Taipei Day 2 | Yangmingshan , Beitou, Tamsui

July 25, 2013

Our 2nd day was to Yangmingshan Mountain, which was a pretty easy access from Shilin, we chanced upon the bus stop which had a bus that brought us up to the mountain. Buses 230, 260, red 5, mini bus 15 and 19 from Shilin MRT Station. When we googled and checked how long the journey would be, it was like 45 minutes or something, in actual fact, it only took about 15-20 minutes. It's a nice ride up the mountains, the scenery in the morning, or maybe the day's weather was just nice for us. 

When we reach the Yangmingshan Bus Station, we bought a round trip ticket for the Yangmingshan National Park bus 108. It was merely couple of bucks (sorry, I forgot the exact amount), and it brings you around the attractions on the mountain. Then again, there are a few of the 108 buses and their final stops are at a certain stop (which we didn't know until we got thrown off the bus). If you don't know which bus is the correct one, and you're well equipped with speaking mandarin, just ask around, the taiwanese are really friendly. 

This is the full route of the bus: (highlighted places were the places we stopped at)
1. 阳明山 260 终站 
2. 旅客中心(第二停车场)
3. 阳明画屋
4. 竹子湖
5. 七星山
6. 大屯自然公园 (the place we got thrown off the bus)
7. 小油坑
8. 中湖
9. 冷水坑
10. 擎天岗
11. 梦幻湖
12. 松园
13. 絹丝瀑布站

This is just so you can research about these places , and maybe check out how many stops you would like to make within the day. Just so you know, the 108 round bus comes around each stop every half an hour, so you don't actually have much time to cover all the places, just go to places you would REALLY love to see. Also, what we heard from a taiwanese was, if we wanted to cover 3 or more places, we we suppose to be there earlier in the day about 9am, we only got there about 11am or so, lazing in bed after the tiring day before. 

We... Missed the bus, so.. MORE PICTURES!!!! 

小油坑 this place was mainly sulphuric potholes. So the first picture we took was in front of the small pothole where just moments before we took the photo, a westerner hurt himself. He got a puncture in the side of his tummy and boyfriend helped cleaned his wound. At times like these I feel so proud of my boyfriend, can't wait for him to further this medical path, he seems pretty enthusiastic whenever he sees someone hurt or something. What he wants to see, BLOOD. Like WHY?!?!?! He's so weird. I digress. 

Anyway, the whole place just smells of sulphur, don't hurt your nose, just take a couple of photographs and be out of there! And they say it's hot, it's not really, from where you stand on the paths. Obviously do not go touch the small potholes that are not barricaded, it's obviously hot. 

It was kind of getting late, so we decided to head down to Beitou and find ourselves a hot spring to soak in. We went back up to the 2nd car park, but actually, the bus was from 7-eleven/starbucks opposite, so you're supposed to stop at 7-eleven, or you can just get off when everyone else gets off, they know where they are going more than you would. Ask around for what bus you could take, I'm sorry, I forgot the exact bus number. You could check it out on TripAdvisor, people give you detailed instructions on what buses to take and where to take them from (it was where I got my directions from).

Our initial plan was to visit the hot spring museum and the park, but turns out it was really small, and I guess wouldn't have been that interesting, so skipped them, we went right ahead to finding a place to soak at. We didn't go for the public hot springs because male and females were separated, and being there with just my boyfriend, both of us didn't want to land ourselves in that awkward situation with no one to talk to in the hot spring, so we decided to find a couple room hot spring! 

We walked along the street that I mapped out with hot springs, and went to one that just looked more legitimate. It's all about the facade of the hotel or shop. This was the place we had our hot spring at, 百樂匯 溫泉飯店 (BROADWAY HOTSPRING HOTEL) we paid about 1000NT-1200NT, about $40-$50 for 2 hours in a room with a bed! It was REALLY worth it, although we had a bimbo moment as to the operation of the taps for the sulphuric spring water. The thing about hot springs is that, you won't be able to soak in there for a long time, especially if you're not from a culture that involves hot springs. We spent about 10-15 minutes soaking inside, watching the television, then came out of the hot spring, lay on the bed, watched more television, then soaked again for another 10-15 minutes. 
That was good enough, you would come out feeling more refreshed (after a whole day of walking), and your skin would feel much smoother. Although I think it would have been much more enjoyable during the winter period, but.. being there, we just could not miss that. 

Ended the day at Tamsui, and because we only decided on that place a couple of days before leaving for Taipei, I didn't do my research on what was good in Tamsui. I heard there are nice japanese charcoal BBQ places at Tamsui, and a lot of those, please try them, the beef they serve, it tastes like a piece of heaven. Also, Tamsui is the place where you would want to buy 铁蛋, there are shops that sell like 4 for 200NT or something like that, please get those, we tried one more from the inside lane, 1 for 100NT, it wasn't as nice as the cheaper ones. Anyway, there isn't much things to shop here, just eat till you drop.

If you haven't read about my trip to the Taipei Zoo and the Maokong Gondola, it's in THIS post! And for the post to read about my whole trip planning, HERE.

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  1. hi there,

    can I check with you what time you started your journey? From ximen? and roughly what time you ended at beitou bus stop?

    1. Hi,
      We actually started our journey not-so-early in the morning, I'm thinking 10am if I remember correctly. We started our journey at shilin, a bus stop that was directly behind our rented apartment. There's a lot of buses that bring you to yang ming shan if that was your concern. We ended our trip at beitou about 5-6 I think..That was after we soaked ourselves soggy for 2 hours. Maybe if you have more qns you can email me. My itinerary was much more detailed, however I just went there and winked it. If you're Chinese, don't have to worry too much get the rough idea of where to go and you're good!! Enjoy your planning!


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