Taiwan 2014: Keelung Adventure

15 Feb

Grabbed from Epoch Times

Us girls were excited to wake up bright and early to head out of town for Yehliu. Unfortunately, weather conditions did not permit this trip, and instead, we were off to an unplanned adventure to Keelung…

Our first task for the day was to head out to the Taipei Main Station and to look for Bus Station A. Finding it was difficult, as the size of the station and the language were barriers that weren’t easy to overcome.
While roaming around, we found foreign immigrants hanging out at the main hall.  Some were seated in groups, sharing stories and meals on their day off.
We thought we already found the place to buy our tickets, but apparently Bus Station A had a separate building all to itself.
We thought that finding something to eat was way easier in Taipei, and we were right! First to greet us on our way out was my favorite Bubble Tea store, Chatime!
And right beside it was Kozukaya, a place that served the best pancakes and waffles! What made these pancakes amazing was that they were filled with “QQ” or mochi filling. We bought a three pack set of freshly cooked Green Tea, Redbean and Custard filled pancakes.
And if Chatime and Kozukaya aren’t your thing, there’s always sushi to go.
After battling it out for breakfast choices, we finally made it out of the Main Station.
Across the street was Bus Station A. This was where we heard the news that the Yehliu Park was closed due to weather conditions. Not wanting to put our search for the station into waste, we opted to buy tickets for Keelung instead.
After an hour or so, we woke up with views of the sea once again. We were back in a wharf, but this time at Keelung, the “Rainy” and second largest port of Taiwan.
The wharf was a nice place to sit down and enjoy the view of the city or the sea.
The wooden structures were perfect places to sit and enjoy the view. But these kids had another idea.
Since we were clueless on where to go at Keelung, we roamed around the city.
Just our luck, we found a travel agency where we took advantage of the brochures and their local recommendations. With our 6pm dinner commitment with M’s parents, our options were limited to the city.
We decided to head out for Chung Cheng Park and bumped into a monk by his temple on the way.
With some respectful gestures to the monk and a few steps later, we found the infamous steps leading to Chung cheng Park. These set of stairs started our adventure through the  “three level” park.
Despite the chilly weather, we managed to break a sweat when we arrived at the first level, which had the historic cannon fort. The place was deserted, and we wondered if this was really a tourist destination.
With no signs of life anywhere near the structure, we sat down in the middle of the road to double check where was this “top of the park” they were talking about.
And since we did not find the answer, I walked around and discovered that there was a museum in the lobby. Asides from features on the Ghost Festival, there weren’t much clues to where to go next.
With only our wandering feet to pave the way, we finally found the second level which had the Buddhist library, Chung Lieh Temple and Chu Pu Tan Temple.
We walked some more through what seemed like a forest and even conquered an uphill climb. With great satisfaction (and relief), we found the Kuan Hai Pavillion.
The park was a cross between a religious shrine and an amusement park.  Parlor games and kiddie rides were a great contrast against the large statue of the Guan Yin, the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy that stood in the middle of the park.
It felt like a throwback to the 90s with an old school arcade.
And in case you have loose change, battle it out with kids in shooting these rubber duckies down.
And if you tire from these games, you can just take a breather and enjoy the panoramic view of the Rainy Port.
Before you start your descend, ring the bell! But let me warn you that you must use your power, as you have to use a very heavy log that you would have to forcefully move to swing back and forth.
Since we were in Taiwan, you must know by now that we couldn’t wander too far off without food. One of my favorites from the trip was the popiah with taro ice cream, shredded peanuts and some coriander.
Just a couple of steps away was this street vendor with whom we had the hardest time conversing with. Eating uncooked street food will definitely be one of the funniest moments of the trip. We eagerly grabbed a stick before she could even cook it.
Along the streets, we also grabbed some onion pancakes and bubble tea. Just because.
All is fair in the world. The calories we burned climbing was negated by the food we consumed descending. (Do you spot the backwards Swastika sign???)
Time goes by when you’re having fun. After our lost adventure, next thing we knew it was time to go.
Hopefully next time, we’ll get visit the farther scenic sites of this rainy town.
Check out our #LetsGoCrayAtTaipei adventures in the following posts…

2 Responses to “Taiwan 2014: Keelung Adventure”

  1. daebak February 24, 2015 at 2:23 pm #

    Those streets! Not a single candy wrapper or cigarette butt in sight. How is that possible

    • androrono February 24, 2015 at 2:42 pm #

      I agree! Their cleanliness is really amazing! 🙂 Even their public toilets were so clean and fresh! 🙂

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