Tainan Trip

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Category: Taiwan

Currently in: Taipei, Taiwan / GMT+8

This blog post is also available in Japanese.

 

As I am here in Taiwan to live instead of to travel around, I hadn’t really gone outside of Taipei. But I had a chance to visit Tainan, a South West part of Taiwan during the weekend in November with a group of friends. I thought I’d share a bit of the information including how to get there, the hostel we stayed in and the places we went to see.

 

 

HSR (High Speed Rail)

Taiwan is a fairly small island, approximately 36,000 km2 (14,000 sq mi). The High Speed Rail is running on the west coast, exactly like the Shinkansen in Japan but in MUCH MORE reasonable fee of 1,300 NT (about 40 USD) from Taipei to Tainan. Took us about 2 hours.

Leaving in the early afternoon on Saturday, we had no problem getting tickets at Taipei station from the ticketing machine however it is better to check the availability during the weekend, especially early or late in the day on their website.

 

Hostel

For the first time in my life I stayed in a hostel! Two of our international group of friends had lived in Tainan before so we received the “friendship discount” to this cozy hostel called DODORO’S.

The newer building was fully booked but we were able to have another building just for five of us. We didn’t use it but they had kitchen with fridge downstairs. We stayed upstairs where we had a room filled with four futon mattresses and another room with a bed. It was fun, kind of reminded me of my school days. We enjoyed beer and long time chat until just before the sunrise on the lovely balcony, in a really nice and warm Tainan breeze.

 

Sightseeing

Unlike Taipei, there is no MRT type of transportation in Tainan so we used buses and walked a lot. The bus is 18 NT (abot .6 USD) per ride.

 

Anping Old Fort

The oldest castle in Taiwan, built in 1964 by the Dutch. You can also go up the observation tower and see the town of Tainan.

 

Temples

There are so many temples in Tainan and we visited the one right next to the Anping Old Fort.

 

Lunch

We ate really good seafood nearby (unfortunately I don’t remember the name of the place…) in a casual restaurant.

The food in Tainan is said to be really good and they have a lot of Tainan original food. We had oysters, shrimps and others and everything we had was very tasty :)

The food was so good I filled my stomach a little too much. I know I shouldn’t have because we went to a desert place right after that.

I must admit, I was not so excited when I saw what we were going to have but when I tasted it I really wished I had left some space in my stomach. I think it was Tofu with pearls in a milk soup served cold. Not too sweet at all that even I, who normally don’t really eat so much sweets, loved it. No wonder the place was so busy!

 

Fort Provintia

This place too is from the period of Dutch rule.

 

Long Distance Bus

We took a bus to get back to Taipei from Tainan on Sunday night. It was a lot busier than we expected. We went to the street where all the bus companies are lined around 4pm to get the tickets for the bus leaving a little after 5pm and it was all sold out in all three companies. We were lucky to be able to book the bus leaving around 8pm, it only had some seats left.

Leaving around 8pm, we got to Taipei around midnight. The seats were so comfortable that I slept 4 hours straight! It’s hard to believe it costs only 400 NT (around 12 USD)!

 

Tainan was a very lovely town. Many of my Taiwanese friends told me that “there is not much in Tainan!” but the sunshine and warm temperature warmed our hearts as we had been a little too tired of the continuous cold rainy days in Taipei. I really liked Tainan.

Thanks to the friends who made the trip so much fun!

 

 

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