Visit to Taipei / 台北旅行記 1/4

It was spontaneous, immediate decision that I was determined to go to Taipei this summer. First I had been thinking to visit Hawaii or Germany, where I can handle communication with people at ease. Then I thought, I’d rather feel like trying something (but not too ?) different this time, and reached one of the neighbors to Japan.14012781_10154387851618688_558020820_o It turned out to be a very comfortable stay in terms of communications after all, and overall so fun, so much fun beyond my expectation. As one of my former colleagues from MHI joined me to the trip, it became even more fun.

On the first day, I woke up in the very early morning and went to the airport with my friend by car. Although we arrived with much time left for check-in, we were somehow almost the last for boarding. It was just from full of passengers with so many luggage and it took time for every check-in besides some errors at the airline’s side.



breakfast at the airport before flight. / フライト前に空港で朝食。


14018072_10154391412258688_1649402206_n_1After passing through the boarding, it all went well to our accommodation: no delay on flight, smooth traffic on limousine bus, great access from the Taipei main station to the hotel. Oh I forgot to take a picture of the hotel we stayed. It was located just within a walking distance of the main station. It was already around 14:00 as we checked in at the hotel and since we were offered a lunch on the plane, we immediately started strolling around the city. We had done some planning before visiting, and first went to the south west district for Lungshan Temple (or 龍山寺), Qīngcǎo Xiàng Herb Alley (or 青草巷) and Bopiliao historic block (or 剥皮寮歴史街区).

Lungshan Temple is known as a so-called power spot and I found therefore many visitors there. As an Asian raised in Buddhism culture and tradition, it was interesting for me to see and learn how to pray in Taiwan, which was sort of different from some ways I had ever seen/done in Japan. Here totally 19 different Gods and Goddesses are enshrined and every one of them handles something different such as for study, business, family, health and so on.


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taken at the Lungshan Temple. Many visitors were praying for some wishes. / 龍山寺にて。多くの参拝者が願いを胸に、拝みに来る。


Wishing for some blessings from them, we went on to the Herb Alley and tried a kind of green tea called Qīngcǎo Xiàng Tea (or 青草茶) at a street nearby the temple. It looked… well, made me not feel like trying but actually tasted fine, yes, just a tea, maybe kind of healthy. After that, we passed Bopiliao historic block on our way to Taipei 101. This block used to be a major passage between the towns (seemed to be busy at that time), but then displaced by another street under the urban planning in the Japanese colonial period. Between 2003 and 2009, the Taipei City Government worked on renovating the block together with local residents and preservation groups, and therefore we are still able to get a glimpse of Taipei’s past in the Bopiliao historic block.

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taken at the Bopiliao historic block. The street really kept the historic atmosphere of its past. / 剥皮寮歴史街区にて。通りは確かに昔の趣を残しているように見える。


Starting the trip from the south west district of the city, we reached east for Taipei 101 in the evening on the first day. For Taiwanese, it was still a weekday but we saw many customers enjoying time there for shopping and/or dining. It was already a looooooooong day for us as our day began around 5 o’clock (or maybe much earlier for my friend) in the morning, so we finally didn’t go up to the top of the building but enjoyed having some dishes and viewing nice night light-up in the dark.

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taken at the Taipei 101 / 台北101にて

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