Met up with poots on the weekend before Taiwan Trip to plan our itinerary,
love rompers, especially this Navy Satin one from Dadigirl,
because they are so convenient to dress,
and comfortable to just laze around at poot's place! :p
The Navy Satin Romper.
And a cool blue stripe dress with the courtesy of Dadigirl too,
without many accessories, the dress just stands out with the satin stripe design.
Check out for more colours with them if you like it!
* * *
Poots & I at Taoyuan Airport.
Our favourite picture of the day.
As promised, I am back to blog about my 7 days Taiwan trip and this entry would cover half of our first day.
Images are intensive because we snapped almost every single destination we went,
and well, we are girls anyway. :p
Its 3.30am now, but i am totally in the mood to blog,
hopefully the mood lasts long enough for me to complete this extensive post energetically.
4th August 2010 (Wednesday)
Our day started as early as 5.30AM at Changi Airport,
waiting to onboard our jetstar flight (which we booked 5 months ahead with a return ticket price of SGD $365).
To our dismay, we actually had to pay SGD $60 during check in because we selected the lowest fare- Jetstar Saver Light,
and that does not include the check in baggage.
The note is, do make sure you select the proper one that you want when you book jetstar!
They have too many different categories of tickets.
Black and white for the day, woohoo telepathy. :p
Jetstar didn't exactly have the best customer service that day but fortunately, our flight wasn't delay.
After a 5-hour flight, we finally arrived at Taiwan TaoYuan International Airport at 12.04PM.
And omg, it was 36 degrees celsius!
Singapore is 27 degrees, and its like almost 10 more there. Zzzz
Excited me waiting to alight the flight..
Walking towards the exit.
YOUTH PRIVILEDGE- FREE YOUTH TRAVEL CARD
You will realize that there are many signage hanging in regards to the Free Youth Travel Card.
Do get them at the Tourist Service Counter immediately after you exit,
they will then give you each a round paper card chain to carry around,
together with a booklet that tells you where are the places you can get discount when you present this youth card!
The Youth Card is applicable for people age 15 to 30 years old.
Just present your passport at the counter and you can easily get it after filling up a form.
But frankly speaking,
though the booklet listed quite an amount of shops/businesses with the various promotions,
we didn't even at all used this youth card.
Perhaps we didn't exactly check through which are the shops that we can use,
but would suggest that you can just ask the shops if there is any discount with the youth card if you are lazy to read. :p
Buying the prepaid Sim Card.
MOBILE SERVICE IN TAIWAN
Weeee, I love this.
Easy Peasy, just go to the cellular service counter located near the tourist center,
and buy a prepaid sim card (which cost NT 345 = SGD $14.85) for your mobile line in Taiwan.
Ours was from Taiwan Da Ge Da (台湾大哥大) Tel Co.
It will then have NT 300 value for you to call overseas,
which is about 60 minutes of phone call.
And the best thing about this is you can just top up NT 345 instantly,
(Do consult the service counter people for help,
because you have to follow certain instructions and dial the number/code,
so as to auto deduct the data roaming amount from your prepaid card)
and get 5 days of UNLIMITED DATA ROAMING for you to tweet, google,
surf the net, check emails, skype, facebook, whatever etc in Taiwan.
Alternatively, if you are visiting Taiwan Less than 5 days,
you can just pay the per day usage of data roaming (NT 100 = SGD $4.30).
Walking towards the Express Buses to go to our hotel
FROM TAOYUAN AIRPORT TO XIMENDING – KUO-KUANG BUS
The thing is we heard that taking a cab all the way to our hotel at Ximending would be expensive,
so we checked the route in advance on how to make our way there.
We realised that we could easily take a bus called the Kuo-Kuang Bus (国光) to "Taipei Main Station" stop,
directly from the Express Buses Station @ TaoYuan Airport.
Ximending is just one stop away from "Taipei Main Station" stop.
Again, easy peasy,
just buy the tickets at the Kuo Kuang Counter at the Express Buses Station located in TaoYuan Airport.
There are other buses to ximending area,
so you can check out others before going there as well.
Buying our bus tickets to "Taipei Main Station" stop.
Seeeee, how hardworking I was snapping away, :p
here's the price list for your info!
We sat the Kuo Kuang bus and paid NT 125 = SGD $5.40.
Definitely worth it! Heard the cab cost app. SGD $60!!
We were then guided to the bus terminal to wait for the bus.
Finally the bus arrived!
Inside the bus, decent and pretty spacious.
Finally we reached "Taipei Main Station" stop!
The first few views we got when we arrived outside the station..
We were confused where to sit the MRT to Ximending,
and thought that we should buy tickets at the first counter when we entered via this EAST 3 entrance (picture above).
Don't get mixed up like we did,
as i mentioned this station has the different kinds of trains like MRT, railway trains etc.
The MRT is called the Metro Taipei – 捷運 (jie yun), and have to walk a bit of distance,
passing all the shops before you reach there.
A few more shots before we enter!
First peek upon entering.
Spotted a mochi shop while walking to the MRT, love mochis!!
Bought one to try, but seriously, we ate better mochi on the next few days,
forget about trying this, oops.
Love their magazine shops there!!!
They give free cute tote bags as a bundle with the different magazines. Coolios.
Upon reaching the Metro Taipei (the MRT train),
we have to buy "tickets" which come in coin form but act like a Singapore EZ Link.
It costs only NT 20 = SGD $0.85 to reach Ximending which is one stop away.
For those who are going Taiwan soon,
I have something real useful (at least for us) that Eileen sent to me months ago,
and hope this will guide you in travelling too!
If I didn't remember wrongly,
this MRT map is all accurate except for the last stop of the blueline (right side),
apparently there is a new stop, so the train ends at the new stop name instead of Kunyang.
Print out if you need to
As you can see, Ximending is at the Ximen Stop,
and the train we were supposed to take from "Taipei Main Station" is the blue line,
towards Yong Ning.
Ah, we were quite amazed that we have to queue to enter the train!!
Inside the train, its clean..
XIMENDING TO OUR HOTEL – HAN SHE HOTEL
Prior to the trip,
I asked around my friends in search for a good and decent hotel to stay in.
After much sourcing, Felicia from Majolica Majorca introduced to me this really comfortable and clean hotel,
and poots, shawn and I like it there very much!
The Hotel is called HAN SHE HOTEL 函舍商务旅店 (HANDSOME HOTEL) in Taipei,
as corny as the name of the hotel sounds,
and the link that I provided might not have many reviews to judge from,
but we were really satisfied with the stay.
Upon reaching Ximending, we need to go to EXIT 1 to go to our hotel.
Poots and I couldn't find our way to the hotel and in the end,
we walked a huge round, dragging the luggage for almost an hour before arriving,
If you are planning to stay in this hotel too,
please take note that after you exit at EXIT 1,
just cross the road straight ahead when you come out of the station,
(you will see that there is a fashion shop called "NET" under a building),
and just walk STRAIGHT ahead.
Walked until you passed by a cafe/restaurant called "TMK"
(this will take about 5 minutes straight walk),
and turn left into the alley, you will see Han She Hotel.
"TMK" Cafe and its logo
Before you turn left,
the other shop in front of you (beside TMK, and at the next building),
is called the "Olympia", a bakery.
So in other words,
Han She Hotel is located in between "TMK" and "Olympia".
Another landmark to notice is that,
the building on your right, across the road,
will be a Karoke (KTV) building as shown below.
The KTV building
the sign you will see under the "Olympia" shop signboard before you turn left,
is this alley address plate below (note: this is not the address for the hotel).
The alley street
This is the view you will get when you turn left,
Yayyyyy, reached the hotel!!
The reception is at the 4th level,
so just take the lift up to there to check in.
Note: There is a CCTV camera once you enter the lobby,
and the staff there are all very observant,
so if you are planning to stay 3 people in a room for two (like what we did),
beware! They were extremely particular about that,
and kept asking us how many people are staying for the night. lol.
Peeks of our hotel!
I, personally, am quite particular about the toilet, lights and cleanliness,
and in Ximending, there are so many small hotels/motels,
even some hotels which only occupied the last 3 levels of a building.
Han She Hotel occupied a whole building on its own,
and surprisingly, the room we stayed in Han She Hotel was really clean and cosy,
lights were brightly lit and we had a huge plasma teevee.
Toilet was clean, hair dryer, towels, necessities were all provided too.
If you are interested,
Address: 4/F, No. 68, Cheng Tu Road, Taipei, Taiwan.
Cost/night: SGD $80.70 (you can book via priceline.com) for our room
Phone No: (886) (2) 23718812
Will be back to continue on the next half of Day One very soon!
* * *
CREDITS TO DADIGIRL:
NAVY SATIN ROMPER
STRIPE BLUE DRESS