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Asia » Taiwan
January 1st 2016
Published: December 25th 2016
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During my time in China I have also spent some weeks visiting Taiwan.

I flew from Kinmen island nearby Xiamen to Taipei. Taiwan is clean,

modern, globalized and not as attractive as mainland China.

I stayed four days in Taipei, it is a city extending on the river Tamshui

where there is the beautiful homonymous coastal city of Tamshui.

I love the street market in Tamshui with many little stalls selling their

food, handycraft, souvenirs and where groups of young people gathering

together and chatting with friends.

I was really taken into the alluring ambiance of this charming place on

the coast and I spent most of my time there.

While in Taipei, one thing that I have appreciated much was that I found

out a bookstore opened around the clock and for me it was great since I

love to spend hours in the bookstore reading books.

I then set off along the east coast, by train, to Taroko National Park.

Taroko is one of the most recent National Parks in Taiwan and became

National Park in 1986.

To enter in the N.P. I had to also catch a bus until the camping ground

where I stayed for a couple of days.

I was the only one there and it drizzled throughout the day and only at

night it stoped a little.

When I was out in the night, and I had my torch with me, I heard some

noise in the vegetation and when I pointed my flesh light toward the

wood, at first sight it seemed a few fireflies, and I gently walked near

the edge up to when I could distinguish the silhouette of two jaguars

that immediately disappeared in the thick vegetation.

I had a fright and I waited to see if they were still around nearby myself

but I heared nothing else and so I went into my tent to sleep.

In the morning, the weather was better and sunny and I decided to go

for some trekking.

There are plentiful trails spread in the N.P. and I went for one called the

Swallow Grotto Trail.

This trail is pretty accessible and ther is a beautiful narrow emerald

green river making its way through the gorge.

It is very peaceful and well maintained and I could also kindly have from

the National Park service a helmet in case some rocks fell down from the

slopes.

It is a place of abundant wildlife according to the N.P. service with more

than 152 species of birds, including 14 endemic of taiwan.

about 15 species of amphibians and some 300 species of butterflies.

also 46 species of mammals like: black bear, wild boar and formosan

macaque.

Flora is also abundant with its more than 2000 species of plants growing

within the park and many of them are rare or endangered.

I then moved further south to reach the amazingly beautiful Kenting

National Park.

Here, there is a completely different weather and most of the time it is

very sunny.

I arrived in Hengchun Township and, as I got out from the train station, I

found a vibrant city full of market stalls and friendly people selling their

fresh produce and that general dirtiness that I like in these places.

It was like to be back in Mainland China since that the lifestyle of people

and the atmosphere were the same and very different from the spotless

northern part of the country.

I found a fantastic place to the very end of the N.P. and for a few dollars

I could place my tent outside of a guesthouse.

It looked like an old farm with some barking dogs,a few rooms and a

shelter where the owners lived.

At night there was a cool breeze typical of the tropics and silent.

This is also the place of a famous movie "The life of Pie" and I had a visit

there for an entire.

The name of the beach is "baisha" but after this movie even this place

became a very much touristic spot with bars and food stalls scattered

further up the beach that have taken away all the serene and beauty of

the spot.

But all in all I did enjoy this visit in this place and I was excited to be on

the spot where this movie's scene was set.

Definitely my favourite part of Taiwan and, even though in only some

places, still authentic.


Additional photos below
Photos: 43, Displayed: 24


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28th December 2016
Motorcycles

Formosa
Do the locals still call it Formosa or do they call it Taiwan? To be the only one in a National Park with jaguars at the end of your torchlight! Hopefully a memory that will remain with you always, Marcos. I hope wherever you spend Christmas day, you feel joy and peace and thankfulness for the path that you have just trod and what lies before you.
28th December 2016
Motorcycles

Formosa
Hey Dave!!well Formosa belongs to the past and most of the people now call it Taiwan. Travel is full of unexpected surprises and beautiful.. Thanks for the Christmas wishes Dave and the same for you and your family.. Happy New year.
28th December 2016
Motorcycles

Formosa
Hey Dave!!well Formosa belongs to the past and most of the people now call it Taiwan. Travel is full of unexpected surprises and beautiful.. Thanks for the Christmas wishes Dave and the same for you and your family.. Happy New year.

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