OK so here goes the final post for our Taipei trip. We started our last day by waking up pretty early (well earlier than usual) since we needed to catch our Klook ride to Yehliu Geopark. The meet-up point was somewhere around Ximending (if I’m not mistaken), and we had to take the subway to get there. STORY TIME. We were a little short on time and I’m gonna be honest here — I was a little worried we would miss our ride. To make matters worse, we had such a hard time looking for the Klook meet-up point, even after walking back and forth, checking the directions on the ticket we printed out, and looking at the map at least five times (or more). We eventually found the shuttle, it wasn’t exactly where it was supposed to be but we found it.
Yehliu Geopark is located in the northeastern part of Taipei and it took us an hour and a half to get there from downtown Taipei. Our ride with Klook was so comfortable to the extent that all three of us fell asleep. When we got to the Geopark, we quickly located the entrance since we didn’t want to go beyond the time Klook has allotted us with. We thought all the entrance fees for the places we were to visit with Klook were already included in the fee, but for this particular package, we were only able to avail of a shuttle service from Klook. So we paid for the fee, and off we went.
Yehliu is known by its many rock formations, which were caused by mountains pushed out of the sea. Many of the rock formations apparently resemble quite a lot of things (like candles, the queen’s head, ginger…) but let me tell you. They all looked like rocks to me. Truth be told, I didn’t even know there was this whole resemblance thing going on so I hope you understand why I paid no attention to it and failed to see any. Whoops.
Could this be the famous Queen’s Head? LOL
Or this one…?
We walked around the park and took lots of photos. We also noticed there were marshals or guards around the park, warning tourists if they were stepping beyond the boundary and getting too close to the edge.
If we had stepped over the red line, we would’ve gotten called out by the marshals haha!
We walked around some more before we headed back to our Klook bus. And on the way out, there was this neat marketplace especially designed to attract tourists. I was lowkey looking for the same orange juice we had from the nightmarket…
SHUINANDONG SMELTER / REMAINS OF THE 13 RUINS
The highway and the ocean across the parking lot of the 13 Ruins.
After traveling for 30 or 40 minutes from Yehliu Geopark, we reached our next stop — Shuinandong Smelter or the Remains of the 13 Ruins. OK before I start blabbing away I just want to say, this place really creeped me out and writing about it now still gives me the creeps so I’m gonna type this out as fast as I can and sorry in advance if I miss anything out.
The overcast made the 13 Ruins look like it came straight out of a horror movie…
This area of Taipei was once a mining town since it was abundant with gold. Mining eventually stopped and gold ran out so the miners left town, leaving their factories abandoned. Thus, the existence of the Remains of the 13 Ruins.
Seriously though, I was so creeped out the whole time we were there. Don’t know if it was because of exhaustion, hunger, or just the place. But I swear, it was creepy.
We hopped back on our bus and 5 (or 10?) minutes later, we reached the Golden Waterfall. The whole waterfall gave the illusion that actual gold was flowing from it, I mean it did look a goldish!
It was beautiful, no lies. It was one of those things that completely catches your attention.
According to Round Taiwan Round, the “beautiful gold color (was) a result of the combination of regular rainfall in this mining area and the abundance of heavy metal elements deposited in the riverbed.”
The water flowing from the waterfalls is actually too toxic to touch. Hmm I wonder if that’s actually true.
OLD TOWN JIUFEN OLD STREET
Our second to the last stop was Old Town Jiufen, which was comprised of REALLY narrow and REALLY crowded streets filled with food and goodies loudly representing the Taiwanese culture.
Our Klook bus was parked at what seemed like the very bottom of the hill and we had to climb countless flights of stairs up different hills, valleys, and mountains to get to the Old Town. (half joke) We even got lost once, the signs weren’t clear enough to give the proper direction and asking locals would’ve been frustrating because I for one didn’t even know the name of the place we were going to until I looked it up for this blog post. :—)
The first thing we did was to look for a restaurant/street shop that sold authentic Taiwanese Braised Pork Rice (PS. only discovered the name of this dish just now thanks Google!) to have for lunch.
This with a bottle of Coke? P E R F E C T I O N
After our late lunch, we walked around Old Town and indulged ourselves with more streetfood. Here’s a few photos of the food I liked!
No Try = Sad Maddie. I live for food samples. Ask Lara or Vina, they can attest to that.
Simply called “Peanut Ice Cream Roll.” I didn’t buy one at the time but I bought one at our last stop!
Our Klook driver was nice enough to take our photo while enjoying our Pork Sausage! There are times I still crave for that dang pork sausage… 😦
SHIFEN OLD STREET
Our last stop with Klook was at Shifen Old Street, more commonly known as the place where all the sky lanterns are at. Upon disembarking, we wasted no time and quickly looked for a stall to purchase our lantern from.
Vina and I writing on our lantern!
We were allowed to choose from any set that had four colors. We chose the set that had red, blue, yellow, pink and each color symbolized …something. I can’t remember. Anyway, we took a while debating which to get since there were sets that had 3 colors that we liked and 1 color we strongly didn’t like, 2 that we liked and 2 we didn’t like…you get the picture.
Ours is the one on the right. Bye, bye, lantern!
Right in the middle of the village, trains literally pass by. Fast fact: these train tracks were originally made to transport coal during the Japanese era.
Treating myself to some yummy Peanut Ice Cream Roll!
A footbridge we chanced upon before heading back to our Klook bus. We never found out what was on the other side though. When one of us randomly checked the time, we realized we had already missed the call time. So we ran back down, hoping we wouldn’t be the last ones to board the bus!
Looking back now, I’ve come to realize that heading to Shifen for the sky lanterns was a great way to end our trip. I mean writing on the lantern made me think about the things I was thankful for right then and there, and I realized just how I was thankful for my friends, for our Taipei trip, everything going on in my life, future plans… It was just. Yeah. Okay.
For our very, very, very last hurrah, we headed back to Taipei 101. We went up the mall (which we weren’t able to do before) just to check what was in there. We didn’t stay long, since none of us were planning to buy anything from Louis Vuitton or Furla.
View from the footbridge outside the mall.
The MAIN reason why we went back to Taipei 101 was because of the LOVE sign. I had completely forgotten about the LOVE sign in Taipei until our very last day and thank goodness it was really easy to get to.
That’s the end of our Taipei trip! I hope you enjoyed reading my posts about this trip! In case you missed my other posts, here’s a quick link. 🙂