So why did I titled it as Hot Taiwan, because my hubby and I went last August, and OMG!!! its freaking hot and humid at 33-34 degrees!
I seriously don’t recommend going to Taiwan during their summer season. I went Taiwan many times, but never during summer, so it was kind of a shock for me. Nevertheless, we went ahead as we needed a holiday! So here we go!
I love Taiwan, the way they speak, the friendliness, the food (of course) and others!
When we reached the airport and we went to the first level where all the bus operators are located. And we realized that the Fei Go last bus service is 515pm! And we reached at 525pm! Missed by 10 mins!!! Fortunately, me being in events company always have back up plans, the hotel that we booked also gave another bus option: from Guo Guang Bus 1819 at 125twd per pax. So it was still fine, only that we still need to change to train and spend a bit more time. If we take cab, it will be around 1000.
Finally reached our hotel Forte Orange Hotel Ximen, which took about 1.5 hrs bus ride. To return to Airport from hotel, you just need to inform the hotel receptionist the day before, your flight details.
Forte Orange Hotel Ximen is only 2 mins frm the Ximending. We didnt have much choice of hotel as it was peak season , so we chose this.
I find the boutique hotels in Taiwan really small, maybe its just around those prominent tourist spots like Xi Men Ding. There was really not much space to put our luggage and walk around the hotel.
Things I like about this hotel:
1) Near Xi Men Ding, if you are staying in the middle of Xi Men Ding, it might have been too noisy with all the noise of music and promotion being broadcast, an experience I encounter in my second hotel, will share more in next post)
2) It has its unique style
3) Affordable for its basic needs
4) Friendly service
5) Tv is just infront of the bed, feels cosy
6) though toilet is just next to the bed, even after someone shit, there is ventalialtion above the toilet that you don’t smell a thing!!
Things I don’t like
1) Too small room (not much space to walk around after dumping the luggage on the floor.)
2) The shower room has no cover (so make sure you are comfortable with whoever you are going with. For me, I was with my hubby, so it was still fine.)
Overall, I give it a 7/10, as location and price is very important for me.
Settling down all our luggages, we changed to cooling clothes and started scouting for our dinner!
Randomly walking around, we past this place that had Chou Toufu (Smelly Tofu). And they have hotpot! Though I would recommend this place more during cold weather, but seeing the crowd inside the shop, I am quite convinced that its good. And true enough, the food was delicious!
Its called San Ma Chou Chou Guo (三妈臭臭锅) Xi Men Shop, 萬華區昆明街85號
They have other outlets as well at other cities in Taiwan.
We ordered Big Intestine Hot pot, 100TWD, and added small intestine and some other ingredients. You can add which ever items you want more!
And I love the cold melon drink, refreshing in the hot weather and best part is, it is free flow.
After that, we walked around and chanced upon another gem.
Before this, I have never eaten 滷肉飯 (Lu Rou Fan), Braised Pork on rice before. Its Taiwanese style, so its not the same as those I have eaten in Singapore, which the meat is harder. The sauce is so OMG. The braised pork is freaking delicious!!!!! I love anything that is braised actually. I kept craving for it when I came back. Thank goodness I found a Taiwanese restaurant that serves this at United Square.
I dont remember the shop location but its the same street as the Hotpot, at 140. Only managed to capture the shop name here.
Filling our stomach, we went back hotel to rest and watched some tv series, wanted to rest early, as we were quite tired.
….. THE NEXT MORNING
Being a very routine person as I have gastric problems, I must have breakfast at 9am, and since Ah Zhong Mian Xian, only opens at 11am, I decided to have Mac Donalds for breakfast. Bought for my sleepy hubby, who is a late sleeper and waker.
Even Taiwan has the Hello Kitty plush toys, and they were selling those toys that was sold out in Singapore. There is not much of craze here. Honestly, I don’t really know what’s the fuss about. But I did see one I thought was cute but that week, they didn’t have the one I wanted, so I didn’t buy.
After resting a while more after eating, we went for the famous 阿宗麵線 (Ah Zhong Mian Xian)!!! Almost every Singaporean I know, when they are at Taiwan, this is something they would include in their itinerary. I honestly can eat this everyday!!! Such a simple dish yet it makes people come back for more.
阿宗麵線 (Ah Zhong Mian Xian)
No. 8~1 Emei St., Taipei (East XMD Pedestrian Area) 台北市峨嵋街8號之1,
Tel: (02) 02-2388-8808, 2388-8182
2 sizes- Big bowl for NT$55, Small bowl for NT$40.
It opens from 11am – 10.30pm.
Next is to explore Jay Chou’s restaurant. I have heard some good and some okay only, so I wanted to see it for myself.
Mr J French-Italian Restaurant II (Mr.J 義法廚房II)
250 WuXing St. Taipei Medical University Taipei,
Here is directions:
Take the train to Taipei City Hall, Exit 2, take escalator up to ground level, turn right and you will see many shuttle bus stops.
The shuttle bus to Taipei Medical University is next to the shuttle bus stop to Taipei 101. (it should be further down) There is one that is free and one that you need to pay. We didn’t know and got on the one that needed to pay and still ought to scout around for the restaurant.
There is a shuttle bus every 15 minutes from 7am-7pm.
Once you alight from the shuttle bus, walk to the right of the main building entrance (Taipei Hospital) towards the Library and you will see Mr J’s restaurant!
Directions credits to : Blog
After asking a security guard, we found the place! As we went at 4pm, its was quite quiet and empty, only a few students or tourists. I enjoyed the quietness though. We ordered to share as we were still quite full and was going to try some other food at another location after this. The food is quite alright only not exceptionally good that you would go all the way here just to try. So I guess its the name of Jay Chou that made this place attractive. I remembered watching this show few years back where the hype was still strong. It was Jay Chou’s first attempt at directing a movie, after testing his own works through his music videos. I do admire his dedication and talent.
I would say their drink was something that I remembered was exceptionally good. I ordered the Fa Shi Xian Nai Cha (I guess translated to be Magic Milk Tea?)
The squid ink was not too bad as well. This obviously was a dish not chosen by me, as girls wouldnt choose something so black for a date. Yes, its the hubby.
Getting on the shuttle bus and heading to our next food location!
Its my favourite Braised Pork Meat Rice!!!! There is another brand that was quite recommended.
胡须张 (鬍鬚張Formosa Chang)
Take the metro to Hou Shan Pi Station and Exit 1. Walk straight along Jhongpo N. Rd. to the intersection of Jhongpo N. Rd. and Yongji Rd. Look out for this sign!
Walk towards Wufenpu, and you look out for the signboard on the right.
It was really crowded when we reached. The whole place was bustling with people, but the service staff were so efficient that we immediately got a seat and in less than 10mins, we had our food. I would say the braised pork is not as nice as the one I ate on the first day. But I really love the Taiwanese style pork..and sauce!! It really melt in your mouth and the meat is so soft and yummy!!! Formosa Chang is little commercial to me, but nonetheless, I still dig the meat!
Next, we went to Wufenpu and Raohe Street!
I made a quick shopping at Wufenpu, and surprisingly, my hubby was the one who had more buys than me, he managed to find his berms at a local brand shop. He is no picky about clothes but it must be comfy. And since he seldom shop, I was glad he found some clothes that he liked.
Raohe Street is like a night street market that is also popular for many tourists. Of course food is the number one thing to look out for!
It was a really long and hot day, we went back to hotel to rest for the last night. Tomorow, we gonna move to another hotel smack in the centre of Xi Men Ding. We wanted to try out different hotels and see the difference. And I am glad we had the new hotel! Will talk more in the next post!