks to check out.

”Cute Princess rock” looked more like a rat on a rock, “candle rocks”, “potholes”and a fossilized sea urchin

Exploring Jiufen town

Up next was the town of Jiufen. This place is supposedly known for being the inspiration for Spirited Away although we have heard that may not be true. Either way, there are a lot of studio Ghibli souvenirs being sold here!

The streets are very narrow and jam packed with people, it took us at least half an hour to shuffle our way through to the other end!

We ended up eating vegetarian balls in a broth and a strange vegetarian dumpling but we had no idea what is was made from. We think it was a type of tofu in a sweet sauce wrapped in very stretchy glutenous rice wrapper.

After that we had xiaolongbao and some fried soft-shell crab on the way back to the bus. It was very crowded but timed it well to get back through the crowds to the bus just in time! We even had a couple of minutes to get some fresh pineapple.

Shifen Waterfall

Next up is Shifen waterfall, the locals say it has a similar shape to Niagara Falls just much smaller. It’s very nice either way. We had to walk over a bridge to get there and it was swaying quite a lot from all the people!

Shifen Old Street

Our final stop on the tour is the Old Street of Shifen. Famous for its sky lanterns and railway running right through the middle of the street. The other thing is famous for is it’s chicken wings stuffed with sticky rice! We had one of these at the night market yesterday but the one here is so much better!

We choose not to release a lantern this time but we ate the chicken and a dessert that has ice cream coated with peanuts and honey shavings, wrapped in a crepe and walked around the quaint little town as the sun was setting. The sky lanterns looked even better as the sky got darker, it’s a much nicer atmosphere here compared to Jiufen!

Taipei 101

From Shifen we boarded the bus back to the city and after about an hour and a half of battling with traffic we arrived, thanked our tour guide and explored the mall there for a bit.

The mall reminds me of Singapore where there are little stalls around the grocery stores offering samples of their goods. We tried a few random bits and pieces, bought some fresh fruit and then headed back to the hotel with a stop by 711 for some nuts and soda water, our typical dessert!