Taiwan is one of my unexpected trips this year.
We booked a trip to Taiwan last June knowing that our visa exemption will last until July 31, 2018. During that time, they did not announce yet when the visa exemption will be extended (it was extended July 31, 2019) and we wanted to visit Taiwan so bad, and as soon as possible.
We have a friend from Spain who we met in Cebu. She is currently studying in Taiwan so we wanted to visit her.
All I can say is that Taiwan is AMAZING!!
I want to share with you my experience in this amazing country. I hope you’ll enjoy my experience and maybe you can learn a thing or two.
This will be a series post, I hope you’ll read them all! 😀
Welcome Party at Shilin Night Market
We arrived around 8 PM in Taiwan. We transferred via Express train to Taipei’s main station where we met our friend, Paula. Our travel time was more or less 30 minutes.
She was really nice and met us at the Taipei Station. She was full of energy and she willingly brought us to where we wanted. It was nice to see her and we were excited to start our day (or I should say night) in Taiwan.
During that time, I was not tired, I was just a little bit hungry. Well actually, very hungry so we wanted to eat. I was very excited to try Taiwan’s food because I heard a lot of good things about it e.g. Taiwan is a food haven.
A night market is the best way to beat our hunger.
We took the train to Shilin Market to explore and embarked on our food trip!
We were carrying our backpacks so we left our things so before leaving the train station.
TIP: They have lockers available at the train station. You just have to pay a reasonable amount for storing your things.
Shilin Night Market was overwhelming. There are a lot of people, stores displaying many stuff and tons of food to choose from. It was crazy and I wanted to try EVERYTHING!
I was a bit confused about how to choose what I wanted to eat. Good thing that our friend suggested really good food that we should try. I was really happy because the food that we tried was really good. The rumor is really true! Taiwan’s food is super yummy!
For example, we tried a cheesy potato salad thing with ham, corn and a lot of toppings all together. It was really super cheesy delicious.
You can check this blog post for more FOOD: Taiwanese Food Culture
Another one was bacon wrap, a bundle of scallions wrapped in bacon. It was a bit spicy for me and too aromatic. I swallowed everything in one, not knowing that there was a toothpick in between to hold the wrap. So be careful if you want to try bacon wrap.
Of course, we tried the stinky tofu and it was…..beyond my taste. You know what I mean. Like the name, it stinks. My only savior was the cabbage salad that comes with it.
Paula also took us to their favorite ice shave store. In this kind of travel, it is not just the place you visited you’ll know, but the people showing the place to you. Which is nice and very personal, and that kind of experience will always be something memorable.
TIP: When traveling, it’s always nice when you have a local guide. They recommend the best things! (According to me, let me know otherwise. Haha)
In short, all I wanted to is to eat my way around Taiwan.
Paula also took us to this grilling prawns area, but you have to catch the prawns. It looked fun and of course, it was a challenge for me. So I tried, we paid NT20 for each stick. They also have NT100 for 7 sticks. I was a bit shocked every time the prawn sticks to the hook because it moves quickly. It was like I had a mini heart attack! I tried to catch one but failed to do so. It was fun and I recommend you to do it when you visit Taiwan.
One thing I tried also, is this Bottle Up game where you have to make the bottle stand using a stick with a string and a ring to hook the neck of the bottle. The old man showed us how to do it and it looked so simple. Then, when it was my turn, I failed. I think we paid NT100 for the three attempts for that game.
TIP: Always try something new and challenging. It makes you remember to be like a child, curious and happy with little things. Which we sometimes forget in our daily crazy life.
We ended our day running at the train station, chasing the last ride, and luckily we were able to ride the train.
Paula took us to her house. A very cozy place. I have to say this, I love her room! It was pink. 😀 But aside from that, her room has a lot of cabinets and compartments that maximize the whole area.
She offered us to stay with her. It was a big deal to us that she took us in since we can save a lot of money, as we all know accommodation is a large cut of the budget when traveling. She was really nice and very accommodating to us the entire trip, which is why we are very thankful for her hospitality and kindness.
We had to sleep because we all knew that we will be busy the next day.
Watch the video for more!
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