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China, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong and Macau Travel Forum Touring and Holidaying in China, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea and Macau. Tell us about your travels in these countries, are the Hong Kong Hotels all expensive? Tell us about the tourism in Hong Kong, have you been to a Macau casino? Tell us about Taiwan nightlife or travel in China, do you need a korean translation service to visit Korea? Tell us about it here, also you can share your pictures and youtube videos here aswell.

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Old 13-04-2017, 07:33 AM   #26 (permalink)
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If planning a trip to Taiwan, you can estimate the time & cost of train travel by going to the Taiwan railway website. They also have a mobile app for it. I've estimated that I'll use ~2k ntd for the long distance trains. You'll pay a bit more if you use the high speed rail (and get to your destination faster).

Today, I'm staying at a hostel but I have my own room. In Taipei, I stayed in a hotel. I try to mix it up, depending on my budget & needs.

In Taipei, I was toured by a Taiwanese friend (but I didn't stay at his place). Since he was a local & spoke the language, it was very nice. We went to Tamsui, an area north of Taipei. It's near the river and has lots of small shops along the riverside. Kinda like the riverside atmosphere in Phnom.Penh or Vientiane. Since it was a weekend, there were many families, teens & seniors walking about, and it was good to just sit & people-watch.

Sunday, we went to the city of Keelung, then Yeliou Geopark. It's a geological park with lots of rock formations by the coast. Entrance fee was 80 ntd. Since it was a weekend, there were lots of ppl & you couldn't get a good pic of the rocks w/o pesky ppl. Lol. All in all, it was okay. I didn't get to have my photo taken with the "queen's head" rock, since there were lots of ppl queing up for it, and I didn't want to wait. Anyway, I don't post my pics on FB, IG or twitter, so no need for that iconic photo. Heh.
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Old 13-04-2017, 07:48 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Yday evening, I met another Filipina solo traveller, she's staying at the same hostel. We talked A LOT abt our experiences, our travels, etc. She's in her mid-20s, works in IT and has travelled to most of the SEA countries & to Japan. I've also met a Pinoy solo traveller - we were waiting at the bus station in.Poi Pet in Cambodia. He was going to Siem Reap, I was on my way to.Phnom.Penh. It's nice to see that more Pinoys are getting adventurous & dointravelling - whether solo or in groups. Previously, I've only seen hi-so Fil-Chinese families, or foreign workers going to/coming frm their country of work. They udually have lots of luggage & boxes of stuff (pasalubong) for the relatives. Lol

As I've said before, it's good that there are more Asian ppl travelling & exploring the world. This would've been.tough.in my parents' generation, bcos of economics, lack.of cheap flights & technology. Now, it's easier to travel.independently bcos of technology.

I know that some of you did lots of travels while you were younger, and for some of you guys, travelling is a common thing. You're white, have a "powerful" passport, and the value of your currency is higher. It's harder for a 3rd world national.to travel. We don't take "gap years" or can't travel for 6 months to years at a time. We don't have the dole or unemployment benefits. So if one wants to travel.on an employee's salary, one has to save up for it, and allot the time for it by using the vacation leaves.

It was super nice to talk to someone in Tagalog after so many days of speaking English & Chinese!
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Old 13-04-2017, 09:07 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Taipei
Great stuff Katie. If you get back to Taipei go to the National Palace Museum. A must see.

https://www.npm.gov.tw/en/
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Old 13-04-2017, 02:57 PM   #29 (permalink)
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^cheers, Norts. I went to the NPM during my trip last year. Entrance was 250 ntd, I think. Well worth it if you like museums & history. If you're not the museum-going type, give it a miss.

Most Taiwanese ppl are very helpful & friendly. I got off the train to my next city. I had printed out a map & name of the hostel beforehand. However, since this is a small city, there are not much street signs. So I felt like I was going in circles (I'm too kuripot/kee neow) to buy a sim card w/ data plan, since I think I can survive on my skills & hotel/hpstel wifi. Lol.

Anyway, since I felt I was going in circles and my backpack was getting heavy, I saw a noodle shop & decided to have lunch there. I asked the seller/cook.if they had rice, and she called someone from inside who.spoke English. So I ordered my food - rice, soup, sausage, tofu. While it was being prepared, I asked the guy if he knew where my hostel was, and showed him the map. He took the map, tapped on his phone. After a few min, he said he knew where it was. But he told me to eat first, then he would drive me there. I asked if it was far & he said, maybe 5-10 min. But he said if by car, it was 1-2 min. So I said Xie xie & accepted his offer of a lift. very nice of him.
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Old 14-04-2017, 12:18 AM   #30 (permalink)
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What do we want?

Pics.

When do we want them?

After Lulu's and K-pop's date.




On ya K-Pop. Have fun.
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Old 15-04-2017, 06:55 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Ni hao! I am now in the city of Kaohsiung, in the south tip of the island. Hualien & Taroko Gorge were great. After that, I spent 1D/1N in the city of Taitung. It's a small city on the SE coast. When I was planning my trip, I thought whether to include Taitung or skip it, since it's not famous & looks like there's nothing to see. However, I'm glad I did visit it, precisely bcos it was small & quiet. It was nice to just rest, walk around, enjoy the cool air & the view of the mountains. The temps in Hualien & Taitung were in the low 20s, so pleasantlt cool. The railway stn in Taitung is a bit far from the "downtown" area, you have to take a bus or taxi. My hostel was located 10 min (walk) away from the stn. I didn't go to the city cwnter anymore, since I wanted to take it easy that day & rest from sightseeing.

The train ride from Hualien to Taitung is ~2h, from Taitung to Kaohsiung 2h 45m, all ordinary trains. You'll get faster if you use the high speed rail. You can go from Hualien to Kaoshiung directly, but will take ~5h. That's why I cut the journey & visited Taitung.

There are good bike paths in Taitung, if one is interested. There's also an air force base, accdg to my friend. He did his military service there. Military service is obligatory for men - they can choose which branch whether AF, navy or army.
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Old 15-04-2017, 07:14 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Last night, I went to the Liouhe night market. It's the most famous one in Kaohsiung, and it's walking distance to my hotel now. It's a long street and I was impressed with thw variety of food available! Especially the seafood - lots of it! They're displayed raw, and you can ask them to cook it for you, whether grilled, fried or in soup.

BLD, if you're reading this, Mrs. B would love it here bcos of the seafood!

I'm staying at a hotel which is in between City Council Stn & Formosa Blvd stn. There are lots of cheap hotels in the vicinity. My hotel room is small & nothing great, I have myown bathroom (so I washed clothes yday, 55). I feel quite luxurious bcos I even have a TV & mini-fridge. The a/c is good & strong, so all's well. I've no complaints, you get what you pay for.

Yesterday, I visited the Kaohsioung Museum of History, it was near the Love River, so I got to see both sites. It was hot & sunny yday pm, so I wanted someqhere cool to rest from the sun. The museum is nice, esp the exterior. It was formerly the city hall. Most of the descriptions in the exhibits are in Chinese script, but have English titles. Some exhibits have 3 languages - Chinese, Japanese & English. Even though I couldn't understand mos od the exhibits, pictures say a thousand words, so I could still get the geberal message. Also, it was a good way to hide from the sun.

By the time I went out of the museum, it wasn't so hot anymore. The area was near the Love River, so I took pics of that. There's a park nearby, and a cycling/walking path. Some joggers around. A very relaxing area.

For those who want upmarket, there's an Ambassador Hotel near the Love River. I think the view would be very nice, esp on the top floors.
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Old 15-04-2017, 07:25 AM   #33 (permalink)
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Earlier this year, I initially planned to go to Cambodia &.Vietnam. However, due to circumatances, plans changed and I decided to go around Taiwan instead.

When I was planning my trip to Taiwan, I looked at my usual sources - wikitravel, travelfish, agoda for my accoms. Thank goodness for technology!

However, one of the most useful resources was a blog - molon dot de. It's a blog (with pic, so you won't be bored, Dill. 55) It's a blog by a young-ish.German guy (30+, I think), he has an Asian wife & small kids. Travelling with small kids is more difficult, as most ofyou giys know. So when he did the trip, all his accoms were prebooked, etc. He toured Taiwan in 2013 & 2016.

Just search for molon dot de, Taiwan travel. Lots of useful info there. I also looked at an old pic thread here, by Wujumao. Good thread too. Give credit where it's due.

I'm off to see Cijin island today. It promises to be a hot day, so I think I'll get good pics. Cheers all and xie xie!

P.s. I also looked at the Kaohsiung thread of Slimboyfat. Thanks Slim!

Last edited by katie23 : 15-04-2017 at 07:35 AM. Reason: addendum
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Old 15-04-2017, 07:57 AM   #34 (permalink)
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Yesterday, I had the experience of using a squat toilet on a moving train. Ugggh! When I opened the door and saw the squattie, my rxn was, Oh No! Anyway, I took a pic of course, before I did my business.

Misskit, if you're reading this, my purse didn't have to hang around my neck, since there was a small lavotory & I placed my bag there. But I have done that before, in Th & Myanmar! lol

However, I'm impressed. There are bars/rails to hold on to, and there's a flusher (not bucket). As said in the other thread, not all squat toilets are created equal. But still, I HATE squat toilets!
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Old 15-04-2017, 10:50 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Katie what does it feel like being almost the only normal poster on here?
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Old 17-04-2017, 12:52 PM   #36 (permalink)
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I know that some of you did lots of travels while you were younger, and for some of you guys, travelling is a common thing. You're white, have a "powerful" passport, and the value of your currency is higher. It's harder for a 3rd world national.to travel. We don't take "gap years" or can't travel for 6 months to years at a time. We don't have the dole or unemployment benefits. So if one wants to travel.on an employee's salary, one has to save up for it, and allot the time for it by using the vacation leaves.

It was super nice to talk to someone in Tagalog after so many days of speaking English & Chinese!
Yes, a lot of the young ones travelling come from families that can afford to pay of it. As for a Gap Year, that's a British thing and rare if at all in the US.

I'm only speaking for myself, but after I studied abroad in my last trimester of Uni in Greece and traveled through Europe on the Europass, I actually worked in construction for 2 years after graduating from Uni.

Why?

Because I got the travel bug.

In construction I could earn a decent wage and save a good amount. We would get laid-off at late November around Thanksgiving when the constant drizzle/rain of the Northwest would come.

Almost all of the workers would go unemployment and return in late April.

I would travel for 5 months and was lucky to have a job available.

After doing this twice I moved out of state to get stuck in the "cubicle rut." That last 5 years and then I ventured off to new things.

No regrets.

Yes, it's good to see Filinos on the road.
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Old 17-04-2017, 01:27 PM   #37 (permalink)
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^Well done! It's amazing the things you have done, and all that you have accomplished in life, while never leaving Mommy's basement and also while overcoming such severe learning disabilities.

How was your virtual trip to the Philippines? You lying cocksucker.
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Old 17-04-2017, 02:20 PM   #38 (permalink)
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How to post like Katie:

Think of 5 or 6 words about getting to the airport and then spend a paragraph telling us about it in a step. by. step. guide.

Does she think we're all Americans?
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Old 17-04-2017, 02:35 PM   #39 (permalink)
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^Well done! It's amazing the things you have done, and all that you have accomplished in life, while never leaving Mommy's basement and also while overcoming such severe learning disabilities.
Still trolling, eh?

I like the attention. I never respond to you unless you follow me around.

Keep it up.

Quote:
How was your virtual trip to the Philippines? You lying cocksucker.
I postponed it because of Semana Santa.
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Old 18-04-2017, 08:44 PM   #40 (permalink)
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I've enjoyed reading about your adventure thus far Katie and anticipate the denouement when you get back settled in at home. If and when you find the time to post the pics that is. I know it takes time and effort and working people with lives to lead must make choices and trade-offs as to what's got to get done and when.

For now relax and enjoy your well deserved, I'm sure hard earned, vacation and don't let some pissy pants pensioner get your goat. And for heavens sake tell us where your eating and what it cost and how to get there. I'm impressed that you take the bull by the horns and run with it. Unlike others that beg to ask where to take a special someone out to eat. You've got a lot of moxie kid. Enjoy your youth and have safe, fun and happy travels.

I read it as Katie-1 the pom-0. Seems a bit thin skinned to criticize your writing style when he has none himself, period. Just another example of the pot that called the kettle black. Some dish it out eh.

Good luck along the way and yes you are right it is up to you. You go girl so get on with it.

Sincerely......................................... .....................................the Seppofish.
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Old 26-04-2017, 07:26 PM   #41 (permalink)
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^, ^^ and ^^^ Thanks for the luv and support. I luv y'all too. lol

Ok, let's see if I can load some pics from my trip - depends on my &*($ internet.

++++++

My accoms was located near 2-28 Peace Park. It's named as such because of the massacre that happened in Feb. 28, 1947. In the distance is the Taipei 101 building.

For more details:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/228_Peace_Memorial_Park



I arrived on a Saturday, and I saw lots of people practicing Tai Chi. This is a pic of a tai chi master and his apprentice. I had a brief chat with them, with the younger guy translating as he spoke a lil English. Tai Chi Master spoke Mandarin only.

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Old 26-04-2017, 07:30 PM   #42 (permalink)
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Ok, I can see that it ^ worked, so on with the pics...

This is the Presidential Office, which is near the Park. I was a bit surprised to see that it wasn't barricaded and all that super max security stuff. Or maybe it was, but I didn't go near enough to see if it was.
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Old 26-04-2017, 07:38 PM   #43 (permalink)
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This was my second trip to Taiwan already. The first trip was last year, and I visited the usual tourist spots like Taipei 101, Chiang Kai Shek memorials, Longshan Temple, National Palace museum, etc.

This year, a friend (Taiwanese) was able to tour me around and go to places that locals frequented, which was great, as I saw local people doing their thing, and not mostly tourists with selfie sticks and flag-bearing tour groups. lol

My friend and I went to Tamsui, which is an area in the NW of Taipei. It's part of Taipei, but not of New Taipei city (I think). Accdg to my friend, New Taipei includes the inner city limits.

Since it was a Saturday, Tamsui was alive with locals enjoying the sun and the weekend. Very relaxed, family atmosphere.

Some streetfood for you...


I tried the mushrooms. The mushrooms are "battered" in flour/egg mixture, seasoned, then fried. They were tasty and somehow tasted like chicken nuggets.

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Old 26-04-2017, 07:41 PM   #44 (permalink)
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My friend also said that I should try the "smelly tofu", which Taiwan is famous for, so I did. It was good too, and not as smelly as it sounds, or as I expected. I liked the sauce and the veggies on top.

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Old 26-04-2017, 07:47 PM   #45 (permalink)
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Tamsui (or Danshui) MRT station is the last stop of the red line of Taipei MRT. The area is named after a river, the Tamsui River. There's a ferry boat that you can ride to get to the other side of the river.


That's not me, btw. I'm more tanned than her.

View to the other side of the Tamsui River
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Old 26-04-2017, 07:50 PM   #46 (permalink)
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It was a hot, sunny day, around 30 C. Lil kids eating ice cream...


Big kids like ice cream too
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Old 26-04-2017, 07:54 PM   #47 (permalink)
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There are places which sell live sea creatures and you can let them cook it for you.


We had lunch at a noodle shop. Here are the prices, if anyone's interested. The NTD (new Taiwan dollar) is slightly higher than the baht. In general, I found Taiwan more expensive than Th, Cambo or Vietnam, but not as pricey as SG or S. Korea.

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Old 26-04-2017, 07:59 PM   #48 (permalink)
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This is the noodle shop. It's good that I was with a local, else I wouldn't have known what that those Chinese characters meant.


Sorry, I think it should be turned 90 degrees.

What I ate - beef noodle soup with noodles made of sticky rice. The noodles were very heavy and filling, and the soup was delish.
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Old 26-04-2017, 08:05 PM   #49 (permalink)
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Re: language, many young people are able to speak a bit of English. Or if not, they have an app on their smartphones which is able to translate. One teenage-looking couple that I asked for directions, I asked them the English name of the building - they didn't know it. But they asked me to type the name in English, the app translated immediately to Chinese script. Upon knowing the Chinese name, they pointed me to the right direction. One other local used google maps on his phone for me. Very nice and accommodating people.

Street scene in Tamsui


This girl used pots and pans as her drums.. very creative. Good rhythm too. We watched her for a bit.
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Old 26-04-2017, 08:11 PM   #50 (permalink)
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At some point, I needed to answer the call of nature. Unfortunately, nature's call had to be answered in the dreaded.... SQUAT TOILET!



Oh, but this cubicle had toilet paper! A definite improvement!


My net is &$%# again. To be continued ...

Last edited by katie23 : 26-04-2017 at 08:31 PM.
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