Monday, 15 March 2010

Taipei Day 2: Yangmingshan Flower Festival (阳明花季) and Taipei 101

We wanted to catch cherry blossoms at yangmingshan and according to grace, the later in mar you go, the less you will see so although the guidebook advised AGAINST going on weekends, we went there on sunday anyway because the weather seemed fine that day (the weather in taipei is really unpredictable... weather good better go... if not if it rains and washes them all away, you'd cry man)

anyway, i kena saboed by grace and the hotel reception... they told me that yangmingshan will be COLD so i brought my trenchcoat (which grace also advised me to bring)... -.- it was FREAKIN HOT!!! i was the only girl walking around in a t-shirt (i layered so i too off the outer long-sleeved top). i don't know what's with the taiwanese girls -.-??? it's so freakin hot and they wear jackets!!!! cardigans, longsleeves... and some even wear thick thick down jackets *mouth wide open* grace says it's because they don't want to get dark... ok, my arms are dark and i have the watch print hahaha

we took bus RED 5 to the yangmingshan bus station and made the big mistake of going to the tourist information centre cos it's a 20min UPHILL HIKE!!! -.- and we were told that we should have started from back down there #@$@%$#^@#%$ ok, i didn't really do a lot of research for this trip so we kalang kabok abit lor haha rmb ha, DO NOT GO TO THE TOURIST INFO CENTER unless you desperately need maps for serious hiking

we did manage to see some spectacular cherry blossoms at hua1 zhong1 花钟 (flower clock), albeit sporadic rather than masses. they were really pretty =) i can totally imagine how awesom it looks in full bloom in JAPAN

vireya blossoms 杜鹃 Du4 Juan1 were in bloom too =)

we saw a cute squirrel on a tree ^^

other random shots

at zhu2zi3hu2 竹子湖 (bamboo lake... there's no lake here k... it's a dried up lake), calla lilies were in full bloom and for a small fee (i think it's NT100 which is SGD$5, you can pluck them and bring them home =) we didn't go and pluck la... how to bring home???

taiwanese love to bring their pets out =) there were many cute doggies =)

but because it was a weekend, the traffic was REALLY bad... the roads are so narrow and there was a bad jam at zhuzihu so the Q for the bus was SUPER long... and when we got on, we had to stand all the way down >.<


before leaving yangmingshan, we stopped by at landis resort 中国饭店 for a hot spring cum light meal. we felt it was a little expensive at about NT$1000 (about SGD$50)person because the hot spring wasn't all that great (compared to japan). the brochure described it as LUXURY. it is not really luxury la. it's ok only. in japan, the day use public hot springs cost about SGD$10 only... and it's outdoor somemore. i find that taiwanese don't have v good hot spring habits. not all of them shower before soaking, which i find disgusting. in some hot springs, people actually wear SWIMSUITS!!! *gasp!* that is utterly disgusting. so we're not hot on hot springs in taiwan =P

there was a garden with a nice cherry blossom tree though =)

at night we visited taipei 101. it's just a very tall building lor. and we went up to the observatory at level 91. oh oh oh, the elevator is SUPER fast!!! it's the fastest in the world... within seconds, we went from 5th to 88th level... coolz! but taipei is quite polluted and the skies were v misty so although we could see, i didn't bother to shoot. anyway, the open air deck had so many spooks (to prevent people from falling) that it was difficult to shoot.

oh, it had this damper that is supposed to counter any wind effect or something like that. cool teknologi!