On the following day, we started our day with breakfast at a small market, not far from the Taipei main station. My friend bought her a travel guidebook for this trip and in the book a porridge (not really a risotto) made from „Tofu“ was recommended for breakfast in Taipei. When we were searching for the market, a man noticed us and gave some gestures guiding us a direction as if he knew what we were looking for. Yes, he was really telling us where the market was. As we just looked at the direction he pointed to, we found it right in front of us. There was already a long queue of people, which seemed they all were waiting for the same breakfast. We thought it would take time for us to sit at table but it actually didn’t. A group of ladies kept themselves busy on cooking and serving for guests in the queue. There were many kinds of food listed in the board on the wall behind the ladies but it seemed everybody was ordering the same breakfast. No sooner did we order the one in the travel guide, one of the ladies at the counter served some dishes for us. The first Tofu porridge (or 鹹豆漿) tasted quite different from rice gruel, light, healthy and yet very good.
porridge made from Tofu, and restaurant area (阜杭豆漿)
There were several recommendations in the travel guide, and we were looking for the one of which the bathing style would be the same as the Japanese one but unfortunately that hot spring spot had been closed for renovation and we tried another one. The hot spring spot we finally chose was located outside and required a swimming wear. There were baths of three different temperatures, and some local guests kindly explained how they usually bathed there – not a rule but recommendation. We stayed at the hot spring spot for an half hour interacting with some foreign visitors, and left for next places.
train to the Beitou hot spring area (or 北投温泉), an old library in the hot spring park, art at the nearby station.
After getting relaxed in the hot spring, we went to the National Palace Museum (or 故宮博物館) via Shilin (士林) by bus. Observing the palace from the entry to the premises, I thought it was really magnificent.
Photos taken in the premises of the Palace, so magnificent.
Unfortunately the photography was strictly prohibited inside the museum, so I don’t have any pictures of materials to upload here but there were enormous, astonishingly beautiful artifacts and materials from ancient China. One of the artifacts, which seized the attention from visitors, was a ball-shaped object made of ivory (or 象牙多層球). According to the audio guide, it was of one solid ivory, and engraved with an ingenious method (cut 14 round holes and bore 1 cm deep (maybe less or more), engrave with a special chisel from these holes, and repeat the processes). It looked super elaborate and I couldn’t take my gaze from the object for a while. We spent about 2 hours in the museum but I thought it was not enough to cover the all exhibitions there.
Our last visit on the day was Shilin (night) market (or 士林夜市). Although we arrived in the market much earlier than its „hottest“ time, we already found so many people everywhere in and around the market; and a wide variety of stalls for goods and food. As we weren’t that hungry, however, we just strolled about for an hour, and went back to the hotel.
snack sold at a small stall nearby the Shilin station, and popular crushed ice in Taipei.