Taiwan Day One

For the rest of our China Trip:
1. China Part One - Meizhou
2. China Part Two - Guangzhou (Destinations)
3. China Part Three - Guangzhou (Eats)
4. Macau - Destinations
5. Taiwan Day Two
6. Din Tai Fung - Taipei 101, Taipei
7. Taiwan Day Three
8. Taiwan Day Four and Five Part 1
9. Taiwan Day Four and Five Part 2


TAIWAN! Out of the whole China trip, this was the part I was most excited about. I'm not sure why, I haven't particularly heard amazing things about Taiwan, perhaps it was because I was more involved in the planning for Taiwan, or because my sister will be joining for the Taiwan trip, either way I was excited!

DAY ONE:

We arrived in Taipei at around 4:30pm, a whole two hours later than planned due to plane delays. I was anxious because we had planned to see three different sites on our first day, but the day was slipping away. Turns out I had nothing to worry about as Taipei is a city that sleeps late, not never, but very late. 

We took a taxi from the Taoyuan international airport to our hotel in Ximending, Taipei. We stayed at Westgate Hotel, which was a very cute hotel. The rooms were clean, well decorated and the best part, filled with lots of freebies. The freebies included, water, pineapple cakes, lollies and for their 2nd birthday, a scarf. The highlight for me, the fancy schmancy fully automatic toilet.









After exploring our room, which took 30 seconds, we left to explore the city. As I said we had planned to see three sites on our first day, but our tired and hungry bodies had other plans, so we settled to just exploring the surrounding streets. As we were in the city anyway we were sure there was plenty to see. We were absolutely right. Taipei is famous for their lively night markets and we had already planned to visit two of the most popular ones, Raohe and Shilin. On our first night we stumbled into a lesser known night market the Ximending night market, which was around the corner from the hotel.


Entrance to Ximen night market through Zhonghua Road



The food we ate on our first night was not very exciting. Again, language became a problem and we didn't know what each stall or restaurant was selling. So we settled for a fast food place, which was surprisingly tasty. I have no idea what the place was called or what I ordered as we ordered by pointing at the pictures and a lot of nodding and head shaking.


Thick noodles with minced pork and tofu (NT$120)

I ordered this dish with thick noodles topped with minced pork and tofu. It looked dry when it first came out, but as I stirred it, the aroma made me salivate. It was really tasty and satisfying. It also came with a drink. 

We then continued the market further, it was so busy we sometimes had trouble just walking. We even saw a dance mob in the middle of a busy intersection! This was the first real life dance mob I've ever seen!

Then as we were walking back to the hotel, we came upon a small stall selling car wheel cake (the Japanese name is imagawayaki). Car wheel cake is made of two small pancakes sandwiching a filling of your choice.




Car wheel cake (NT$20)


Mum chose the green tea pancake with red bean filling, my sister had the green tea with custard and I had the chocolate pancakes with custard. They were all delicious! The pancakes were not too sweet so the taste of the filling dominated, which made it really well balanced. They were also really warm and fluffy, making them perfect on a cold night. Definitely a good way to finish the night.

So far we were liking what we saw in Taipei and were excited to explore it further!!

Information:

Westgate Hotel
No.150 Sec. 1, Zhonghua Road
Ximending
Taipei
Ph: +886 233 131 161
Website: Westgate Hotel

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