August 10 to August 17 my girlfriend and I went back to Taiwan after about a year. (Read more about that trip here)
But although I had one day in Hualian and Taroko gorge last time, we mainly stayed in the North near Yangminshan and Taipei.
The trip from Haneda airport was approx. 3 hours flight to Taipei where we stayed one day before continuing by high speed train to Kaohsiung(Zuoying)
The first and the last day we spent in Taipei before heading south with just walking around the streets exploring.
And on the first evening, right outside our hotel there was street karaoke, and we saw this sexy best show off to the ladies. (;´༎ຶД༎ຶ`)
But this time we wanted to visit the southern Taiwan and see Kenting national park, so early the next morning we got on the Japanese built high speed train, from there it was another 2 hours by bus until the hotel.
Our hotel was in Kenting national park so it was a good base to use and then simply rent a scooter and go exploring from there.
One day with a particularly irritating guerrilla-warfare-like-percipitation we decided to not go on scooter and instead we decided to take a death defying taxi ride, that we would soon regret to "Henchung" the next city to Kenting and ended up taking the bus home instead. This taxi driver was out of his ***king mind, and would pull stunts like when other cars and buses where stopping for a red light, he would speed up, and drive past them on the separate dedicated narrow scooter and bicycle road, honking his horn for them to get off their road (=_=;)
In Henchung we walked around exploring, but as there where constant rain showers my camera did not make it out from under my raincoat very often. The Canon 6D is weather sealed, but my new Sigma 35mm Art F1.4 lens is not :( never really thought that would be an issue until visiting Taiwan during a typhoon … (T_T;)
Arriving I saw the usual rides for kids that you can find in front of most stores, but these rides seemed selected from a pile of discarded ones none else wanted.
Strange rides pictures below. Notice that non of the title on the rides have anything to do with the actual ride... you had ONE job!!
Also Family Mart and 7-Eleven are no further apart than you can spit from one to the other. The same is true for the delicious "Presotea" and "茶の魔手" teashops chains, that sell a multitude of tea-mixes and tapioca delicacies.
We ended up walking the old city barricades in what was likely one of the most extravagant downpours I have ever seen, but with the temperature high enough that it was never cold.
We had some great noodles after our walk, got on the bus and headed back to our hotel.
Getting home we jumped in a much needed shower and had some Earl gray milk tea with tapioca and pineapple. ʕु•̫͡•ʔु!
We went all the way to the other side of the tip of Kenting near the "Eluanbi" view point for some amazing scenic spots.
And had a great hike through the Daishan forest park to see monkeys and some old caves. As we visited on a weekday there were really not any people there and we had most of it to ourselves ♥. And the caves were lit in a cozy warm light and were well worth the trip, contrary to mosts shops in Taiwan that seems to take lighting design queues from 1980 horror movies with their bare flickering florescent pipes. (@_@;) We did see a few monkeys, bats and lizards. And all through the park there were tiles with animal motifs (but too many to include in the pictures here).
On the 15th we went to the "Taiwan national museum of marine biology and aquarium" (a mouthful! ) by bus and although our expectations were fairly low, we were still thoroughly impressed with this massive aquarium. We easily spent 4 hours just walking through the aquarium trying to see it all.
All in all a great trip despite the fact that I was expecting it to include relaxing and swimming at the beach. In the end Typhoons are but water and wind... and we had plenty of fun exploring Kenting despite that. I am just glad we got out before the next typhoon hit the week after and shut down public schools and services etc.