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Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Taiwan Day 4: Taichung & Sun Moon Lake

Our fourth day in Taiwan, already halfway through our trip...sigh, don't know why time seemed to pass faster there. Anyway, as usual, had breakfast first. Tomato Rooms had provided us with a voucher for breakfast at a shop a few doors away. Just a simple breakfast of toast and black tea or 'hong cha' as they call it.

After that, we went over to McD as we wanted to try their pork burger. However, found that it was only available up to 11 am. So in the end, we just got a cup of coffee and continued exploring the other shops nearby.

1. & 2. Breakfast provided by Tomato Rooms, chocolate toast and tea
3. Cheese sticks     4., 5. & 6. McD

With coffee in hand, we went window shopping at the Watsons next door, which was huge. This Watsons took up 2 storeys and we found it quite interesting to just browse there. So many different brands which we can't find here in Malaysia.

We then headed back to our hostel room and packed up our belongings before checking out. We took a free shuttle bus to Taichung HSR Station based on the directions given to us by the owners the night before. The bus stop is just across the road from McD. After getting off at the HSR Station, we looked around to buy bus tickets to Sun Moon Lake.

At the station, there were some taxi drivers offered to send us directly to Sun Moon Lake for about NTD300 one way I think. Good thing we rejected them because when we found the counter selling bus tickets, we realised that return tickets by bus would only cost us about NTD330. The time saved by taking taxi wouldn't have made much difference for us anyway.

Sun Moon Lake

On arriving, we walked straight to our minsu for the night, Laurel Villa (http://laurelvilla-en.emmm.tw/). It was quite easy finding the place as the area around Sun Moon Lake is quite small. We stayed in a double room for NTD1,800 per night, also inclusive of breakfast. The minsu very cosy and the room was also clean. However, we did notice some other minsu nearby with lower room rates.

Spent a quiet and peaceful afternoon at Sun Moon Lake. Just walked around Sun Moon Lake enjoying the beautiful scenery. Also, the weather here is just great. First time in days that we haven't felt any heat when walking around. Though the sun is shining, it's still quite cooling here as Sun Moon Lake is located a certain distance up the mountains. The weather here reminds me a little bit of Genting, but without the dampness.

Doesn't it just look beautiful? There weren't too many people along the walkways and it almost felt like we had the place to ourselves at times ^.^ We decided against taking the ferry trip around the lake and instead, just enjoyed ourselves taking short walks along the side of Sun Moon Lake. We saw another two couples  taking wedding photos here as well. So sweet =)

Had a late lunch at a restaurant, just some noodles and cold appetisers. One of it was called "Lau Hu Mian" (direct translation is Tiger Noodles)...hehe, just ordered this out of curiousity. Coincidentally, everything we ordered here seemed to be spicy. But I loved the plate of bamboo shoots, very crunchy and sweet ^_^

We even tried some mushroom flavoured ice cream which was being sold at one of the souvenir shops =p Personally, I didn't really seem to get much of the mushroom flavour in the ice cream, so it wasn't really that good for me.
1. Noodles, dumplings and bamboo shoots for lunch     2. Biscuits, have no idea what they're called    
3. Mushroom flavoured Ice Cream     4. 'Hong Cha'     5. Our dinner set    
6. Bacon flavoured potato chips =p     7. Lay's sushi flavoured chips     8. Taiwan Beer

We decided to have dinner at a restaurant next to Shui She Harbour at Sun Moon Lake. Saw that they had this traditional set meal which consisted of several dishes served together with rice and 'Hong Cha'. Overall, the set was quite good actually and this set for one was actually enough for both of us! Quite worth the money paid.

At night, there are some light and music shows at the Shui She Harbour which is quite pretty. It's only on a small scale but still quite pretty all the same. Spent some time enjoying the show here after our dinner.

Bought some snacks and beer at 7-11 before heading back to our minsu to rest for the night. Have I said how much I love the 7-11 here? Why can't ours be the same? Sigh...Anyway, enjoyed our snacks while watching TV in our room as there is not much to see here at night anyway ^_^ We were also told that sunrise here is at 4.40 am, which is super early, so planned to sleep earlier in order to get our rest.

One last thing of course: goodies of the day =p

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